Are you interested in becoming an elevator mechanic? If your answer is yes, then welcome to an exciting career. This post will show you how you can become a technician specializing in elevator repairs and installation.
Who is an Elevator Mechanic?
An elevator mechanic is a technician whose specialty is basically in installing and repairing of escalators, chair lifts, and a variety of other electronic transport systems conveying both humans and materials in buildings.
They may be required to do the work of adjusting of control systems, and braking systems, motors and their switches, connect wirings, install doors, counterweights, and ratchets.
They also work on control panels, and perform maintenance on transport machines using a variety of equipment like pressure gauges, and various meters, to test and troubleshoot problems, not forgetting to ensure that the appropriate safety standards are adhered to.
They often go by a number of other names, including, elevator contractor, elevator mechanic, elevator installer or repairer.
Educational Requirements and Career Pathway for Elevator Mechanics
Apprenticeship are usually offered to anyone interested in becoming an elevator mechanic who can meet up with the requirements of the trades school, and are selected often through an application process to the required trades school.
A high school certificate and attaining the age of 18 years may also be a requisite for expression of interest.
The tasks performed by elevator mechanics are usually physically challenging, therefore, apprentices may be required to do some heavy lifting, stand up for prolonged period of time, and work repeatedly in awkward positions, to get used to the work condition of the profession.
He/she is also expected to commit about 144 hours of time to learning in the classroom.
Several locales may prefer to break the courses into segments requiring you to subject yourself to about two different training periods per year with courses bothering on topics in mechanical, technical, electrical and solid state elevator skills.
Putting in both theory and on-the-job training sessions in basic electronic theory, math, applied physics, safety procedures, understanding blueprints, and working with hydraulics, microprocessors, circuits and electrical currents which may also involve up to four years of training in the field.
In addition to apprenticeship training, some states also require that the elevator mechanic conducts a licensing examination to certify him and ensure public safety.
The exams are usually in theoretical forms testing installation procedures, technical limits, and other requisite work procedures, as employers are looking for verified certificates of expertise and proficiency.
Though the certificates may often not be required, however, if you are interested in joining associations for elevator mechanics, they may prefer to see some papers.
In some places, the apprentices are paired with more experienced mechanics, and they begin their apprenticeship program by carrying out little tasks and menial jobs, working their way up to learning more, and eventually become certified a journeyman or mechanic.
Although mechanics with a degree possess the tendency to advance much faster considering the technicalities now involved on the job with the use of technology in making the hardware and software tools required for effective work, the degree may also serve as a career boost for entry level opportunities in disciplines like elevator technology, electronics repairman, thermostat repairmen, etc.
To know about trade schools in your area, it is advised that unions bothering on elevator mechanics in your area be consulted.
Note: To be absorbed into an apprenticeship program as well as to be hired after completing training, you may be required to take one or two tests. Learn about the assessment tests you may need to pass to get into the elevator mechanic career and how to make top scores in them.
Valuable Elevator Mechanic Skills
Many of the skills needed in this field can be learnt in the classroom or as an apprentice in the field, and they include areas of:
- Physical strength for lifting objects like elevator rails and other heavy tools.
- Giving attention to details.
- Stamina: The work of an elevator mechanic demands that he/she spends long hours in tight or awkward position. Being able to show endurance is a skill needed to effectively carry out such tasks.
- Strong mechanical and troubleshooting knowledge: Since he/she will be coming in contact with various tasks; not only in installing, but in solving problems, an elevator mechanic should be able to observe critically the task before him/her and diagnose the problem accurately to proffer lasting solutions.
- Excellent use of testing equipment and tools: Since this will be needed to detect issues on the job, the elevator mechanic should properly understand the way his/her machines work.
Elevator Mechanic Career Opportunities
The growth rate in the field of elevator installation and repairs are expected by the Bureau of labor Statistics to up by 25 percent from 2012 to 2022.
Challenges to Expect Working as Elevator Mechanic
The challenges you should expect working as an elevator mechanic include having to do heavy lifting often to incredible heights, which may leave you sore afterwards.
Also, the job of elevator mechanic can posit more danger than you will come across if you were on a desk job.
Although it is strongly advised that a workout schedule be considered as physically challenging jobs like that of the elevator mechanic may require you to do heavy lifting as you progress in the profession.
Elevator Mechanic Salary
Elevator mechanics can earn between $18 and $27 an hour. Apprentices are paid half the price per hour of journeymen. The profession has a mean annual wage of about 78,000 per year.