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author RocketCert Staff
date 01.15.2024

To legally perform skilled trades like electrical, plumbing, or mechanical work in residential or commercial settings, professionals are typically required to complete specified training and obtain a state-issued license. The requirements for securing and maintaining a license will vary from one state to the next.

However, to become an inspector in your chosen field, you’ll most likely need a certification from the International Code Council, or ICC. This body sets standards for knowledge and skills required for inspecting different aspects of construction and building. 

While inspector licenses are issued at the local and state level, passing an ICC exam can help you obtain this type of license.

As a commercial mechanical inspector, you’ll inspect installations and alterations to mechanical systems at either the residential (M1) or commercial (M2) level. 

How do you go about preparing for and passing your exam? What can you expect when you take this licensure test? Here’s what you need to know to effectively prepare for testing and succeed on your first try.

Requirements to Obtain Your License

Although the ICC exam is nationally recognized, it’s not always enough to obtain your license. Each state has its own licensure requirements. In many cases, you’ll have to apply for a license, sometimes before completing ICC testing.

Financial and legal requirements are not uncommon at the state level. While some local licenses only require a passing score on the ICC exam, this isn’t common for a state-issued license. 

Your first step to becoming a mechanical inspector should be to contact your state licensing board to make sure you fully understand what’s required to obtain and maintain your license.

What to Expect When You Take the Exam

Whether you’re interested in the Residential Mechanical Inspector – M1 License or the Commercial Mechanical Inspector – M2 License, you’ll find that exams cover similar topics. Both could include questions related to:

  • General administration
  • Heating, cooling, and water heaters
  • Duct systems
  • Exhaust and ventilation systems
  • Chimneys and vents
  • Combustion air
  • Fuel supply systems

The difference is that these topics will focus on either residential or commercial applications. Both tests are open-book and have a time limit of two hours for completion.

The Residential Mechanical Inspector – M1 License exam consists of 60 questions, and you must answer at least 75% (or 45 questions) correctly to pass. The Commercial Mechanical Inspector – M2 License exam has 50 questions, and you must answer 75% (or 38 questions) correctly to receive a passing score.

Exam Prep Designed for Working Professionals

The right exam prep program will help ensure you’re ready to ace your ICC test when the time comes. 

You’ll want a program that offers the convenience of self-paced learning through 24/7 online access, along with the books you can use during the exam, a handy guide to tabbing books for quick reference, and practice exams that simulate the real-life experience.

If the next step in your career involves obtaining an M1 or M2 mechanical inspector license, RocketCert has the comprehensive exam prep program you need to succeed. Contact us today to learn more.