|Program Levels||Individual courses, associate degree; bachelor's degree|
|Field(s) of Study||Auto maintenance and repair|
|Prerequisites||High school diploma or equivalent|
|Program Length||Course lengths may vary; 2 years for associate; 4 years for bachelor's|
|Credit Offered||Credit and non-credit courses available|
|Common Topics Covered||Principles of automotive upkeep, automotive systems, tune-up techniques, maintenance of late model cars, custom car servicing and design, business basics|
Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics
Car maintenance courses are offered through associate's and bachelor's degree programs. Participants in these programs may be seeking careers as auto mechanics, but courses are open to individuals for personal enrichment as well. Here are some of the main concepts you'll encounter while studying car maintenance include:
- Principles of automotive upkeep
- Automotive systems
- Tune-up techniques
- Maintenance of late model cars
- Custom car servicing and design
- Business basics
Let's take a deeper look at some courses that may be in a program:
Basic Car Maintenance Course
A basic car maintenance course is a personal interest course open to anyone. It doesn't offer credits and doesn't lead toward a degree or certificate. The course starts at the beginning to teach owners how to keep their vehicles running smoothly. Students receive hands-on experience checking oil, changing tires, and conducting other simple tasks that keep cars functioning.
Beginning Automotive Maintenance Course
Slightly more advanced, car maintenance courses such as the Beginning Automotive Maintenance course are designed for people who know a little about cars and have some talent with them. Students gain experience conducting basic tune-ups and checking the vehicle's major systems, including the electrical and cooling systems. They practice repairing minor engine and suspension problems as well. This course includes lecture sessions, but it also includes labs where students work on their own vehicles, learning where things are located and the basics of correcting problems. Students also learn which fluids are best for their particular vehicles.
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Late Model Car Care and Maintenance Course
Intermediate car maintenance courses for late model cars, like Late Model Car Care and Maintenance are designed for both service technicians and owners who want to perform regular maintenance checks and service, thus prolonging the life of the car. Students complete basic repair procedures and learn how the different systems work, with special focus on how they're different from more modern vehicles. The course uses the owner's manual for a starting place with car maintenance and to schedule regular performance checks.
Custom Car Creation
The Custom Car Creation course is designed for technicians or owners who want to create custom car designs. Students acquire the skills to work on high performance cars that include drag racers and street rods. Often, this course covers different topics depending on what interests the students. Some topics include power-adders, high performance sound equipment, sunroofs, wings, and headers.
Automotive Service Course
Advanced courses in automotive services, like the Automotive Service course, are designed for individuals who want to become professional mechanics. Students gain practical skills checking and fixing many systems, including the brake, ignition, electric, and transmission systems. This course prepares students for state licensing requirements so they can take more advanced classes and become certified to work as a mechanic.
Car maintenance courses and classes are designed to help individuals learn skills and advance their knowledge regardless of whether they are pursuing a degree, certification, or just taking courses for personal interest.