How Much Does a Mechanic Earn in the United States?


Do you like mechanics and want to know how much a mechanic earns in the United States? In this article, you will learn what the average base salary is for those who exercise this essential job and which are the North American cities with the highest salary in this career. But in addition, we explain the different types of mechanics that you can choose, the education, training and certifications that you need and we explore the job prospects that you will have if you choose to become a mechanic.

Although the work of mechanics is always associated with auto, motorcycle, boat and airplane mechanics, they actually repair and maintain engines, equipment and machinery in many industries. That’s why it’s important that you understand what types of jobs are available to mechanics and how much they are generally paid; so you can determine if this is the career you are interested in pursuing.

Average Base Salary For Mechanics

The average base wage for mechanics in the United States, compiled by Indeep Salaries, is recorded here at $21.29 per hour with $6,750 of overtime pay per year. However, mechanic salaries can vary depending on the industry, how much experience they have, what their certifications are, and where they work.

Some industries pay more than others due to the complexity of the machines and the training or certification that is required. Mechanics can earn certifications in their particular focus. These certifications demonstrate a mechanic’s expertise and experience and are offered through vocational schools and professional organizations.

A mechanic who works with a large dealership and has a number of advanced certifications can earn $40.00 an hour, according to the source cited, almost twice as much as an entry-level mechanic who works in a small auto repair shop.

A mechanic’s salary can also vary by state of location due to differences in living standards, such as housing costs, which affect wages in many industries. State salaries also differ according to the industries that are prevalent in the state.

The North American cities with the highest salary for mechanics, according to the same cited source, are:
• New York, NY $27.49 per hour
• Everett, WA $26.37 per hour
• Phoenix, AZ $26.35 per hour
• Oklahoma City, OK $23.19 per hour
• Houston, TX $22.32 per hour
• Chicago, IL $22.29 per hour
• Tulsa, OK $20.51 per hour

What does a mechanic do?

A mechanic uses advanced technical and mechanical skills to troubleshoot, diagnose and fix problems, or complete preventative maintenance on the vehicle or machinery. As a mechanic you may have the following responsibilities:

• Operate diagnostic equipment to identify problems.
• Discuss repair costs and plans with customers.
• Repair mechanical problems with transmission, brakes, electronics, and engine.
• Assess the condition and safety of each repair.
• Give complete preventive maintenance to vehicles.

Requirements You Must Meet To Be A Mechanic

To obtain a position as a mechanic, you must complete certain educational, training, and experience requirements, including:


Formal education is not usually a requirement to become a mechanic. However, completing a technical or vocational program can help you find a job as a mechanic. These programs typically last one to two years.

Many mechanics also choose to earn an associate degree in auto mechanics which takes four years to complete.

Many hiring managers prefer candidates to have at least a high school degree or equivalent. Mathematics, computer science, technology and automotive courses may be useful to you.


An auto mechanic vocational program will give you hands-on experience troubleshooting and repairing common automotive problems. As an entry level mechanic you will generally continue your training while working with an experienced mechanic until you are ready to strike out on your own.


Certifications aren’t usually required to become a mechanic, but they can make you a more competitive candidate when applying for jobs. Also, service shops that repair unique vehicles or offer complicated services may require certifications. The following certifications are available for a mechanic:

Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Certification for Diesel Machines – Ideal for mechanics who want to work on diesel vehicles.

Marine Master Technician Certification – Ideal for mechanics who want to work on marine vehicles. This certification, available through the American Boat and Yacht Council (ABYC), requires the completion of eight core exams including; electrical, marine corrosion, marine systems, ABYC standards, diesel engine and support, gasoline engine and support, composite boat construction, and refrigeration.


Mechanics require certain soft and hard skills that will help you with your daily responsibilities, including:

Customer service

Customer service skills are important as mechanical. You will work with customers, discussing vehicle concerns and repair plans. The ability to communicate effectively with customers will help you understand what is wrong with the vehicle and, at the same time, you will gain customer confidence.

Problem resolution

As a mechanic you will find various challenges during your work. You must take customer reports, identify vehicle sounds and apply your technical knowledge to diagnose the problem. Then, you must take appropriate measures to repair it.

Handling tools

You will use a variety of automatic and manual tools daily to solve problems and repair vehicles. You should also know how to use diagnostic devices to determine the scope of a mechanical problem.

Projects management

Mechanics usually have several projects in progress at the same time. You need good organizational and project management skills to manage customer expectations and complete projects on time.

Mechanics related races

If you are looking for a career similar to that of a mechanic, then you can find these related work descriptions useful:

Automotive mechanic

Automotive mechanics work on vehicles that work with gasoline, ethanol and electricity. They complete routine maintenance, such as rotating and replacing tires, alignment, change oil and replace filters and straps. They also diagnose more serious problems through the analysis of computerized impressions of diagnostic tests.

Small motor mechanic

Small motor mechanics work with a variety of machines that include boats, gardening equipment and water motorcycles. They are familiar with a wide range of equipment and many different types of customers. Small motor mechanics can work with companies or start their own businesses. They can be vulnerable to climate trends, so working independently requires careful financial planning.

Heavy vehicle mechanic


Heavy vehicles mechanics often work in agricultural, construction and railway teams that are too large to take them to a workshop. These are complex machines, and many heavy vehicles mechanics complete a program specialized in vocational schools or universities.

Diesel mecanic


Diesel mechanics specialize in equipment and machines that use diesel fuel. They often work in heavy vehicles, such as long -running trucks, buses and airplanes. These vehicles require a lot of maintenance to function well, and diesel mechanics usually work in the place, since the diesel team is usually too large and complex to transfer them to the workshop.

Heating, air conditioning and cooling mechanic


They are also called HVAC technicians. They specialize in inspecting, repairing, maintaining and installing HVAC units in residential and commercial buildings. They ensure that heating and cooling units work efficiently and comply with environmental regulations. They usually complete a training or learning program.

Airplane mechanic

Aircraft mechanics work on airplanes, helicopters, drones, and other aerial vehicles. They complete inspections, maintenance, and repairs to ensure that the vessel complies with regulations set forth by the Federal Aviation Administration (FAA). Aircraft mechanics become certified after attending an aviation maintenance technician school, gaining 18 to 30 months of work experience, and passing an exam that includes oral, written, and practical components.

Motorcycle mechanic

Motorcycle mechanics work on dirt bikes, motorcycles, ATVs, and other small personal vehicle engines. Motorcycle mechanics can train by working in a garage or shop, or they can attend a college or vocational program.

Electrical mechanic

Electrical mechanics work on wiring, motors, heating, generators, and controllers. Electrical mechanics require approximately four years of training from an employer or through an apprenticeship to be fully qualified.

Industrial machinery mechanic

They manage, maintain, inspect, and repair equipment used for manufacturing. Industrial mechanics also use diagnostic technology, manuals, and their own observations to troubleshoot machine problems. They can receive on-the-job training or they can complete an associate degree program in industrial maintenance.

The salary amounts reflected in this article are based on data provided by Indeed Salaries at the time of writing the text. Wages and salaries may vary depending on the hiring company, experience, educational history and location status of the candidate.

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