Refrigeration/Air-conditioning Technician Kaihangarau Pūrere Whakamātao
Refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians install, service and maintain refrigeration and air-conditioning systems.
Qualified refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians need to be registered and licensed with the Electrical Workers Registration Board.
To work with compressed gas you must hold an approved filler compliance certificate.
- Electrical Workers Registration Board (EWRB) website - information on registration and licensing
- Worksafe New Zealand website - information on becoming an Approved Filler
Refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians may do some or all of the following:
- advise clients on different refrigeration/air-conditioning systems
- install refrigeration/air-conditioning systems
- test, adjust and balance systems to make sure they work properly
- check refrigeration/air-conditioning systems for faults and repair them
- manage and supervise less experienced refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians.
Refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians need to have a good level of fitness and be strong as they may need to carry heavy tools and equipment.
Useful experience for refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians includes:
- plumbing and gasfitting
- work in an engineering workshop
- electrical work.
Refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians need to be:
- able to work accurately with their hands
- good problem solvers
- able to follow health and safety guidelines
- good at making calculations and problem solving
- comfortable working in enclosed spaces and at heights.
Refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians need to have knowledge of:
- mechanical and electrical systems
- how gases behave at different pressures and temperatures
- basic physics and chemistry
- the advantages and disadvantages of different refrigeration/air-conditioning systems
- how to interpret building plans and technical drawings.
- may work more than 40 hours a week, including evenings and weekends
- may work shifts
- work indoors and outdoors on commercial and residential sites
- may work in confined spaces or at heights
- may travel to work on projects.
No specific secondary education is required for this job, but maths, physics, digital technologies, construction and mechanical technologies, processing technologies and English to at least NCEA Level 2 are useful.
For Year 11 to 13 learners, trades academies and the STAR and Gateway programmes are good ways to gain relevant experience and skills.
These programmes may help you gain an apprenticeship, but do not reduce the amount of time it takes to complete it.
Refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians may progress to set up their own refrigeration or air-conditioning business.
They may specialise in either refrigeration or air-conditioning systems.
Years Of Training0-4 years of training usually required.
There are no specific requirements to become a refrigeration/air-conditioning technician as you gain skills on the job. However, many employers prefer to hire refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians who have or are working towards a qualification.
To become a fully qualified refrigeration/air-conditioning technician you need to complete an apprenticeship and gain a New Zealand Certificate in Refrigeration and Air Conditioning – Trade (Level 4). Competenz oversees refrigeration/air-conditioning apprenticeships.
Most refrigeration/air-conditioning technicians also need a driver's license.