motorcycle-mechanic-or-tech
How to Become a

Motorcycle Mechanic or Tech

The complete career guide to be a Motorcycle Mechanic or Tech: salary, job growth, employers, best schools, and education you may need to get started.

Why We Love It

  • $36,240
    Potential Avg. Salary
  • 5.9%
    Job Growth Rate
  • Growing Demand
    Job Outlook
  • Don't Take Work Home
    Career Attribute

Motorcycle mechanics and technicians are skilled motorcycle repair technicians who are able to perform everything from simple oil changes, to minor body repairs, and complex jobs such as engine or carburetor rebuilds. They specialize in performing routine maintenance and repairs on motorcycles.


What is a Motorcycle Mechanic or Tech?

The following job responsibilities are common for individuals in motorcycle mechanic or tech roles:

  • Discuss concerns with customers and perform diagnostic tests to determine needed repairs
  • Perform routine inspections to identify maintenance needs before more severe problems occur
  • Repair components of engines, transmissions, brakes, exhausts, and other vehicle systems

A Day in the Life

Motorcycle mechanics are employed to perform maintenance, repair, and other service tasks for a number of vehicle types, with motorcycles being the most common. Unlike auto mechanics who often specialize on a single task applied to many makes and models, motorcycle mechanics are usually skilled at all areas of motorcycle service and are able to perform everything from simple oil changes to minor body repairs and complex jobs such as engine or carburetor rebuilds.

The all-around nature of a motorcycle mechanic career means that someone in this position may have a very different set of tasks from day to day. In terms of general maintenance, fluid changes, brake pad replacements, and engine tuning are the most common jobs, but a high-quality mechanic will also be well-suited to repair tasks that involve a motorcycle’s electrical, mechanical, and exhause systems. To perform this work for clients, a motorcycle mechanic will use diagnostic equipment to correctly determine problems and the optimal solutions.

While the job title of motorcycle mechanic may imply that a person works only with motorcycles, the truth is that these mechanics are quite versatile in the service they provide. In addition to motorcycles, many mechanics are also experts at working with mopeds, ATVs, scooters, and other similar vehicles. Some mechanics do choose to specialize between Harley-Davidson, European, or Asian models, but the vast majority are competent with any manufacturer.

Typical Work Schedule

Most motorcycle mechanics and motorcycle technicians work in well-ventilated but noisy repair shops. They typically work full-time schedules, putting in 40 hours per week during the normal business hours of 9 to 5. Every dealership and privately-owned shop will be different, so you may find that some motorcycle mechanics work irregular hours.

To accommodate customers, mechanic shops are commonly open on weekends, so the role may also require some weekend work. Additionally, some evening work and overtime may be required to complete repairs on time when the shop is busy.

Location of shop also plays a role in work schedule. For those mechanics living in warmer climates where people can ride their motorcycles year-round, they may have more regular hours, whereas people living in areas of the country that experience winter weather may see their hours fluctuate and follow a more seasonal schedule.

Projected Job Growth

If you are thinking about becoming a motorcycle mechanic or technician we have some good news. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicted back in 2010 that employment for motorcycle mechanics would see a 24% increase by 2020. This increase is significantly faster than other job sectors and has occurred due to increased sales of motorcycles and. Most of the job openings have been within motorcycle dealerships.

What caused an uptick in motorcycle sales? The economy saw a strong recovery over the last few years, allowing people to spend money on “non-essential” items. Some have suggested that Hollywood depictions of the “cool” and “free” men and women seen in productions such as “Sons of Anarchy” also cause more people to go out and buy a motorcycle to experience the fun and adventure for themselves.

If you are willing to move to obtain a good paying mechanic position, there are a few states that are known to pay their technicians top dollar. While the median annual wage around the nation is $32,410, in New Hampshire you can earn $38,780; in California $38, 620; and in New Jersey you can earn $39, 090.

Typical Employers

Motorcycle mechanics and techs commonly work for motorcycle dealerships, motorcycle repair shops, as well as auto parts stores. After getting some experience under their belt first, many technicians decide to open their own motorcycle repair shops where they can call the shots. Still others may conduct maintenance and repairs on a freelance basis for individual clients.

 


How To Become a Motorcycle Mechanic or Tech

Many motorcycle repair and maintenance shops in the United States require that a mechanic hold a credential beyond a high school diploma, but having experience working with motorcycles can supersede this requirement. This training can be gained by earning a certificate from technical, community, or vocational college. These programs focus on a deeper understanding of the principles that govern motorcycle repair and prepare a mechanic to pass the exams required by some states.

While technical college programs may be an excellent source of theoretical knowledge, many motorcycle mechanics prefer the hands-on experience gained by working as an apprentice with a local shop or private mechanic. In this manner, the on-the-job training will give the future motorcycle mechanic a wide variety of practical experience that will quickly build a knowledge base comparable to postsecondary education programs.

For those that have chosen motorcycle mechanic as their career of choice, one way to elevate your ability is by attending workshops and seminars on a regular basis. By staying up to date with all of the advancements in motorcycle technology and repair techniques, you’ll be able to both deliver a higher level of service and widen the range of motorcycles and other vehicles in your service offering, leading to more work a thriving career.


Motorcycle Mechanic or Tech Salary Data

We’ve provided you the following to learn more about this career. The salary and growth data on this page comes from recently published Bureau of Labor Statistics data while the recommendations and editorial content are based on our research.

National Anual Salary

Low Range

$26,940

Average

$36,240

High Range

$54,730

National Hourly Wage

Low Range

$13/hr

Average

$17/hr

High Range

$26/hr

How do Motorcycle Mechanic or Tech salaries stack up to other jobs across the country? Based on the latest jobs data nationwide, Motorcycle Mechanic or Tech's can make an average annual salary of $36,240, or $17 per hour. This makes it an Above Average Salary. On the lower end, they can make $26,940 or $13 per hour, perhaps when just starting out or based on the state you live in.

Salary Rankings And Facts

  • #602 Nationally for All Careers


Highest Education Among Motorcycle Mechanic or Techs

  • 0%   Doctorate
  • 0.4%   Masters
  • 3.1%   Bachelors
  • 8.2%   Associates
  • 26.3%   College
  • 49.1%   High School
  • 12.9%   Less than High School

Job Growth Projections and Forecast

2014 Total Jobs

17,000

2024 Est. Jobs

18,000

Job Growth Rate

5.9%

Est. New Jobs

1,000

How does Motorcycle Mechanic or Tech job growth stack up to other jobs across the country? By 2024, there will be a change of 1,000 jobs for a total of 18,000 people employed in the career nationwide. This is a 5.9% change in growth over the next ten years, giving the career a growth rate nationwide of Below Average.

Growth Rankings And Facts

  • #382 Nationally for All Careers


What Companies Employ The Most Motorcycle Mechanic or Techs

Industry Current Jobs New Jobs Needed % Increase
Other motor vehicle dealers 13,200 1,000 1%
Self-employed workers 1,600 --- ---
Personal and household goods repair and maintenance 1,300 100 0%

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