I graduated from an HVAC school three years ago but didn't want to switch careers in a bad economy. Now I'm looking to finally get my start in HVAC and want to some day be a service tech. Problem is we all know most ads want experience, so I'd like to hear how you got your start in HVAC to give me and others some ideas on how we can break into the industry. I'm even considering working for free just to gain experience, because we all know there is a big difference between what you learn in the school and what you learn in the field.
How did you get your start? As an installer? As a helper? Did you have any schooling? Did you get your certifications as you worked on the job?
Please help us newbies get an idea of potential ways to get a start in HVAC by illustrating how you got your foot in the door.