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Auto Mechanic and Automotive Schools in Florida

Home to the Daytona 500 and possessing a large NASCAR fan following, it's not surprising that careers in auto mechanics would be popular in the "Sunshine State."

Florida employs a large number of automotive service technicians and mechanics. Those interested in a career in auto mechanics in Florida can expect to identify and troubleshoot problems with automobiles through the use of technology as well as more hands-on methods. Performing tasks with tools, parts and other automotive hardware is common among auto mechanics.

Auto Mechanic Training and Certification in Florida

Formal training programs at automotive schools in Florida, which can typically be completed any where from six months to two years, cover topics such as:

  • Fuel systems
  • Transmission and engine repair
  • Suspension and steering
  • Collision repair and refinishing
  • Diesel technology

After students complete a program at an auto mechanic school in Florida, they can choose whether or not they want to pursue a certification from the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). Certification from ASE may have an impact on career opportunities so interested students should research the benefits ASE certification provides. Students who complete ASE certification can move onto become ASE-Certified Master Technicians. To qualify for ASE certification, automotive technicians must have two years of on-the-job training or one year of on-the-job training and a two-year degree in automotive repair. Professionals must retake the ASE test every five years to continue certification.

For more information on requirements for auto mechanic training and certification in Florida, the National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation is a good resource.

Employment and Salary Overview in Florida

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) reports that auto dealerships and repair shops often have trouble finding highly trained and qualified personnel to perform repair work. Job prospects, the BLS says, should be strongest for graduates of automotive training programs, especially those who have studied newer technologies, such as hybrid fuel or electric vehicle systems. Mechanics without formal training or ASE certification are expected to face the most competition for employment.

Auto Mechanic Wages and Salaries

RegionTotal EmploymentHourly Mean WageAnnual Mean Wage
Fort Lauderdale-Pompano Beach-Deerfield Beach, FL Metropolitan Division4,650$21.08$43,840
Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall, FL Metropolitan Division5,680$18.61$38,710
Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL5,310$17.68$36,780
Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL7,140$18.88$39,260
Source: 2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2016-26 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

Florida is among the states with the highest number of auto mechanic and automotive jobs. In fact, the metropolitan areas of Punta Gorda, FL and Miami, FL are among the top 10 highest concentration metropolitan areas for auto mechanic jobs in the United States.

Auto Body Technician Wages and Salaries

Source: 2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2016-26 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

Auto mechanic job opportunities should be plentiful as the BLS projects the field to grow. Those interested in an automotive career in Florida can expect to find jobs in the following industries, which include the highest concentration of employment:

  • Automotive Repair and Maintenance
  • Automobile Dealers
  • Automotive Parts, Accessories and Tire Stores
  • Government
  • Gasoline Stations

Bus/Truck Mechanic Wages and Salaries

RegionTotal EmploymentHourly Mean WageAnnual Mean Wage
Jacksonville, FL1,360$22.13$46,030
Miami-Miami Beach-Kendall, FL Metropolitan Division1,480$25.69$53,440
Orlando-Kissimmee-Sanford, FL1,460$22.07$45,900
Tampa-St. Petersburg-Clearwater, FL1,720$21.15$43,980
Source: 2016 Occupational Employment Statistics and 2016-26 Employment Projections, Bureau of Labor Statistics, BLS.gov.

Q&A with an Expert

interviewer_photo
An interview with the President at the Universal Technical Institute - Orlando
Steve McElfresh

Q: What qualities/skills do you look for in a person interested in a career in auto mechanics?

A: In a word: passion. They have a passion for their chosen market segment. Many are enthusiasts and have chosen a career path that supports their passion for a particular market. Any car enthusiast would find a career in a dealership filled with the latest models extremely rewarding.

Our students are young men and women who are passionate about cars, tend to be hands-on learners, are the "fixers of things" and want to make a career out of doing something they love. Many tend to grow up around people who have influenced them in a positive way about the industry.

About 97 percent of our students are men between the ages of 18 and 34, but we are seeing a growing number of women enrolling in our programs. About 20 percent of our students are veterans.


"Florida has a vibrant industry that is dependent on transportation, so there will always be a demand for skilled technicians to keep the transportation industry and infrastructure running." - Steve McElfresh, President, UTI-Orlando


Q: Are there any specific licensing requirements in Florida for someone interested in an automotive school?

A: Automobile technicians are not required to get a license to service cars or trucks in Florida. Nevertheless, job seekers with training in advanced automotive technology from a renowned automotive school in Florida should enjoy the best job prospects while those who don't have formal training are likely to face strong competition for entry-level jobs.

Mechanics who match the following standards are considerably more likely to get a career in an automobile repair center as compared with job seekers who do not meet many of these minimal criteria:

  • Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Certifications (Master Technician status preferred)
  • Work experience in one of the following areas:
    • Repair Technician - 1, 2, or 3 years
    • Service Consultant - 2 years
  • On-the-job training from local automotive dealers
  • Plus: Any car manufacturer certifications (e.g., BMW, Chrysler, General Motors, Mercedes-Benz)

For those interested in automotive careers in Tampa, Florida, there are a number of auto mechanic and automotive schools to choose from. Check out the school listings on this page to get started on your automotive career path today.

Sources:

  • Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/installation-maintenance-and-repair/automotive-service-technicians-and-mechanics.htm
  • Occupational Employment Statistics, Bureau of Labor Statistics, Department of Labor, May 2016, https://www.bls.gov/oes/current/oes493023.htm
  • National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence, https://www.ase.com/Home.aspx
Occupational Outlook Handbook, 2016-17 Edition, Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, https://www.bls.gov/ooh/installation-maintenance-and-repair/automotive-service-technicians-and-mechanics.htm

Automotive Schools in Florida

*This list may contain out-of-state and online schools that accept students from Florida.

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