There are many reasons a person might want to know how to become an aviation mechanic. These jobs offer very good wages and a rewarding career. The best wages and jobs await persons that have invested the time to get proper training and certification in the field. The following information applies to US citizens that want to become certified aircraft mechanics.
Applicants for the mechanic’s certificate must be at least eighteen year of age. In part, the age regulation has to do with the danger of this work. Even without this age regulation for the license, US child labor laws would prevent a person younger than eighteen from working in the environment.
Applicants to become an airplane mechanic must have the ability to speak, write, read and understand the English language. Many of the instruction manuals, forms and documents that the mechanic will use are only available in English or must be completed in English. Certification is available to persons that are not US citizens who reside and work outside of the US but not speak English. It should be noted that this certification is not valid for working in the USA. See the FAA requirements to become an Aviation Mechanic here.
Applicants that want to become an airline mechanic need eighteen to thirty months of experience working on planes. For certification just with airframes or just with power plants, the applicant must have eighteen months experience working in the area where he or she is seeking certification. In order to be certified in both areas, the applicant must have two and one half years working in both areas simultaneously. Many applicants fulfill this requirement through several years of military experience.
In lieu of the experience requirement, the applicant wants to use education; he or she will need to graduate from a school that is approved by the FAA. Over 170 different schools offer this type of training.
Certification is also dependent upon the applicant passing three exams. The first exam is a written examination. This test evaluates the candidate’s general knowledge of the area in which he is seeking certification. The second test is an oral exam. Finally, the candidate must pass a hands-on practical examination. In the practical examination, the person will make actual or simulated repairs on an actual plane.
While aircraft mechanics do make repairs when needed, today, many focus on preventative maintenance. They make necessary inspections of planes to prevent in flight failures that could cause costly and possibly deadly failures.
Other mechanics may specialize in the repair side of the industry. These are the mechanics that are called to action when a pilot discovers a mechanical problem during a preflight check. The mechanic may work to troubleshoot the problem and then make the necessary repair so that the plane can safely fly to its next destination.
The opportunities in aircraft mechanics are expected to grow for the next several years. In addition, replacements will be necessary for the mechanics that are expected to retire during this time.
The best paying jobs for persons in this field are for those who will work on commercial airlines. Due to the higher pay for these positions, the competition for them will be higher. Persons may need to work for several years in the lower paying positions in order to move up to those that pay a higher wage.
Persons that have a high mechanical aptitude may wish to learn more about how to become an aviation mechanic. Becoming a certified aviation mechanic in this field is the best way to the better paying jobs. Trainees can gain the necessary experience for the position through training schools or practical experience. Certification is only issued once the candidate passes three different types of examinations.