The Cost & Breakdown of Manufacturer Training for Commercial HVAC

A 3D simulation of a commercial HVAC unit on top of a building

One of the first things you’ll come to understand when working in the commercial HVAC space is that continued education and ongoing training is incredibly important – it doesn’t just stop when you get a job. Why? The industry is constantly evolving, and the demand for lower maintenance costs has resulted in the development of more complex and brand specific HVAC systems.

More and more contractors are choosing to train their technicians on brand specific machinery – each coming with their own set of proprietary components and approaches. By sending their technicians to training sessions put on by each manufacturer, they are making certain that each technician develops the skills to set up, operate, maintain and troubleshoot specific systems.

In this blog we will break down the types of training manufacturers offer, the price for this type of training, and additional expenses to keep in mind.

Manufacturer Training Programs

Different equipment has different parameters and procedures, particularly on the commercial side. When big money and big systems are involved, many contractors send their technicians to factory training specific to brand equipment. Some manufacturers that put on these trainings are:

  • Trane University
  • Carrier University
  • Johnson Controls Training Institute

Manufacturer training varies in delivery – covering a wide spectrum of environments and class types, the most popular being 2-3 day seminars that take place in dedicated training centers.

These seminars range from foundation courses like apprentice start-up and installation to more complex brand specific troubleshooting scenarios, and learners are able to practice scenarios on the latest and most robust in-house equipment. A lot of the time the instructors that are leading these sessions do not have a background in teaching, so it’s important to check their credentials prior to enrolling.

While commercial HVAC manufacturer led training is often the most popular option for up-to-date, comprehensive education, it is also the most expensive. Below we will break down the average cost of these training sessions.

Average Cost of These Programs

In addition to the cost of the class itself (which is often thousands of dollars) contractors have to pay pricey travel expenses and make accommodations for technicians they are sending on-site.

Additionally, there is the added revenue lost from having to cover that technician while they are off the job. Because of this, it’s often common for a contractor to only send a few of its top technicians to these training courses.

Let’s take a look at the average breakdown of the various expenses for four different training programs below:

HVAC Training Course NameCarrier Basic Apprentice Start Up and Installation
Type of TrainingCarrier Onsite Classroom
Length of Program4 days
Travel Cost*~$1200 - $1300
Lost Revenue*$4000


HVAC Training Course NameTrane HVAC Electrical Troubleshooting
Type of TrainingTrane Onsite Classroom
Length of Program4-5 days
Travel Cost*~$1200 - $1400
Lost Revenue*$4000 - $5000


HVAC Training Course NameJohnson Controls HVAC Mechanical Systems
Type of TrainingJohnson Controls Onsite Classroom
Length of Program5 days
Travel Cost*~$1300 - $1400
Lost Revenue*$5000


HVAC Training Course NameJohnson Controls HVAC Equipment Maintenance
Type of TrainingJohnson Controls Onsite Classroom
Length of Program4 days
Travel Cost*~$1200 - $1300
Lost Revenue*$4000

*Revenue Lost: Assuming that each technician brings in $250 per job and performs around 4 jobs per day, averaging around $1,000 per day.

*Travel expenses: Our math says about ~$200 per day for hotel and food expenses and anywhere from $300-$400 for travel (i.e. 2 days would be $700-$800 in travel costs).

Increase Learner Retention with Interplay Learning

There is no one-size-fits-all approach when it comes to training & education. The need for supplemental training that can be easily integrated into any formalized training program is more important now than ever before. That’s where Interplay Learning comes in.

Interplay’s expert-led Commercial HVAC courses and 3D simulations are a great on-demand and supplemental resource to manufacturer training because they cover much of the foundational concepts and applied sciences that are needed as a baseline. By providing ongoing and immersive training that can be accessed anytime and anywhere, managers will be able to develop and maintain a highly engaged workforce.