Occupational Demand for HVAC Technicians in Baltimore, MD
Heating, air conditioning, and refrigeration mechanics and installers held 332,900 jobs nationwide in 2016, according to the BLS, and the demand for HVAC technicians nationwide continues to grow. In fact, the overall number of positions in this field is expected to swell 15 percent nationally between 2016 and 2026—much faster than average for all occupations. A forecast for Baltimore specifically isn’t available, but Maryland is experiencing a slightly higher-than-average growth in the demand for technicians in the latest predictions. By illustration, Projections Central anticipated a 15.1 percent statewide increase in local HVAC positions for the decade ending in 2024. Several factors contribute to the growth of the HVAC and HVAC/R industry:
- New commercial buildings and residences
- Increasing complexity of climate control systems
- Emphasis on energy efficiency and reducing pollution
- Replacing, retrofitting, or upgrading older systems
Technicians who are computer/electronics-literate and those with good troubleshooting skills are likely to have the best job prospects.
It’s important to note that adverse weather conditions don’t stop the need for HVAC repairs or maintenance. HVAC workers experience a relatively high rate of injury, suffering electrical shocks and injuries related to moving heavy equipment. With proper training in safety, however, these risks can generally be kept to a minimum.
The BLS (Oct. 2017) reported that nine percent of HVAC/R technicians were self-employed, while 64 percent were employed by plumbing, heating, and air conditioning contractors. The remaining workers were employed by schools or retail and wholesale organizations. Also, most of the technicians worked full time. Depending on peak seasons, technicians may work evenings, weekends, and other overtime hours in homes, hospitals, offices, schools, stores, and warehouses.
To illustrate the thriving demand for HVAC services in a given area, check out local job boards. Indeed (Jan. 2018) listed an astounding 892 HVAC jobs in the Baltimore area. One company wanted a technician skilled at diagnosing, repairing, and maintaining commercial HVAC systems and controls. A different family-owned company wanted an experienced HVAC installer/service technician, while Petro Home Services wanted a technician able to install HVAC systems and Lockheed Martin was looking for a facilities engineer experienced with automated controls. In short, there’s a strong demand for HVAC professionals in the Baltimore area.