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Motorcycle Maintenance Technician: Career Profile

Learn about the education and preparation needed to become a motorcycle maintenance technician. Get a quick view of the requirements as well as details about training, job duties and certification to find out if this is the career for you.

A motorcycle maintenance technician ensures that Harleys, dirt bikes, scooters, or any other types of motorcycles are in working order. These technicians may work freelance or be employed by dealerships and shops. Experience working on motorcycles is essential, which can be attained by on-the-job training or by taking vocational courses that offer certification upon completion.

Essential Information

Motorcycle maintenance technicians troubleshoot, repair and maintain the systems of a motorcycle, and they often work for motorcycle dealerships. Getting started in this career may require only a high school diploma and hands-on training with motorcycles; however, some employers require a certificate or associate's degree. Qualified individuals can also seek certification through a motorcycle manufacturer for career advancement purposes, although not all employers will require it.

Required Education High school diploma and training for entry-level; certificate or associate's degree preferred
Certification Certification through motorcycle manufacturers
Projected Job Growth (2014-2024)* 6% for motorcycle mechanics
Median Salary (2015)* $34,220 annually for motorcycle mechanics

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Career Profile

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reported that motorcycle technicians were expected to see a job growth of 6% between 2014 and 2024. Two factors that contribute to this growth are the various brands and styles of motorcycles and the increasing number of registered motorcycles.

The BLS noted in a May 2015 report that motorcycle mechanics earned a median annual wage of $34,220. Most motorcycle mechanic jobs were found at dealerships and private motorcycle repairs shops.

Job Duties

Motorcycle maintenance technicians maintain all working parts of motorcycles. They work on engines, repair brakes, transmissions and other such components. Technicians may work in a variety of settings. These locations include motorcycle dealerships, where they'll service the makes and models sold by the dealership. Motorcycle maintenance technicians must know how to perform regular maintenance and troubleshoot problems on most brands of motorcycles.

Educational Requirements

A high school diploma and training may be sufficient for entry-level jobs as a motorcycle maintenance technician. However, employers prefer mechanics that have completed formal training programs due to the increasing complexity of motorcycles. Training programs are offered at many vocational and community colleges, usually as certificate and associate's degree programs. Topics may include performance engines, chassis, routine maintenance, motorcycle fabrication, engine overhaul, motorcycle suspension, wheels and brakes, electrical components, and carburetor/fuel-injected systems.

Certifications

Motorcycle maintenance technicians may seek certification to demonstrate their competency, knowledge and skill. Motorcycle manufactures such as Harley-Davidson and Honda offer certification programs for motorcycle mechanics. These voluntary certifications may enhance an individual's advancement and career opportunities. Specialized certification may be required for jobs at motorcycle dealerships.

If you love working with motorcycles, then a motorcycle maintenance technician may be a good career for you, where you'll mend parts and improve performance. Job prospects are best for those with more formal training, such as finishing a degree program, though a high school diploma and moderate experience will sometimes suffice.


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