Becoming an auto mechanic can be a lucrative career choice, provided that you get it right. As per the US Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average salary of auto mechanics in 2020 was around $47,000.
However, to become an automotive technician or mechanic, there are certain steps that you need to undertake. The auto repair industry is constantly evolving and if you don’t keep up, it will become challenging for you to become a mechanic.
So what can you do to successfully break into the industry of car mechanics? All you need is this guide on how to become a mechanic and you are all set to go!
Steps To Becoming An Auto Mechanic
To become a successful automotive mechanic, you need formal education and hands-on training. Begin by conducting market research and reading both consumer automotive magazines, like Car and Driver, and professional journals, such as Auto Service Professional, alongside car service manuals to gauge your interest and retention of technical knowledge. Gain practical experience by practicing on your own vehicle or by working in a local auto repair shop, even without formal qualifications, starting with tasks like detailing cars to familiarize yourself with the work environment and to learn more about technical aspects such as collision repair.
Complete Your High School Education
The majority of firms in the automotive industry prefer applicants with atleast basic high school education like a high school diploma. This qualification also demonstrates that you have the fundamental arithmetic, scientific, and reasoning skills required for the work. Most states allow you to finish the GED tests in a few months for roughly $80 to $140.
If you want to start a career as an auto mechanic, it is absolutely critical that you complete your high school education. Without it, you might not even be able to make it to an auto mechanic school.
Some high schools provide beginning courses in auto mechanics and developing automotive technologies. A trade school will provide you with even more advanced opportunities in these fields.
High school graduates can pursue an associate’s or bachelor’s degree in automotive technology at any of the country’s community institutions. This procedure will take around two years and will include both classroom learning and hands-on teaching.
Complete A Formal Training Program
Automotive mechanics have the option to choose from a few different types of mechanic training programs. Each program comes with its own set of benefits and also, challenges. Your choice of the program also depends on what your long term goal as an automotive technician is.
Trade and Vocational Program
Certificates and diplomas are available from these schools for automotive technicians. Some trade schools collaborate with high schools, allowing you to prepare for your career while also completing your high school diploma.
Automotive Mechanics School
These self-contained schools educate aspiring mechanics on all they need to know to enter the workforce after graduation. When you complete the program, you will have gained knowledge through hands-on training and will receive a certificate or diploma.
Get An Entry Level Certification
The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) creates examinations to demonstrate automotive professionals’ proficiency in several specializations. There are eight tests in the ASE entry-level certification. It addresses
- Engine maintenance
- Electrical systems and brakes
- Engine performance, heating, and air conditioning
The entry-level test does not require any prior experience. So, whenever you think you’re ready, take the test during or after your educational program. On the ASE’s website, you can also take mock tests and follow test-prep checklists.
Opt For An Apprenticeship or Internship
Apprenticeships are not required for all mechanics. An associate degree program will most likely require you to complete a semester of internship or other fieldwork.
Assume you are hired as an entry-level mechanic by a large car dealership. In that situation, you may need to work as an apprentice for at least eight weeks before receiving the title of an automotive technician. This is one of the most useful tips in our guide on how to become a mechanic!
It is going to give you practical experience and learning when it comes to conducting auto repairs for customers. You will also gain hands-on knowledge about automotive technology that will help you increase your yearly income as a mechanic.
Pulling it Together
Do you enjoy automobiles? Do you enjoy putting together pieces and experimenting with machinery? Then perhaps a career in vehicle servicing is for you! In this guide, we go through what the job includes, the degree required, income expectations, the job outlook, and much more.
Published by: Martin De Juan