How to Become a Diesel Mechanic in North Carolina
If you have mechanical aptitude and good problem-solving ability, consider becoming a diesel mechanic. Diesel engines provide power behind weighty vehicles like large trucks and buses, and drivers of these vehicles rely on skilled diesel service technicians and mechanics to keep their vehicles in good running condition.
Your duties as a diesel mechanic would involve inspecting, troubleshooting, repairing and maintaining all types of diesel engines. If you pursue a career as a diesel mechanic in North Carolina, you’ll find that your skills are in great demand.
Requirements for Becoming a Diesel Mechanic in North Carolina
A high school diploma or equivalent is usually the minimum requirement for becoming a diesel mechanic. While postsecondary education isn’t always required to find a job in this field, more and more employers prefer applicants who have obtained formal training in the specialized skills needed to service diesel engines. Many vocational schools and community colleges offer programs that combine classroom learning with hands-on training.
Diesel Mechanic Training Programs in North Carolina
Successful completion of formal diesel mechanic training can help you learn what you need to know to diagnose and repair diesel engines. Going through a training program in this field can make you more valuable to potential employers and more skillful in your ability to repair and maintain all types of diesel engines. Programs where you can obtain these skills in North Carolina include:
- Universal Technical Institute. UTI has 12 locations across the country including Mooresville, NC. They offer training in diesel technology, which includes hands-on training on both trucks and equipment supplied by leading manufacturers. Completing this program is equivalent to one to two years of work experience and prepares graduates to complete ASE examinations.
- AB Tech Community College. Located in Asheville, NC, this community college offers an Associate of Applied Science degree in Diesel and Heavy Equipment Technology. This program prepares students to service, maintain and repair diesel engines in heavy duty trucks, railroad locomotives, buses and equipment.
Is Certification Required to Become a Diesel Mechanic in North Carolina?
Certification isn’t needed to work as a diesel service technician or mechanic in North Carolina. But obtaining optional certification through National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence is a great way to demonstrate your competence in the field to potential employers. It’s a nationally recognized standard that may improve your earning potential.
Salary Range and Job Expectations for Diesel Mechanics in North Carolina
The field of diesel mechanics is expected to grow at a rate of about 5 percent between 2018 and 2028 nationwide, which is about average for all occupations, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Growth is expected to be approximately 9 percent in North Carolina between 2016 and 2026, which is slightly better than the national rate according to Career OneStop.
In North Carolina, the median annual salary for diesel mechanics was $44,150 in 2018. This means that half of the people who worked as diesel mechanics made more than this salary and half earned less. The average hourly pay (mean) the same year was $21.78.
Working as a Diesel Mechanic in North Carolina
Working as a diesel mechanic can be rewarding when you have the ability to diagnose and solve problems with diesel engines. You’ll use a variety of power tools, hand tools and machine tools in order to make both minor and major engine repairs. You may have to handle greasy equipment, and you may find that your working environment is fairly noisy.
Working hours may vary, because some shops are open standard hours while others offer evening and weekend service, or even 24-hour emergency service. Opportunities are available at repair shops, trucking companies, auto dealerships and leasing companies. The transportation industry is growing steadily, which leads to a growing need for skillful diesel service technicians and mechanics all over North Carolina, especially in large cities such as Raleigh and Charlotte.