If you love to learn about complexities & mechanics of engines and do not mind getting your hands dirty, then a career as a diesel mechanic may suit you well.

What Does a Diesel Mechanic Do?

Diesel mechanics are very specialized technicians who repair, maintain and inspect all kinds of diesel engines. They can work in many different settings e.g., at auto repair shops, garages, dealerships and companies etc. Diesel mechanics typically repair, maintain many types of vehicles such as trucks, buses, heavy/light duty machinery, boats, cars and vans etc. Sometimes, diesel mechanics are also asked to build entire engines. Although, the duties of a diesel mechanic vary for each work setting, their typical job requirements include:

  • Diagnosing problems.
  • Inspecting engine parts.
  • Changing engine oil.
  • Replacing broken or old parts.
  • Cleaning engines.
  • Maintaining engine parts and systems.

How to Become a Diesel Mechanic in New Jersey?

The duration to become a diesel mechanic in New Jersey varies according the type of education you pursue and the type of certification you obtain. For instance, majority of certificate programs take between 6 to 12 months to complete. On the other hand, an associate’s degree usually takes about 2 years. Completing a program that is certified by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) or by the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF) improves your career outlook.

Requirements to Become a Diesel Mechanic in New Jersey

You must follow the steps given below to begin your career as a diesel mechanic in New Jersey.

  1. Obtain a high school degree or an equivalent GED certificate.
  2. Complete a certification or an associate’s degree in a relevant subject e.g., Engine Maintenance &Repair.
  3. Get hands-on experience in the field as a Trainee Diesel Mechanic.
  4. Acquire a state issued certification by passing the ASE exam.

Apart from the above-mentioned requirements, diesel mechanics must have the following skills.

  • Mathematic Skills:Diesel mechanics need to do basic calculations on a daily basis therefore, a strong knowledge of basic mathematical concepts is important.
  • Technical & Analytical Abilities: Diesel mechanics must know how to operate modern-day technology that is used to repair engines. They must also have the analytical skills to evaluate any problems in an engine.
  • Attention to Detail:Diesel mechanics’ job requires them to be capable of pin pointing all sorts of problems in engines and their parts.
  • Patience:The job of a diesel mechanic is very challenging and demands them to be patient with the unforeseeable problems that may cause delays.
  • Communication Skills: To work seamlessly in a team, diesel mechanics also need strong communication skills to successfully get their point across.
  • Willingness to learn: To keep up with the frequent technological changes in the engines and their parts, diesel mechanics must be willing to learn on the go.

 

Certifications to Become a Diesel Mechanic in New Jersey

The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) offers various certifications for diesel mechanics in the following areas:

  • School & Transit Bus Maintenance.
  • Truck Equipment .
  • Heavy/Medium Trucks.

To be eligible for an ASE certification, applicants must have at least 2 years of relevant work experience.

How Much Can I Make as a Diesel Mechanic in New Jersey?

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported the annual mean income of Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists for 2016, 2017 and 2018 as follows:

2016 2017 2018
Annual Mean Salary (NJ) $54,500 $54,950 $55,500
Annual Mean Salary (US) $46,710 $48,000 $49,150

Source: US Bureau of Labor Statistics

 

The above-mentioned income chart shows a gradual and stable increase in the salary of Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists in the US over last 3 years. In New Jersey, the annual mean has remained well above the national average which is great news for people in the state who want to join this field.