How My Phoenix HVAC Technician Job Turned into A Rewarding Career

How My Phoenix HVAC Technician Job Turned into A Rewarding Career

If you would’ve asked me thirty years ago what I wanted to do when I grew up, I would have definitely not said, “I want to move to Phoenix, AZ and get a job installing and repairing air conditioning, heating and refrigeration equipment.”

It never ceases to amaze me how many people look down on HVAC Service Technicians or other tradesmen, as if it is a menial job…when in fact there are many techs and installers earning $100k+ annually, and they possess a skill they can use pretty much anywhere in the world! Since my very first HVAC job, I have never been out of work, and always had multiple offers and options lined up when wanting to make a switch.

Source: US Bureau of Statistics

I wasn’t one of those kids that wanted to be a rock-star, ball player, or astronaut, frankly I didn’t know what I was going to do with myself. I wasn’t exactly a model student, but not because I wasn’t a smart kid, in fact I was placed in all of the Honors and Accelerated classes in junior high and high school based on my test scores. I wasn’t a good student because I was bored by school and needed action! I had the intellectual ability to have gone on to earn a degree in whatever field I wanted to, but not the desire.

Unfortunately, society is still teaching our young people they should rack-up a ton of student loan debt and become a doctor or lawyer, because those are “respectable” careers. Knowing what I know, I told my kids the best thing they could do was to learn a skill, then go to college for the core studies, and then decide what passion they wanted to pursue.

When I say skill, I’m not necessarily talking about a trade. I’m talking about any skill that you can take anywhere and land a good job with a large corporation, a small business, a government agency, or start your own business with, like I eventually did. A skill that empowers you to never be on the unemployment lines when everyone else is being laid off, or replaced by younger, “lower cost”, workers. A skill where your experience makes you more valuable over time.

The skilled labor shortage is one of, if not the biggest challenge in the HVAC Industry and other trades. The jobs are there; the skilled people are not. We all know the law of supply and demand, so why parents aren’t encouraging their kids to put themselves in a position where they are in high demand as opposed to incurring high debt straight out of high school is baffling to me.

Source: US Bureau of Statistics

Source: US Bureau of Statistics

But alas, the title of this article is, “How My Phoenix HVAC Technician Job Turned Into A Rewarding Career” so here’s the short and sweet version:

I grew up in Long Island, NY and got a job as a helper aka “grunt” for a large company that did both residential and commercial HVAC, Electrical, Plumbing, and Appliance Repair. I was assigned to work with a lead HVAC Service Technician named Billy. Billy, who was in his early thirties at the time was a very skilled technician, so it was my job to run up and down stairs to get tools and parts, dig holes, clean up, or whatever other general labor task needed to be done to make sure Billy stayed focused on the technical work at hand. Billy, owned a home in the suburbs, drove a nice car, had some toys, and was clearly well respected by the bosses…all facts that did not elude me.

Fast forward a few years, I moved from Long Island out to the city and went to work for a company that specialized in the fabrication and installation of metal duct work, mostly in skyscrapers. The company I worked for was tiny (three employees), and the owners name was Neal. Neal was in his late sixties and had owned this small company for thirty years or so. He wasn’t a pleasant man to be around a lot of the time, he was opinionated, obnoxious, and difficult (even with his own customers), but he was excellent at his craft and always had work, another fact that didn’t elude me. Neal was also something else…a millionaire.

Jump ahead a few more years, I’m now a married man with my first child on the way, and my wife and I found out our daughter was going to need surgery immediately after being delivered (she is now grown and everything turned out fine). One of the most respected surgeons for this type of rare surgery happened to be in Chandler, AZ., where it also just happens is where most of my family had moved to years before. So off to Phoenix we went.

Two days after stepping off the plane in Phoenix, I had already secured a job as a HVAC Service Technician at Allied Signal (now Honeywell). I also signed up for trade school so I could have “paper” behind my name.

Fast forward again (and skipping some of the details), after only a two-day search I began working for what was then a small (they are quite large now), but well respected, residential air conditioning and heating company in Central Phoenix. I liked my job there and am still friendly with the owner today, but by now (two years later) couldn’t fight the desire to take the entrepreneurial leap and start my own HVAC Company. Almost two decades later, Magic Touch Mechanical is a multi-million-dollar company, employing many people, and because of it I have had the opportunity and pleasure to watch other careers blossom the way my own did.

I watch our HVAC Installers & Technicians, buying homes, boats, cars, paying for their children’s educations, going on nice vacations with their families, etc. – And here’s the kicker – they are invaluable to our company so they are paid very well and have job security…without $80 to $100k in student loan debt on their backs.

Don’t misunderstand me, the world will always need doctors, and yes even lawyers, and they are admirable careers, but don’t for one second think a career in HVAC, Plumbing, Electrical, or any other trade isn’t equally as admirable, rewarding, or lucrative.

I bought my first home when I was in my mid-twenties, owned three rental properties by my mid-thirties, was able to buy my children their first cars, help them with their first apartments, and so on – and all of it because of a low-level HVAC job that turned into a very rewarding career.

If you are interested in joining one of the top rated HVAC Companies in Phoenix, check out our employment page to see a list of current openings and apply online today! To prove my point, I should mention that the day I wrote this article, we were hiring for five different positions!


Magic Touch Mechanical Named Best in the Nation!

Magic Touch Mechanical Named Best in the Nation!