Maine is considered to have relatively comfortable temperatures as a whole year round. Its highest temperatures tend to not exceed 80°F and the state experiences fairly humid summers. However, winters in Maine can be extremely cold and the state is known for being the coldest state in New England. Winter months typically have an average low temperature of 12°F at their peak and snowfall can be quite heavy during the beginning of the year. Due to the cold conditions experienced during winter in addition to the muggy summer months HVAC professionals stay in the highest demand throughout the months of November through February and May through August with an abundance of work throughout all portions of the state.
Maine HVAC License Options
Maine does not require HVAC professionals to obtain specific HVAC licensure, however it does offer licensure for Oil Burner and Solid Fuel Technicians through the Maine Fuel Board. Licenses for either kind of HVAC technician are offered at the apprentice, journeyman and master levels.
Maine HVAC Apprentice
The only requirements for working at the apprentice level are that HVAC technicians must register with the state as well as work directly under a licensed master level technician in either the master oil or solid fuel specialty.
Maine HVAC Journeyman License
HVAC technicians wishing to work at the journeyman level must choose one of three options available for obtaining licensure. The first option is for HVAC technicians to complete one year of work experience at the apprentice level. The second option is for HVAC technicians to complete a minimum of 160 hours of field-related education with at least 75 hours pertaining to oil burning systems lab work in addition to working 6 months as a licensed apprentice. The third option is for HVAC technicians to complete 320 hours of education within at least 150 hours pertaining to oil burning systems lab work. HVAC technicians that plan to work at the master level must meet specific requirements for either the oil burner or solid fuel specialty.
Maine HVAC Master Level License
HVAC technicians that plan to work at the master level must meet specific requirements for either the oil burner or solid fuel specialty. The oil burner specialty requires HVAC technicians to complete a minimum of four years of work experience with two of the required years working at the journeyman level. The solid fuel specialty requires HVAC technicians to complete at least two years of work at the apprentice level. HVAC professionals wishing to work as contractors are not required to obtain contractor specific licensing, however they must obtain a business license.
In some cases, HVAC professionals working in Maine may be required to obtain a systems control wiring permit through the Maine Electricians’ Licensing Board in order to work on the initial wiring of HVAC systems. The Maine Electricians’ Licensing Board also offers licensure for HVAC professionals working in refrigeration at the limited electrician level. In order to obtain this license HVAC professionals must complete a minimum of 270 hours of education in electricity as well as 6,000 hours of related work experience and pass an exam.
Maine HVAC Education
Maine has several programs which offer HVAC education including Eastern Maine Community College, Northeast Technical Institute, Northern Maine Community College, Southern Maine Community College and Washington County Community College.
Maine HVAC Exam Overview
There are exams in Maine for both Oil Burner technicians and Solid Fuel technicians. Generally both exams are in the form of multiple choice questions and require a minimum score of 70% in order to pass.
Maine EPA Section 608 Certification
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) requires all HVAC technicians that work with refrigerants to be certified. In order to obtain EPA certification, HVAC technicians must take an exam which has 80 multiple choice questions that must be completed within 3 hours. A score of 70% is required to pass the exam and the exam fee is $120.
The three different EPA certification types that HVAC technicians can acquire are Type I, II and III. Type I limits HVAC technicians to working on appliances which contain no more than five pounds of refrigerant. Type II permits HVAC technicians to perform work on high pressure appliances. Type III limits HVAC technicians to working on low-pressure appliances. This certification is transferable among all states and does not expire.
Maine HVAC Salary
HVAC professionals in the state of Maine earn on average over $45,000 per year with the top 20% earning over $62,000 annually. Cities which pay some of the highest rates for HVAC professionals include Eliot, Augusta, and Westbrook with earnings ranging from $24.50 to over $30 per hour. Maine does not require HVAC professionals at any level to obtain licensure specific to the HVAC trade, however HVAC contractors are required to obtain a business license prior to taking on work.