Automotive Electrical Systems Repair Technician: Job Duties & Requirements

Learn about a career as an automotive electrical systems repair technician. Read the job description, duties, education requirements, salary and employment outlook to decide if this is the right career for you.

Career Defined for an Automotive Electrical Systems Repair Technician

Automotive electrical systems repair is a specialization in the field of automotive service. Trained in such matters as electrical theory, Ohm's Law, magnetism and circuitry, automotive electrical systems repair technicians perform inspections, maintenance and repair on automotive electrical parts. They are highly trained workers who use computerized diagnostic tools, equipment and reference manuals to perform the complex task of finding the source of a vehicle's electrical problem and solving it. Automotive electrical systems repair technicians understand the complicated working parts of a vehicle's electrical system, including the ignition, engine, chassis and accessories of today's gasoline, ethanol or alternative-fuel autos and light trucks.

Education High school vocational courses, certificate and associate degree programs available
Certification Credentials given through the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence
Job Skills Problem solving, attention to detail, customer service, troubleshooting and maintenance
Average Salary (2015) $40,720 for automotive service technicians and mechanics
Job Growth (2014-2024) 5% for automotive service technicians and mechanics

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Educational Requirements

High school vocational courses and hands-on experience can be helpful in obtaining employment in the field of automotive electrical systems repair. Certificates, vocational school training and associate's degrees all increase chances of employment. Certificates earned from vocational schools or community colleges generally take a year or less to complete, and associate's degree programs in automotive technology generally take two years. Associate's degree programs require the completion of chemistry, physics, math and electronics courses.

Certification Requirements

The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certifies individuals in automotive repair service, including electrical systems repair, through more than 40 tests, many of which are available online. Those who pass the examinations earn certification by ASE; certification in all areas leads to the title of master mechanic.

Required Skills

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that automotive electrical systems repair technicians should have these listed traits:

  • Knowledge of equipment maintenance, repair and troubleshooting methods
  • Ability to problem solve, pay close attention to detail and collaborate with others
  • Dexterity and the ability to work in small spaces
  • Customer service skills

Employment and Salary Outlook

According to the BLS, employment of automotive service technicians and mechanics was projected to increase 5% between 2014 and 2024. Average annual earnings were published as $40,720 in May 2015. Those service technicians employed by local governments earned an average of $49,830, while those employed by car dealerships earned about $44,400.

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