Diesel Technology

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Diesel Technology programs prepare employees to fix, replace, and diagnose electrical issues on vehicles that have a diesel engine. Technicians and mechanics often work in loud repair shops or on the side of the road. Aspiring techs should possess the physical stamina to lift heavy equipment and work long hours.

When it comes to education, a high school diploma or equivalent will suffice. However, those interested in Diesel Technology careers can also pursue a certificate from a diesel technology trade school or community college. These courses teach students basic repair techniques, how to properly use equipment, and the basics of the craft. Individuals typically gain hours of hands-on experience before entering the field.

What Is a Diesel Technician?

Diesel technicians make sure the engines found in heavy machinery, trucks, and commercial boats run smoothly. This includes general care as well as repairing and replacing any broken or malfunctioning parts. Workers often follow a set checklist to ensure that they examine everything.

What Are a Diesel Technician’s Job Duties?

Diesel mechanics take on many different tasks throughout their shifts. In addition to repairing diesel engines, these workers inspect the brake systems, steering mechanisms, transmissions, and other parts of trucks and machines. They also work on the vehicle’s electrical and exhaust system. Some other diesel tech duties include:

  • Talk to customers about issues they’re experiencing
  • Read diagnostic test results to determine problems
  • Perform basic oil changes, rotate tires, check fluid levels
  • Test-drive heavy machinery and vehicles with diesel engines
  • Fulfil work orders

What Types of Skills Should Diesel Technicians Possess?

Diesel technicians should be familiar with basic mechanic practices and skills. These workers spend most of their day fixing and disassembling major vehicle parts and engines. They must be able to put them back together properly and according to code.

The ideal diesel technician has a steady hand for working with small, delicate pieces found in a vehicle’s engine. Good hand-eye coordination is also important when taking apart an engine, attaching new parts, and using a variety of tools.

Additionally, mechanics focus on small details when checking out and fixing engines or other components. Detail-oriented individuals often succeed in these positions, as they can catch slights issues such as misalignments or other easy-to-miss details.

How Do Diesel Mechanics Maintain Their Workspace?

A diesel mechanic can work in several different places. At an auto-repair shop, these technicians fix vehicles by appointment. They have easy access to the company’s power tools and equipment. At the end of the day, these workers are responsible for cleaning up their space and making sure all tools are safely put away. Mechanics can also take jobs on the road. In this instance, employees must make sure to pack the specific tools they’ll need for each job.

Why Do Diesel Mechanics Need to Have Customer Service Skills?

While they spend most of their day working on machines, diesel technicians often meet with customers to talk about issues with their vehicles. A successful worker can discuss the automotive problems in a way that their clients can understand. These associates should also be ready to answer any difficult questions, listen to their concerns, and offer solutions.

How Do Diesel Technicians Promote Their Work?

Diesel technicians typically work for larger corporations or local businesses. These companies often post advertisements in the newspapers, on social media, and on radio stations to reach more customers. Additionally, employees may have personal business cards that they can hand out to friends, family, and potential clients that give more information about what services they provide.

What are Useful Skills for People in This Field?

  • Answering customer questions
  • Reading service reports
  • Diagnosing equipment or service issues
  • Maintaining a steady hand and dexterity
  • Following safety protocols
  • Keeping an organized work station
  • Lifting bulky or heavy tools and parts
  • Dealing with loud noises
  • Learning from mistakes
  • Working individually or as a team

Are There Special Requirements for Diesel Technician Jobs?

Most diesel technicians find jobs right after high school after taking a series of hands-on technical courses. However, some corporations prefer to hire candidates who have some postsecondary training in mechanics or a diesel technology degree. Some programs offered include electronics, math, and automotive repair.

Along with a degree or the appropriate certificate, aspiring diesel technicians should prepare for excessive hands-on training with a local shop. This gives individuals the chance to learn repair techniques, how to use equipment properly, and how to interpret electronic diagnostic reports. These skills will help workers greatly once they’re in the field.

The training process could take three to four years to complete. Once finished, potential workers should look into certification from the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. While not a requirement, this certificate shows employers that the worker is knowledgeable and competent in the field. It also comes with the likeliness of a higher pay.

What Is

the Outlook of Diesel Mechanic Jobs?

As freight and large orders are shipped across the country, the need for up-to-date and working diesel-powered trucks will continue to grow. Experts say that the employment of diesel service technicians will grow 5% within the next ten years, which is the average pace for most jobs. Technicians are always needed to repair and maintain these vehicles.

Per year, the average pay a diesel tech can expect to make is about $49k. With added experience, certificates, and training, workers can earn a wage of up to $74k. The amount of pay also depends on job location and company.

Diesel mechanics enjoy an array of employment benefits. While it varies per corporation, most workers get paid time off, medical and dental insurance, and a 401(k) retirement plan. Other benefits may include holiday pay and disability insurance.

What Should Workers Expect?

Diesel techs lift heavy equipment and spend hours on their feet or lying beneath the vehicle at uncomfortable angles. Aches, sprains, bruises, or cuts are common among these employees. Workers should always follow the proper protocols to stay safe in the workplace.

Where Can Prospects Find Work?

In addition to auto repair shops, entry-level and experienced diesel technicians can find jobs at places like:

  • Truck transportation sites
  • Wholesale trade and retail facilities
  • Government facilities
  • Military bases

Can You Operate Your Own Diesel Technician Business?

Most diesel technicians work for major corporations and well-known companies. However, with enough experience and a trusted team of employees, workers can start their own business or autobody shop. Those interested in taking this route should check any state-specific codes and regulations that they must follow.

Do Diesel Mechanics Have Any Other Options?

Thanks to their handy work and basic mechanical skills, diesel techs have the skills to work in other areas of mechanics. Individuals who work as automotive technicians, and body and glass repair techs all perform similar duties.

What are Alternate Careers for Diesel Technicians?

With extra training and certificates, diesel technicians can find jobs in a variety of other mechanical fields. Small engine mechanics perform the same basic duties and repairs as diesel technicians but on a much smaller scale. Alternatively, those willing to complete some additional schooling can learn the ins and outs of aircraft and avionics equipment mechanics, working on planes and other flying crafts.