Home Appliance Repair Technician Career Information

Discover the duties of home appliance repair technicians. Find out what training and certification are required to work in this field, and learn about some alternative career options.

Career Definition

Also known as an in-home service professional, home appliance repair technicians service a variety of household durable goods, with the exception of central cooling and heating units. According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), repair technicians typically specialize in major appliances and must be particularly knowledgeable in the diagnosis, service, and repair of electronics and their components, while also keeping abreast of manufacturer service bulletins. Federal regulations require that home appliance repair and service technicians detail the capture and disposal of refrigerants used in cooling systems as they can contribute to ozone depletion if improperly discarded.

Become a Home Appliance Repair Technician

Required Education

Most home appliance repair technicians learn their craft through on-the-job training as an apprentice to master technicians. However, employers prefer to hire graduates of technical appliance repair or electronics programs offered at postsecondary technical schools or community colleges. While these programs can help reduce the amount of on-the-job training required for entry-level workers, trainees usually receive additional schooling from their employer and appliance manufacturers.

Certification Requirements

The Environmental Protection Agency requires that all technicians who work with refrigerants pass a written examination to become certified in the proper handling of these.

Required Skills

A friendly and customer-service oriented nature is as essential as mechanical and electronic ability. Because home appliance repair technicians work on appliances in homes, they must be able to interact with customers in a friendly and knowledgeable way and be able to work independently without much supervision.

Career and Economic Outlook

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) projected employment for home appliance repair technicians to stay about the same from 2012 to 2022. The BLS published the median annual salary of home appliance repairers as $35,170 in May 2012.

Alternative Career Options

HVAC Technician

Those who like to repair home appliances, but would like a career with a higher earning potential and better job outlook than home appliance repair technicians, may consider becoming heating, ventilation and air conditioning (HVAC) technicians. These workers typically must complete 2-year degrees or apprenticeships to learn their craft, and they may be required to obtain certifications and licenses. HVAC technicians had a median annual salary of $43,640 in May 2012. Jobs for HVAC technicians are expected to grow by 21% from 2012 to 2022, according to the BLS.

General Maintenance and Repair Worker

While home appliance repair technicians fix specific appliances, general maintenance and repair workers are jacks-of-all-trades, able to perform minor repairs to a wide variety of building systems and appliances. These workers may learn on the job or take technical courses in blueprint reading, electric systems or wood working. The median annual salary for these workers was $35,210 in May 2012, according to the BLS. The BLS projects jobs in this field will increase by 9%, which is about average growth, from 2012 to 2022.

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