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Become A Mechanic

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Working As A 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

  • $26,708

    Average Salary

What Does A Mechanic Do

A Mechanic is responsible for building and assembling machines or mechanical components according to a project's requirements. They also perform basic auto care maintenance, such as oil changes, tire rotations, and inspecting machines and engines.

How To Become A 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.


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.


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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Mechanic Demographics


  • Male

  • Female

  • Unknown



  • White

  • Hispanic or Latino

  • Asian

  • Unknown

  • Black or African American

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Languages Spoken

  • Spanish

  • French

  • Carrier

  • German

  • Russian

  • Arabic

  • Polish

  • Japanese

  • Dakota

  • Korean

  • Portuguese

  • Ukrainian

  • Chinese

  • Hindi

  • Swahili

  • Vietnamese

  • Cheyenne

  • Italian

  • Greek

  • Swedish

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Mechanic Education


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Real Mechanic Salaries

Job Title Company Location Start Date Salary
Avionics Mechanic Hyannis Air Service, Inc. Dec 15, 2015 $60,899
Mechanic (Industrial) V&V Construction, Inc. Bowie, MD Jun 22, 2016 $57,387
Mechanic A&S Auto Service Inc. Woodbridge, VA Jul 11, 2012 $55,994
Avionics Mechanic Hyannis Air Service, Inc. May 16, 2016 $53,845 -
Mechanic Corcorans Mobile Service Houston, TX Apr 15, 2010 $52,175
Mechanic (Industrial) V&V Construction Inc. Bowie, MD Aug 25, 2015 $51,792
Mechanic Lourenco Contracting Co. Inc. Hazlet, NJ Feb 22, 2016 $51,376
Mechanic Baranko Bros Inc. Dickinson, ND Apr 10, 2016 $51,340
Trencher Mechanic Techcon Trenching, Inc. Johnson City, TX Mar 30, 2012 $50,856 -
Mechanic Nutley Street Exxon Inc. Fairfax, VA Mar 19, 2015 $47,757
Avionics Mechanic Hyannis Air Service, Inc. Dec 15, 2012 $47,291
DOA Mechanic Bonded Logic, Inc. AZ Nov 01, 2013 $46,582
Mechanic Moducop, LLC Totowa, NJ Jun 11, 2008 $46,311
Mechanic Moducop, LLC Totowa, NJ Apr 12, 2011 $46,311
Mechanic Jet Auto World, Inc. Davie, FL Aug 08, 2016 $41,267
Mechanic Ballston Center Exxon Arlington, VA Oct 30, 2007 $40,801
Mechanic Wilston Exxon Station Falls Church, VA Dec 18, 2009 $40,801
Mechanic Reliable Auto Repair Center Inc. Chicago, IL May 28, 2008 $40,655
Mechanic G&W Auto, Inc. Swampscott, MA Nov 23, 2010 $39,770
Mechanic Joe Kerby Auto Repair Redondo Beach, CA Jan 22, 2010 $39,507
Mechanic Mercurio Truck Body Los Angeles, CA Jul 16, 2010 $39,486
Mechanic Precise Striping LLC Commerce City, CO Mar 01, 2015 $39,298
Mechanic Mountain Top Ventures, LLC CO Apr 01, 2013 $34,436
Mechanic Hobby Products International, Inc. CA Apr 01, 2015 $34,060
Automitive Mechanics King's Auto Center, Inc. Cypress, CA Dec 19, 2007 $33,434
Mechanic Winding Road Construction Inc. KS Jun 01, 2015 $33,392
Mechanic Reliable Auto Repair Center Inc. Chicago, IL Nov 02, 2007 $33,162

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Top Skills for A Mechanic


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Top Mechanic Skills

  1. Customer Vehicles
  2. Important Parts
  3. Safety
You can check out examples of real life uses of top skills on resumes here:
  • Diagnose, repair and complete accepted service on customer vehicles.
  • Followed checklists to ensure all important parts within transmission and potentially troublesome areas were examined.
  • Performed safety inspections on the vehicles to ensure driver safety and company integrity.
  • Diagnose, adjust, repair, or overhaul buses and trucks, or maintain and repair any type of diesel engines.
  • Removed desired dysfunctional parts, Tune Ups, Oil Changes, Tire Rotation

Top Mechanic Employers

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