What Skills Do I Need to Work in Automotive Technology?

What Skills Do I Need to Work in Automotive Technology?

Those that work in automotive technology maintain, repair, and inspect automobiles that run on alternative fuels, gasoline, or electricity. Aside from performing basic care maintenance, they also diagnose complicated problems and perform repairs on the vehicles as well. So what skills do you need in order to work in automotive technology?

In today’s world, those that work as mechanics and technicians in the automotive technology field find themselves working with highly complicated computer and electronic systems. Aside from being able to work with engines and motors of the past, technicians are also required to possess computer skills. On any given day a worker might find themselves working with everything from traditional hand tools to complicated electronic equipment. 

Some things that the mechanic might find themselves performing include tune-ups, brake maintenance and repair, front-end work, diagnosing and completing repairs, servicing parts, and installing air-conditioning systems. Having troubleshooting abilities and being able to diagnose and analyze problems is very important so that the right adjustments and repairs can be sought and carried out.

Learning how to use diagnostic equipment is very important for those that work in automotive technology. Diagnostic equipment is often used to determine a vehicle’s problem if it’s not at first obvious. Various testing equipment must be used during this time and it’s important for the technician to be both accurate and efficient in their testing procedures.

Technicians must also keep accurate records and be very organized. They are responsible for keeping various checklists on multiple vehicles. They must make calls to different companies to order parts, work with vendors and suppliers, and maintain professional relationships with their customers and co-workers.

Although computer skills are necessary, that doesn’t mean that those that work in the automotive technology industry don’t have to rely on the more traditional tools, either. On any given day they will be required to work with a variety of both hand and power tools. It’s important to know how those tools work as well as to be skilled with them and to use them with caution.

Since a mechanic’s shop is filled with a lot of large equipment and tools, it is essential to practice safety measures. A mechanic must be cautious and aware of their surroundings at all times in order to prevent injury from occurring to themselves and to the people around them.

Sometimes, technicians choose to specialize in one specific area of automobile mechanics. They might, for example, choose to specialize in the transmission of a vehicle. These mechanics are responsible for working on hydraulic pump, gear trains, and couplings. For this type of job, it would be very important to understand computer controls, be able to diagnose hydraulic and electrical problems, and to understand sophisticated technology. On the other hand, those that work in air-conditioning must go through training as required by the federal and state governments in regards to the handling and disposal of refrigerants.

For the most part, those in the automotive technology industry work indoors for 40 hours per week. However, sometimes it is necessary to work longer hours and to work on the weekends as well. Long hours with few breaks are common. Being able to stick to deadlines and to work efficiently and quickly is important in this job, although it’s also just as important to be thorough with the work as well.

There are quite a few vocational schools and technical colleges that offer degree programs and certifications for those that wish to work in automotive technology. Those individuals that continue to receive training and education within the field will not only demonstrate an aptitude for learning new skills but will also be more appealing to potential employers in the process.