How to Become a Mobile Diesel Mechanic
Mobile diesel mechanics go where the work is, servicing diesel trucks and other equipment directly at client locations. Oftentimes, they operate their own businesses, but they may also work for larger companies as part of an in-house truck repair team.
They are on the road all day and night, traveling around the city or state to meet with truck drivers, inspect their vehicles and perform maintenance as necessary. The job can be rewarding for those who enjoy travel and have a flexible schedule, but it’s also a challenging and demanding profession that requires extensive training to become qualified.
The ideal diesel mechanic should be able to handle any type of work, from simple oil changes to complex repairs and inspections. They should also be able to provide customers with the level of service they expect and deliver efficiency as well as quality.
You need a lot of patience and a strong attention to detail as a mobile diesel mechanic. You must be able to listen carefully and thoroughly assess clients’ needs, providing information or assistance to resolve their problems.
A good diesel mechanic should be able to communicate effectively and clearly with both clients and other members of the truck repair crew. You should be able to explain the different parts and mechanisms of the vehicle, provide advice about maintenance and repair procedures and order parts.
If you don’t have a lot of experience as a truck mechanic, the best way to get started is to attend trade school and complete a program in diesel engine repair. Upon completion, you can apply for employment as a mobile diesel mechanic.
In this position, you perform scheduled preventative maintenance (“PM”), DOT inspections and follow up repairs on light, medium and heavy-duty vehicles. You use standard tools and equipment to diagnose and adjust various systems including electrical, air conditioning, start/alternator, brakes, drive trains, fan clutches and engine electronics.
You use a computer to enter notes and records about your work. You also must document repair orders and perform other duties according to company standards. You must also ensure that you have the proper parts to complete your work in a timely manner.
The average pay range for a mobile diesel mechanic is $17,492, but this can vary depending on skill level and location. If you’re an experienced mobile diesel mechanic, you can expect to earn more than this.
Your duties are primarily to repair and maintain diesel engines that power large vehicles and equipment, like transportation trucks and buses, cranes and bulldozers. You communicate with truck owners about current and potential issues, suggested repair methods and ordering parts, usually using computer equipment. You inspect defective equipment to identify malfunctions and use test instruments to determine the source of problems, and you road-test vehicles to evaluate their performance.
You need to be physically fit and capable of handling tools and heavy machinery. You also need to have a valid driver’s license and a safe, reliable vehicle for transporting your tools to your jobs.