Diesel Mechanic Schools in California
Diesel service mechanics are trained to inspect and repair vehicles with diesel engines. This career can be ideal for people who have strong customer service, mechanical, technical and problem-solving skills. Those who have a steady hand and enjoy math and computers also make excellent diesel service technicians. These type of mechanics are often responsible for inspecting equipment and materials in order to identify the cause of defect or error. They may also analyze data and information to determine the best solution for a mechanical problem. They must be knowledgeable about machines, tools, equipment, and transportation policies and regulations.
While some diesel mechanics may learn the trade from on-the-job training, many jobs in this field require a minimum of a high school diploma for employment. In recent years, an increasing number of employers prefer candidates with postsecondary training in the field. There are a large number of diesel mechanic schools in California that can prepare students for a career as a diesel mechanic.
Mechanic Training Schools
Below is a list of diesel mechanic schools in California that offer associate degree programs in Mechanics and Repair. The schools are located in several different cities across California and can provide education programs for students specifically looking for diesel mechanic training. The enrollment requirements vary based on the individual school and programs typically take anywhere from six months to two years to complete. Most of the diesel mechanic schools in California structure programs to include a combination of classroom instruction and hands-on practice out in the field.
- American River College in Sacramento
- College of the Redwoods in Eureka
- Hartnell College in Salinas
- Long Beach City College
- Los Angeles Trade Technical College
- Palomar in San Marcos
- San Bernardino Valley College
- San Diego Miramar College
- Santa Ana College
- Santa Rosa Junior College
Upon completion of a diesel mechanic training program, graduates may go on to work in a number of different industries. According to national findings reported by the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) in 2010, the majority of diesel mechanics worked for private companies, and 11 percent worked for the government. Approximately 18 percent of all diesel mechanics belonged to a union. Potential jobs include specializing in general freight trucking, automotive repair and maintenance, motor vehicle and parts wholesalers, and specialized freight trucking. According to the BLS, as of May 2011, California has the second-highest employment levels for diesel engine specialists (along with bus and truck mechanics).
Certification is not required for employment as a diesel mechanic, but may be preferred by many employers and can often increase chances of employment. Additionally, earning certification communicates education, experience and expertise to potential clients. The National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), the nationally recognized institution that certifies automotive professionals, requires certification candidates to pass an exam and have two years work experience. ASE offers exam prep and training, including free study guides and webinars, and testing for those interested in earning a credential in the industry, including diesel mechanic certification. The certification test consists of 45 questions and tests knowledge about electronic diesel engine controls, the diagnosis of diesel engines and diesel fuel systems. Once certification is achieved, diesel mechanics must retake the exam every five years to keep the credential current.
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2012-13 Edition, Diesel Service Technicians and Mechanics, http://www.bls.gov/ooh/installation-maintenance-and-repair/diesel-service-technicians-and-mechanics.htm
National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence: Test Series, http://www.ase.com/Tests/ASE-Certification-Tests/Test-Series.aspx
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2011 Bus and Truck Mechanics and Diesel Engine Specialists, http://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes493031.htm#st