Image source: Flickr
Gas technicians (or “gas fitters”) work in residential, commercial, and industrial settings. They’re employed by construction companies, HVAC or gas-servicing firms, and utilities companies—or may even be self-employed.
Gas tech work is challenging, offers a variety of tasks, and will definitely stretch your problem-solving skills. Considering this trades career, but need more information on what the job is like, and the training you’ll need to get started?
Read on for a detailed look at what a gas technician does, the Ontario job market, and TSSA certification requirements.
Typical Gas Technician Tasks & Responsibilities
It’s important to know that your duties, job options, and salary as a gas technician will depend on the level of licensing you hold. For example, technicians with G3 certification are not legally allowed to work on gas-fired appliances without supervision.
If you have a G2 license, you are authorized to supervise G3 techs, and work independently on natural gas or propane appliances with an input of 400,000 BTUH or less.
G1 is the highest level of certification, and allows technicians to work unsupervised on systems with a firing rate of more than 400,000 BTUs.
So, obviously, the specific work you do as a gas technician will vary somewhat depending on your level of experience and licensing.
That being said, there are core responsibilities that come along with almost every gas tech job. These are fundamental tasks you can expect to perform regularly, such as:
- Installing, repairing and maintaining gas meters, regulators, gas lines and gas appliances
- Testing for gas leaks
- Working on boilers, ovens, gas fireplaces, gas-fired refrigerators, hydronic heating systems, etc.
- Installing and connecting appliances to gas, water, and electrical supplies
- Testing and replacing defective equipment or components
- Attending to gas escape calls and assisting in the investigation of gas fires and explosions
- Educating clients on safety features and maintenance of gas units and systems
What are some common challenges you’ll face as a gas technician? Typical “cons” of the job include:
- the work can be seasonal (however, according to the Canada Job Bank, 70% of gas fitters in Ontario work year round, while only 30% work seasonally)
- some positions require “on call” and weekend work schedules
- work can be physically demanding (long periods of standing, bending, crouching, kneeling, or working in confined spaces)
- job sites are often noisy
Career Outlook for Gas Technicians in Ontario
On the plus side, the latest job outlook report from the Government of Canada (released December, 2017) shows steady demand for gas techs in Ontario.
The Job Bank awarded “gas technician” 2/3 stars for employment potential across the province, including major city centers like Toronto. In the GTA, the vast majority of technicians are currently working in construction (74%), with the rest employed by utilities companies (15%).
New residential and commercial development is driving demand for gas techs, along with retro-fit work to meet new standards for energy efficiency.
Gas Technician Training & Certification
You cannot legally work as a gas technician in Ontario without first getting certified by the TSSA (Technical Standards and Safety Authority).
You’ll need to fulfill their training requirements and pass their exams, beginning with the G3 exam. Quality gas technician training is based on the strict requirements laid out by the TSSA.
After completing the approved courses at your local trades school, you’ll be ready to challenge the exams.
Newcomers to the field, with little or no experience, should begin with G3 certification. The G2 license builds on the principles and hands-on skills taught in level 3, preparing students to work independently as gas technicians.
It takes approximately 480 hours of class time to prepare for the G2 exam.
Learn more here: How to Become a Gas Technician in Ontario: Training & Certification
Take a look at the Gas Technician Programs offered at the Pre-apprenticeship Training (PAT) Institute. Click below to explore G2 and G3 courses, career options, admission information—or chat live with a knowledgeable advisor. We’re here to help!
Are You Career Training Ready? Find Out!
Take the PAT Institute "Career Training Readiness Quiz"
The fun, online quiz takes 3-minutes to complete and you’ll get a personalized report. Identify your strengths and social style plus the training and positions you’re best suited for. Get Your Career Readiness score now.