About the trade

A Residential Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic works on residential air conditioning systems, including geo-exchange systems. Specifically, a Residential Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic:

  • plans, lays out, installs, starts-up, connects, maintains, services, repairs, tests, verifies, commissions and de-commissions residential air conditioning systems, components and their accessories
  • installs and connects piping for the purpose of conveying all types of refrigerants used for both primary and secondary heating and cooling
  • maintains, services, repairs and replaces system components and accessories, including electrical and electronic components
  • checks system operation, integrity, efficiency outputs, calibrations, and parameters
  • replaces defective, leaking, discoloured and worn components
  • makes adjustments to pressures and controls
  • cleans, lubricates, reassembles and repairs components
  • starts-up, tests and charges the systems
  • measures, cuts, bends, threads and connects pipe to functional components and utilities
  • services, tests, adjusts, commissions and decommissions the system

In Ontario, this trade is compulsory, which means certification or registration as an apprenticeship is legally required to practice the trade.

Apprenticeship program

The Residential Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic (313D) apprenticeship program consists of on-the-job and in-school training. The program typically takes two and a half years to complete and consists of:

  • 4,020 hours of on-the-job training/work experience
  • 480 hours of in-school training

A minimum of Grade 10 high school education or its equivalent is required to qualify for the Residential Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic apprenticeship program. 

On-the-job training

A Residential Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic apprenticeship involves practical training provided on-the-job by a skilled worker or trainer. The skills or competencies to be developed through this training include:

  • protecting self and others
  • planning and preparing for installation, maintenance or service of residential Air Conditioning and Heat Pump
  • assembling and installing residential Air Conditioning and Heat Pump
  • commissioning residential Air Conditioning and Heat Pump
  • servicing residential Air Conditioning and Heat Pump

See all skills and competencies in the Apprenticeship Training Standard (PDF). 

In-school training

A Residential Air Conditioning Systems Mechanic apprenticeship includes two levels of theoretical training delivered in a classroom, which includes subjects such as:

  • codes, legislation and regulations
  • workplace health and safety
  • applied trade mathematics
  • engineering drawings and documentation
  • trade practices

See all in-school training subjects in the Curriculum Training Standard:

Red Seal Program

The Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program is the nationally recognized standard for skilled trades workers in Canada.

This trade is not part of the Red Seal Program.

If you are a tradesperson who holds a Red Seal-endorsed trade certificate, learn how  you can apply to obtain an Ontario Certificate of Qualification in that trade without further training or examination. 

Trade certification for experienced workers

If you have work experience and/or training in a skilled trade, from another province or territory in Canada, or from another country, you may be eligible for certification through a Trade Equivalency Assessment.  

Updated: August 19, 2021
Published: June 24, 2020