Diesel Engine Mechanic And Repairer

A diesel mechanic is an expert on the maintenance and repair of modes of transportation equipped with diesel fuel systems and engines, such as cars, buses, trucks, boats and tractors. Diesel is the engine of choice for trucks, heavy machinery, and marine engines. The technology has always required a specialized skill set. In this mechanic's specialty, ASE (Automotive Service Excellence) certification is highly desired.

Diesel mechanic positions are good working-class jobs that are accessible to those with only a high school education plus relevant work experience. Some jobs are even available to those without a high school diploma, although many employers now prefer some level of postsecondary training. As a result, more aspiring diesel mechanics are pursuing vocational certification to demonstrate their knowledge and skills to prospective employers. Others go further, finishing a 2-year associate's program in diesel technology.

After getting a certificate or degree, graduates need to get some solid work experience. At least two years of work experience is needed to get ASE-certified and several more may be necessary to find entry-level employment as a diesel mechanic, according to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). The accreditation organization affiliated with ASE is the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF). Diesel mechanic programs should be NATEF-accredited.

Degrees in Diesel Mechanics

Vocational Certificates

Certificates programs that focus on the fundamentals of diesel and industrial technology last anywhere from a few months to a few years. These programs are offered at standalone technical schools, community colleges, some universities, and even by employers who hire those they train. Aspiring mechanics should acquire a set of hand tools with items like prybars, multimeters and torque wrenches, as many schools and employers expect students and workers to bring their own.

During school, students master the basics of diesel technology, from engines and transmissions to cooling, electrical and electronic systems. They learn to make diagnoses, do tune-ups, rebuild parts, and carry out preventative care. They learn how to follow vendor procedures for maintaining tools and equipment and how to troubleshoot problems quickly and effectively. Coursework at a diesel mechanic technical school might include:

  • Heavy-Duty Drivetrains
  • Diesel Service Techniques
  • Suspension, Steering & Brake Systems

The best diesel mechanic schools prepare students to take ASE certification exams. For example, mechanics can earn the Electronic Diesel Engine Diagnosis Specialist Certification by demonstrating they have the skills to assess problems of efficiency and performance on medium- and heavy-duty trucks. Other ASE certifications include:

  • Transit Bus Certification
  • Engine Machinist Certification
  • Specialist Exhaust Systems Certification

Some programs let students take electives in vendor products like Cummins, Paccar and Allison. Diesel mechanics with expertise in these areas are valuable to employers. Qualified technicians may pursue certification with the ASE in one or more specialties to demonstrate their prowess.

Diesel mechanics may need to obtain a certificate of fitness from a provider like the municipal fire department to ensure they can safely perform heavy manual labor. Depending on the work environment, some mechanics need to be medically qualified to wear a respirator, too. To get a head start, many mechanics-in-training earn these qualifications before they hit the job market. While they are in school, students should also work on getting a valid driver's license if they do not already have one. The ideal diesel technician has a commercial driver's license.

What jobs can you get with a certificate in Diesel Technology?

  • Fleet Mechanic
  • Diesel Truck & Trailer Mechanic
  • Field Service Technician

Associate Degrees

Associate credentials help applicants compete for desirable positions and promote within organizations once they are hired. The degree also affords mechanics the opportunity to expand their background knowledge and workplace communication skills. That is, diesel mechanics are not only gearheads. They need excellent writing and verbal abilities. Many employers also expect computer proficiency. Students have more time to learn such 'soft' skills in an associate's program. These programs also let students dive more deeply into the underlying physics and mathematics of diesel tech.

There are many pathways for advancement in this field that can lead to surprisingly high salaries. The more experience and specialized skills diesel mechanics acquire, the more opportunities are available. Diesel mechanics who have welding certification, fabrication skills or DOT approval to perform brake inspections, for example, are perfect for positions with these specifications.

Courses for an Associate of Applied Science in Diesel Technology typically includes:

  • Technical Algebra & Trigonometry I
  • Commercial Truck Powertrain Inspections
  • Technical & Professional Communication

What careers are open to those with associate degrees?

  • Stimulation Equipment Mechanic
  • Hydraulic Technician
  • Diesel Mechanic Instructor

Featured Schools

Programs offered:

  • Diesel/Heavy Vehicle Technology w/ Service Management - Associate's
  • Diesel/Heavy Vehicle Technology - Diploma
  • Automotive Technology - Diploma
Locations:  Virginia Beach

Programs offered:

  • Automotive and Diesel Technology
  • Automotive Technology - Evening
  • Automotive and Hi-Performance Technology
  • And more...
Locations:  Warminster

Programs offered:

  • Diesel Technology, Occupational Associate Degree
  • Automotive Technology, Occupational Associate Degree
Locations:  Jacksonville

Programs offered:

  • Diesel Service Technology
  • Diesel Service
  • Automotive Services Technology
Locations:  Owosso

Programs offered:

  • Diesel
  • Automotive
Locations:  Orlando

Programs offered:

  • Automotive Technician (9.5-Month Diploma Program)
Locations:  Bakersfield

Programs offered:

  • Automotive Technician (10 Month-Diploma Program)
Locations:  Hialeah

We found 250 schools offering diesel mechanic degree programs in the U.S.

>> See all 250 Diesel Engine Mechanic And Repairer Colleges in the U.S.

Diesel Mechanic Schools By Total Enrollment

Houston Community College System
Houston, TX  |  Total Enrollment: 40929

Degrees Offered: Less than one year, One but less than two years, Associate's, Two but less than 4 years
Santa Ana College
Santa Ana, CA  |  Total Enrollment: 27571

Degrees Offered: Less than one year, One but less than two years, Associate's, Two but less than 4 years
Austin Community College
Austin, TX  |  Total Enrollment: 25735

Degrees Offered: Less than one year, One but less than two years, Associate's
Portland Community College
Portland, OR  |  Total Enrollment: 24209

Degrees Offered: Less than one year, One but less than two years, Associate's, Two but less than 4 years
Oakland Community College - Bloomfield Hills Campus
Bloomfield Hills, MI  |  Total Enrollment: 23188

Degrees Offered: Less than one year, One but less than two years, Associate's, Two but less than 4 years
Salt Lake Community College
Salt Lake City, UT  |  Total Enrollment: 21596

Degrees Offered: Less than one year, One but less than two years, Associate's, Two but less than 4 years
Palomar College
San Marcos, CA  |  Total Enrollment: 21062

Degrees Offered: Less than one year, One but less than two years, Associate's
Utah Valley State College
Orem, UT  |  Total Enrollment: 20946

Degrees Offered: One but less than two years, Associate's, Bachelor's
Long Beach City College
Long Beach, CA  |  Total Enrollment: 20926

Degrees Offered: Less than one year, One but less than two years, Associate's, Two but less than 4 years
Florida Community College at Jacksonville
Jacksonville, FL  |  Total Enrollment: 20838

Degrees Offered: Less than one year, One but less than two years, Associate's

Browse All 250 Colleges With Diesel Mechanic Programs

Title City State Enrollment
Louisiana Technical College - Gulf Area Campus Abbeville LA 241
Grays Harbor College Aberdeen WA 1950
Washington County Adult Skill Center Abingdon VA 231
Northeast Technology Center - Afton Afton OK 96
College of Alameda Alameda CA 5088
Albany Technical College Albany GA 2444
Linn - Benton Community College Albany OR 4443
Albuquerque Technical Vocational Institute Albuquerque NM 17265
Central Alabama Community College Alexander City AL 1577
Louisiana Technical College - Alexandria Campus Alexandria LA 300
Alexandria Technical College Alexandria MN 2192
Suny College of Technology at Alfred Alfred NY 2735
Amarillo College Amarillo TX 8422
South Georgia Technical College Americus GA 1319
University of Alaska Anchorage Anchorage AK 14794
Des Moines Area Community College Ankeny IA 10998
Harry M Ayers State Technical College Anniston AL 1112
Fox Valley Technical College Appleton WI 6806
Southern Oklahoma Technology Center Ardmore OK 172
Northeast Kansas Technical College Atchison KS 130
T H Pickens Technical Center Aurora CO 765
Riverland Community College Austin MN 3182
Austin Community College Austin TX 25735
Universal Technical Institute of Arizona Inc Avondale AZ 2091
North American Trade Schools Baltimore MD 232
Ilisagvik College Barrow AK 322
Lee College Baytown TX 5932
Lamar University Beaumont TX 11550
Academy of Careers and Technology Beckley WV 320
Arkansas State University - Beebe Beebe AR 4899
Bellingham Technical College Bellingham WA 3682
North Central Kansas Technical College Beloit KS 411
Lawson State Community College - Bessemer Campus Bessemer AL 1314
Pennco Tech Blackwood NJ 289
Oakland Community College - Bloomfield Hills Campus Bloomfield Hills MI 23188
Louisiana Technical College - Sullivian Campus Bogalusa LA 849
Boise State University Boise ID 16287
Northeast Mississippi Community College Booneville MS 2796
Manatee Technical Institute Bradenton FL 2721
Somerset County Technology Institute Bridgewater NJ 532
Massasoit Community College Brockton MA 6706
Hennepin Technical College Brooklyn Park MN 5843
Texas Southmost College Brownsville TX 7776
Fred W Eberle Technical Center Buckhannon WV 285
Western Technology Center Burns Flat OK 179
Washington County Community College Calais ME 239
Northeast Iowa Community College - Calmar Calmar IA 3480
Casper College Casper WY 3972
Centralia College Centralia WA 3063
Nunez Community College Chalmette LA 1884
O C Collins Career Center Chesapeake OH 502
Laramie County Community College Cheyenne WY 3394
Pinellas Technical Education Center - Clearwater Clearwater FL 1417
Ohio Technical College Cleveland OH 518
West Hills Community College Coalinga CA 4344
Suny College of Agriculture and Technology at Cobleskill Cobleskill NY 2303
North Idaho College Coeur Dalene ID 4049
Central Arizona College Coolidge AZ 4536
Del Mar College Corpus Christi TX 9936
Louisiana Technical College - Avoyelles Campus Cottonport LA 219
Iowa Western Community College Council Bluffs IA 4503
Gateway Community and Technical College Covington KY 1024
Louisiana Technical College - Acadian Campus Crowley LA 254
Eastern Iowa Community College District Davenport IA 6179
Mcfatter Technical Center Davie FL 986
Henry Ford Community College Dearborn MI 12742
Denver Automotive and Diesel College Denver CO 390
Morris County Vocational School District Denville NJ No Data
Wayne County Community College District Detroit MI 9008
George C Wallace Community College - Dothan Dothan AL 3612
Central Technology Center Drumright OK 188
Lake Superior College Duluth MN 3972
Ben Franklin Career Center Dunbar WV 362
Red River Technology Center Duncan OK 35
Illinois Central College East Peoria IL 11053
Baran Institute of Technology East Windsor CT 242
Canadian Valley Technology Center El Reno OK 198
Tennessee Technology Center at Elizabethton Elizabethton TN 458
Elizabethtown Technical College Elizabethtown KY 637
Great Basin College Elko NV 2978
Snow College Ephraim UT 2999
Lane Community College Eugene OR 9957
College of the Redwoods Eureka CA 6986
Lake Technical Center Eustis FL 669
Automotive Training Center Exton PA 198
Northwest Technology Center - Fairview Fairview OK 21
San Juan College Farmington NM 4282
Florence - Darlington Technical College Florence SC 3814
Caddo Kiowa Technology Center Fort Cobb OK 311
Lee County High Tech Center Central Fort Myers FL 874
Itawamba Community College Fulton MS 3467
Carl Sandburg College Galesburg IL 3220
Uti of Illinois Inc Glendale Heights IL 1407
Citrus College Glendora CA 11486
Northwest Kansas Technical College Goodland KS 593
Central Community College Grand Island NE 7126
Rogue Community College Grants Pass OR 4071
Barton County Community College Great Bend KS 4612
Greenville Technical College Greenville SC 10786
Adult & Continuing Education - Bcts Hackensack NJ 77
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