Becoming an Auto Mechanic or Automotive Technician in New Hampshire
If you are looking for work as an automotive technician or truck and diesel mechanic, you can find a variety of jobs in New Hampshire. There are also many educational opportunities if you want to complete a degree or certification program, but neither is required for entry-level positions. After two years of work as an automotive technician, a mechanic is eligible to obtain Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certification to advance in their field. [En Español]
According to the May 2021 report from the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), there were 3,870 automotive technicians and mechanics employed in New Hampshire at that time. There were an additional 800 auto body repairers, 130 auto glass installers and 1,060 truck and diesel mechanics. The employment rate for mechanics in New Hampshire is expected to increase by 3 percent between 2020 and 2030, which is indicative of the increasing opportunities available for mechanics.
The average annual salary for an automotive technician in New Hampshire is around $47,790, and a highly experienced auto technician can earn up to $69,620 a year. For truck and diesel mechanics, the average salary is slightly higher at $54,140 per year, and those in the top 10 percentiles earned $75,050 a year. Mechanics can find the best-paid jobs in and around Portsmouth, as well as the regions surrounding nearby Boston and Cambridge, MA, and Nashua, N.H.
Salaries in New Hampshire by Occupation
|Average Hourly Wage
|Average Annual Salary
|Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics
|Automotive Glass Installers and Repairers
|Automotive Body and Related Repairers
|Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists
Auto Mechanic Salaries in New Hampshire by Region
|Mean Hourly Wage
|Mean Annual Salary
Popular Auto Mechanic Schools in New Hampshire
Not all automotive jobs require previous experience or training, but it is helpful to have prior knowledge. For high school students, graduates of programs accredited by the Automotive Youth Educational System (AYES) are the most competitive. Those who choose to learn automotive technology in college should look for a school with a program accredited by the National Automotive Technology Educational Foundation (NATEF).
New Hampshire offers four high school AYES programs: Concord Regional Technology Center, Salem High School, Seacoast School of Technology in Exeter and Pinkerton Academy in Derry. Concord Regional Technology Center has a general technician program, whereas the other schools offer maintenance and light repair programs. All high school programs in New Hampshire are NATEF-accredited.
The following two colleges have automotive technology programs:
- Manchester Community College. Manchester offers an excellent associate degree program in automotive technology with available manufacturer pathways in Chrysler, Ford, Audi and Subaru. A global pathway automotive technology program is offered as well, focusing on companies in Europe. The associate program is expected to take two years to complete, and an additional one-year certificate program is available. Manchester Community College requires students to complete an internship if they are working to earn their automotive technology certificate, to further ready them for ASE certification.
- Lakes Region Community College in Laconia. An associate program is available with flexible hours for students and an opportunity to complete an additional one-year certificate program. This is taught by certified technicians prepared to train students to become ASE certified. Lakes Region Community College is a NATEF-accredited school.
After gaining on-the-job experience, an automotive technician is eligible to get an ASE certificate. ASE certificates, offered for over 50 specifications, show employers and customers that the mechanic is highly qualified and has enough experience and expertise to perform more advanced tasks in the field.
Some of these 50 specifications tests include:
- Truck equipment certification tests
- Light repair certification test
- Engine machinist certification tests
- Light truck certification tests
- School bus certification tests
- Transit bus certification tests
- Alternate fuels certification test
- Parts specialist certification test
- Parts specialist certification tests
A mechanic must have two years of work experience, or a year of work after obtaining an associate degree, in order to take an ASE certification exam.
Where to Find Work in New Hampshire
There are available auto mechanic jobs throughout New Hampshire. Dover and Portsmouth offer the least competition for automotive specialties, as well as Manchester, which had very few mechanics employed as of 2020.
Mechanics who studied under one of the manufacturer-specific programs will be hired to work as certified technicians or dealers for one of close to a dozen companies, including Audi, Subaru and Chrysler. Auto technicians can work for dealerships, service stations and independent shops with a wide variety of vehicle work.