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Automotive mechanics, also called automotive technicians, repair a variety of vehicles and often specialize in working on a particular vehicle type, such as large equipment or motorcycles. Their work involves examining, diagnosing, and repairing malfunctioning vehicles. You may choose to focus on one or two types of repair work, such as heating and cooling or transmission systems.

People who are good at analytical thinking, pay attention to detail, and enjoy working with their hands may enjoy a career in this field. Those considering becoming auto mechanics in Alabama may find career opportunities in service centers, auto dealerships, garages, and more.

Alabama Auto Mechanic Schools

Those considering a career in this industry may consider attending a trade school or technical program, as well as seek out certification or licensing. Here is a sample of the many auto mechanic programs throughout Alabama:

  • Faulkner State Community College: Located in Bay Minette, this school offers a two-semester training certificate program in Automotive Technology designed to prepare students to enter the field immediately upon completion.

  • Bevill State Community College: This school in Jasper offers the Vehicle Technology & Repair program with three concentration options: Automotive Service Excellence, Auto Body Repair, and Diesel Technician.

  • Trenholm State Community College: This Montgomery school offers three award programs in Automotive Technology, where students study the principles of the National Automotive Service Excellence Certifications.

  • J.F. Drake State Community & Technical College: This school in Huntsville offers students two degree programs in Automotive Service Technology, both designed to prepare students to repair modern vehicles and light trucks.

  • Lawson State Community College: Those in Birmingham may consider this school, which offers the Alabama Center for Automotive Excellence, with six available programs: Auto Body Repair, Automotive Mechanics, Ford ASSET, General Motors ASEP, Toyota T-TEN, and Medium/Heavy Truck Technician.

What to Expect from Alabama Auto Mechanic Programs

While all programs may vary, students in a typical automotive technician program study the following basic principles of auto repair:

  • Automatic transmission/transaxle
  • Electrical/electronic systems
  • Heating and air conditioning
  • Brakes
  • Engine performance
  • Engine repair
  • Drive train and axles
  • Steering and suspension

Typical beginner courses include Fundamentals of Automotive Technology and Electrical Fundamentals. Training includes diagnostics that aid in figuring out why the equipment isn't working properly, and then developing and executing a plan to repair it.

Alabama Auto Mechanic Certification and Licensing

The state of Alabama does not require licensing for auto mechanics. However, you can make yourself more valuable to prospective employers with the right certifications.

Automobile Service Excellence (ASE) certification may boost your résumé and earning power, and some shops require it. In addition, the EPA requires certification in the proper handling of refrigerants for mechanics working with this substance.

Resources for Auto Mechanics in Alabama

  • ASE offers free practice tests and registration for ASE Certification.
  • The EPA offers information and tests on Stationary Refrigeration Certification.
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More Alabama Auto Mechanic Schools

Source: Integrated Postsecondary Education Data System (IPEDS) 2016-17, National Center for Education Statistics, http://nces.ed.gov/ipeds/

School Name
Campus
Highest Award
Total Enrollment
Hanceville
Associates
5,301
Gadsden
Associates
4,979
Bay Minette
Associates
4,968
Wadley
Associates
4,828
Dothan
Associates
4,645
Tuscaloosa
Associates
4,607
Jasper
Associates
3,872
Muscle Shoals
Associates
3,440
Birmingham
Associates
3,248
Mobile
Associates
3,233
Montgomery
Associates
1,845
Andalusia
Associates
1,838
Huntsville
Associates
752
Brewton
Associates
746
Deatsville
Associates
449

Job Popularity in Metro Areas for Automotive Mechanics

The map below shows job statistics for the career type by metro area, for Alabama. A table below the map shows job popularity and salaries across the state.

Metro Areas Rated for Popularity for:
Automotive Mechanics

Listed below are metro areas ranked by the popularity of jobs for Automotive Mechanics relative to the population of the city. Salary data was obtained from the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

2017 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2016-26 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov; O*NET® 23.1 Database, O*NET OnLine, National Center for O*NET Development, Employment & Training Administration, U.S. Department of Labor, onetonline.org

Metro Area
Jobs
Annual Median Salary
Auburn-Opelika250 $45,550
Anniston-Oxford-Jacksonville200 $38,200
Huntsville730 $39,780
Daphne-Fairhope-Foley250 $39,210
Decatur210 $33,130
Dothan360 $31,510
Birmingham-Hoover2460 $45,270
Florence-Muscle Shoals210 $41,560
Gadsden170 $38,430
Mobile600 $41,750
Montgomery710 $41,300
Tuscaloosa330 $43,090

Sources:

  1. College Navigator, IES, National Center for Education Statistics, http://nces.ed.gov/collegenavigator/?s=AL&p=15.0803+47.0604, accessed September 3, 2016
  2. Test Prep & Training, National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence, http://www.ase.com/Test-Prep-Training.aspx, accessed September 3, 2016
  3. Types of Section 608 Technician Certification, EPA US Environmental Protection Agency, https://www.epa.gov/section608/types-section-608-technician-certification, accessed September 3, 2016

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