How To Become a Maintenance Technician?

How To Become a Maintenance Technician?

How To Become a Maintenance Technician?

Maintenance technicians are in high demand across various industries to keep equipment and machinery running smoothly. This career offers job stability, good salaries, and opportunities to advance.

If you are detail-oriented, skilled at troubleshooting, and interested in hands-on work, becoming a maintenance technician may be a great fit. This guide covers everything you need to launch your career.

What is a Maintenance Technician?

A maintenance technician, also known as an industrial or building maintenance technician, repairs, maintains, and installs equipment. Their core responsibility is keeping machinery and systems running properly to avoid disruptions in business operations. 

What Does a Maintenance Technician Do?

Common job duties include:

  • Performing preventative maintenance.
  • Conducting routine inspections and functionality checks.
  • Detecting issues early and troubleshooting problems.
  • Disassembling equipment to repair or replace worn parts.
  • Reassembling, testing, and installing repaired machinery.
  • Maintaining maintenance logs and documentation.
  • Ordering and stocking replacement parts.

Maintenance technicians work in various environments depending on their industry, from manufacturing plants to commercial buildings to hospitals.

What Skills Does a Maintenance Technician Need?

To succeed as a maintenance technician, certain soft and hard skills are required:

Technical skills:

  • Understanding of mechanics, pneumatics, hydraulics, HVAC, and electromechanical systems.
  • Ability to read blueprints, schematics, manuals, and documentation.
  • Knowledge of safety procedures and proper use of tools/equipment.
  • Troubleshooting and diagnostic skills.
  • Computer skills for record keeping and communication.

Soft skills:

  • Detail oriented with strong observational skills.
  • Critical thinking and complex problem solving abilities.
  • Self motivated with the ability to work independently.
  • Time management and organizational skills.
  • Teamwork and communication skills.

Steps to Become a Maintenance Technician

If a career as a maintenance technician appeals to you, here are the main steps to get started:

1. Get the Necessary Education and Training

While some maintenance technician jobs require only a high school diploma, completing postsecondary training can make you much more competitive. Many employers prefer applicants with an associate’s degree or technical certificate in industrial maintenance.

Get the Necessary Education and Training

Vocational programs provide hands on training in areas like machine repair, welding, hydraulics, and more. Coursework combines trade specific technical instruction with health and safety protocols.

2. Gain Relevant Work Experience

Look for apprenticeship opportunities or entry level maintenance roles you can use to build up hands on experience.

Paid internships and apprenticeships allow you to gain skills under the guidance of seasoned professionals. Entry level roles like maintenance assisting expose you to equipment and typical responsibilities.

3. Obtain Certifications

Industry recognized certifications demonstrate your competence to employers. Some of the most popular certifications for maintenance technicians include:

  • Manufacturing Skill Standards Council (MSSC) Certified Production Technician (CPT)
  • Associated Equipment Distributors (AED) Foundation Technical Training
  • Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) 30 Hour Training
  • Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Section 608 Certification

4. Create a Strong Resume and Cover Letter

With the right education, experience, and credentials, you’ll want to make sure your resume highlights your qualifications. Emphasize technical expertise, certifications, and hands on training.

When applying for maintenance technician roles, customize your cover letter to show how your background meets or exceeds the company’s needs.

5. Prepare for Interviews

During interviews, companies want to see your technical knowledge, communication abilities, and alignment with their maintenance culture.

Be ready to talk about your experience troubleshooting issues, familiarity with equipment/tools, and how you prioritize preventative actions to minimize downtime. Giving specific examples of achievements can help you stand out.

Also Check: Maintenance Technician Interview Questions

Maintenance Technician Job Description Example

Here is an example of a typical maintenance technician job description: 

Maintenance Technician Responsibilities:

  • Perform routine preventative maintenance on equipment and machinery.
  • Inspect mechanical systems, tools, devices, and physical structures to detect issues.
  • Diagnose root causes of breakdowns using testing devices and tools.
  • Repair or replace worn or defective components and parts.
  • Reassemble, test, and install repaired equipment.
  • Keep detailed logs of inspections, maintenance, and repairs.
  • Follow established safety precautions and procedures.
  • Collaborate with team members to optimize maintenance operations.


  • High school diploma or equivalent required; Associate’s degree is preferred.
  • 1+ years of hands on maintenance experience.
  • Knowledge of mechanical, electrical, and pneumatic systems.
  • Understanding of HVAC and facilities maintenance.
  • Ability to read blueprints, manuals, and documentation.
  • Strong diagnostic and problem solving skills.
  • Excellent verbal/written communication abilities.
  • Detail oriented with strong organizational skills.
  • Valid driver’s license.

Top Industries for Maintenance Technicians

Nearly every industry requires maintenance technicians to keep operations running smoothly. Here are some of the top sectors hiring maintenance technicians:

  • Manufacturing: Food processing, aerospace, automotive, chemical, pharmaceutical
  • Facilities: Hospitals, data centers, commercial real estate, hospitality
  • Energy: Power plants, oil and gas, wind farms, utilities
  • Transportation: Aviation, rail, shipping and logistics
  • Government: Military bases, public infrastructure

Average Maintenance Technician Salary

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, the average annual salary for a maintenance technician is $55,380 per year or $26.60 per hour. Those working in fields like oil/gas or utilities tend to earn higher wages.

Average Maintenance Technician Salary

Salaries can vary based on your location, experience level, industry, and certifications. Overtime is also common, allowing you to earn premium hourly rates.

Career Advancement Opportunities

What you do with your maintenance technician career is up to you. Many have enjoyed the hands on daily work for decades. But for those seeking to advance, options include:

  • Maintenance Supervisor: Oversee teams and maintenance operations.
  • Facilities Manager: Responsible for maintenance/operations of entire buildings.
  • Field Service Technician: Travel to service equipment in the field.
  • Maintenance Engineer: Help design, improve, and install new equipment.

With additional training or education, some move into industrial engineering or management roles.

Frequently Asked Questions

Do I need to be mechanically inclined?

Yes, you should feel comfortable working with mechanical systems and equipment. Understanding how things work can help you diagnose and fix problems.

Do I need a college degree?

A high school diploma paired with technical training usually provides the necessary foundation. However, an associate’s degree enhances your employment prospects.

What tools should I know how to use?

You’ll use both hand and power tools daily, like wrenches, pliers, wire cutters, voltmeters, welding equipment, and more. With training and practice, using tools properly becomes second nature.

Can I get certified in high school?

Yes, many high schools and vocational programs offer industry recognized certifications for fields like manufacturing and facilities maintenance. These look great on resumes and college applications.


From manufacturing plants to office towers, smooth operations rely on maintenance technicians. Their behind the scenes work keeps processes running and avoids costly disruptions. 

If you are detail-focused, technically skilled, and want to turn your mechanical aptitude into a lifelong career, becoming a maintenance technician may be an excellent choice. This field offers stability, competitive wages, and constant opportunities to expand your abilities.

Use this guide to take the necessary steps for education, training, certification, and gaining that all important experience. Before you know it, you’ll establish yourself as a vital maintenance professional that businesses depend on.

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