Diesel mechanics inspect and repair engines, transmissions, and other parts of diesel-powered vehicles. They use a variety of tools to perform their duties, including diagnostic scan equipment and diagnostic software. They also perform preventative maintenance on diesel-powered vehicles to keep them running smoothly and to avoid issues.
Mechanics who work on diesel-powered vehicles are generally expected to be physically fit and capable of working in cramped repair shops. They may be required to stand or kneel for long periods of time, and they often lift heavy parts to perform repairs. Those who are uncomfortable with the physical demands of this type of job should avoid pursuing this career.
Experienced mechanics with specialized knowledge of diesel engines and other components are attractive to employers. These professionals can demonstrate their expertise in the field by adding certifications to their resumes.
Education and Training
A minimum high school diploma is usually necessary to become a diesel mechanic, although some individuals choose to complete an associate degree or certificate program in diesel technology. These programs can be completed at community colleges or vocational schools and are a great way to jump-start your career in this specialized area of mechanics.
Employers are willing to pay more for experienced technicians with degrees, as it shows they take pride in their work and have the qualifications to meet and exceed expectations. Additionally, diesel mechanics who have a degree typically earn a higher salary than those who do not have a degree in this field.
Qualifications and Work Experience
A diesel mechanic must be able to read and understand schematics and diagrams of diesel-powered vehicles. This helps them to diagnose issues and make repairs more quickly. They also must have a thorough understanding of diesel fuel and fuel delivery systems.
Problem Solvers and Communicators
Diesel mechanics work closely with customers to ensure that their repair or service requests are understood and completed correctly. They are able to explain complex processes in a simple, straightforward manner that allows customers to understand what is going on with their vehicle.
Customer Service and Interpersonal Skills
Mechanics who work on heavy-duty trucks, buses and construction vehicles need to be able to communicate with their customers in a clear and respectful manner. This is especially important in a trucking environment where customer relations are a major part of the job.
Strong attention to detail is also essential for diesel mechanics, as they must be able to spot and correct small problems that could otherwise lead to major issues later on. They must be able to spot the source of a problem and then prescribe the appropriate fix in order to ensure that their customers have a safe and efficient ride.
Those interested in becoming diesel mechanics should consider applying to a vocational or community college in New York that offers an associate degree or certificate in this specialty. These programs can provide students with the hands-on training and specialized knowledge needed to enter this field and earn a good starting salary.