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the come Alabama hvac contractor license guide for apprentices

The Free Alabama HVAC License Guide for 2020!

HVAC contractors in the state of Alabama are governed by the:

  • Alabama Board of Heating, Air-Conditioning, and Refrigeration


There are 4 classifications for HVAC technicians in the state of Alabama:

  • Apprentice 
  • Certified Heating and Air Conditioning Contractor
  • Certified Refrigeration Contractor
  • Duct Air Tightness Testing Contractor
how to get the alabama hvac license

How Do I Get My HVAC License In Alabama?

The process can be a little confusing but we got you covered!

First off, what you need to understand is:

Anyone performing HVAC work in Alabama must be registered with the Alabama Board of Heating, Air-Conditioning, and Refrigeration.

You will first need to choose which level you want to start from:

HVAC Apprentice

"A person other than a certified heating, air conditioning, or refrigeration contractor, whois engaged in learning and assisting in the installation, service, or repair of a heating, air conditioning, or refrigeration system and working under the direct supervision of a certified heating, air conditioning, or refrigeration contractor, and who has successfully fulfilled the voluntary registration requirements of the board and has been duly registered by the board as such for the current year"

An HVAC apprentice must:

Certified Heating and Air-Conditioning Contractor

A heating and/or cooling apparatus consisting of an air heating and/or cooling fixture from pipes, plenums or blowers including any accessory and equipment installed in connection herewith; specifically excluding window units, automotive or farm implement type heating and/or air conditioning equipment

To get the Alabama air-conditioning contractor license, you must:

Certified Refrigeration Contractor

Any and all legal entities engaged in the business of refrigeration contracting and servicing, installation, and repair.

An refrigeration contractor must:

  • Work under a Refrigeration contractor for at least 2 years (3,000 hours)
  • Pass the Refrigeration examination
  • Register as a Contractor

Duct Air Tightness Testing Contractor

Any individual who engages in the practice of testing and verifying duct air tightness in conjunction with the installation, service, or repair of a heating and air conditioning system

A duct air-tightness testing contractor must:

  • Work under a Duct Air Tightness Contractor for at least 2 years (3,000 hours)
  • Pass the examination
  • Register as a Contractor

Alabama HVAC License Requirements

You must meet the following requirements:

  • 18 Years of Age
  •  Valid Drivers License OR USA Issued Identification
  •  Social Security Number

You must also have:

  • Meet the experience requirements of each classification
  • W2's verifying your experience
  • Pay fees

Journeyman Level Experience

To get the alabama HVAC license you will need to pass a journeyman level exam

While the Alabama HVAC board does not explicitly state any Journeyman requirement for HVAC contractors. You will be expected to supply W2's verifying your work experience. 

Your examination will also present questions as if you are at least a journeyman level HVAC technician.

While different regions may have varying definitions for what a journeyman is, typically this is someone who:

  • Can perform all of the duties associated with their trade
  • Has worked un-supervised performing their trade
  • Has supervisory level experience
  • (in some cases) has completed a Journeyman certification

HVAC Contractor License Application Processing

The application process is as follows:

  • Step 1: 

Complete either an Apprentice orContractor application (EA1-4) 

Once you are approved for an examination you will be emailed a Voucher ID. You have 1 year to take and pass the exam. 

  • Step 2:

Schedule your examination with the Alabama HVAC board

  • Step 3:

Pay your certification fee and provide a performance bond ($15,000)

The Alabama HVAC License Examination

Alabama HVAC contractor license exam

All applicants must pass the Alabama HVAC exam. 

The test is administered by PSI services. It will be:

  • 80 Questions (multiple choice)
  • 66% required to pass
  • 240 minutes allowed
  • Open Book

Questions will cover the following topics:

  • Insulation
  • Hangers and Supports
  • Sound, Vibration and Seismic Control
  • Heating and Cooling Principles
  • Refrigerants 
  • Testing, Adjusting and Balancing
  • Controls
  • Air Conditioning and Heat Pump Systems
  • Furnaces and Heaters
  • Chimneys, Flues and Vents
  • Combustion Air Ducts
  • Ventilation and Exhaust
  • Safety
  • Piping
  • Load Calculations, Residential

Alabama Refrigeration License Exam

The refrigeration license test will be: 

  • 60 Questions (You need 40 correct to pass)
  • Multiple choice
  • 150 Minutes allowed
  • Open Book

Exam questions will cover:

  • General Knowledge
  • Refrigerant Piping
  • Refrigerants and Refrigeration
  • Refrigeration Systems and Controls
  • Testing, Inspecting, and Troubleshooting

Exam Site Locations

  • Birmingham (Vestavia Hills) 

100 Center-view Drive, Suite 100

Vestavia Hills AL 35216


  • Huntsville

4900 University Square, Suite 4

Huntsville, AL 35816


  • Mobile

Dorsey Center 6051-B Airport Blvd.

Mobile, AL 36608


  • Montgomery

500 Interstate Park Drive Suite 530

Montgomery, Alabama, 36109

Alabama Business License

if you are looking to become an electrical contractor in alabama, you may want to look at establishing yourself as a business entity

If you are applying for an Alabama HVAC contractors license as a business, the state board will require you to have an established business entity.

This can be set up through the Alabama Secretary of State

You will choose a name and then select the type of entity you want. Typically, construction companies choose either:

  • Sole Proprietor - License held through an individual
  • Partnership - License held through a partnership
  • LLC - License held through a company that exists as its own entity
  • S-Corporation - License held through a corporate entity

For a deeper look at the advantages and disadvantages of each business entity, check out this free guide!

Worker's Compensation laws for Alabama HVAC Contractors

Alabama requires all construction companies with 1 or more employees to hold workers compensation insurance.

This also includes LLC's. However, If you apply as a sole proprietorship and have no employees you may be exempt.

Contractors must be insured through a commercial provider, self insured carrier or through the Alabama Department of Labor

Alabama HVAC license search

The Alabama HVAC Board's number one responsibility is protecting the consumer public.

The agency exists not only to enforce rules on electrical contractors, but also to ensure that homeowners are not being over charged.

If you are looking to verify an electrical license in the state of Alabama, you can check a license here

Alabama contractor license renewal

Once your HVAC license is active, you will be responsible for renewing it on an annual basis. 

Make sure that you begin the renewal process 30 days in advance to make sure there is no gap in your licensing.

Alabama HVAC license renewal portal

HVAC Apprenticeships

If you are entering the construction industry without any experience, you should absolutely explore starting out in an apprenticeship!

One of the best ways to build a solid foundation and position yourself to earn an excellent living in a short time frame is by investing in your education.

Apprenticeships can provide you with valuable training in a variety of different trades including: Electrical, Plumbing, Concrete, Landscaping, Painting, HVAC, Roofing, Carpentry and much more!

If you are one day looking to get the Alabama General Contractors license, you must demonstrate skillsets beyond just your specific trade. 

Check out our online course library:

There are several online alabama hvac license courses available

If you have never heard the term “journeyman” or “apprentice” and are not sure what these terms mean, these courses may be perfect for you.

Each state may have different requirements and standards for what is considered a journeyman, check your state laws.

To Learn more about the step by step path from an Apprentice to Journeyman!

HVAC Codes in Alabama

In March 2010, legislation was signed giving the Alabama Energy and Residential Codes (AERC) Board the authority to adopt mandatory residential and commercial energy codes for the entire state.

It also gave the board the authority to adopt mandatory residential building codes for jurisdictions that had not implemented such a code prior to March 2010.

What are Building Codes?

What You Need To Know About Contractor License Schools

getting your HVAC license in alabama is a difficult process, You may need to enroll in a contractor license school

If you are looking to prepare for your Alabama HVAC license exam, taking contractor classes could be a huge help.

Schools typically provide

  • Home study materials
  • Online classes taught by industry professionals
  • Application assistance 
  • Insurance and Business services

Many tradesman find themselves a bit confused when faced with questions about construction accounting, balance sheets, workers compensation, employee rights, job site safety and Alabama state construction law. 

These topics can be learned quickly. Studying consistently on the weeks leading up to your exam day will help you greatly.

Practice exams and study guides breaking down everything you need to know can be found here.

Blueprint Reading Course

blueprint reading is an excellent skill for hvac contractors

For anyone looking to become a licensed general contractor, learning how to read blueprints is critical...

Blueprints communicate important information about the way in which a structure is built as well as what materials are necessary or have been used for its construction.

Being comfortable with construction blueprints is an invaluable skill especially for those looking to get into engineering or architecture.

See our Free Blueprint Reading Course!

Alabama OSHA

Statistically, 21% of all work-related fatalities are in construction.

That equals about 1 and 5 worker deaths on average.

In the construction industry, the leading cause of worker deaths is reported as falls, struck by an object, electrocution, and caught-in/between.

License alabama hvac contractors should have a deep understanding of OSHA safety regulations

Safety is taken very seriously by construction authorities in Alabama.

Whether it be HVAC, roofing, painting, landscaping, carpentry, electrical or any other trade.

If your workers are not properly trained, it can place unnecessary risk to not only your personal safety but your bottom line as a business. 

For employment with a licensed general contractor, you may be asked to complete some level of Alabama OSHA Training

Alabama HVAC Contractor License Reciprocity

You may qualify for reciprocity if you are licensed in the following states:

  • Georgia
  • Louisiana
  • Mississippi  
  • Tennessee  
  • North Carolina ​
  • South Carolina
  • Virginia

Learn more about HVAC license reciprocity

Get Started on Your Construction Career

Applying to the Alabama HVAC Board can be a huge first step up in starting your own business.

The construction industry is very lucrative. There will be more and more opportunities for skilled tradesman in the future.

The key is to use the information you have now and take action from beginning to end. If you are looking to get work in another state you can find information here about electrical contractor licenses in: California, New Mexico, Arizona, Colorado, Louisiana, Alabama, and Florida

If you have found this article, be sure to let us know! and check back for more updates in the future.

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