What do Automotive Mechanics do?
Automotive mechanics service, repair and overhaul the mechanical parts of motor vehicles such as the engine, the transmission (clutch, gear box and differential), and the suspension systems (springs, steering, brakes, wheels and tyres).
Automotive mechanics may perform the following tasks:
- discuss problems with car drivers or vehicle operators to discover faults, listen to engines, fit and operate special test equipment and test drive vehicles
- repair or replace worn and faulty parts by removing assemblies such as engines, transmissions, differentials or steering gear; dismantle them and check parts, referring to manuals as necessary
- reassemble, test, clean and adjust repaired or replaced parts or assemblies, use various instruments to make sure they are working properly and put them back into the vehicle
- carry out minor body repairs and minor trim repairs
- diagnose, repair and replace engine management/fuel injection components
- use oxy, electric, TIG and MIG welders
- test and repair electrical systems such as lighting, instrumentation, ignition and electronic fuel injection
- inspect vehicles and issue roadworthiness certificates or list the work required before a certificate can be issued
Light vehicle motor mechanics work mainly in workshops and wear protective clothing. They need to keep up with changes in motor industry technology. With the changes in automotive technology, there are now more electronic controls and computers fitted to vehicles. As a result, light vehicle motor mechanics are becoming more specialised in their areas of work.
How do I become an Automotive Mechanic?
To become an Automotive Mechanic you usually have to complete an Apprenticeship in Automotive (Mechanical – Light Vehicle). Entry requirements may vary but employers generally require a minimum of Year 10. Training is usually both on and off the job. The off-the-job training is provided through Registered Training Organisations (RTO’s), including Group Training Companies. Details of the training may vary depending on the needs of the employer and are finalised as part of the training agreement.
Qualifying as an Automotive Mechanic involves:
- Three to Four years commitment
- Attending paid work with a “host employer” for the duration of the apprenticeship
- Attending off-the-job training at an RTO
Ideal Personal Requirements to be an Automotive Mechanic include:
- Enjoy practical and manual work
- Normal eyesight and hearing
- Problem solving skills
- Able to read and interpret technical information from service manuals
- Technical aptitude
- No skin allergies or reactions to grease, petrol or oil