Electrician vs. HVAC — Which Career Is The Right Choice For You

If you are starting your career, there are many paths you can choose from.

Are you interested in trades but not sure which one to get into?

It is completely ok.

Estimating your options is a great thing.

In the following post, we will talk about a decision that many tradespeople make: should you become an HVAC technician or an electrician.

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Electrician Duties

Electricians install and maintain electrical equipment that brings electricity to industrial and commercial centers, and residential homes.

There are different types of electricians performing various tasks, such as inside wiremen, outside linemen, residential wiremen, and telecommunication electricians.

Their responsibilities vary from reading blueprints, maintaining and installing wiring, testing systems, and applying the National Electrical Code to ensure the safe and efficient operation of buildings.

HVAC Duties

HVAC stands for heating, ventilating, and air conditioning.

HVAC technicians handle the installation and maintenance of systems moving heat, oxygen, and cooling air in a building.

All buildings have vents and heating systems you can see, but also there are extensive ventilation and heating systems in the building’s infrastructure.

HVAC systems are essential for residential homes, commercial public places, and industrial centers creating gases and chemicals.

Verdict: It’s a tie.

Both HVAC techs and electricians work with systems significant for all building types.

How Different Is Training?

Electricians need to complete an apprenticeship program that lasts for five years.

These programs can be hard to find, and many aspiring electricians either get some schooling or an entry-level job to gain some experience to improve their chances to be accepted into an apprenticeship.

On the bright side, they are paid, and the pay raises as they move on through the program.

The process is the same for HVAC technicians.

They should also be trained through the apprenticeship.

However, the programs can be shorter, depending on the location.

Some apprenticeship programs take a little over three years while others last more than five.

Similar to electrical apprenticeships, HVAC apprentices get a salary, which raises as they move on.

Verdict: It’s another tie.

You have to go through extensive training for both trades, and the apprenticeship provides all the necessary training.

Some HVAC apprenticeships can be completed faster than electrical apprenticeships.

But either way, you are getting paid.

Since in the apprenticeship you earn as you learn, the duration of a program isn’t a vital matter.

HVAC Salary vs. Electrician Salary

The US Bureau of Labor Statistics records thousands of data regarding employment, job outlook, salaries, etc.

According to their latest analysis, professionals in the two trades make the following:

  • Electricians: $49,840 per year, or $23.96 per hour.
  • HVAC Technicians: $43,640 per year, or $20.98 per hour.

The figures above represent the median wage data, which is not the average salary but “middle” wage.

The median salary for electricians is $49,840, which means that half of all electricians in the US make more than that while the other half makes less than that.

The median annual wage of all workers in America is around $35,000.

Verdict: Electricians make more.

On the bright side, both careers are paid above the national median salary.

Despite your choice, your salary will be higher than the average American.

Job Outlook

According to the BLS, the employment rate for all occupations nationwide will increase by 11% by 2022.

For HVAC and electrical professionals, the projection is the following:

  • Electricians: 20% growth by 2022.
  • HVACs: 21% growth by 2022.
  • Construction trades workers: 22% by 2022.

This means that the job outlook is positive regardless of your choice.

Verdict: A tie one more time.

That’s great news for all tradespeople.

Many sectors of the American economy will face a lot worse outlooks.

These figures will be reevaluated in 2022 but so far job outlook is positive.

What Are YOU Interested In?

Both trades are a great career choice, and with any of them, you will have a reliable income and a long-term career.

So, both careers are a great option and can’t be outsourced overseas.

Electricians and HVAC techs, just like people of all trades, will always have work in States.

It is hard work but respected and reliable.

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Get information on Electrician programs by entering your zip code and request enrollment information.

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