Career Profile – Automotive Technician
Do you want to become an Automotive Technician?
Automotive Technicians are the life-blood of the Motor Industry in Ireland. These highly skilled crafts-people diagnose, inspect, repair and service light passenger cars and light commercial vehicles.
What exactly does an Automotive Technician do?
An Automotive Technician’s work is practical, hands-on work and involves locating and diagnosing problems in vehicles, then using technical know-how to replace or mend the fault, service and carry out routine checks, and test the vehicle to ensure that it is operating safely.
The Technician may have to test drive the vehicle or use a variety of testing equipment to identify the source of the problem. In some cases, the motor technician will also deal directly with the customer and give estimates on the cost of the work.
The mark of a good Vehicle Technician is their ability to diagnose mechanical, fuel, electrical and electronic problems and make repairs in the minimal time. You will work in a workshop or a garage, or for a company owning large fleets of cars or for a motoring organisation as vehicle breakdown engineer. Automotive Technicians use a wide range of basic and specialised tools, including the latest in electronic diagnostic handheld scan tools.
They also use precision equipment such as micrometers, ammeters, voltmeters and torque wrenches and increasingly computerised engine testing equipment such as infrared engine analysers, dynamometers, engine analysis units and compressions testers which are used to monitor and locate malfunctions.
With rate of change in modern automobile technology, an Automotive Technician continues to learn throughout their whole career.
How do I become an Automotive Technician?
The route to this exciting career is through a four-year apprenticeship. Most of your learning is on the job in the garage or workshop with Master Technicians, with 3 phases of full-time study. You need to find an employer to take you on as an apprentice. Please visit https://www.simi.ie/en/find-a-member if you are looking for an employer.
What are the requirements?
The minimum entry requirements is that you are at least 16 years old and have at least a grade D in any 5 subjects in the Junior Certificate (or equivalent grades in other approved examinations).
Some employers will look for more than this – up to Leaving Certificate. Maths, physics, technical drawing, metal work, technology and engineering are particularly relevant school subjects.
What does it take to be an Automotive Technician?
- Physically fit
- Must pass a colour-vision test
- Aptitude for handling tools and equipment
- Aptitude for Maths
- Mechanical Aptitude
- Problem solving skills for diagnosing the machines’ malfunction
- Computer skills
- Good reading skills for studying service manuals and analysing complex diagrams.
How do I find out more?
Please visit www.simi.ie for more information on Apprenticeships and Careers in the Irish Motor Industry.