Career Profile: Small Engine Mechanic

Career Profile: Small Engine Mechanic

by Giselle Mazurat
Jobs People Do | JobsPeopleDo.com

A Small Engine Mechanic repairs and services small gasoline and diesel-powered equipment such as lawn mowers, motorcycles, boats, zero-turn mowers, snow mobiles, garden tractors and chainsaws. Mechanics can specialize in generators and power sports motors that include outboard motors, ATVs and dirt bikes.

Typical responsibilities include prioritizing work orders, inspecting and testing engines, estimating repair costs, diagnosing and isolating faults as well as adjusting and replacing parts. Customer service is an important role for the mechanic. They advise customers on the work performed and show them how to take care of the equipment.

No day is routine in the life of a Small Engine Mechanic. In the morning, either the mechanic or foreman reviews and prioritizes the work orders. The day can start with a simple problem such as an oil change and end with a highly complex problem such as the motor not starting due to a carburetor problem.

To be a successful mechanic, you need a strong mechanical and electrical aptitude as well as excellent problem solving abilities. You need to figure out if the problem is as simple as needing an air filter change or as complicated as the engine suddenly stopped running. Good manual dexterity is a must since you’ll manipulate a lot of small parts and use a variety of tools.

You may get a customer like me who knows absolutely nothing about machinery and they may not explain the problem properly. They may just tell you “my lawnmower won’t start” which doesn’t say much, so you need imagination to picture what could have happened. For example, did the customer neglect or abuse it? Did they fill the machinery while the engine was running? Or did they use it improperly? Answers to questions like these will help you diagnose the problem.

The job of a Small Engine Mechanic is very cerebral because you have to focus on a lot of detail for complex tasks like taking a carburetor apart. A carburetor has a lot of small parts. If you take it apart in the wrong order or get the parts mixed up, you may have a very hard time putting it back together and your carburetor could end up like Humpty Dumpty who fell of the wall.

If you’re in high school, you can take courses in electronics, mechanics, business math and science to prepare for a Small Engine Mechanic career. You can get experience by working part-time or during the summer at a mechanic shop then further your education in a certificate program at your local college.

Most Small Engine Mechanics work full time during regular business hours, but they may work more hours during peak times. Employers who hire mechanics include shops, marinas, motor vehicle dealers, garages, boatyards, equipment rental companies, wholesale distributors, and parts dealers. An experienced Small Engine Mechanic can earn about $59,288 or $16.50 per hour.

If you’re mechanically inclined, practical and love problem solving, a Small Engine Mechanic career may be a step in the right direction for you.


Education Experience For Motorcycle And Small Engine Repair Worker http://www.careerexplorer.net/education-experience/education-experience-motorcycle-and-small-engine-repair-worker

Payscale.com – Small Engine Mechanic (Canada) http://www.payscale.com/research/CA/Job=Small_Engine_Mechanic/Hourly_Rate

Small Engine Mechanics http://job-outlook.careerplanner.com/Small-Engine-Mechanics.cfm

Small Engine Technician http://www.ycdsb.ca/departments/instructionalservices/scp/documents/smallenginetech.pdf

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