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Maintenance technicians use their skills to make things work – fixing and maintaining machines, mechanical equipment and buildings.
Many maintenance technicians learn basic skills in high school shop or technical education classes, trade or vocational schools, or community colleges. You’ll need a good working knowledge of many repair and maintenance tasks.
You’ll need excellent customer service skills to interact with customers on a regular basis. Troubleshooting, manual dexterity and hand-eye coordination are also important for many maintenance tasks. In this job you’ll often do work that involves electrical, plumbing, heating/AC systems or painting and roofing tasks, so experience in these areas is a plus. Education in mechanical drawing, electricity, woodworking, blueprint reading, mathematics, and computers can also be useful.
With two years’ experience you may be able to take on more challenging tasks, such as overhauling machinery or building walls.
At this stage you’ll be expected to be competent in most tasks asked of you. Some maintenance techs may choose to train in one specific area and become a craftworker, such as an electrician, HVAC technician or plumber.
After 10 years you may make the decision to open your own repair or contracting business.