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How to Hire a Mechanic

Does your growing business need a mechanic? A mechanic is responsible for making sure that motorized vehicles, machines and other equipment are functioning properly. If you need a problem solver with speciality skills in inspecting, diagnosing, dismantling, repairing and replacing mechanical parts, consider hiring a mechanic who knows the ins and outs of all kinds of machinery.

Understanding the steps behind hiring a mechanic, including data about candidates looking for mechanic jobs, salaries and key terms to include in your job description, can help you stand out from the competition to reach and attract the most qualified candidates.

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Mechanics searching for jobs on Indeed*


job seekers clicked on mechanic jobs


resumes from job seekers with mechanic experience on Indeed


mechanic jobs that received clicks

What is the cost of hiring a mechanic?

  • Common wage in US: $21.35 hourly
  • Typical wages range from $7.00$50.50 hourly
  • Find more information on Indeed Salaries



*Indeed data (US) – July 2020

As of July 2020, mechanic jobs in the US are very competitive compared to other job markets, with an average of 19 job seekers per mechanic job.

Why hire a mechanic?

An efficient mechanic maintains and repairs machinery and vehicles. They understand how internal systems work (e.g., combustion and diesel motors, suspensions, transmissions, brakes), perform regular maintenance and status checks and fix machinery using specialized tools like wrenches, screwdrivers and hydraulic lifts.

Their in-depth knowledge of machinery and how it works can be beneficial if you run a garage or auto shop, car dealership, a home repair business or own a fleet of vehicles.

Contributions of a great mechanic:

  • Build and assemble machines as per customer needs
  • Monitor and inspect machines, engines and uncover functionality issues by running diagnostic tests
  • Enhance reliability of machines and vehicles by performing minor and major repairs as needed
  • Thoroughly explain vehicle repairs needed to each customer to build trust and loyalty
  • Perform routine maintenance such as changing oil, replacing filters and cleaning and lubricating equipment and machinery
  • Follow all safety measures and protocols when working on machinery

Deciding between a full-time vs freelance mechanic

Before writing a mechanic description or interviewing candidates, decide if you need a full-time or freelance, part-time or contract mechanic (and what your budget will allow).

You may want to hire a freelance mechanic, for example, if you own a fleet of business vehicles and need someone to make one-off repairs every now and again. However, you may need a full-time mechanic if you run an auto shop, garage or home repair business and need help meeting customer demand.

What are the types of mechanics?

When you want to hire a mechanic, it’s important to understand the type of mechanic you need. While many mechanics work on cars, trucks, buses and motorcycles, there are several other kinds of mechanics that have a specific set of skills and expertise. Here are some of the most common types of mechanics:

  • Auto mechanic: Focuses on car repairs and maintenance. There are general auto mechanics as well as those that specialize in certain electrical and mechanical aspects, such as brakes and steering, engine repairs, suspension, etc.
  • Millwright: Also known as industrial machinery mechanics, millwrights work in factories, power plants and construction sites. They are typically responsible for installing, repairing and maintaining heavy machinery such as power generators, turbines and conveying systems.
  • Heating, ventilation, and air conditioning (HVAC) mechanic: These mechanics typically work in residences, office buildings and other commercial establishments. They may repair and maintain kitchen equipment, such freezers and ice makers, or perform general maintenance on equipment like air compressors, boilers and dryers.
  • Heavy vehicle mechanic: Similar to an auto mechanic, but works on heavier machines, such as farm equipment, rail cars, passenger buses, and marine vessels. Heavy vehicle mechanics are often known as diesel mechanics.
  • Handyman: A handyman may perform light repair and maintenance work, which could include fixing machinery, equipment or appliances.

Where to find mechanics

To find the right mechanic for your business, consider trying out a few different recruiting strategies:

  • Hire from within. Are any of your mechanic apprentices ready to move up? Take a look at your current staff and see if there’s anyone who matches your job requirements.
  • Encourage referrals. Ask your current team if they know anyone who could be a match for the role.
  • Get involved at local technical colleges. Attend career fairs and post help wanted flyers on technical or trade school campuses near you.
  • Recruit military veterans. Military technicians often have experience working on diesel units.
  • Post your job online. Try posting your mechanic job on Indeed to find and attract qualified mechanic candidates.

Skills to look for in a great mechanic

Mechanics are an integral part of any auto shop, home repair business, car dealership, construction site or factory. With the ability to identify and fix mechanical problems and deliver exceptional customer service, a great mechanic candidate will have training, qualifications and experience that reflect these top mechanic skills and qualifications:

  • High school diploma or GED (Associate’s degree a plus)
  • Current state vehicle inspection license
  • Proficient in troubleshooting, diagnosing and repairing different types of equipment
  • Valid driver’s license
  • Familiarity with professional diagnostic equipment
  • Knowledge of hydraulic and electrical systems
  • Knowledge of various makes and models of vehicles, both foreign and domestic
  • Familiar with advanced and latest machine diagnostic equipment
  • Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) certification
  • Exceptional customer service skills
  • Detail-oriented

Writing a mechanic job description

A thoughtful description can help you find qualified mechanic candidates. A mechanic job description includes a compelling summary of the role, a detailed list of duties and responsibilities, and the required and preferred skills for the position. You may also want to include details about the working conditions and physical demands of the role (e.g., ability to lift a certain amount of weight), as well as what availability is required.

To improve the visibility of your mechanic job description, consider including keywords that job seekers are using to search for mechanic jobs. Here are some of the most popular search terms leading to clicks on mechanic jobs, according to Indeed data:

  • Mechanic
  • Diesel mechanic
  • Maintenance
  • Maintenance technician
  • Welding
  • Heavy equipment mechanic
  • Construction
  • Aircraft mechanic
  • Automotive technician
  • Automotive

Interviewing mechanic candidates

After you’ve reviewed the resumes of your top mechanic candidates, take the time to ask detailed interview questions to better understand their knowledge, skills and experience. Strong candidates for mechanic positions will be confident when answering a variety of questions about the following topics:

  • Proficiency in doing minor and major repairs to machines and vehicles
  • Inspecting vehicles to uncover technical issues and correct them
  • How they’ve contributed to sales and profit goals of the company by actively working towards resolving vehicle and machinery technical issues

Need help coming up with interview questions? See our list of mechanic interview questions for examples (with sample answers).

FAQs about how to hire a mechanic

What does a mechanic use to fix things?

The tools that mechanics use depend on the types of machines and vehicles they’re working on. Common tools and equipment in a mechanic’s toolbox include tire pressure gauges, hydraulic floor jacks and stands, torque wrenches, crowbars, pliers, hammers, a flashlight, diagnostic tools, and much more.

What is the difference between a technician and a mechanic?

While there are several differences between technicians and mechanics, one of the main differences is their area of expertise. Technicians typically use computers to diagnose problems and then hand it off to mechanics to fix the problem.

What does a mechanic wear?

Mechanics often wear a set of durable, flame resistant coveralls, mechanic gloves, safety glasses or goggles and steel toe work boots. You may choose to provide your mechanic with a uniform or ask them to buy their own clothing that fits within your business’s dress code and safety standards.

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