What Do Outdoor Power Equipment and Other Small Engine Mechanics Do?
An outdoor power equipment and other small engine mechanic works on engines for lawn mowers, chain saws, four wheelers, snowmobiles and other small engines. They may have to diagnose, overhaul, adjust and repair the engine depending on the situation.This type of occupation is expected to increase by about 6% across the United States. That could translate to approximately 810 annual job openings.
Outdoor Power Equipment and Other Small Engine Mechanics Skills and Abilities
Being a mechanic of any type requires certain skills and abilities. In order to be able to work on small engines, you have to have a technical knowledge of machines and ways to repair them. You should know the proper steps for maintaining engines and the equipment that they run in. Because this is a service position, you also have to have customer service skills. You have to be able to actively listen, so you can diagnose the issue as early as possible. As you work with small engines you also need some physical abilities, such as dexterity, arm-hand steadiness and strength.
Outdoor Power Equipment and Other Small Engine Mechanics Duties
As an outdoor power equipment and other small engine mechanic, your duties will vary depending on institution that you work for. Many mechanics in this area find themselves using feeler gauges in order to adjust valves, distributors, spark plug gaps and carburetors. You will also have to keep records of the repairs you made, how long the repairs took and the parts you had to use. It is likely that you will be the first line of customer service, which means that you will also have to give customers and estimate of cost taking into account your labor and the parts required. You will also have to be able to refer customers to other specialists if something is out of your breadth. As a small engine mechanic, you should expect to remove engines, sell parts, repair defective parts, replace engines and parts and adjust parts to make the engine run smoothly.
Outdoor Power Equipment and Other Small Engine Mechanics Tools and Technology
Thankfully, there are a lot of tools and technologies that actually make being a small engine mechanic much easier. In order to be efficient, you have to be familiar with these tools and technology. You should be familiar with pressure gauges, pullers, screwdrivers, sockets, spark plug testers, wenches and other useful small engine tools. You may have to also know how to use analytical software of database user software to diagnose issues and record information.
Education and Training for Outdoor Power Equipment and Other Small Engine Mechanics
Typically this type of small engine mechanic only requires a high school education, but some employers may want you to have an Associate’s degree or some other college experience. You will have to undergo on the job training in order to gain the technical knowledge necessary to be successful. If you do pursue higher education, you should take courses such as:
- Small Engine Repair
- Automobile Mechanics
Outdoor Power Equipment and Other Small Engine Mechanics Salary
The average outdoor power equipment and other small engine mechanic in the United States makes $32,100. The salary depends on your level of education, experience, the company that you work for and where you live. Usually someone in this position makes between $20,700 and $49,200.
Outdoor Power Equipment and Other Small Engine Mechanics Jobs by Geography
When you start thinking about a career, you have to look at it by geography. In one area, this occupation may be more lucrative and readily available than another. On average, this job is most lucrative in Alaska, Hawaii and Wyoming. The average wage in these areas is $52,700, $45,800 and $$43,200 respectively. All of these states are also projected to see more growth in the occupation than the United States as a whole. They are slated to see 14%, 8% and 29% growth respectively. As you start thinking about careers, it is important to realize just how much geography, education and experience can affect your success.