Wind turbine service technicians perform maintenance and repair to wind farms. Aspiring wind turbine technicians should be comfortable in tight spaces and high up in the air, as they will spend much of their time working under these conditions. This job also entails frequent travel, as many wind farms are located in remote areas.
National Average Salary
As of 2012, wind turbine service technicians reported an average hourly wage of $23.23 and an average annual salary of $48,320 to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The lowest-paid 10 percent of turbine service techs reported incomes of $33,170 or less, while the highest-paid 10 percent earned $66,960 or more per year. Half of all turbine service technicians employed as of 2012 reported annual incomes ranging from $39,200 to $55,830.
Pay by Employment Situation
Wind turbine service technicians working for most types of employers reported similar earnings. For example, those employed by wholesalers to service wind turbines still under warranty averaged $50,900 per year. The average salary of those employed by electricity distribution companies averaged $49,850, while technicians working for equipment maintenance companies averaged $48,080. Wind service technicians employed directly by local governments reported average incomes slightly above the national average, $52,230 per year.
Pay by Location
Turbine technician salaries varied more significantly by location than by employer in 2012. The state with the highest-paying jobs, Kentucky, reported an average income of $56,200 per year. North Dakota reported the second-highest salary, $53,130 per year, followed by California at $52,050 per year. States with average salaries significantly lower than the national average included New York at $43,620, Indiana at $40,140 and Minnesota at $40,100.
While the Bureau of Labor Statistics does not yet track outlook information for wind turbine service technicians, the number employed can be expected to grow as U.S. wind power industry grows. The Global Wind Energy Council reports that the U.S. wind power industry grew by 30 percent in 2011 alone. However, the GWEC also cautions against undue optimism, noting that some wind energy companies are laying off workers due to the federal government's inconsistent energy policies.