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Automotive Tech Career Information

Automotive technicians perform routine services on cars and trucks to keep them running well. They inspect, maintain, and repair cars, and sometimes may install or repair accessories, such as heaters, air conditioners, or windshield wipers. A career as an automotive technician involves having to have a thorough knowledge of automobiles and how they work so that you are able to diagnose and fix a problem quickly and accurately.

When a customer brings a car in for inspection or repair, automotive technicians talk to the car’s owner to get a description of the problem. Then the automotive technician will start to troubleshoot. The first thing an automotive technician will do is to try and isolate the problem by testing different components to make sure they are each working properly. This process can involve running the car, and even test-driving it to check gauges and other dashboard features, and hopefully through this process, an automotive technician is able to eliminate things and diagnose what is causing the problem.

Automotive technicians also use a variety of testing equipment, such as diagnostic computers and compression gauges to try and determine the car’s problem. Once the problem is diagnosed, the automotive technician will then need to determine whether a new part is needed, of if they can fix the current one. They will also need to determine an estimate of the cost for repair to give the owner before they do any work.

Automotive technicians also perform routine service inspections on cars. This involves testing the engine and other major components such as belts, hoses, plugs, brakes, and the fuels system to see if any of these parts need to be repaired or replaced. The goal of a routine inspection is to catch a minor problem before it causes a major problem. Automotive technicians usually follow a prescribed checklist as they perform service inspections to ensure that they check every critical component thoroughly.

A career as an automotive technician is actually also becoming a highly technical career as well. Computers are now commonly used in many automotive shops to maintain and update data, and to perform diagnostic tests on cars in order to check their performance or diagnose any problems. Automotive technicians need to know how to work with these computers, computerized shop equipment, and advanced diagnostic systems, in addition to the more simple and traditional hand tools.


Related Career Resources

Automotive Technology Colleges and Schools

Automotive Technology Outlook and Salary Information

Automotive Technician Career Traits

How to Become an Automotive Technician


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