Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractors Frequently Asked Questions

LICENSING & REGISTRATION

AIR CONDITIONING AND REFRIGERATION CONTRACTOR LICENSE

  1. How do I apply for an Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor’s license?
  2. What documentation is required if I need to re-apply for my license?
  3. How do I know if I qualify for the ACR Contractor’s exam?
  4. What is the difference between “Environmental Air Conditioning” and “Commercial Refrigeration/Process Heating and Cooling?”
  5. What is the difference between a Class A and a Class B license?
  6. How do I add an endorsement to an existing license?
  7. How do I add an endorsement if I have a current application on file?
  8. If I want to add an endorsement to an existing license AND change my business information on my license, what is required?
  9. Does Texas reciprocate with any states, and if so, which states?
  10. Does Texas accept municipal licenses in lieu of a Texas license?
  11. Does Texas accept out-of-state licenses in lieu of a Texas license?

Examination

  1. What are the requirements to take the exam?
  2. How can I prepare for the exam?
  3. How do I get scheduled for my exam?
  4. How often can I take the exam?
  5. Do I need a certificate of insurance before I take the exam?

1. How do I apply for an Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor’s license?

Submit a completed application and the $115 application fee to TDLR. You must qualify for the license and pass the required exam(s). View forms

2. What documentation is required if I need to re-apply for my license?

A completed application with the experience and employment documentation attached, and the license fee of $115.  The license requirements are to provide 48 months of practical experience in air conditioning and refrigeration related work under the supervision of a license air conditioning and refrigeration contactor in the preceding 72 months.  

3. How do I know if I qualify for the ACR Contractor’s exam?

To qualify for the exam, you must:

· be at least 18 years old and

·  show proof of 48 months of practical experience in air conditioning and refrigeration work under the supervision of a licensed air conditioning and refrigeration contractor within the last 72 months.

If your application is approved, we will notify the exam provider (PSI) and they will send you a postcard to proceed with scheduling your examination. The exam fee will be paid directly to PSI.

4. What is the difference between “Environmental Air Conditioning” and “Commercial Refrigeration/Process Heating and Cooling?”

  • "Environmental Air Conditioning" means treating air to control temperature, humidity, cleanliness, ventilation, and circulation to meet human comfort requirements.
  • "Environmental" includes central air conditioning and heating.
  • "Commercial Refrigeration" means the use of mechanical or absorption equipment to control temperature or humidity to satisfy the intended use of a specific space.
  • "Process Cooling or Heating" includes controlling temperature, humidity, or cleanliness solely for production requirements or the proper operation of equipment.
  • "Commercial Refrigeration/Process Heating and Cooling" is limited to coolers, freezers, ice machines, and equipment that provides temperature and humidity controls.

5. What is the difference between a Class A and a Class B license?

The Class A license allows you to work on any size unit.

The Class B license allows you to work on cooling systems of 25 tons and under, and heating systems of 1.5 million BTUs/hour and under.

License numbers have the following form: Title/Class/Number/Endorsement code-TACL/A/000000/C.

Endorsement codes are as follows:

  • Environmental Air Conditioning - E;
  • Commercial Refrigeration & Process Cooling and Heating - R;
  • Combined Endorsements - C

6.How do I add an endorsement to an existing license?

You can add an endorsement by using the ACR003 Notice of Change and Duplicate License Request, along with a fee of $25.

7. How do I add an endorsement if I have a current application on file?

If it has been less than one year since you submitted your application, you may email or fax your request to the Department (no fee is required). PSI will mail you a postcard when you are eligible to take the new exam.

8. If I want to add an endorsement to an existing license AND change my business information on my license, what is required?

You may complete the ACR003 Notice of Change and Duplicate License Request, submit a fee of $50 and provide a new certificate of insurance if the business name is being changed.
A fee of $25 for adding the endorsement AND a fee of $25 to change the existing license is required: Total $50

9. Does Texas reciprocate with any states, and if so, which states?

Yes, Texas reciprocates with South Carolina and Georgia. If you have a Texas license and wish to reciprocate with either state, please contact TDLR and request a “letter of good standing.”

Contact South Carolina and Georgia directly for reciprocal forms and license requirements:

If you are currently licensed in South Carolina or Georgia and you want to be licensed in Texas, you need to submit:

10. Does Texas accept municipal licenses in lieu of a Texas license?

Yes. To receive the Texas license, you will need to send in a completed TDLR application, a copy of your municipal license, and a copy of the municipality’s license requirements. Also, we need to know when this license was issued and how long you held it. TDLR will review the information you submit and determine if you meet the Texas license requirements.

11. Does Texas accept out-of-state licenses in lieu of a Texas license?

Yes. To be licensed in Texas if you have an out-of-state license, you will need to send in a completed TDLR application, a copy of your out-of-state license, and a list of the requirements for the out-of-state license. Also, we need to know when this license was issued and how long you held it. TDLR will review and determine if you meet the Texas license requirements.

Examination

12. What are the requirements to take the exam?

You must complete and submit:

· a License Application

·  the Employment Verification Form detailing the 48 months of practical experience within the preceding 72 months as verified by a licensed air conditioning and refrigeration contractor,  and

· the license application fee of $115.

Exam content and scheduling information is available from the Candidate Information Bulletin on our web site.

13. How can I prepare for the exam?

TDLR does not offer study guides. A reference material list is provided on our web site. These references may be purchased at community college bookstores or technical bookstores. Check with your local associations, schools, or license holders. TDLR does not offer or endorse air conditioning and refrigeration exam preparation classes.

14. How do I get scheduled for my exam?

You may schedule your exam at your convenience. The Schedule Notice will have the contact number for the testing site along with a code for the type of exam that you are requesting.

15. How often can I take the exam?

You may take the exam as often as necessary within one year from the time you file your application, but you will be charged by PSI for each exam.

16. Do I need a certificate of insurance before I take the exam?

No. You will need a certificate of insurance to get your license, but it should be submitted with the license request only after the exam is passed. See Sample of Certificate of Insurance (398kb PDF).

AIR CONDITIONING AND REFRIGERATION TECHNICIAN REGISTRATION

  1. Who is required to register as an ACR Technician?
  2. What is air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work?
  3. What is the difference between registration and certification?
  4. How do I apply to become a Registered ACR Technician or Certified ACR Technician?
  5. How much does it cost to register?
  6. Do I have to be certified to become a Registered ACR Technician?
  7. Do I have to pass an exam to become a Registered ACR Technician?
  8. What is a qualifying exam?
  9. I do air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work for an apartment complex. Do I need to register?
  10. I do air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work for an office building. Do I need to register?
  11. I install complete new air conditioning systems in new construction. Do I need an air conditioning technician registration?
  12. I’m a licensed air conditioning and refrigeration contractor. Do I need to be registered or certified as an ACR Technician?
  13. Is the technician registration the same as the refrigerant registration?
  14. What is the minimum age requirement to be registered or certified as an Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Technician?

1. Who is required to register as an ACR Technician?

Any person who assists a licensed air conditioning and refrigeration contractor in performing air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work must register as an ACR Technician.

2. What is air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work?

All work, including repair work, required for the continued normal performance of an environmental air conditioning system, a process cooling or heating system, a commercial refrigeration system, or commercial refrigeration equipment. Maintenance work does not include total replacement of a system, nor does it include work to install and test equipment in new construction.

3. What is the difference between registration and certification?

Registration is required for air conditioning technicians who work under a licensed air conditioning and refrigeration contractor and who performs air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work.

Certification is optional. To become certified, you must:

  • register with TDLR and;
  • pass a qualifying exam.

4. How do I apply to become a Registered ACR Technician or Certified ACR Technician?

You can complete an application online for Registered ACR Technician or Certified ACR Technician using TDLR’s Online Licensing Services.

You may also apply by submitting a completed paper application and the required fee.

5. How much does it cost to register?

For a Registered ACR Technician, the Application Fee is $20.

For a Certified ACR Technician, the Application Fee is $35.

6. Do I have to be certified to become a Registered ACR Technician?

No, certification is not required for a Registered ACR Technician.

7. Do I have to pass an exam to become a Registered ACR Technician?

No, an exam is not required to become a Registered ACR Technician. A Registered ACR Technician who has passed a qualifying exam may obtain TDLR certification to become a Certified ACR Technician.

8. What is a qualifying exam?

You must pass a qualifying exam to obtain TDLR certification to become a Certified ACR Technician. TDLR accepts the following exams:

Angelina College, Lufkin, HVAC
Ashworth University, HVAC
ATI (American Trades Institute, HVAC)
Austin Community College, HVAC
Blinn College, HVAC
Capital City Trade - HVAC
Career Centers of Texas - Brownsville, HVAC
CARRIER Technical Training Certification
Castillo Training - NATE ONLY
Central Texas, AC and Refrigeration School
Central Texas College, HVAC
Centre County, HVAC
CFESA - Master Tech. Certification (Commercial Food Equipment Service Association)
City of San Antonio, HVAC
Dallas County Community College, HVAC
Department of Labor, HVAC
Education Direct/Penn Foster, HVAC
El Paso Community College, HVAC
Everest Institute, HVAC
Fortis Institute, HVAC
Grayson College, HART Program
Hill College, HVAC
Houston Community College
HVAC EXCELLENCE
IAPMO (International Association of Plumbing and Mechanical Officials)
ICC (International Code Council)
ICE (Industry Competence Exam)
ICS/National Education, HVAC
Kilgore Junior College, HVAC
Lamar Institute of Technology, HVAC Associate Degree or Certificate Program
Lincoln Technical Institute, HVAC
Lindsey-Cooper
Lone Star College, HVAC
Meridian Technology Center, HVAC
MIAT, HVAC Houston
NATE (North American Technician Excellence)
National Comfort Institute
North Central Texas College-HVAC
OSU-Okmulgee, HVAC
Paris Junior College, HVAC
Professional Career Training Institute
Puerto Rico HVAC license
Quality Tech.Training - Las Vegas
RETA-CIRO (Refrigeration Engineers & Technicians Assoc.)
RSES CM and CMS (Refrigeration Service Engineers Society)
RSI-Phoenix, HVAC
San Diego Community College, HVAC
San Jacinto College, HVAC
Sauk Valley, HVAC
Southern Career Institute, HVAC
South Texas College, HVAC
St. Phillips College, HVAC
TACLA, HVAC
TACLB, HVAC
Tarrant County College, HVAC
TECH ZONE HVAC-R
Terra State, HVAC Associates Degree
Texas A&M-TEEX/HVAC
TSTC (Texas State Technical College, HVAC)
Tyler Junior College, HVAC
UA - Star HVAC Certification
Universal Technical Institute (UTI), HVAC
University of Texas at Brownsville / Texas Southmost College, HVAC
U.S. Air Force DD214, HVAC
U.S. Army, DD214, HVAC
U.S. Navy DD214, HVAC
Vernon College, HVAC
VGI Training - NATE or ICE Only
Vista College, HVAC
Weatherford College-HVAC
Western Technical College, El Paso, HVAC

Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) 608 certification examinations for the use and handling of refrigerants are not accepted for certification.

Other AC&R Technician certification examinations will be considered on a case-by-case basis. For related questions you may contact us at (512) 463-6599 or toll-free in Texas (800) 803-9202 OR email us at air.conditioning@tdlr.texas.gov - make sure to put “Certification Examination” in the subject line.

NOTE: Certification is not required to become a “registered” technician.

9. I do air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work for an apartment complex. Do I need to register?

No. See the Air Conditioning Occupations Code, Section 1302.054 for further clarification.

10. I do air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work for an office building. Do I need to register?

No. See the Air Conditioning Occupations Code, Section 1302.054 for further clarification.

11. I install complete new air conditioning systems in new construction. Do I need an air conditioning technician registration?

No. Only persons who perform air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work are required to register.

12. I’m a licensed air conditioning and refrigeration contractor. Do I need to be registered or certified as an ACR Technician?

No. Your contractor license allows you to perform air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work.

13. Is the technician registration the same as the refrigerant registration?

No. The air conditioning and refrigeration technician registration is required for an individual who performs air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance work for a licensed air conditioning contractor.

A refrigerant certificate of registration is for unlicensed individuals who purchase refrigerant and refrigerant products. Please refer to the ACR Contractor Administrative Rules for further clarification.

14. What is the minimum age requirement to be registered or certified as an Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Technician?

The minimum age is 18.


RENEWALS

  1. How do I renew my Registered ACR Technician, Certified ACR Technician, or ACR Contractor license?
  2. How much does it cost to renew my license?
  3. What is required to renew my TDLR air conditioning and refrigeration contractor license besides submitting my renewal application and renewal fee?
  4. Should I wait to submit my license renewal application until after I have completed my eight hours of continuing education?
  5. My license has been expired for more than 18 months. How do I get it back?

1. How do I renew my Registered ACR Technician, Certified ACR Technician, or ACR Contractor license?

You can renew online 24 hours a day, 7 days a week using our Online Licensing Services.

2. How much does it cost to renew my license?

Type of License On-Time Renewal Fee 1–90 Days Late 90+ days late
Registered ACR Technician $20 $30 $40
Certified ACR Technician $20 $30 $40
ACR Contractor $65 $97.50 $130

NOTE: All fees submitted are non-refundable.

3. What is required to renew my TDLR air conditioning and refrigeration contractor license besides submitting my renewal application and renewal fee?

Each ACR Contractor is required to complete eight hours of continuing education to renew their license, including two hours of instruction in Texas air conditioning and refrigeration  law and rules that regulate conduct.

Continuing education hours must be completed within the period of the license. (Example: if the license is effective from June 1, 2011 to June 1, 2012, the hours must be completed during that period only. A course taken in April 2011 is not within the license period, and will not count for the required continuing education hours.)

4. Should I wait to submit my license renewal application until after I have completed my eight hours of continuing education?

No. You may file your renewal application at any time during your renewal period. We encourage you to file the application early so your license won’t expire and you won’t have to pay late renewal fees.

5. My license has been expired for more than 18 months. How do I get it back?

If your license has been expired for more than 18 months but less than three years, you may renew online or submit a “Request to Executive Director for Expired License Renewal” form with the required renewal fee.

If your license has been expired for more than three years you may not renew your license. You must apply for a new license.

You may be subject to enforcement actions, including administrative penalties and sanctions, for operating with an expired license (expired less than 18 months) or operating without a registration (expired 18 months or more).


CONTINUING EDUCATION

  1. Where can I locate continuing education (CE) provider and course information?
  2. What is the actual amount of instruction time required for one hour of continuing education?
  3. There are no continuing education classroom courses in my area. Are other course delivery methods available?
  4. What must I do if I have already taken a continuing education course since I was licensed, but that provider is not on TDLR’s list of registered providers?
  5. Who notifies TDLR that I have completed a required continuing education course?
  6. How will I be notified that I have completed a required continuing education course?
  7. Can I get partial credit for completing part of a required continuing education course?
  8. Will I be monitored if I take a distance learning continuing education course (for example: online)?
  9. Will I be able to go to TDLR’s web site and look up my completed continuing education hours?
  10. What can I do if my completed continuing education hours are not posted on the TDLR web site?
  11. What should I do if I don’t receive a certificate for my completed continuing education course?
  12. If I am a licensee and an instructor for an approved continuing education course, can I get my continuing education hours while teaching that course?
  13. Will college course hours count towards continuing education for license renewal?
  14. How long must I keep a copy of my continuing education certificate of completion?

1. Where can I locate continuing education (CE) provider and course information?

You can find CE provider and course information on TDLR’s web site. This list is updated as new providers are registered and courses are approved.

2. What is the actual amount of instruction time required for one hour of continuing education?

One hour of continuing education is equivalent to 50 minutes of actual instruction time.

3. There are no continuing education classroom courses in my area. Are other course delivery methods available?

Yes. Go to the Continuing Education Providers page on TDLR’s web site. Select the Offers Internet Courses button on the web page to see only those CE Providers that provide internet courses.

4. What must I do if I have already taken a continuing education course since I was licensed, but that provider is not on TDLR’s list of registered providers?

If the course you took was not from a registered TDLR provider (or was not an approved course), it will not count toward your required hours for license renewal. You must select a CE course from registered providers and approved courses.

5. Who notifies TDLR that I have completed a required continuing education course?

Providers are required to submit to TDLR your continuing education course completion information. If you have taken a course from one or more providers, each provider must transmit that information to TDLR and also issue you a certificate of course completion.

CE course completion information is available on the web site for your review. If you have a question about the information posted on the web site, please check first with the provider. If you continue to have questions, please contact TDLR: by phone, (512) 463-6599 or toll-free in Texas (800) 803-9202; or by email ce@tdlr.texas.gov.

6. How will I be notified that I have completed a required continuing education course?

Your provider will issue you a course completion certificate. If you have questions, please contact your provider

7. Can I get partial credit for completing part of a required continuing education course?

No. TDLR does not accept partial completion of a continuing education course. However, a provider may allow you to finish the course at another time. When the course is completed the provider will transmit the completion record to TDLR.

8. Will I be monitored if I take a distance learning continuing education course (for example: online)?

Yes. TDLR requires the provider to monitor licensee attendance for all courses, including online courses. If a licensee does not meet the provider’s monitoring requirements, no continuing education hours will be given.

9. Will I be able to go to TDLR’s web site and look up my completed continuing education hours?

Yes. You can use the CE Courses Lookup on TDLR’s web site.

10. What can I do if my completed continuing education hours are not posted on the TDLR web site?

If your course completion is not posted seven days after you completed the course, contact your provider.

11. What should I do if I don’t receive a certificate for my completed continuing education course?

If you do not receive your course completion certificate within 15 days from the end of your course, please check with your provider.

12. If I am a licensee and an instructor for an approved continuing education course, can I get my continuing education hours while teaching that course?

Instructors who are licensees may arrange with the provider to get continuing education hours for that portion of the course which the instructor taught. However, if the instructor does not teach the entire course, the instructor must attend the remainder of the course to obtain credit for the whole course. No partial course credit is allowed.

13. Will college course hours count towards continuing education for license renewal?

If the college course is a TDLR approved continuing education course, then the course hours can be used for license renewal. However, the courses must be taken during the period of the license being renewed. Courses which are not approved by TDLR as continuing education courses cannot be used for license renewal.

14. How long must I keep a copy of my continuing education certificate of completion?

You are required to keep a copy of the continuing education certificate for one year after the date you completed the course.


GENERAL FAQs

  1. How do I change my address on my license?
  2. Can I inactivate my license?
  3. I am not working in the industry, but I want to keep my license active. What do I do?
  4. I am a licensed Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor and want to be certified to perform the installation and repair of LP gas appliances. How do I obtain this certification?
  5. Can unlicensed persons perform maintenance, service, and repairs on a process cooling and heating system?
  6. How do I find out if someone is licensed?
  7. Can a licensed Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor drill closed loop wells for connection to a geothermal air conditioning system?
  8. Is R438A refrigerant acceptable for use in environmental air conditioning systems in Texas?

1. How do I change my address on my license?

Send us a written request indicating the new address. See the License Request Form found on our web site.

2. Can I inactivate my license?

No. The Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Law and Administrative Rules do not provide for an "inactive status" for your license.

3. I am not working in the industry, but I want to keep my license active. What do I do?

You will need to request a waiver of insurance by downloading the License Request Form from our web site. Although you may have a waiver of insurance, you are still required to renew your license.

Mail the completed form with a $25.00 revision fee to:

Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation
P.O. Box 12157
Austin, Texas 78711

4. I am a licensed Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor and want to be certified to perform the installation and repair of LP gas appliances. How do I obtain this certification?

Contact the Texas Railroad Commission at (512) 463-6933, or Fax (512) 463-7292 and ask for Form 16B, Application for Examination Exemption by a Class A or B Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor.

5. Can unlicensed persons perform maintenance, service, and repairs on a process cooling and heating system?

Yes. Once the primary (closed loop) process system has been deactivated and rendered inert by a licensee, an unlicensed person may perform maintenance, service and repairs on the secondary (open loop) components which include the piping, heat exchangers, vessels, cooling towers, sump pumps, motors, and fans. See Administrative Rule 75.100(d)(2) and Chapter 1302.002 Definitions - specifically (2) and (15).

NOTE: A license is required to perform the same work if it is part of an environmental or commercial refrigeration system. See Chapter 1302.002 Definitions - specifically (6) and (11) - as they help to clarify.

6. How do I find out if someone is licensed?

To see if a person is licensed, search the Licensing Database or contact Customer Service at (800) 803-9202 (Texas only) or (512) 463-6599.

7. Can a licensed Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor drill closed loop wells for connection to a geothermal air conditioning system?

No. TDLR also regulates water well drillers. An Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor must possess a Closed Loop Water Well Driller license or contract for those services with a licensed Driller. See http://www.tdlr.texas.gov/wwd/wwd.htm.

8. Is R438A refrigerant acceptable for use in environmental air conditioning systems in Texas?

Yes. Any refrigerant or refrigerant substitute that meets all of the following can be used in environmental air conditioning systems in Texas:

  • classified as nonflammable (Safety Classification A1 under ASHRAE Standard 34), and
  • recognized by the EPA as nonflammable (Safety Classification A1) by rule or by notice of acceptability, and
  • classified as acceptable under the EPA’s SNAP Program.

See TDLR’s legal opinion regarding the sale and use of nonflammable refrigerants or refrigerant substitutes in air conditioning and refrigeration systems in Texas (305kb PDF).


OFFICE OF THE ATTORNEY GENERAL (OAG) DENIAL OF LICENSE RENEWAL

  1. Why did I receive a Notice of Denial of License Renewal?
  2. Who should I call about removing the nonrenewable status of my license?
  3. Can I use my existing license after getting a license nonrenewable notice from TDLR?
  4. How can I renew my license if I am in nonrenewable status?
  5. Once I settle with the CSD, when can I renew my license?
  6. What will happen if I don’t get a release from the Child Support Division and my license has not expired?
  7. What will happen if I don’t get a release from CSD and my license has expired?

1. Why did I receive a Notice of Denial of License Renewal?

The OAG’s Child Support Division (CSD) records show you have not made a payment in more than 6 months. Contact the CSD at (800) 252-8014 to resolve this matter.

2. Who should I call about removing the nonrenewable status of my license?

Contact the CSD to settle payment of any amounts you may owe and to change the nonrenewable status of your license. Contact CSD at (800) 252-8014.

3. Can I use my existing license after getting a license nonrenewable notice from TDLR?

You may not use your license after the expiration date on the license.

4. How can I renew my license if I am in nonrenewable status?

First, contact the OAG’s Child Support Division at (800) 252-8014 to resolve payment of any amounts you may owe and obtain a release. Then, apply with the Texas Department of Licensing and Regulation for renewal of your license.

5. Once I settle with the CSD, when can I renew my license?

You may not apply for renewal of your license until TDLR receives a release from the CSD.

6. What will happen if I don’t get a release from the Child Support Division and my license has not expired?

If you haven’t received a release from CSD approximately 65 days before the expiration of your license, you will receive a notice from TDLR that you need to get a release from the Child Support Division in order to apply to the Department for license renewal. You may not use your license after the expiration date on the license.

7. What will happen if I don’t get a release from CSD and my license has expired?

You have 365 days from the expiration date to apply for license late renewal. License holders who are barred from license renewal due to past-due child support must obtain a release from the CSD and apply for renewal within the 365-day period. Otherwise, the license cannot be late renewed.


ENFORCEMENT

1. How do I file a complaint against a licensee?

To file a complaint, you may make a complaint online, download the Complaint Form from our web site or contact TDLR at 800-803-9202 (Texas only) or 512-463-6599.


COMMUNICATION

  1. How can I stay in touch with TDLR for updates and new information?
  2. How do I contact the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA?)

1. How can I stay in touch with TDLR for updates and new information?

Sign up to receive TDLR email notices. After you sign up you will receive email notices of new and changing information.

You can also follow us on Facebook and Twitter.

2. How do I contact the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA?)

Contact the EPA at (800) 296-1996.


DISASTER RECOVERY

  1. I am an out-of-state air conditioning technician and want to help with disaster recovery. Do I need a license to perform air conditioning work here in Texas on a temporary basis?
  2. I am an out-of-state contractor and have experience performing air conditioning and refrigeration work. I would like to assist with disaster recovery. What is the quickest way to get licensed to perform air conditioning and refrigeration work here in Texas?
  3. I am a licensed out-of-state Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor; I have liability insurance, and would like to help with disaster recovery. Can I use my out-of-state license to offer my services to those people and businesses affected?
  4. I am an out-of-state contractor and would like to assist with disaster recovery. Can TDLR help me find employment with a Texas licensed Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor?

1. I am an out-of-state air conditioning technician and want to help with disaster recovery. Do I need a license to perform air conditioning work here in Texas on a temporary basis?

Yes. A person performing non-exempt air conditioning and refrigeration maintenance must, at a minimum, be registered in Texas as an Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Technician. All non-exempt air conditioning and refrigeration work must be provided through a Texas licensed Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor who holds the required amount of liability insurance.

2. I am an out-of-state contractor and have experience performing air conditioning and refrigeration work. I would like to assist with disaster recovery. What is the quickest way to get licensed to perform air conditioning and refrigeration work here in Texas?

The quickest way to get licensed is to register as an Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Technician online. You must be at least 18 years of age, and there is no exam required. The application is only one page (which includes a criminal background check) and the fee is $20. All non-exempt air conditioning and refrigeration work must be provided through a Texas licensed Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor who holds the required amount of liability insurance.

3. I am a licensed out-of-state Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor; I have liability insurance, and would like to help with disaster recovery. Can I use my out-of-state license to offer my services to those people and businesses affected?

No, to offer to perform non-exempt air conditioning and refrigeration work in Texas requires that you hold a Texas Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor license. The administrative rules do allow you to sub-contract work through a Texas licensed contractor. You may also be required to register in Texas as an Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Technician. If you have more questions, feel free to email us at air.conditioning@tdlr.texas.gov - be sure to put “disaster recovery” in the subject heading of the email.

4. I am an out-of-state contractor and would like to assist with disaster recovery. Can TDLR help me find employment with a Texas licensed Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractor?

No, TDLR cannot help you find employment; however, TDLR can assist you with getting the necessary license or registration to perform work. To register as an Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Technician, you can apply online. You can also find a list of Texas licensed Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractors on TDLR's web site OR you may try and contact industry groups such as the Air Conditioning Contractors Association (ACCA) of Texas or the Associated Plumbing-Heating-Cooling Contractors (APHCC) of Texas.

November 1, 2012 Changes to ACR Requirements

1. How have the practical experience requirements for the Air Conditioning and Refrigeration contractor’s license changed?

Starting November 1, 2012, all applicants for an Air Conditioning and Refrigeration (ACR) contractor’s license must have at least 48 months of practical experience in air conditioning and refrigeration-related work under the supervision of a licensed ACR contractor in the preceding 72 months. Prior to November 1, you were required to have 36 months of practical experience in the preceding 60 months.

2. Can my educational accomplishments be used to fulfill the practical experience requirements?

 Yes, education can be used to fulfill practical experience requirements in the following ways:

· If you have completed a four year degree or diploma in air conditioning engineering or technology, or mechanical engineering, it is equivalent to 24 months of practical experience.

· If you have completed a two year associate’s degree, a two year diploma, or a two year certification program primarily focused on air conditioning and refrigeration-related work, it is equivalent to 12 months of practical experience.

· If you have completed a one year certification program or a program of at least two semesters in air conditioning and refrigeration-related work, it is equivalent to 6 months of practical experience.

· If you have another related degree, diploma, or certification, it will be considered the equivalent to the amount of practical experience as determined by TDLR.

3. How does my military experience, on-the-job training in an apprenticeship program, industrial work experience, or government experience apply to the practical experience requirement?

· Every 2,000 hours (per year maximum) of on-the-job training in an apprenticeship program is equivalent to 12 months of practical experience;

· Verified military service in which you were trained in or performed air conditioning and refrigeration-related work as part of your military occupational specialty will count towards the 48 month requirement;

· Four or more years experience performing air conditioning and refrigeration-related work in the following areas will qualify you to take the Texas exam:

- Regulated electric or gas utility;

- Licensed engineer who engages in air conditioning and refrigeration contracting work in connection with the business in which he is employed but not for the public;

- Industrial work including chemical plants, petrochemical plants, refineries, natural gas plants, or natural gas treating plant, and performing process cooling or heating work for the operation;

- Performing air conditioning and refrigeration-related work while employed by a governmental entity.

4. Does it matter how much time has passed since I earned my degree, diploma, or certification? No, your degree, diploma, or certification can be used no matter how long ago it was earned.

5.What is considered a Governmental Entity?  Examples include: Federal and State agencies, school districts, universities, municipalities, hospital districts, water districts, navigation districts, etc.

6. Where do I find information regarding HVACR Apprenticeship Programs?  Please contact the United States Department of Labor to get information at: http://www.bls.gov/ooh/Installation-Maintenance-and-Repair/Heating-air-conditioning-and-refrigeration-mechanics-and-installers.htm#tab-4

7.Can I use my degree that I received in another country? Yes, please submit the transcript or curriculum documentation along with your application for review and consideration.

8. If I hold an out-of-state license, does that license qualify me to take the Texas exam?  Yes, if you can provide proof of equivalent practical experience for 48 months in the preceding 72 months.

9.Does my out-of-state experience in HVACR qualify me to take the Texas exam?  Yes, with proof of equivalent practical experience for 48 months of the preceding 72 months.

10. Can someone other than a licensed HVACR Contractor verify my practical work experience? No, the experience must be verified by the licensed supervising ACR Contractor. For more information, see the Air Conditioning and Refrigeration Contractors Law.

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