ARLINGTON, Va. — Demand for skilled installation and repair technicians in the hvacr industry far outstrips supply and the industry now needs more than 20,000 new workers each year, according to a spokesperson for the Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Institute (ARI).
Edward Dooley, vice president of communications and education at ARI said, “Contractors across the country report that their number one problem is a lack of skilled installers and repair technicians. This industry offers a superb lifetime career opportunity in a business that grows with the construction of each new home, supermarket, shopping mall, hospital and office building.”
Nationwide more than 84% of new homes are built with central air conditioning or heat pumps. With 70 million units already installed, replacement and repair of aging systems provides steady business to the nation’s 40,000 contractors. Installation and maintenance of millions of refrigeration units in stores, plus chillers in commercial and industrial buildings, add to the workload.
ARI has joined with more than a dozen industry organizations to form the Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, Refrigeration and Plumbing Career Education Coalition which launched a website (www.coolcareers.org) that now garners more than 20,000 visits monthly, Dooley said. In addition, the group distributed kits to 1,300 training programs to recruit high school students and adults seeking retraining to applied technology courses offered across the country.