Motorcycle mechanics, also known as motorcycle technicians, specialize in the repair and maintenance of motorcycles, scooters, dirt bikes, mopeds and other small-engine vehicles. Although a certificate and certification are not necessarily required for employment as a motorcycle mechanic, they may increase the likelihood of finding employment and can lead to higher wages and future administrative positions.
Motorcycle technology, motorcycle repair and motorcycle technician certificate programs are offered at various community colleges and trade schools. These programs, which can be completed in about less than a year, emphasize service and maintenance, 2- stroke and 4-stroke cycle engines and brake systems. Students also learn safety skills for power and hand tools. Prerequisites include a high school diploma or its equivalent.
Motorcycle Mechanic Certificate
Motorcycle repair certificate programs typically require around 36 weeks for completion. Most programs require that students complete internships in addition to their training coursework. Typical courses in these programs may include:
- Fundamentals of electricity
- Ignition systems
- Electrical systems
- Starting systems
- Fuel systems
- Exhaust and emissions controls
Salary Information and Employment Outlook
According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), employment for motorcycle mechanics is expected to increase by 6% between 2014 and 2024, with the best prospects projected for those with formal training. In May 2015, the BLS reported the average the average annual salary of motorcycle mechanics was $36,240.
Certification Information and Continuing Education
Motorcycle mechanics may elect to obtain voluntary certification from one or more motorcycle manufacturers. Because specialized manufacturer certification may be required for employment at a manufacturer dealership or retail store, many motorcycle mechanics elect to obtain certification to increase their job prospects and marketability.
Most motorcycle manufacturers, such as such as Harley-Davidson, Honda, Suzuki and BMW motorcycles, offer certification programs. Which certification program a potential motorcycle mechanic chooses depends on which vehicles they expect to be working on most often in their career; it is possible to gain multiple certifications.
Students interested in obtaining certifications may complete manufacturer electives through many motorcycle repair and motorcycle technician certificate programs, or may take certification courses offered through trade schools or community colleges. A manufacturer certification program typically includes training in manufacturer diagnostic test equipment, special tools, parts systems and specific vehicle models.
Motorcycle mechanic certificate programs will consist of studying topics such as ignition and electrical systems and exhaust and emissions controls. Certification is also available from motorcycle manufacturers.