Heavy equipment repair and maintenance is a viable career option for those who are willing to learn, train, and hone their skills for the craft. With a good set of mechanical skills and a background in automotive and equipment maintenance, you can transition to a career in fixing heavy equipment. The job involves understanding the systems that run motorized machinery, including cranes, bulldozers, and more. Your knowledge should cover topics like hydraulics, diesel engines, and all the other moving parts that may need repair and maintenance throughout its use.
While your background in automotive repair may help, heavy equipment repair and maintenance is a different beast. Heavy equipment cannot be taken to a repair shop, and repair and maintenance are usually done on the spot, in the field where it is being used.
To become an expert in heavy equipment repair, Salt Lake City, UT residents should have trained in a variety of ways. One is through on the job training, so that they can learn first-hand what parts break down easily, what they need to do, what equipment they need to have and use, and more. As for formal training, there are many community and technical colleges that offer classes in this field. You can earn a bachelor’s or associate’s degree, a certificate, or a diploma. The coverage of these courses is pretty diverse since you are expected to be the expert in all things heavy equipment. You’ll learn about basic repairs, proper operation of certain equipment, and even lessons on diesel engines and diesel technology.
There are also distance learning options for those who are interested in studying some of the concepts away from the typical classroom setting. But since the nature of work is hands-on, the distance learning program is more hybrid, with requirements that involve attending actual classes for the experience.
A good set of mechanical skills will come in handy for heavy equipment repair. You need to take apart engines, moving parts, and more, so you also need to learn your tools by heart. Often overlooked, a heavy equipment maintenance worker should also be able to communicate well. The tasks are usually a team job, so you’ll be working with other people to fix a piece of equipment. Lastly, you also need to be updated with the tech required in the industry. Repair workers should be able to operate computers and various electronics.
There’s a growing demand for diesel service technicians and other heavy equipment jobs in the next couple of years. The career pays well, with a median wage of $46,870 for heavy equipment maintenance, and $42,730 for diesel engine mechanics. With proper education, both classroom and hands-on, and sufficient on-the-job training, you are well on your way to becoming a heavy equipment repair professional.
If you specialize in heavy equipment repair and maintenance, then you have a lot of opportunities in store, so make sure that you are prepared and well-equipped with the knowledge to work to do the job.