Career Development

What Does a Maintenance Mechanic Do?

Find out what a maintenance mechanic does, how to get this job, and what it takes to succeed as a maintenance mechanic.

Maintenance mechanics are responsible for keeping industrial equipment and machinery running smoothly. They commonly work on a team with other maintenance personnel, engineers, and technicians to ensure that all systems are functioning properly at all times.

Maintenance mechanics may also be tasked with performing repairs or replacing parts as needed. This can include anything from fixing simple problems like a clogged drain to more complex issues like repairing faulty wiring or broken motors.

Maintenance Mechanic Job Duties

Maintenance mechanics have a wide range of responsibilities, which can include:

  • Inspecting equipment for safety hazards such as loose screws, broken rivets, frayed wires, cracked handles, or other defects that could cause injury to users
  • Maintaining inventory of parts and supplies to ensure they are available when needed
  • Performing routine maintenance activities such as greasing machinery, checking fluid levels, and replacing filters
  • Diagnosing and repairing mechanical problems with equipment such as engines, motors, pumps, valves, or turbines
  • Repairing small engine equipment such as lawn mowers, weed eaters, chainsaws, and leaf blowers
  • Installing or repairing piping systems such as fuel lines or natural gas lines
  • Making electrical repairs such as repairing wiring, replacing fuses, or installing light fixtures or fans
  • Inspecting equipment for damage caused by wear and tear or misuse
  • Maintaining tools and equipment such as hand tools, power tools, and shop machinery used in construction or repair operations

Maintenance Mechanic Salary & Outlook

Maintenance mechanics’ salaries vary depending on their level of education and experience, the company size and geographic location. They may also earn additional compensation in the form of overtime.

  • Median Annual Salary: $52,500 ($25.24/hour)
  • Top 10% Annual Salary: $80,500 ($38.7/hour)

The employment of maintenance mechanics is expected to grow at an average rate over the next decade.

Demand for maintenance services will depend on the condition of the nation’s infrastructure, which includes roads, bridges, and buildings. As the infrastructure continues to age, demand for maintenance services will increase. However, some jobs may be lost to automation, as some tasks are increasingly done by machines.

Related: In-Depth Maintenance Mechanic Salary Guide

Maintenance Mechanic Job Requirements

There are a number of qualifications that are typically required to become a maintenance mechanic. They include:

Education: Maintenance mechanics typically need a high school diploma or General Education Development (GED) certificate. Some employers prefer to hire candidates who have completed some post-secondary education in industrial maintenance or related fields.

Training & Experience: Maintenance mechanics can get on-the-job training from their previous work experience or through apprenticeships. Apprenticeships are programs that last between two and four years and combine classroom instruction with on-the-job training. Maintenance mechanics can also receive on-the-job training from their current employer.

Certifications & Licenses: Certifications are not usually a requirement to become a maintenance mechanic, but they can make you a more competitive candidate when applying for jobs.

Maintenance Mechanic Skills

Maintenance mechanics need the following skills in order to be successful:

Mechanical skills: Maintenance mechanics need to understand how machines work and how to repair them. They need to understand how to read and interpret mechanical diagrams and schematics to identify and repair mechanical issues. They also need to understand how to use tools and equipment to test and troubleshoot mechanical systems.

Communication skills: Maintenance mechanics often work in teams with other mechanics, supervisors and other maintenance staff. They need to be able to communicate effectively with others to share information, explain their work and ask questions. They also need to be able to listen to others and understand their needs and requests.

Problem-solving skills: Maintenance mechanics use their problem-solving skills to identify and resolve issues with machinery. They use their problem-solving skills to identify the source of a problem, research possible solutions and implement a solution to fix the problem. They also use their problem-solving skills to troubleshoot issues with machinery and equipment.

Organizational skills: Maintenance mechanics need organizational skills to keep their work areas clean and organized. They also use organizational skills to keep track of their tools and paperwork. This can help them find what they need quickly and complete their work efficiently.

Technological skills: Maintenance mechanics need to be familiar with the latest technology and equipment to ensure they can complete their job duties. They need to understand how to operate and maintain machinery and equipment to ensure it continues to function properly. They also need to be able to troubleshoot and repair any issues that may arise.

Maintenance Mechanic Work Environment

Maintenance mechanics work in a variety of settings, including factories, power plants, office buildings, and other structures. They may work indoors or outdoors, depending on their employer and the type of work they are doing. Many mechanics work full time, and some may work overtime or be on call to respond to emergencies. Maintenance mechanics typically work with hand tools and power tools and may be required to lift heavy objects. They also may be exposed to noise, dust, and fumes. Although most mechanics work during the day, some may work at night or on weekends.

Maintenance Mechanic Trends

Here are three trends influencing how maintenance mechanics work. Maintenance mechanics will need to stay up-to-date on these developments to keep their skills relevant and maintain a competitive advantage in the workplace.

The Need for More Technical Skills

The need for more technical skills is a trend that is being seen across all industries, as businesses are increasingly looking for employees who can provide solutions to complex problems.

This trend is especially evident in the maintenance industry, where technicians are needed to repair and maintain complex machinery. As businesses continue to rely on technology, the need for skilled technicians will only grow.

More Automation of Maintenance Work

As automation becomes more prevalent in the workplace, maintenance mechanics will need to learn how to work with these systems.

Automated systems can help reduce the amount of time and effort required to perform maintenance tasks, which can be very beneficial for businesses. In order to take advantage of this trend, maintenance mechanics will need to be familiar with the different types of automation and how to work with them.

Maintenance Becomes More Complex

As technology continues to evolve, so does the maintenance required to keep it running smoothly. This means that maintenance mechanics will need to be able to troubleshoot and repair a wider range of equipment.

In addition, they will need to be able to understand the latest technologies in order to keep up with the latest trends. This includes understanding how to install and configure new software updates, as well as maintaining the hardware that runs it.

How to Become a Maintenance Mechanic

A career as a maintenance mechanic can be rewarding in many ways. It offers the opportunity to work with your hands, solve problems, and help keep things running smoothly. You’ll also get to see the results of your hard work every day when you walk into the building where you work.

The best way to start a career as a maintenance mechanic is by getting certified. There are several different certification programs available, so find one that matches your interests and skills. Once you have your certification, look for jobs at companies that make heavy machinery or industrial equipment.

Related: How to Write a Maintenance Mechanic Resume

Advancement Prospects

Maintenance mechanics typically start out as helpers or apprentices, working under the supervision of a more experienced maintenance mechanic. As they learn the trade and develop their skills, they are given more responsibility and eventually may be promoted to lead maintenance mechanic, supervisor, or manager. Some maintenance mechanics eventually open their own businesses.

Many maintenance mechanics receive on-the-job training that lasts several months to a year. Some learn their trade through an apprenticeship program that can last up to 4 years. Apprenticeship programs usually combine on-the-job training with classroom instruction.

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