Like many trades and professions that require technical expertise and skills, auto mechanics frequently learn their jobs in levels. A journeyman auto mechanic is an intermediate level automotive repair specialist.
Diagnosing and repairing automotive problems is the main job duty. The mechanic analyzes how different operating systems work and pinpoints problem areas. He discusses automotive symptoms with customers and prepares bids and estimates for required repairs.
Thorough knowledge and understanding of electrical, hydraulic, pneumatic and combustion engine systems is necessary. Good judgment helps the mechanic advise the customer if car problems are worth the price of replacement parts and labor costs. Efficiently finding parts and negotiating prices is required.
Technical colleges and trade schools offer certifications in automotive technology. Aspiring mechanics need to complete these programs or may receive on the job training and be promoted from apprentices to journeymen based on demonstrated skills and knowledge. Background in troubleshooting and repairing mechanical systems is desirable.
Based on information provided at PayScale.com, an auto mechanic in the United States in 2010 earned between $29,389 and $48,276 a year depending on experience, demographics and area of specialization.