Characteristics of a Good Automotive Repair Mechanic

Knowledgeable on various auto parts.

This is perhaps the most basic characteristic that any auto mechanic should have. Lots of different auto parts are out in the market today. And because we, as car owners, do not necessarily possess the sufficient knowledge when it comes to vehicle parts, we will inevitably depend on the expertise of our mechanic. A simple trick to determine if your chosen car specialist really knows his business is to ask him to differentiate a few parts and gauge whether he is confidently answering your question or is just making his way around.

Diverse background on automotive repair experiences.

Years ago when the makes of our vehicles were much simpler, any mechanic would have been okay. But with today’s high-tech and complex vehicles including family sedans, sports and luxury cars, SUVs, and pick-up trucks, we need someone who has a diverse background in automotive repair services. Mistakes have no room when it comes to automotive repair as these will only make things even more costly. Choose a mechanic who has certifications of training programs and classes that he has attended. The mechanic’s time spent in studying as well as in the actual practice of automotive repair is very advantageous for us car owners.

ASE certified to be an automotive repair professional.

Speaking of certifications, perhaps the most famous and widely recognized one, when it comes to professionals in the automotive industry is the ASE certification. Annually, an estimated 100,000 automotive technicians take ASE certification exams each May and November at over 750 locations.

With an ASE certification, we are assured that our mechanic has good background in all automotive services because an ASE certification requires a minimum of two years work experience in addition to passing a series of examinations that include Engine Repair, Engine Performance, Electrical/Electronic Systems, Brakes, Heating and Air Conditioning, Suspension and Steering, Manual Drive Train and Axles, and Automatic Transmissions for auto technicians alone. There are separate tests for those who want to be collision repair technicians, engine machinists, parts specialists, and others.

Furthermore, all ASE certifications have expiration dates which requires technicians to re-test every five years to keep up with technology and to remain certified.

Works in a reputable auto center.

Unfortunately, ASE certifications apply only to individuals and not to auto centers. However, an auto center with at least one ASE certified mechanic is allowed to display the ASE sign. Furthermore, an auto center that has 75% ASE certified mechanics among its employees are given the Blue Seal of Excellence from the ASE.

Aside from the ASE recognition, other signs that we should look for an auto center include neat and well-organized facility complete with modern equipment, courteous staff, and good policies (regarding labor rates, diagnostic fees, guarantees, etc.)

Highly recommended by family and friends.

Nothing can attest to the quality service that any auto center and mechanic can give than testimonials of our family members, relatives, and friends. Ask for referrals and recommendations. Local community organizations and business listings are also good sources of information.

Pros and Cons of Becoming an Auto Mechanic

There are various positive and negative realities of becoming an auto mechanic. You need to be familiar with all of them before becoming 100 percent committed on pursuing this profession. By being involved in auto shop courses and working as a mechanic apprentice early on you will gain invaluable information that will help you make a thought out choice. In this article we aim to showcase some significant advantages and minuses of working as an auto mechanic and set you on the right path to pursuing this subject further.

Pros:

1. Doing work on your own vehicles.

As a mechanic you’ll be able to work on your own personal vehicles which means you will save money by doing the work yourself. Additionally, you can buy and repair older vehicles and sell them for a profit.

2. Great place to begin for launching your own shop.

After you obtain the essential expertise you will have the opportunity to open your own shop. This will require not only technical skills but additionally behavioral skills that you will need a lot when dealing with clients.

3. Employment stability.

As increasing numbers of individuals are putting off the purchases of new vehicles their older cars need more repairs and maintenance. By entering this field, you can expect to always have a place to work provided that you possess the essential skills.

Cons:

1. Expensive resources.

The equipment required for the career are costly. Initially the majority of your wages will go towards your tool assortment. It is a sizable investment but will pay off for itself eventually.

2. Entry-level salary is fairly low.

When coming into the field of automotive repair, you will notice that your income will not be very high. Dependent upon your location and past experience the earnings may vary individually for each person but tend to be anywhere from $8 to $15 per hour. If you need a high paying job instantly, this may not be the career path for you.

3. Long hours and continuous training.

Fast paced mechanic shops are generally filled with cars and remain open to satisfy client expectations. Anticipate to work nights and weekends. Furthermore, with all the changing technology in cars a mechanic will need to continually retrain themselves. As a mechanic you will also have to retake the ASE examinations every 5 years in order to maintain your certification. This training costs money and typical courses cost between $500 to $2,500.