Deciding on a career isn’t always easy.
If you’re considering a career in the trades, you have many options.
One option is to become a mechanic.
To help I have performed some research and spoken to several Mechanics to uncover the most common questions relating to becoming a mechanic.
Worth being a Mechanic, a good job?
Yes, it is worth being a Mechanic and is a good job if you have a passion for working on cars, enjoy working with your hands, and don’t mind getting dirty.
To be a mechanic you also need to be prepared to earn a salary of medium wage of $21.02 or $44k per annum, which is not the highest paying trade ($55k average wage plumber or electrician) or other technical professions.
There is increased earning potential if you run your garage or move into ownership of a dealership.
Mechanic a Hard Job?
Yes, being a Mechanic is a hard job. It is a physically demanding job, walking around all day on concrete floors, bending, twisting, pulling, and tightening parts of an automobile.
From working underneath cars, breathing in toxic fumes to dealing with cranky customers being a mechanic can be a tough job.
The physical side can be physically hard and these demands can take a toll on your body over time.
However, if your body will adjust to the physical demands.
Often there will be the pressure of competing jobs.
Adding to the pressure is completing a job on time and avoidance of any mistakes.
After several years of being a mechanic, you will learn by practicing how to repair cars. This will make being a mechanic easier.
The difficulty of being a Mechanic will soften if you have a passion for cars.
What also makes being hard is the low hourly wages of $21.02 or $44k per annum with some states and garages paying less.
Some states have laws requiring shops to pay mechanics an hourly age regardless of if there are no cars to work on.
Unfortunately, there are some states where there a no laws protecting mechanics, where a shop is not obligated to pay mechanics hourly wage if there are no cars to work on.
Some garages do take advantage of this and their mechanics by hiring more guys than they need.
That way, there’s always someone available to start on a job right away, which decreases customer wait time.
But that also means there are a lot of guys with nothing to do, making no money.
This doesn’t matter to the owner because it doesn’t cost him any extra to have too many guys.
But don’t let this put you off being a mechanic, just make sure you do your research on potential employers when applying for mechanic jobs and apprentice roles.
What also makes life as a Mechanic is a garage is either too hot in the summertime or too cold in the wintertime.
So if you still have a desire to be a mechanic, let’s further explore how hard to become a Mechanic.
Hard to Become a Mechanic?
No, it is not hard to become a mechanic if you are mechanically minded and enjoy working with your hands. You also need to be willing to put in the effort to learn and have an interest in working on fixing and repairing cars.
As an apprentice, your ability to learn will also be determined by the Mechanic teaching you.
If you have an experienced Mechanic who has the patience and ability to properly teach plumbing will be made easier than if you don’t.
To be successful at being a mechanic you will have the desire to learn, have good problem-solving skills, and being mechanically minded will be an advantage.
Can you be a self-taught Mechanic?
Thirty-odd years ago when cars were simple and low tech you could have self-taught yourself to be a mechanic. Nowadays, cars are more complicated and hi-tech
No, it would be very difficult to be a self-taught mechanic. To be a mechanic you need proper training and hands-on training and mentoring.
It is possible to teach yourself basic vehicle maintenance, however, to acquire a basic understanding of how cars and SUVs machines operate, be able to pinpoint problems, and know how to fix them you need the appropriate training.
Can a Mechanic make 6 figures?
Yes, it is possible, however, it is unlikely a mechanic can make 6 figures per annum as the average wage of a mechanic is $44k per annum,
If you own a garage or several garages working on expensive cars or specializing in performance vehicles you may have reached the 6-figure mark, however, to achieve this, will take having a successful business model and hard work.
Do you have to be strong to be a Mechanic?
No, you don’t need to be strong to be a mechanic, however having enough strength to shift bolts, and lift heavy parts will be useful.
Mechanics do need to be strong enough to clean parts and strip engines down for rebuilds and remove transmissions
If you are not very strong, don’t worry there are strengthening exercises you can undertake.
Alternatively, with the physical nature of lifting heavy parts, unscrewing, and screwing on bolts and parts you will soon build up strength.
Nowadays, no need to lift heavy parts and risk injury when you can utilize lifting equipment and mechanical or power tools to help.
But your body does get used to the work, the muscles you use most often get stronger
Is a Mechanic stressful?
Yes, being a Mechanic can be stressful, having to work in a garage that is either too hot in the summertime or too cold in the wintertime whilst under pressure from garage owners to repair vehicles quickly.
Some but not all require mechanics to supply their tools.
Buying tools is expensive, causing financial pressure and stress on mechanics.
Another stress for mechanics is low wages, having to try and live on an average wage of $21.02 or $44k per annum with some states and garages paying less. The low wages can place financial stress, especially if a mechanic has a family to provide for.
Owning a shop and managing mechanics is ridiculously stressful.
They tend to be fairly unreliable, showing up late or not at all, many try to hide their mistakes instead of owning up, so the owner/ manager is left holding the bag in front of the customer.
Being a Mechanic Dying Profession?
No, being a Mechanic is not a dying profession while there are cars to be maintained and repairs to be performed. There will also be a need for mechanics.
The role of the mechanic is evolving.
The job of a mechanic 30 years ago is different from the job of a mechanic today.
With the increased use of technology and cars’ ever-increasing adoption of electronics, the role of a mechanic will change, becoming more scientific.
Nowadays, mechanics can plug in the automotive diagnostic scanner can figure out any issues with a car and it can help understand how to fix/repair it.
Being a mechanic is ideal for someone who doesn’t mind being on their feet every day, getting and bit dirty, and likes working with their hands.
The role of the mechanic has been around since the invention of motor vehicles and will continue to be around for many years to come.
However, this does not mean the role of the mechanic will not evolve.
It will evolve as cars move away from being petrol driven to electric.
This dramatic shift will change the role of the mechanic to being more scientific, using computers to diagnose and repair vehicles.
Choosing the right career means taking into account your personality, interests, and goals.