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Become A Master Mechanic

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Working As A Master Mechanic

  • Repairing and Maintaining Mechanical Equipment
  • Getting Information
  • Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material
  • Evaluating Information to Determine Compliance with Standards
  • Outdoors/walking/standing

  • $40,524

    Average Salary

What Does A Master Mechanic Do

Diesel service technicians and mechanics inspect, repair, or overhaul buses and trucks, or maintain and repair any type of diesel engine.

Duties

Diesel service technicians and mechanics typically do the following:

  • Consult with customers and read work orders to determine work required
  • Plan work procedures, using technical charts and manuals
  • Inspect brake systems, steering mechanisms, transmissions, engines, and other parts of vehicles
  • Follow checklists to ensure that all critical parts are examined
  • Read and interpret diagnostic test results to identify mechanical problems
  • Repair or replace malfunctioning components, parts, and other mechanical or electrical equipment
  • Perform basic care and maintenance, including changing oil, checking fluid levels, and rotating tires
  • Test-drive vehicles to ensure that they run smoothly

Because of their efficiency and durability, diesel engines have become the standard in powering trucks and buses. Other heavy vehicles and mobile equipment, including bulldozers and cranes, are also powered by diesel engines, as are many commercial boats, and some passenger vehicles and pickups.

Diesel technicians handle many kinds of repairs. They may work on a vehicle’s electrical system, make major engine repairs, or retrofit exhaust systems with emission control systems to comply with pollution regulations.

Diesel engine maintenance and repair is becoming more complex as engines and other components use more electronic systems to control their operation. For example, fuel injection and engine timing systems rely heavily on microprocessors to maximize fuel efficiency and minimize harmful emissions. In most shops, workers often use hand-held or laptop computers to diagnose problems and adjust engine functions. 

In addition to using computerized diagnostic equipment, diesel technicians use a variety of power and machine tools, such as pneumatic wrenches, lathes, grinding machines, and welding equipment. Hand tools, including pliers, sockets and ratchets, and screwdrivers, are commonly used.

Employers typically provide expensive power tools and computerized equipment, but workers generally acquire their own hand tools over time.

For more information on technicians and mechanics who work primarily on automobiles, see the profile on automotive service technicians and mechanics.

For more information on technicians and mechanics who work primarily on farm equipment, construction vehicles, and rail cars, see the profile on heavy vehicle and mobile equipment service technicians.

For more information on technicians and mechanics who work primarily on motorboats, motorcycles, and small all-terrain vehicles, see the profile on small engine mechanics.

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How To Become A Master Mechanic

Most diesel technicians learn informally on the job after a high school education, but employers increasingly prefer applicants who have completed postsecondary training programs in diesel engine repair. Although not required, industry certification can demonstrate a diesel technician’s competence and experience.

Education

Most employers require a high school diploma or equivalent. High school or postsecondary courses in automotive repair, electronics, and mathematics provide a strong educational background for a career as a diesel technician.

An increasing number of employers look for workers with postsecondary training in diesel engine repair. Many community colleges and trade and vocational schools offer certificate or degree programs in diesel engine repair.

Programs mix classroom instruction with hands-on training, including the basics of diesel technology, repair techniques and equipment, and practical exercises. Students also learn how to interpret technical manuals and electronic diagnostic reports.

Training

Diesel technicians who begin working without any postsecondary education are trained extensively on the job. Trainees are assigned basic tasks, such as cleaning parts, checking fuel and oil levels, and driving vehicles in and out of the shop.

After they learn routine maintenance and repair tasks and demonstrate competence, trainees move on to more complicated subjects such as vehicle diagnostics. This process can take from 3 to 4 years, at which point a trainee is usually considered a journey-level diesel technician.

Over the course of their careers, diesel technicians must learn to use new techniques and equipment. Employers often send experienced technicians to special training classes conducted by manufacturers and vendors to learn about the latest diesel technology.

Licenses, Certifications, and Registrations

Certification from the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) is the standard credential for diesel and other automotive service technicians and mechanics. Although not required, this certification demonstrates a diesel technician’s competence and experience to potential employers and clients, and often brings higher pay.

Diesel technicians may be certified in specific repair areas, such as drive trains, electronic systems, or preventative maintenance and inspection. To earn certification, technicians must have 2 years of work experience and pass one or more ASE exams. To remain certified, diesel technicians must pass a recertification exam every 5 years.

Many diesel technicians are required to have a commercial driver’s license so they may test-drive buses and large trucks.

Important Qualities

Customer-service skills. Diesel technicians frequently discuss automotive problems and necessary repairs with their customers. They must be courteous, good listeners, and ready to answer customers’ questions.

Detail oriented. Diesel technicians must be aware of small details when inspecting or repairing engines and components, because mechanical and electronic malfunctions are often due to misalignments and other easy-to-miss causes.

Dexterity. Mechanics need a steady hand and good hand-eye coordination for many tasks, such as disassembling engine parts, connecting or attaching components, or using hand tools.

Mechanical skills. Diesel technicians must be familiar with engine components and systems and know how they interact with each other. They often disassemble major parts for repairs, and they must be able to put them back together properly.

Organizational skills. Diesel technicians must keep workspaces clean and organized in order to maintain safety and ensure accountability for parts.

Strength. Diesel technicians often lift heavy parts and tools, such as exhaust system components and pneumatic wrenches.

Troubleshooting skills. Diesel technicians must be able to use diagnostic equipment on engine systems and components in order to identify and fix problems in increasingly complicated mechanical and electronic systems. They must be familiar with electronic control systems and the appropriate tools needed to fix and maintain them.

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Master Mechanic Career Paths

Master Mechanic
Operations Manager Property Manager Maintenance Director
Airport Maintenance Chief
5 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Supervisor Facilities Manager
Director Of Facilities
12 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Foreman Maintenance Supervisor Engineer
Engineering Supervisor
7 Yearsyrs
Field Technician Equipment Operator Heavy Equipment Mechanic
Equipment Maintenance Supervisor
8 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Manager Facilities Manager
Facilities Maintenance Manager
11 Yearsyrs
Field Service Technician Service Manager General Manager
Facilities Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Electrician Driver Dispatcher
Fleet Manager
7 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Foreman Maintenance Manager Property Manager
General Contractor
6 Yearsyrs
Electrician Foreman
General Superintendent
11 Yearsyrs
Foreman Heavy Equipment Operator Maintenance Technician
Lead Mechanic
7 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Supervisor Maintenance Manager
Maintenance Director
11 Yearsyrs
Maintenance Manager General Manager Maintenance Technician
Maintenance Lead Person
6 Yearsyrs
Lead Mechanic Technician Maintenance Technician
Maintenance Lead Technician
7 Yearsyrs
Lead Mechanic Maintenance Supervisor
Maintenance Manager
10 Yearsyrs
Field Service Technician Technical Support Technician Technician
Maintenance Supervisor
7 Yearsyrs
Operations Manager General Manager Maintenance Technician
Mechanical Maintenance Supervisor
7 Yearsyrs
Lead Technician Production Supervisor General Foreman
Mechanical Superintendent
9 Yearsyrs
Lead Technician Shop Foreman Millwright
Mechanics Supervisor
6 Yearsyrs
Foreman Maintenance Technician
Senior Maintenance Technician
9 Yearsyrs
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Do you work as a Master Mechanic?

Master Mechanic Demographics

Gender

Male

94.4%

Female

4.4%

Unknown

1.3%
Ethnicity

White

62.8%

Hispanic or Latino

16.0%

Black or African American

11.3%

Asian

6.2%

Unknown

3.7%
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Foreign Languages Spoken

Spanish

40.0%

Carrier

20.0%

Chinese

10.0%

Bosnian

10.0%

Albanian

10.0%

Croatian

10.0%
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Master Mechanic Education

Schools

Garden City Community College

9.8%

University of Phoenix

9.8%

Universal Technical Institute

6.6%

Saint Louis Community College

4.9%

Central Texas College

4.9%

ITT Technical Institute-Fort Wayne

4.9%

San Juan College

4.9%

Lansing Community College

4.9%

Eastern Kentucky University

4.9%

Ferris State University

4.9%

Cornell University

4.9%

American InterContinental University

4.9%

Nashville Auto Diesel College Inc

4.9%

Bismarck State College

4.9%

St. Philip's College

3.3%

Vincennes University

3.3%

Harford Community College

3.3%

Sinclair Community College

3.3%

Edmonds Community College

3.3%

Sandhills Community College

3.3%
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Majors

Automotive Technology

21.7%

Electrical Engineering

11.0%

Business

10.4%

Mechanical Engineering

6.5%

Industrial Technology

6.1%

General Studies

5.8%

Environmental Control Technologies/Technicians

5.2%

Electrical Engineering Technology

4.5%

Heating And Air Conditioning

4.5%

Management

4.2%

Aviation

3.2%

Precision Metal Working

2.9%

Computer Science

2.3%

Drafting And Design

1.9%

Education

1.9%

Information Technology

1.9%

Engineering

1.6%

Mechanical Engineering Technology

1.6%

Electrical And Power Transmission Installers

1.3%

Criminal Justice

1.3%
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Degrees

Other

43.6%

Associate

19.7%

Bachelors

14.3%

Certificate

12.2%

Masters

6.1%

Diploma

3.5%

License

0.5%

Doctorate

0.2%
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Master Mechanic Videos

So You Want a Degree in Physics

How to Become a Professional Automotive Technician

MOTIVATION FOR THE NEW MECHANICS. HOW TO BECOME A PROFICIENT MECHANIC

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Full Time
Part Time
Internship
Temporary

Real Master Mechanic Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Master Mechanic-Alternate Fuels Technician Rick Gaudette Service Center, LLC Marysville, MI Dec 18, 2014 $75,000
Automotive Master Mechanics Carlisle Capital Corporation DBA Binnie Motorsport Portsmouth, NH Oct 15, 2012 $72,000
Automotive Master Mechanic VFC Motorwerks Inc. Chicago, IL Nov 02, 2010 $62,400
Automotive Master Mechanic VFC Motorwerks Inc. Chicago, IL Oct 18, 2010 $62,400
Master Mechanic Chantilly Steering & Allignment, Inc. Chantilly, VA Dec 29, 2010 $52,676
Precision Master Mechanical Assembler Ingersoll MacHine Tools Rockford, IL Dec 17, 2014 $52,416
Master Mechanic Autotecnica Service LLC Lodi, NJ Jul 22, 2015 $52,000
Automotive Master Mechanic Harbor Auto Center Garden Grove, CA Jun 11, 2010 $50,422
Automotive Master Mechanic Jack Ingram Montgomery, AL Oct 31, 2007 $50,088 -
$54,262
Automotive Master Mechanics Beesham Furniture Services, Inc. Sayreville, NJ Oct 08, 2010 $49,254 -
$50,000
Automotive Master Mechanic Franconia Shell Alexandria, VA Oct 04, 2010 $48,585 -
$52,175
Automotive Master Mechanics Karaco, Inc. Beltsville, MD Feb 06, 2009 $48,189
Automotive Master Mechanics Country Hills Inc. 76 Torrance, CA Dec 11, 2009 $48,147
Automotive Master Mechanics Dole Fresh Fruit Company Wilmington, DE Feb 08, 2011 $48,131
Automotive Master Mechanic Six Stars Auto Body Corp. Elizabeth, NJ Feb 13, 2012 $40,602
Automotive Master Mechanic JJ Bergamo, Inc. Linden, NJ Apr 19, 2012 $40,602
Automotive Master Mechanic Capitol Mechanics, Inc. Troy, NY Dec 23, 2016 $40,435
Automotive Master Mechanich Nu Max Management Calverton, NY Dec 11, 2009 $40,321
Automotive Master Mechanics Singh Car Care Services Inc. Yucaipa, CA Feb 27, 2012 $39,998
Automotive Master Mechanics Dalessio Auto Group Inc. Boonton, NJ Aug 26, 2010 $39,945
Automotive Master Mechanic Benks Land Services, Inc. Mine Hill, NJ May 11, 2011 $39,945
Automotive Master Mechanic Texaco Xpress Lube CA Jan 16, 2008 $39,653
Automotive Master Mechanic (Manager) Darvish Inc. Winchester, VA Nov 01, 2010 $32,635 -
$38,064
Automotive Master Mechanic (Manager) Darvish Inc. Winchester, VA Dec 01, 2010 $32,635 -
$38,064
Automotive Master Mechanic Stellar Services Houston, TX Dec 20, 2007 $32,599
Automotive Master Mechanic Hallelujah Auto Anaheim, CA Sep 27, 2010 $32,594
Automotive Master Mechanic Monza Motors, Inc. Los Angeles, CA Jun 17, 2008 $32,000
Automotive Master Mechanics Star Tech San Clemente, CA Mar 16, 2010 $31,722
Automotive Master Mechanics Kim's Auto Service Garden Grove, CA Oct 02, 2009 $31,722

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Top Skills for A Master Mechanic

  1. Vehicle Problems
  2. Electrical Repair
  3. Diesel Engines
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Confer with customers to obtain descriptions of vehicle problems, and to discuss work to be performed and future repair requirements.
  • Perform both mechanical and electrical repairs on equipment at fast pace.
  • Performed repairs using skills mentioned on specialized equipment maintained by the OKC Water Line Maintenance Department.
  • Assigned as the motor pool Safety, aggressively promote safety standards to all personal.
  • Detail-oriented professional who drove preventative maintenance, purchasing and repair efforts on a variety of heavy equipment and machines.

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Top 10 Best States for Master Mechanics

  1. Alaska
  2. North Dakota
  3. Nevada
  4. Texas
  5. Virginia
  6. Wyoming
  7. Montana
  8. New Jersey
  9. Connecticut
  10. District of Columbia
  • (50 jobs)
  • (98 jobs)
  • (87 jobs)
  • (959 jobs)
  • (340 jobs)
  • (32 jobs)
  • (76 jobs)
  • (201 jobs)
  • (75 jobs)
  • (24 jobs)

Top Master Mechanic Employers

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Jobs From Top Master Mechanic Employers

Master Mechanic Videos

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MOTIVATION FOR THE NEW MECHANICS. HOW TO BECOME A PROFICIENT MECHANIC

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