Diesel engines are powerful machines that help transport goods all over the world. Trucks and heavy vehicles require a tremendous amount of energy in order to make their cross-continental journeys. Diesel fuel provides the power to make this happen. But like any other machine, diesel engines break down. In fact, they endure much more stress and wear than the average car ever does, so malfunctions can happen more often. Diesel mechanics are there to make sure that delays are infrequent and short.
The life of a diesel mechanic
When an engine fails, you are there to fix it. Using troubleshooting steps, you identify the problem, repair or replace the necessary parts, and get the engine back on track. However, this is only half of your job. Prevention and maintenance will comprise the bulk of your work. By keeping engines well tuned, you can reduce the likelihood of future breakdowns.
On the job training versus formal education
The U.S. Department of labor admits that many diesel mechanics receive on the job training, but it is quick to point out that your prospects will improve tremendously if you complete a formal diesel engine training program. These courses tend to last anywhere from 6 months to 2 years. Given how complex engines are becoming (some have computer chips these days), you will definitely benefit from formal classes. Besides, most employers would prefer to hire a certified mechanic as opposed to an eager beginner.
The Department of Labor predicts that job growth will match the national average for other occupations, so you need not worry about job security.
Publish date: February 10, 2011