How to Become a

Music Instrument Technician or Repair

The complete career guide to be a Music Instrument Technician or Repair: salary, job growth, employers, best schools, and education you may need to get started.

Why We Love It

  • $38,590
    Potential Avg. Salary
  • 3.5%
    Job Growth Rate
  • Growing Demand
    Job Outlook
  • Get to Travel
    Career Attribute

A music instrument repair technician is responsible for fixing and maintaining the parts and components of various instruments such as guitars, violins, pianos, pipe organs and band instruments.

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What is a Music Instrument Technician or Repair?


Music instrument technicians have varied responsibilities with regard to repairing and delivering instruments in a timely and efficient manner. Some of these tasks are as follows:

  • Work closely on customer owned instruments or rented instruments for the optimal solution in accordance with quality standards.
  • Diagnose an instrument and give the customer an appropriate estimate of timeframe required and guidelines to be followed.
  • Maintain accurate records for all financial transactions such as production reports and bills.
  • Take advice and guidance from the shop manager to solve repair issues as necessary.
  • Create a realistic timetable to ensure the completion of a project within that estimate.

Day In The Life

In this role, you will have some repetitive tasks on a normal work day. It will start with continuing work on existing repair projects and fielding phone calls with service requests. Repairs of different instrument parts like strings, felts, and key, are done using several techniques manually and with power tools. You might also have to create replacements for parts using woodworking machines and/or hand tools, depending on the type of instrument.

Interacting with customers, both old and new, is a part of the everyday job as people will call with many clarifications and questions. As a repair technician, you will have the chance to fix instruments for a wide variety of people, whether it’s children enrolled in music school or advanced musicians like concertmasters or session musicians. Ordering parts for an instrument is also an important aspect of the job. Completing a repair job can take time up to three weeks or can be done in a few hours.

Work Schedule And Typical Hours

As a music instrument repair technician, you will likely for around 40 hours a week, from Monday to Friday. Part-time work options are a common alternative. You will work in a workshop or visit customers’ homes or commercial premises to service their instruments as required. It is usually a dusty environment and will involve long hours of intense work.

Growth Of The Job

Employment opportunities available as a music instrument technician has been steadily on the rise. Since 2004, the number of available vacancies have increased by 6.62 percent. The A projected 460 new jobs will have to be filled by 2018 in this sector. Those starting out are advised to work with large-scale service shops before building their own business as the market is extremely competitive. Jobs in this area will be plenty due to older employees retiring over the years.

Typical Employers

Typical employers include educational institutions such as universities and colleges, repair shops (e.g. Best Instrument Repair Co., The Repair Shop), large music stores (e.g. Music Showcase, Inc., Ellman’s Music Center, Johnstonbaugh’s Music Centers, SSE Music, Tom’s Music House) and factories. There are more and more music departments that are establishing the need for craftsmen such as sales staff, administration and music technicians.

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How To Become a Music Instrument Technician or Repair

Having a high school diploma is sufficient in this career path. Gaining expertise in repairing and restoring instruments can be a tough challenge, since there are very few academic courses that teach these skills. Taking diploma courses in music, industrial arts, math or physics is a definite advantage. Most people in this job sector learn through applied experience, similar to an apprenticeship model. Reach out to local music shops and repair specialists in your area to ask about apprentice opportunities.

Another great place to start is having a thorough understanding of a musical instrument or multiple instruments, depending on what you want to specialise in. Knowing how to take apart an instrument and maintain it, can give aspiring candidates some perspective on the depth of knowledge required to become a successful repair technician. Working on other people’s instruments is a delicate job that requires attention to detail and a mechanical bent of mind.

Major skills required to succeed in this field includes several points. Manual dexterity is a pre-requisite, since most of the work is done by hand, such as manipulating or assembling single or multiple categories of musical instruments. Good quality control assessments are also needed as a musical instrument technician, to evaluate the quality and performance of instruments.  Further, superior customer service skills will come in handy in this career choice, in order to gain client networks and make customers satisfied with the services you offer.

Music Instrument Technician or Repair 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

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High Range


National Hourly Wage

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High Range


How do Music Instrument Technician or Repair salaries stack up to other jobs across the country? Based on the latest jobs data nationwide, Music Instrument Technician or Repair's can make an average annual salary of $38,590, or $19 per hour. This makes it an Above Average Salary. On the lower end, they can make $26,380 or $13 per hour, perhaps when just starting out or based on the state you live in.

Salary Rankings And Facts

  • #556 Nationally for All Careers

Programs and Degrees

Here are the most common degrees for becoming a Music Instrument Technician or Repair. a is usually recommended and specifically a degree or coursework that prepares you for the particular field, see below.

Highest Education Among Music Instrument Technician or Repairs

  • 0.8%   Doctorate
  • 2.9%   Masters
  • 16.9%   Bachelors
  • 21.4%   Associates
  • 33%   College
  • 21.8%   High School
  • 3.3%   Less than High School

Job Growth Projections and Forecast

2014 Total Jobs


2024 Est. Jobs


Job Growth Rate


Est. New Jobs


How does Music Instrument Technician or Repair job growth stack up to other jobs across the country? By 2024, there will be a change of 300 jobs for a total of 8,900 people employed in the career nationwide. This is a 3.5% change in growth over the next ten years, giving the career a growth rate nationwide of Below Average.

Growth Rankings And Facts

  • #500 Nationally for All Careers

What Companies Employ The Most Music Instrument Technician or Repairs

Industry Current Jobs New Jobs Needed % Increase
Self-employed workers 1,200 --- ---
Personal and household goods repair and maintenance 1,000 --- ---
Miscellaneous durable goods merchant wholesalers 100 --- ---

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