Insulators/Insulation Workers


Education and Training Requirements

High School

In high school, take courses in shop (especially mechanical drawing and woodworking), mathematics (especially algebra), English, and general science. 

Postsecondary Training

Most floor, ceiling, and wall insulation workers learn their skills via on-the-job training. The majority of mechanical insulators complete an apprenticeship program. According to the Joint Apprenticeship and Training Committee of the International Association of Heat and Frost Insulators and Allied Workers, apprentices "receive a minimum of 720 hours of classroom instruction over four years, a minimum of 144 hours of classroom instruction per year, and a minimum of 1,600 hours of on-the-job training per year." Some mechanical insulation apprenticeships may last up to five years.

The National Association of Home Builders offers a weatherization pre-apprenticeship certificate training through the Home Builders Institute. Visit https://www.hbi.org for more information.  

Other Education or Training

The National Insulation Association and the Association of the Wall and Ceiling Industry provide continuing education webinars, seminars, and workshops to help insulation workers keep their skills up to date. Contact these organizations for more information.

Certification, Licensing, and Special Requirements

Certification or Licensing

The National Insulation Association offers certification for mechanical insulators who conduct energy efficiency appraisals. Insulation workers who remove asbestos must receive training from a program that is accredited by the Environmental Protection Agency. Visit http://www2.epa.gov/asbestos/state-asbestos-contacts for information on asbestos training in your state. 

Experience, Skills, and Personality Traits

The best way to gain experience in the field is to complete an apprenticeship or work as a helper to an insulation worker.

Insulation workers must be in good physical shape and have good dexterity in order to work in confined spaces, effectively use hand and power tools, and reach above their heads to install insulation. Other important traits include critical thinking, time-management, and communication skills; the ability to follow instructions; and strong interpersonal skills.