What does a marine mechanic do?
It’s a marine mechanic’s job to make sure all types of water crafts are working optimally. A day in your life, should you become a marine mechanic, would look a little something like this:
- Work on boats and other water vehicles.
- Discuss with the customer the work that is needing to be done.
- Perform all the typical routine maintenance.
- Drive the boats to test their engines.
- Check for malfunctioning parts by testing and observing the craft.
- Anything broken, defective, or altogether wonky, you’ll repair or replace.
- Keep a well-detailed report of any work to give to the customer.
How do you become a marine mechanic?
Just because you love boats, doesn’t automatically qualify you as a marine mechanic. There’s a learning process you’ll need to go through to be a qualified and certified boat mechanic. You may come across an employer or two who will provide you with on-the-job training, but most employers are looking to hire technically trained marine mechanics.
- Get your high school diploma or GED.
- Know the basics of reading, writing, and math.
- Go to a trade school with a program specializing in motorboat maintenance and repair.
- Programs can last up to two years, it just depends on if you’re choosing a certificate or associate’s degree.
- Some boat manufacturers and unions do offer apprenticeships, which is another option to learn the trade.
- Complete your education and then get a job.
- To open up advancement opportunities, you may want to consider certifications.
- The American Boat and Yacht Council offers a certification specific to marine mechanics.
- Keep up your certification by renewing it every five years starting two years after your initial certification.
- If you complete a minimum of three certifications through the American Boat and Yacht Council, then you can become a master marine mechanic.
How much do marine mechanics actually make?
The median salary for boat mechanics is $39K. What that actually means is that half of the occupation makes more, while half makes less. However, where you work, which state you’re in, and how much experience you have will be the determining factors around what your salary will look like. Your busy season will be during the warmer months, and possibly a couple months leading up to then, as boat owners try to get their crafts ready for launch. During that peak season, you’ll probably be working major overtime.
Find a marine mechanic program near you.
Are there jobs for qualified marine mechanics?
Very slow growth is expected for marine mechanic positions. There are very few available positions (-100, actually), but you still may be able to find a job if you completed some formal education. You’ll find that states like Florida, California, Texas, Michigan, and New York will all have the most job concentration due to the fact that those states have large or many bodies of water for boats owners to enjoy.