what kinds of jobs can you do with a C-38 refrigeration license in California

Jobs You Can Do With a C-38 Refrigeration License

Table of Contents

What Jobs Can You Bid with a C-38 Refrigeration License in California?

The C-38 contractor's license is for individuals or companies that specialize in residential and commercial refrigeration.

There are a variety of jobs you can bid on if you have this license, including:

  • Commercial refrigeration services
  • Restaurant refrigeration
  • Refrigeration maintenance
  • Appliance installation
  • Cooling specialists
  • Bio-medical equipment
  • Laboratory refrigerated equipment
  • Ultra-low below 80 freezers
  • Refrigeration equipment installation
  • Temperature and humidity-controlled chambers
  • Environmental Rooms
  • Blood bank refrigeration
  • Food processing facility design
  • Cold storage construction
  • Industrial ice machine installation and repair
  • Spiral freezers
  • Custom cooling solutions
  • Service and Repair
  • Equipment sales
  • Retrofitting
  • Reach-in coolers
  • Meat cases and cold displays
  • Commercial kitchen swamp coolers
  • Commercial exhaust fans
  • Walk-in freezer services
  • Ice machine sales & repair
  • Construction and project management
  • Commissioning
  • Refrigeration controls and automation
  • Refrigerant retrofits
  • Walk-in coolers
  • Computerized inventory control
  • Blast freezing
  • Load consolidation & cross docking services
  • Refrigerator work table installation

Refrigeration Contractors and the CSLB

The C-38 license is one of 74 classifications available in California. Contractors in the state of California are governed by the CSLB(Contractors State License Board)

There are 4 major classification categories:

Common Pairings for the C-38 Refrigeration License

Contractors in California can hold multiple classifications.

The most common pairings for the C-38 license are:

jobs you can do with a C-38 refrigeration license in california

C-38 refrigeration contractor requirements

To become licensed with the CSLB you must meet the following basic requirements:

  • 18 Years of Age
  • 4 Years of Journeyman Level Experience
  • Social Security or ITIN #
  • Not Currently on Probation or Parole
  • Signature from a licensed contractor, fellow employee, supervisor, or business associate 

What refrigeration concepts do I need to know for the exam?

You will definitely want to be prepared for any curveballs that could come up on the C-38 license exam.

You may be presented with questions related to job site preparation and commercial refrigeration systems which could be unfamiliar.

Take the time to review every possible question and concept.

Below is a breakdown of what you need to know:

1. Planning and Estimating (24%)

  • Planning refrigeration projects
  • Estimating refrigeration projects

2. Refrigeration System Installation (29%)

  • Job site preparation
  • Installing refrigeration equipment
  • Starting up refrigeration systems
  • Installing specialty refrigeration systems

3. Refrigeration System Repair (24%)

  • Troubleshooting refrigeration systems
  • Troubleshooting electrical problems
  • Repairing refrigeration systems

4. Refrigeration System Maintenance (13%)

  • Maintaining refrigeration systems
  • Documenting code compliance

5. Safety (10%)

  • Personnel safety
  • Job site safety

What's the C-38 license exam process like?

The exam will be:

  • 115 Questions Law & Business
  • 115 Questions Refrigeration

  • Multiple Choice
  • Closed Book
  • 3 Hours to Complete each section
  • Taken via computer at a proctored exam center
  • Exam centers located all over the state of California

Math Skills

There will be math on your CSLB law & business and trade exam.

On the law side, questions will be presented to you as if you are a General Building Contractor with multiple projects running simultaneously with several employees.

You can expect math questions related to:

  • Arithmetic
  • Cost Estimation 
  • Percentages and Decimals

The math you can expect on the C-38 license exam may vary. Be prepared for questions that may include:

  • Basic Geometry
  • Units of measurement

Blueprint Reading Skills

Blueprint reading is a fundamental skill for all contractors.

Knowing how to interpret plans and is a key part of the job if you are working within a construction crew. Interpreting building plans is critical.

Some aspects of plan reading may also be your examination. 

For a deeper look at blueprint reading concepts, check out this free blueprint reading guide.

CSLB law & business exam

Our complete course is a guide for aspiring California refrigeration contractors.

A step by step break down all of the essential knowledge you need to be successful on your CSLB law & business examination.

In addition to passing your exam, those looking to get the C-38 contractor license will be equipped with a crash course on how to run a profitable business.

You will learn:

  • Company organization
  • How to bid effectively
  • Understanding cost control
  • Various contract types
  • Cash management
  • Estimation fundamentals
  • Business Structures
  • Worker’s Compensation and Taxes
  • Insurance Types in Construction
  • Labor Laws and Employee Rights
  • Hiring and Firing Practices
  • Contractor Bonds
  • Mechanics Liens
  • State Laws and Statutes
  • Project Management 101
  • Prevailing Wages and Public Works
  • And Much More!