Considering a trades career as a gas fitter, domestic appliance technician, or HVAC technician? One of the first tasks on your list should be to investigate licensing requirements for your province or territory, and reputable training programs in your area.
If you’re looking to become a gas technician in Ontario, or earn a gas tech certification that is required for your trade, it’s important to understand the various levels of licensing and what they mean.
In this post, we break down the differences between gas technician levels 1, 2, and 3, compare the components of training programs for each level, and licensing requirements set out by the TSSA.
Certification with TSSA is Mandatory for Gas Technicians
The Technical Standards and Safety Authority (TSSA) develops training standards, and certification policies and procedures, for trades in a number of sectors, including those related to fuel (oil/gas). Their goal is to protect public safety through education and examination, performing inspections, influencing regulations, and taking action when standards have not been met.
Anyone who wants to become a gas technician in Ontario must by certified by the TSSA, which means fulfilling their training requirements and passing the TSSA gas technician exams. There are different levels of certification for gas technicians: G1, G2, and G3.
Gas Technician Training Levels 1, 2 & 3: What’s the Difference?
The different certification levels reflect varying levels of knowledge and experience for gas techs. G3 is the beginner level, followed by G2—and G1 is the highest level of certification. Training programs to prepare for examinations are provided by trades schools, but are designed by the TSSA (to ensure standards are maintained across all programs). At the end of training for each level, students take an exam to earn the certification—and are permitted to begin working toward the next level if they wish.
Gas Technician 3 Certification
G3 is the starting point for technicians in Ontario. The program is divided into 9 learning modules, or sections, and takes about 12 weeks to complete. The G3 curriculum includes both classroom theory and hands-on practice, and covers core concepts such as:
- safe handling of propane and natural gas
- fasteners, hand tools, and power tools
- installation codes and regulations
- interpreting technical manuals, specs, graphs, etc.
- intro to gas appliances
- intro to piping and tubing systems
With the Gas Technician 3 certification, you may work under supervision on appliances up to and including 400,000 British Thermal Units per Hour (BTUH). Considering becoming an HVAC tech? You will need to earn your G3 to work in the field, and preparation for the exam should be included in your training program.
Gas Technician 2 Certification
G2 training picks up where level 3 finishes, taking students through more advanced levels of knowledge and practice, with a special focus on specific gas fired equipment. The program is broken up into 15 modules, takes about 480 hours to complete, and covers topics such as:
- advanced piping and tubing
- understanding a building as a system
- domestic and non-vented appliances
- gas metres and pressure regulators
- water heaters and combo systems
- forced warm air heating systems
- hydronic heating systems
- mechanical and electric controls
With the G2 certification, you may legally work unsupervised on appliances. You will have the necessary skills and experience to install, inspect, alter, purge, activate, or repair a natural gas or propane appliance that has an input of 400,000 BTUH or less. Level 2 gas technicians may also supervise G3 gas techs in the field.
Gas Technician 1 Certification
G1 is the highest level of certification for gas technicians. To enroll in this program, you must show proof that you have worked in the field for at least two years as a G2. Plus, you must demonstrate that you’ve had 500 hours of experience working on systems with a firing rate of more than 400,000 BTUs.
Want to know more about getting started with G3 certification, or progressing to level 2? Looking for reliable gas technician training in Ontario?
Consider the Pre-apprenticeship Training (PAT) Institute’s Gas Technician programs for G3 and G2. Visit the individual program pages for a complete list of courses for each program, career paths, or to chat live with a knowledgeable advisor. We’re here to help!