If you’re interested in automotive service technician jobs or other auto mechanic jobs, there are several things you should know. These include the ASE Certification tests, job growth and salary, tools required, and the market. You’ll also learn about the challenges of completing the certification process, which is among the toughest in the industry. In addition, you’ll learn about the tools you’ll need, including wrenches, jacks, and a socket wrench.
ASE Certification tests are challenging
The ASE Certification tests for automotive service technicians rigorous and comprehensive. These exams include topics like brake systems, engine repair, automatic transmission repair, steering and suspension, and light-duty diesel engines. Automotive professionals write test questions to be technically challenging. There is also no shortcut to success, and you must carefully prepare for them.
The ASE certification tests cover nearly all aspects of automotive repair and service. They are divided into 58 different test series. Each test has approximately 40 to 75 multiple-choice questions, with an additional ten or so non-scored questions. Test takers need at least two years of hands-on experience and training to pass them. To take the test, you need to register and pay for it in advance.
Salary depends on the market
Automotive service technicians inspect, diagnose, and repair problems with automobiles and light trucks. In addition to diagnosing issues, these professionals perform routine maintenance and oil changes. As vehicles become more complex, their responsibilities have grown. Instead of simply repairing mechanical parts, these workers now must use sophisticated computerized equipment and understand how complex components work together.
The pay for an automotive technician varies depending on the local market and experience. In some cities, wages are higher than in others. For example, in Washington, D.C., there are several major league sports teams and some of the best restaurants in the country. However, the salaries can be lower if you work for a smaller company or are employed at a repair shop that pays a flat rate.
Careers as automotive service technicians and mechanics will see steady job growth in the coming years. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment for mechanics and service technicians will increase by nearly seven percent nationwide by 2026. According to experts like those at Welch Careers, the employment of auto body technicians and glass installers is also expected to increase. In addition, diesel service technicians and mechanics will experience a 10 percent increase in job opportunities.
Automotive technicians with recent degrees or certifications are better positioned to find work than those without. Furthermore, technicians with advanced education and certification, such as those with the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certificate, will be in higher demand. They also have a higher level of expertise in the latest automotive technology. For instance, they will be trained in the newest steering systems, computer transmissions, and internal GPS systems. As cars become increasingly computerized, these technicians will have a higher demand.
An automotive service technician needs various tools to perform various repairs. These include hand tools, power tools, and computerized diagnostic tools. Most of these tools are owned by the employer, but many experienced technicians spend thousands of dollars on their own tool collection. Other devices may include a stethoscope, which is used to listen to the sounds of an engine.
Another essential tool is an OBD Code Reader, which reads computerized codes on a car. This device is handy if you work with cars manufactured after 1980. It can also be used to check for brake and airbag codes. Other important tools include a good toolbox with storage drawers and a pair of work gloves.
Aspiring automotive service technicians can find several career paths. First, they can pursue a vocational training program. Some high schools participate in the Automotive Youth Education Service program, which partners with automotive manufacturers and dealerships to offer students training in entry-level technician positions. These programs typically include physics, chemistry, English, and automotive repair courses.