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Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics

Diagnose problems and repair cars and light trucks.

Quick Facts


Below the statewide median
$17.77 / hour    Read more about wages


Growth rate:  4.4%    Read more about outlook


High school diploma or equivalent is needed for entry. National Data

On the Job:

Typical Work Tasks
  • Read work orders or descriptions of problems to determine repairs or modifications needed.
  • Operate transportation equipment to demonstrate function or malfunction.
  • Rebuild parts or components.
  • Repair non-engine automotive or vehicle components.
Read more about the job

Job Title Examples:

Automotive Service Technician
Shop Foreperson
Automotive Technician

See more job title examples

Wages & Outlook


Typical Wages

This career: $17.77
Statewide median: $18.65


This career pays below the statewide median wage.

Wages for Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics *

Area Low Median High
$13.29 $18.09 $24.27
$13.62 $17.77 $22.68
Central Minnesota
$13.32 $17.18 $21.27
Northeast Minnesota
$13.56 $16.76 $21.92
Northwest Minnesota
$13.25 $15.99 $18.75
Southeast Minnesota
$14.04 $17.21 $21.29
Southwest Minnesota
$13.16 $16.73 $20.58
Seven County Mpls-St Paul, MN
$13.82 $19.30 $23.92

* "Low" indicates 25% of workers earn less and 75% earn more.
"Median" indicates 50% of workers earn less and 50% earn more.
"High" indicates 75% of workers earn less and 25% earn more.

See more wage detail.



In Minnesota, there are 10,980 workers employed in this large career.

Where do Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics most often work?


Current Demand

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This career is currently in very high demand.


Future Demand

This career is high growth compared to other careers.

There will be a need for about 3,750 new Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics to meet market demand between 2012-2022. This includes the demand due to replacement (workers leaving the occupation or retiring) as well as growth.


Employment Outlook for Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics
  Employment Employment Change
2012 2022 Number Percent
U S 701,100 761,500 60,400 8.6%
Minnesota 12,622 13,179 557 4.4%
  2012 2022 Number Percent
Central Minnesota 1,332 1,445 113 8.5%
Northeast Minnesota 828 861 33 4%
Seven County Mpls-St Paul, MN 6,575 6,823 248 3.8%
Southwest Minnesota 1,155 1,202 47 4.1%
Northwest Minnesota 1,450 1,515 65 4.5%
Southeast Minnesota 1,310 1,358 48 3.7%

On the Job


Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics inspect and maintain cars and trucks. They test parts and systems to make sure they are working properly. They identify and fix mechanical problems. They may disassemble and reassemble parts.

Physical Demands   

This career requires good hearing and time standing, walking, or running.


Typical Work Tasks

People who work in this career often:

Typical Working Conditions


Education & Credentials


Typical Entry-Level Education (National Data)

High school diploma or equivalent is most common.


Education level attained (national data)

Education Level Attained (national data)
Education Level AttainedPercentage of workers in this occupation
Less than high school diploma19.7
High school diploma or equivalent45.4
Some college, no degree20.9
Associate degree10.1
Bachelors degree3.3
Masters degree.4
Doctoral (Ph.D) or professional degree.2


Work Experience and Training Requirements

Nationally, this career typically requires:

  • High school diploma or equivalent for entry.
  • No related work experience for entry.
  • Long-term on-the-job training to become competent.


Related Programs (current training opportunities)



Click on any of the Majors listed below to find out more about preparing for this career.



A registered apprenticeship is a structured way of learning a skilled occupation, craft, or trade. It combines on-the-job training and classroom instruction.

View the recent 17 apprenticeship(s) for this occupation.



Certifications are examinations that test or enhance your knowledge, experience or skills in an occupation or profession.

View certifications related to this career.



Licenses are knowledge and skill credentials that are legally required in some careers.

This career does not require a license.


Helpful High School Courses

Examples of helpful classes that help you prepare for this career:

  • Accounting
  • Algebra I and II
  • Automobile and Diesel Mechanics
  • Business English
  • Chemistry
  • Industrial Technology
  • Manufacturing System
  • Metalworking
  • Physics
  • Pre-Calculus
  • Transportation Technology
  • Trigonometry

In Minnesota, your school may have developed a Program of Study in this career area. A Program of Study is an academic and career plan developed by your high school to help move you towards a career and college path. A Program of Study can help you:

  • Select high school classes that prepare you for college and getting a job
  • Understand how the classes you're taking in high school lead to a career
  • Identify extra-curricular activities that are related to your career interest
  • See what classes at your school offer early college credit that will save you time and money towards your college expenses
  • Graduate from high school prepared for your next step toward the career you choose

Learn more about Programs of Study at your high school.

Skills & Knowledge


Most Important Skills for Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics

Assess your skills


Most Important Knowledge Areas for Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics


Different careers may be a good fit for your personality or interests. This career is:

Learn more about your interests. Take the MnCareers Interest Assessment.


Describe Your Skills

People who have worked in this career typically perform the following tasks. These statements can help a prospective employer understand what you can do, on a resume or during an interview.

  • Collecting information from different sources.
  • Operating vehicles or equipment.
  • Making decisions or solving problems.
  • Repairing and maintaining mechanical equipment.
  • Keeping up-to-date with new knowledge.
  • Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to find or fix problems.
  • Controlling machines and processes.
  • Identifying information by categorizing, comparing, or detecting changes in circumstances or events.


Careers that Use Similar Skills

The following careers use skills, knowledge, and abilities that are similar to those used for Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics.


View more careers in the Transportation, Distribution, and Logistics cluster

View more careers in the Facility and Mobile Equipment Maintenance pathway

Tools & Technology for Automotive Specialty Technicians


Acoustic sensors
  • Mechanics' stethoscopes
Adjustable widemouth pliers
  • Radiator hose pinchoff pliers
Air compressors
Automotive cleaners
  • Fuel injection cleaners
Automotive exhaust emission analyzers
  • Exhaust analyzers
Automotive honing machine
  • Brake cylinder hones
Bar code reader equipment
  • Code readers
Battery acid hydrometers
  • Battery hydrometers
Battery chargers
  • Battery jump starters
Bench vises
  • Vises
Bolt cutters
Borescope inspection equipment
  • Borescopes
Box end wrenches
  • Ratcheting box wrenches
Brake drum lathe
  • Brake drum lathes
  • Rotor/drum brake lathes
Brake repair kits
  • Brake shoe tools
  • Disc brake pad spreaders
  • Shoe retaining spring tools
  • Dial calipers
Catalytic combustion analyzers
Circuit tester
  • Circuit testers
  • Continuity testers
  • Test lights
Combination wrenches
Compressed air gun
  • Pneumatic chassis lubriguns
Compression testers
  • Compression analyzers
Cutting die
  • Metal cutting dies
Deburring tool
  • Deburring tools
Desktop computers
Diagonal cut pliers
  • Diagonal cutting pliers
Dial indicator or dial gauge
  • Dial indicators
  • Auto body dollies
Drill press or radial drill
  • Drill presses
  • Workshop presses
Engine ignition systems
  • Dwell meters
Engine or vehicle stands
  • Engine stands
  • Frame racks
  • Jack stands
Feeler gauges
  • Spark plug gapping tools
Grease guns
  • Hacksaws
  • Wheel weight hammers
Hand clamps
  • Clutch holding tools
Hand reamer
  • Reamers
Heat guns
Heat tracing equipment
  • Infrared digital thermometers
Hex keys
  • Allen wrenches
  • Chain hoists
Hole gauge
  • Bore gauges
Hose cutter
  • Hose cutters
Hydraulic press brake
  • Hydraulic shop presses
Impact wrenches
Inspection mirror
  • Inspection mirrors
  • Transmission jacks
Laser printers
Leak testing equipment
  • Combustion leak detectors
  • Leak detection smoke machines
  • Light emitting diode LED leak detector lights
  • Laser levels
Liquid leak detectors
  • Leak detectors
  • Refrigerant leak detectors
Locking pliers
  • Channel lock pliers
Magnetic tools
  • Magnetic pickup tools
Metal inert gas welding machine
  • Metal inert gas MIG welders
Mill saw file
  • Single-cut mill saw files
Multi gas monitors
  • Refrigerant identifiers
  • Clamp-on multimeters
Needlenose pliers
Nut drivers
Oil gun
  • Oil injectors
Open end wrenches
  • Crescent wrenches
Organic light emitting displays
  • Scan tools
Oxygen sensors
Paint sprayers
Personal computers
Personal digital assistant PDAs or organizers
  • Personal digital assistants PDA
Pipe or tube cutter
  • Exhaust/tail pipe cutters
  • Tube cutters
Pipe wrenches
Plasma arc welding machine
  • Plasma cutters
Pneumatic drill
  • Pneumatic drills
Pneumatic hammer
  • Air chisels
  • Air hammers
Pneumatic impact wrenches
  • Air wrenches
  • Butterfly air wrenches
  • Pneumatic wrenches
Pneumatic sanding machines
  • Pneumatic orbital sanders
  • Sandblasters
Pneumatic vacuum equipment
  • Brake bleeders
  • Hydraulic bleed tools
  • Pneumatic fluid evacuators
  • Pressure brake bleeders
Power buffers
  • Buffers
  • Polishers
Power drills
  • Angle drills
Power flaring tool
  • Flaring tools
Power grinders
Power riveter
  • Rivet guns
Power sanders
Power saws
  • Reciprocating saws
Pressure indicators
  • Diesel modulator shift testers
  • Engine oil pressure testers
  • Manifold gauge sets
Pressure or steam cleaners
  • Steam cleaning equipment
Pry bars
  • Ball joint separators
  • Dent pullers
  • Gear pullers
  • Hand pullers
  • Power pullers
  • Slide hammers
Punches or nail sets or drifts
  • Punches
  • Stickleback rasps
Refrigerant compressors
  • Air conditioner chargers
Remote reading thermometers
  • Non-contact thermometers
Retaining ring pliers
  • External snap ring pliers
  • Internal retaining ring pliers
Safety glasses
Screw extractors
  • Screw extractor sets
  • Phillips head screwdrivers
  • Straight blade screwdrivers
Shielded metal arc welding or stick welding machine
  • Shielded arc welding tools
Socket sets
  • Antenna socket sets
  • Socket wrench sets
Soldering iron
  • Soldering irons
Spark plug tester
  • Ignition testers
Spark plug wrench
  • Spark plug sockets
Specialty wrenches
  • Breaker bars
  • Clutch wrenches
  • Filter wrenches
  • Offset brake wrenches
  • Oil filter wrenches
  • Ratcheting gear wrenches
Speed sensors
  • Revolutions per minute RPM gauges
Steering wheel puller
  • Steering wheel column pivot pin pullers
Strap wrenches
Stripping tools
  • Wire strippers
  • Laser photo tachometers
Tape measures
  • Metal cutting taps
Tire changing machines
Tire pressure gauge
  • Tire pressure gauges
Torque wrenches
Torx keys
Trim or molding tools
  • Scrapers
Tube bending machine
  • Tubing benders
Utility knives
Vacuum gauges
Vacuum pumps
Valve seat cutter
  • Valve seating equipment
Voltage or current meters
  • Alternator testers
  • In-line ignition spark testers
  • Spark plug testers
  • Voltmeters
Welding masks
Welding or soldering kit
  • Spot welding kits
Wheel alignment equipment
  • Computerized suspension analyzers
  • Wheel alignment machines
Wheel balancing equipment
  • Strobe wheel balancing systems for heavy vehicles
  • Wheel balancers
Wheel nut or lug wrench
  • Lug wrenches
Wire brushes
Wire cutters
Workshop cranes


Accounting software
  • ARSIS Automotive Repair Shop Invoice System software
Analytical or scientific software
  • Hunter WinAlign
  • Nexiq Tech HDS Suite for Palm
Data base reporting software
  • Genisys Fast Fixes
  • Pathfinder software
Data base user interface and query software
  • Database software
Facilities management software
  • Alliance Automotive Shop Controller
  • Amcom AUTOS2000
  • CC2/CC3 body shop management software
  • Mitchell OnDemand5 Manager
  • Scott Systems MaxxTraxx Pro
  • Snap-On ShoKey
Information retrieval or search software
  • Online service manual database software
  • Technical manual database software
Internet browser software
Project management software
  • Estimating software

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Job Title Examples

Automotive Service Technician,  Shop Foreperson,  Automotive Technician,  ASE Master Mechanic (Automotive Service Excellence Master Mechanic),  Certified ASE Master Automotive Technician (Certified Automotive Service Excellence Master Automotive Technician),  Master Automotive Technician 


Where Do Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics Work?

Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics often work in the following industries.


Similar Careers

Below are careers that use skill sets that are similar to Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics.

Read more about our data.