Keeping the country’s transportation and heavy equipment in motion takes a lot of horsepower… and a crew of highly-skilled technicians and mechanics. Heavy vehicle and mobile equipment service technicians, inspect, maintain, and repair vehicles and machinery used in construction, farming, railways, and road transportation. Diesel service technicians and mechanics service buses and trucks, or repair any type of diesel engine. Many work for trucking companies, wholesale trade firms, and government agencies. Farm equipment mechanics and service technicians repair farm equipment as well as smaller lawn and garden tractors. Most work for dealer repair shops, with seasonal variation in job duties. Mobile heavy equipment mechanics maintain construction and surface mining equipment, such as bulldozers, cranes, graders, and excavators. Most work for government, equipment rental shops, and large construction and mining companies. Rail car repairers keep railroad locomotives, subway cars, and other rolling stock in good repair. They usually work for railroad, public and private transit companies, and for manufacturers. These technicians often lift heavy parts and tools, handle greasy and dirty equipment, and work in awkward positions. While many work indoors in repair shops, some specialize in field service and travel to worksites that may be outdoors, in all types of weather. Service technicians generally work full time, sometimes including evenings or weekends. Overtime is common. Most service technicians have a high school education. Formal training and certificates are increasingly preferred by employers. Certificates usually take 1 to 2 years to earn. Once hired, trainees usually reach full qualification after 3 to 4 years.
What they do:
Diagnose, adjust, repair, or overhaul farm machinery and vehicles, such as tractors, harvesters, dairy equipment, and irrigation systems.
On the job, you would:
Maintain, repair, and overhaul farm machinery and vehicles, such as tractors, harvesters, and irrigation systems.
Dismantle defective machines for repair, using hand tools.
Record details of repairs made and parts used.
Engineering and Technology
computers and electronics
Arts and Humanities
Math and Science
arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics
thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem
listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions
noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it
planning and doing the basic maintenance on equipment
repairing machines or systems using the right tools
Hand and Finger Use
hold or move items with your hands
put together small parts with your fingers
quickly change the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat
use your arms and/or legs together while sitting, standing, or lying down
listen and understand what people say
communicate by speaking
Ideas and Logic
notice when problems happen
People interested in this work like activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions.
They do well at jobs that need:
Attention to Detail
You might use software like this on the job:
Data base user interface and query software
Electronic mail software
high school diploma/GED or certificate after high school usually needed
Get started on your career:
New job opportunities are very likely in the future.