Automotive repair businesses in Michigan must adhere to the state’s Motor Vehicle Service and Repair Act when hiring mechanics. If a shop claims to offer diagnostics work or auto body repair, the mechanic must be certified to provide those specific services. Before you apply to be certified, you can gain educational experience by attending an automotive repair school or by obtaining a trainee permit and working with a certified mechanic.
You can get Michigan mechanic certification in 20 different categories. To become certified as a Master Mechanic, you must take and pass the certification exams in the following categories: engine repair; engine tune up and performance; front end, suspension and steering systems; brakes and braking systems; automatic transmission; manual transmission, front and rear drive axles; electrical systems; heating and air conditioning. To become a specialty mechanic, you only need to pass the certification exam in one category. In addition to the categories listed above, other choices include pre-1973 vehicles, motorcycles and collision related mechanical repair.
Each specialty exam tests your knowledge in several related subtopics. For example, the subjects on the the brakes and braking system test include system diagnosis, diagnosis and repair of master cylinders and anti-lock braking systems. The electrical systems test covers Ohm's law, methods of using testing meters and equipment and starting system diagnosis, among other topics. Some subjects you'll need to know for the engine tuneup and performance exam include carburetor and fuel injection, ignition systems and emission control systems.
After you pass the certification exam, you must complete and submit the Application for Motor Vehicle Specialty or Master Mechanic Certification. The Application will ask about your education, previous experience, arrest record, if any, and the category of certification for which you are applying.
You must pay a fee to take your mechanics certification exam. Another fee is required for the Application for Motor Vehicle Specialty or Master Mechanic Certification. As of June, 2014, the exam fee was $6 and the Application fee $25.