Refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics (NOC 7313)

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Changes have been made to the method for estimating job prospects per occupation. To better reflect the reality of the job market and the new method of estimation, the prospect diagnostics have been modified. Thus, the possible diagnostics are now excellent, good, limited and not published. For more information about the meaning of each diagnostic, see the glossary.
Estimated hourly wage
in Québec (2017-2019)
Minimum 23.00$
Median 33.47$
Maximum 41.50$
Job prospect
(2019-2023)
Employment in 2018
5,000
Skill level
Technical (usually a college or secondary school vocational diploma)

Nature of work

Refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics install, maintain, repair and overhaul residential central air conditioning systems, commercial and industrial refrigeration and air conditioning systems and combined heating, ventilation and cooling systems. They are employed by refrigeration and air conditioning installation contractors, various industrial settings, food wholesalers, engineering firms and retail and servicing establishments. Transport refrigeration mechanics are included in this unit group.

Main duties

  • Refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics perform some or all of the following duties:
  • - Read and interpret blueprints, drawings or other specifications
  • - Measure and lay out reference points for installation
  • - Assemble and install refrigeration or air conditioning components such as motors, controls, gauges, valves, circulating pumps, condensers, humidifiers, evaporators and compressors using hand and power tools
  • - Continued…
  • - Measure and cut piping, and connect piping using welding and brazing equipment
  • - Install, troubleshoot and overhaul entire heating, ventilation, air handling, refrigeration and air conditioning systems
  • - Start up system and test for leaks using testing devices
  • - Recharge system with refrigerant, check and test regulators, calibrate system and perform routine maintenance or servicing
  • - Repair and replace parts and components for entire refrigeration, air conditioning, ventilation or heat pump systems
  • - May install, maintain and repair equipment in refrigerated trucks used to transport food or medical supplies
  • - May prepare work estimates for clients.

Employment requirements

  • * Completion of secondary school is usually required.
  • * Completion of a three- to five-year apprenticeship program or A combination of over five years of work experience in the trade and some high school, college or industry courses in refrigeration and air conditioning repair is usually required to be eligible for trade certification.
  • * Trade certification for refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics is compulsory in Nova Scotia, New Brunswick, Quebec, Ontario, Manitoba, Saskatchewan and Alberta and available, but voluntary, in all other provinces and the territories.
  • * Trade certification for transport refrigeration mechanics is available, but voluntary, in New Brunswick, Alberta and British Columbia.
  • * Red Seal endorsement is also available to qualified refrigeration and air conditioning mechanics upon successful completion of the interprovincial Red Seal examination.

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