10 Best HVAC Schools inCalifornia

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If you live in California and you want to start a career in the field of Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration, this page is for you.

HVAC technicians usually begin their career after graduating from a technical school, community college, or by enrolling in an apprenticeship.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual wage reported by California HVAC technicians was $61,670- higher than the national average.

California is home to many post-secondary institutions that provide trading in this field.

This page includes information about some top programs available in The Golden State.

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1Institute of Technology

About the School

Institute of Technology is a technical school in California that provides a wide range of career training programs.

The school’s Redding campus equips students with the professional knowledge and skills needed for a new career in today’s growing industry fields.

Its catalog includes several technical programs, including one that prepares students for employment in the Heating, Air Conditioning, Ventilation, and Refrigeration industry.

Institute of Technology is accredited by the Accrediting Commission of Career Schools and Colleges and the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training.

Courses Offered

The school’s catalog includes a Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning program.

This program provides hands-on training in theories, techniques, and practices in the HVAC field.

Students learn how to install, maintain, and troubleshoot HVAC system installations while following industry standards.

Trainees are also ready to complete the EPA certification process, required for graduation.

The total program cost is $20,375.50 and includes tuition, registration fee, STRF fee, technology fees, books, and supplies.

Graduates are ready for employment in entry-level positions such as refrigeration technicians, heating technicians, air conditioning technicians, or systems engineers.

Contact Information

  • Address: 1755 Hilltop Drive, Redding, CA 96002
  • Phone: (530) 224-1000
  • Website: https://www.iot.edu

2San Joaquin Valley College

About the School

San Joaquin Valley College offers a variety of trades and industrial programs.

SJVC is accredited by the WASC Senior College and University Commission.

Courses Offered

Its catalog includes a Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration program.

The program provides students with a hands-on approach to learning using applications that are directly related to the current industry.

Students learn entry-level skills in:

  • Electrical theories
  • Principles of heating and cooling
  • Problem-solving skills applied to the mechanical and electrical field
  • Installation, replacement, and servicing techniques

The program can be completed in only 14 months and leads to a Certificate of Completion.

Its curriculum covers topics on:

  • Theory and Applications of Air Conditioning- this course includes blueprint interpretation, floor plan layout, building heat loads calculations, air distribution systems, and more.
  • Theory and Applications of Electricity- a course that covers electron flow theory, magnetism, conductors, insulators, motors, motor circuits, and other related topics.
  • Theory and Applications of Refrigeration- students learn about heat transfer, gas laws, pressure and temperature conversions, codes, safety practices, and many other subjects.

Graduates have the chance to earn Environmental Protection Agency 608 certification.

Contact Information

  • Address: 4985 East Andersen Avenue, Fresno CA 93727
  • Phone: (559) 453-0123
  • Website: https://www.sjvc.edu

3Charter College

About the School

Charter College offers a variety of career training programs that prepares students for employment in a variety of growing industries.

The College offers training programs in Alaska, Washington, and California.

A Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning & Refrigeration program is available at the College’s campus in Lancaster, California.

The campus is located on Business Center Parkway, between E Avenue K and E Avenue L.

Charter College is accredited by the Accrediting Bureau of Health Education Schools.

Courses Offered

The HVACR program can be completed in 10 months and teaches students how to install, maintain, and repair equipment found in today’s homes and businesses.

Charter College classes start every five weeks and allow students to choose between flexible schedules.

The curriculum focuses on the following skills:

  • System Troubleshooting
  • Maintenance Skills
  • Environmental Systems

This program leads to a certificate.

Contact Information

4Brownson Technical School

About the School

Brownson Technical School offers HVAC/R Technician training in Anaheim, California.

The school has more than 30 years of experience in the industry.

Students have access to 12,000 square feet of HVAC/R shop labs filled with hundreds of different older and newer models of industry-standard equipment.

Courses Offered

Brownson provides two separate training pathways.

A 10-month training program is available for students who already work in the HVAC/R industry and want to become certified.

This program includes 750 hours of training.

This program blends online with on-campus training.

The classroom portion is completed online and students attend the school three evenings per week for the shop classes.

This program is also available part-time and can be completed in 22 months by students who attend school Monday-Wednesday from 6 p.m. to 10 p.m.

A 1040-hour intensive hands-on program is also available for those who are new to the HVAC industry and want to become certified.

This program can be completed in 10 months by full-time students who attend school Monday-Thursday from 8 a.m.-2:30 p.m. and in 22 months by part-time students.

Contact Information

  • Address: 1110 Technology Circle, Suite D, Anaheim, CA 92805
  • Phone: 714-774-9443
  • Website: https://brownson.edu

5DeHart Technical School

About the School

DeHart Technical School provides classroom education and hands-on training for students who want to start a career in the Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration industry.

The school is owned by a company in the field of heating, air conditioning, and plumbing.

Students receive up-to-date training and hands-on experience.

The school offers its students the opportunity of graduating with the North American Technician Excellence (NATE) certification in their hands.

Courses Offered

The following programs are available:

  • Facilities Maintenance HVAC Course 1 Hybrid- a program that covers:
    • Electrical and Solar Applications
    • Refrigeration Practices, Brazing, and EPA 608
    • Wiring Diagrams and Troubleshooting
    • Gas and Electric Heating
    • Residential and Light Commercial Electrical and Plumbing
  • HVAC/R Facilities Maintenance Course 3 Hybrid- a program that includes the topics mentioned above, plus:
    • HVAC Installation
    • Nate Review
    • Low/Medium Temperature Systems with Electrical
    • Advanced Refrigeration and Ice Machines-with Electrical
    • Advanced Climate Control Systems
    • Air Quality, Air Distribution & Balance
  • Advanced Training Module- Hybrid- this class includes Low and Medium Temperature Systems with Electrical and Advanced Refrigeration and Ice Machines with Electrical

Contact Information

6Center for Employment Training

About the School

Center for Employment Training offers training programs that prepare students for a new career.

Students learn the skills needed for employment through hands-on training.

The programs can be completed in under a year by students who attend classes full-time.

The Center’s catalog includes a Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning program.

Courses Offered

The Center’s catalog includes an HVAC and Green Technology program.

The curriculum covers safety, hand tools, basic electricity, equipment, and HVAC-related plumbing, among other topics.

Students work with tools and HVAC equipment and learn fundamental concepts related to refrigeration, ductwork, silver brazing, and soldering.

The HVAC and Green Technology program is available at three locations in California: Coachella, Colton, and San Jose.

Trainees have access to a fully working lab for hands-on learning where they work with actual residential and commercial HVAC systems.

This 900-hour program can be completed in 8-9 months by students who attend classes 30 hours per week.

Contact Information

  • Address: 1099 N. Pepper Avenue Colton, CA 92324
  • Phone: (909) 478-3818
  • Website: https://cetweb.edu

7Mayfield College

About the School

Mayfield College provides a variety of post-secondary education programs.

Its catalog includes a Heating, Ventilation, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration program designed to prepare students for employment in this high-demand industry.

HVAC/R students train in a state-of-the-art facility using up-to-date equipment.

The program can be completed in less than one year.

Students also have access to externships at local companies where they gain real-world experience.

Graduates receive either a Certificate or an Associate degree, depending on the chosen path.

Mayfield College is accredited by the Council on Occupational Education to award Certificates and Diplomas.

The College is also approved by the California Bureau for Private Postsecondary Education.

The application process consists of four steps:

First, prospective students have to fill in an application that can be found on the school’s website.

The second step consists of a personal interview.

Afterward, most applicants have to take a career placement assessment exam.

The final step consists of completing a Financial Aid Application- for students who qualify.

Prospective students are guided by a school representative throughout the admission process.

Contact Information

8UEI College

About the School

UEI College offers a variety of career-ready programs at 13 California campuses in locations such as Bakersfield, Chula Vista, Fresno, Gardena, and Sacramento.

Its catalog includes a Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning program.

Courses Offered

The curriculum covers courses on Basic Electricity, Motors, and HVAC Controls, Heating Systems, Duct Design, Blueprint Reading and Load Calculations, Regulation and Building Automation, Electrical and Mechanical Troubleshooting, and more.

Students can enroll in the program without a high school diploma.

The first step in the enrollment process is filling out an online form, calling the school, or simply stopping by a campus near you.

Students can graduate in as few as 10 months.

The program prepares students with the skills needed for installing, maintaining, repairing, and troubleshooting HVAC systems.

Students are also ready to take EPA certification exams.

The training includes a hands-on lab where trainees use real HVAC equipment.

Graduates are ready for successful careers as HVAC technicians, mechanics or installers, and other related positions in the field.

Contact Information

  • Address: 3602 N Blackstone Ave, Fresno, CA 93726, USA
  • Phone: (559) 761-1442
  • Website: https://www.uei.edu

9Modesto Technical College

About the School

Modesto Technical College offers training programs that prepare students for careers in high-demand professions, such as HVAC/R technician, Electrician, Automotive Mechanic, or Welder.

Classes are offered during the day, evenings, and on the weekend.

The College is approved to enroll students with workers’ compensation vouchers, WIA, vocational rehabilitation, and several GI Bill Educational Programs.

Courses Offered

The Industrial Refrigeration program included in the College’s catalog trains students to become Industrial Refrigeration Technicians with RETA Certification.

Students enrolled in this program receive state-of-the-art training in Industrial and Ammonia Refrigeration.

The classes are designed for technicians, engineers, and assistance personnel, in the field of meatpacking, refrigerated warehousing, and pharmaceutical industries.

Trainees have an opportunity to use real equipment.

Those interested can complete a student application that can be downloaded from the school’s website.

Contact Information

10JJATC HVACR Training Centers

About the School

JJATC offers a joint journeymen and apprentice training center.

The Center offers training for apprentices and journeymen.

Trainees learn from Instructors and Teacher Assistants who have many years of combined field and instructional experience.

Courses Offered

The apprentice training program starts with an overview of pre-technical and industrial skills needed by mechanics for their day-to-day tasks.

Trainees then continue with the specifics of heating, cooling, and refrigeration principles.

The apprenticeship lasts for five years.

Courses combine theory lectures with lab work.

The first year is dedicated to the following three topics:

  • Electrical Theory I Lecture- this part takes 18 weeks
  • Mechanical Systems I Lecture/Lab- 36 weeks
  • Brazing and Soldering I Lecture/Lab- 18 weeks

During the next years, students learn about a variety of other topics, including Electrical Controls, Safety for Service, Thermodynamics, Market Applications, HVAC Systems, Advanced Troubleshooting, Hydronics, and many more.

The following Journeyman classes are available: Electrical for Start-Up, Core 2, Energy Audit, Market Core, Pump Rebuild, Advanced Customer Relations, and High Voltage Class.

Journeyman training lasts between nine weeks and 18 weeks, depending on the class.

Contact Information

  • Address: 650 West Cienega Avenue, San Dimas, California 91773, United States
  • Phone: (213) 747-0291
  • Website: https://hvacr.jjatc.com

Regional Salary in California

RegionEmployedAvg. Annual SalaryAvg. Hourly PayTop 10% Annual SalaryBottom 10% Annual Salary
Bakersfield, CA910$60,840$29.25$90,350$37,430
Chico, CA180$55,120$26.5$78,820$38,200
El Centro, CA140$64,860$31.18$101,120$36,940
Fresno, CA1,040$61,380$29.51$95,220$38,130
Hanford-Corcoran, CA80$66,200$31.83$95,710$46,590
Los Angeles-Long Beach-Anaheim, CA10,780$68,680$33.02$106,030$40,080
Madera, CA110$59,290$28.5$79,790$37,620
Merced, CA150$58,150$27.96$77,620$38,440
Modesto, CA450$62,560$30.08$96,960$39,400
Napa, CA120$63,190$30.38$84,960$45,970
Oxnard-Thousand Oaks-Ventura, CA780$60,370$29.03$81,540$37,710
Redding, CA160$57,060$27.44$77,180$37,580
Riverside-San Bernardino-Ontario, CA5,510$56,730$27.28$80,210$36,870
Sacramento--Roseville--Arden-Arcade, CA3,110$66,380$31.91$101,750$38,650
Salinas, CA310$61,680$29.65$83,070$38,690
San Diego-Carlsbad, CA3,950$64,420$30.97$95,860$38,120
San Francisco-Oakland-Hayward, CA4,540$80,300$38.61$128,960$47,560
San Jose-Sunnyvale-Santa Clara, CA2,310$88,990$42.79$148,370$48,830
San Luis Obispo-Paso Robles-Arroyo Grande, CA260$61,170$29.41$93,150$37,710
Santa Cruz-Watsonville, CA160$72,060$34.65$105,510$45,620
Santa Maria-Santa Barbara, CA410$65,260$31.37$99,000$38,090
Santa Rosa, CA550$68,780$33.07$100,320$46,030
Stockton-Lodi, CA480$62,960$30.27$92,350$37,580
Vallejo-Fairfield, CA500$61,030$29.34$85,230$39,100
Visalia-Porterville, CA390$55,620$26.74$81,710$35,780
Yuba City, CA80$59,080$28.4$78,220$37,240
* Salary information based on the May 2022 Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) Survey for Heating, Air Conditioning, and Refrigeration Mechanics and Installers, OCC Code 49-9021, BLS.
* Employment conditions in your area may vary.

Final Thoughts

If you want to become an HVAC mechanic, installer, or technologist, California provides many training options.

Our list was designed to provide you with information about the top HVAC schools in the state.

We encourage you to continue your research and find out more information about the programs available near you.