We all want more money. As mechanics, we have a particular set of skills (said in the voice of Liam Neeson). We should do everything we can to raise the dollar bills. I mean, after all, that is why we turn wrenches to begin with.
I took a survey of several diesel techs and asked them how they went about increasing their paycheck. I got some varied responses and I wanted to share them with you. I feel like there is some very valuable information here. Enjoy.
9 ways diesel mechanics can make more money:
- Continuing Education and Certification: Keeping up-to-date with the latest technologies and advancements in diesel engines can help diesel mechanics increase their earning potential. Many employers prefer or require mechanics to have certifications, such as those offered by the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) or the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF), so taking these certifications can help mechanics to increase their earning potential. I worked at one place that gave 4 dollars more per hour for master diesel tech ASE. It’s worth looking into even if your current employer doesn’t pay for them. You never know where you will be in the future
- Gaining experience: Gaining experience in a particular area of diesel mechanics, such as working on heavy-duty diesel engines or electronic systems, can make a mechanic more valuable to employers and lead to higher pay.
- Specialization: Specializing in a particular area of diesel mechanics, such as working on large diesel engines used in the marine or mining industry, can open up more opportunities for higher pay. Specializing can also lead to more job security, as companies in specialized industries often have a harder time finding qualified mechanics. Some specialties are:
- Heavy-Duty Trucks: Diesel mechanics who specialize in heavy-duty trucks work on large semi-trucks, tractor-trailers, and other commercial vehicles. This can include working on engines, transmissions, brakes, and other systems.
- Construction Equipment: Diesel mechanics who specialize in construction equipment work on heavy equipment such as bulldozers, excavators, and cranes. This can include working on diesel engines, hydraulic systems, and electrical systems.
- Marine Engines: Diesel mechanics who specialize in marine engines work on the engines of boats and ships. This can include working on diesel engines, propulsion systems, and other marine-specific systems.
- Agricultural Equipment: Diesel mechanics who specialize in agricultural equipment work on tractors, combines, and other farming equipment. This can include working on diesel engines, transmission systems, and other systems specific to agricultural equipment.
- Mining Equipment: Diesel mechanics who specialize in mining equipment work on large equipment used in the mining industry, such as trucks, excavators, and drilling equipment. This can include working on diesel engines, hydraulic systems, and other systems specific to mining equipment.
- Bus and Coach: Diesel mechanics who specialize in buses and coaches work on the engines, transmission, braking and electrical systems of buses and coaches.
- Power Generation: Diesel mechanics who specialize in power generation work on diesel generators and other power generation equipment. This can include working on diesel engines, electrical systems, and control systems.
- Working overtime and/or on-call: Some employers may offer overtime or on-call work, which can provide an opportunity for diesel mechanics to earn more money. However, it’s important to remember that this type of work can also be demanding and can take a toll on personal life, so it’s important to weigh the pros and cons before accepting this type of work.
- Starting your own business: This is perhaps the best way to go about peaking over 100k. Starting your own diesel repair business can bring in more income than working as an employee, but it also comes with the added risk and responsibilities of being an entrepreneur. A successful business can lead to higher profits and more control over your income. While it comes with more risk and stress, the rewards can be great and far surpass anything you make working for the man.
- Upgrading your skills: Keeping up to date with the latest technologies and advancements in the diesel mechanics industry can help mechanics to improve their skills and increase their earning potential.
- Pursuing management positions: Some diesel mechanics may choose to move into management positions, such as shop foreman, service manager or even becoming a business owner, this way they can earn more money and have more control over their income.
- Networking: Other diesel mechanics can be your greatest resource, Networking with other mechanics, suppliers, and industry leaders can help diesel mechanics to find better job opportunities, and negotiate higher salaries. Building a professional network can also help mechanics to learn about new technologies and advancements in the field, which can lead to more job opportunities and higher pay.
- Relocating: Moving to areas with a higher demand for diesel mechanics can also increase earning potential. Some areas may have higher salaries for diesel mechanics due to the cost of living or the industry that is prevalent in that area.
It’s worth noting that making more money in any career requires hard work, dedication, and a willingness to take on new challenges. It’s also important to keep in mind that some of the options mentioned above may require additional investment such as education, training, or starting a business and it’s not guaranteed to be successful.
Making 100k as a diesel Mechanic. is it Possible?
It is possible for a diesel mechanic to make six figures, but it depends on a number of factors such as location, experience, and type of employer.
It’s important to note that making six figures is not an easy task and it’s not guaranteed, it’s a combination of factors. While it’s possible, it’s not a common scenario, typically diesel mechanics tend to make between 40,000-60,000 dollars a year, but with experience, location, and employer, those numbers can change.
What if I’m not a diesel mechanic yet?
Here are 7 ways to break into the industry or get going on your new high-paying career:
- Look for jobs that do On-the-job training: Many employers offer on-the-job training for new diesel mechanics, which can provide hands-on experience with real-world problems and equipment. This type of training can be very valuable and can help mechanics to gain the skills and knowledge they need to advance in their careers.
- Look for Apprenticeship programs: Many diesel mechanics gain experience through apprenticeship programs, which typically last between two and four years. Apprenticeship programs typically involve working alongside experienced mechanics while also taking classes to learn the technical aspects of diesel mechanics.
- Find a good Technical school: Technical schools or vocational schools offer training programs specifically for diesel mechanics, which can provide a strong foundation of knowledge and hands-on experience. These programs can also lead to certifications that can help mechanics to advance in their careers.
- Do some Continuing education: Continuing education can help diesel mechanics to stay up-to-date with the latest technologies and advancements in diesel engines. This can include attending workshops, conventions or taking online courses.
- Working on personal vehicles: Some diesel mechanics gain experience by working on their personal vehicles, which can provide an opportunity to gain hands-on experience with different types of diesel engines.
- Volunteer work: Some diesel mechanics gain experience by volunteering to work on community projects such as rebuilding engines for non-profit organizations, this can provide an opportunity to work on different types of diesel engines and gain experience in a variety of settings.
- Join some professional organizations: Joining professional organizations such as the National Automotive Service Professionals Network (NASP), Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) or the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) can provide opportunities to learn from more experienced mechanics, attend workshops, and gain access to the latest industry information.
Gaining experience will take time and effort, and combining different methods is the best way to achieve it. It’s also important to remember that experience is not only about technical knowledge, but also about problem-solving, troubleshooting, and being able to work well under pressure.