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Like Fixing Stuff? Then Consider a Career in Maintenance

January 26, 2012 | Education | No Comments

If you like to fix and build things, work with your hands, don’t mind getting dirty, like technology and don’t want to sit at a desk, you should  seriously consider a career in maintenance.

There are many different types of maintenance workers, which include electrical, mechanical, aircraft, avionics, helicopter and building maintenance.

Many maintenance technicians work in manufacturing plants, such as automotive, aviation, food and medical plants to repair, install and maintain equipment. The majority of their time is spent on working to keep equipment up and running because it’s very expensive for plants to have extended amounts of downtime.

Due to rapid improvements in technology, machines are becoming more complicated so it’s important that maintenance workers are computer and electronic savvy.

If you are considering a career in maintenance there are basically two ways to obtain maintenance training. The first is to attend a community college offering  maintenance training that consist of hands on training, classroom instructions and text book exercises.

The second is to enter an apprenticeship program where you work with an experienced maintenance technician who will train you to complete specific tasks while you take classes at nights or weekends to obtain your certificate or license. Apprenticeship programs are usually offered by companies who will have a  joint program with local unions or community colleges.

Requirements to enter an apprenticeship program are less stringent than community colleges, however, more companies are only accepting individuals who have a  high school degree. They also prefer high school students who have taken some vocational classes like blue print reading, mechanical drawing, computer  programming, wood working, auto repair, etc.

Training in aircraft maintenance is the most stringent because you will have to pass exams to become certified by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA), you must be at least 18 years old, have a high school diploma or equivalent, be fluent in reading and speaking English and have the required basic technical  skills. To become a certified aircraft mechanic the FAA requires students to complete a minimum of 1, 900 class hours.

To become a maintenance electricians most states and local governments require a license, however, requirements vary by state/local area. Electricians are required to pass an exam testing their knowledge of electrical theory, local/state electric and building codes and the National Electrical Code.

Salaries for maintenance technicians depend on industry, geography and job classification. Entry level maintenance workers can expect make from $14 to over $20 per hour plus benefits. Workers with over 5 years experience can earn over $30 per hour.

Maintenance workers tend to be older men who will start to retire in abundance over the next few years which will result in a shortage of workers to fill these  positions. Younger workers want to work in cleaner environments and jobs that are less physically demanding. Additionally, younger individuals tend to shy  away from technical careers which involves math and science.

 

 

 

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