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Career and Education Opportunities for Outdoor Power Equipment Mechanics in Stockton, California

Stockton, California provides a wide variety of opportunities, both career and educational, for outdoor power equipment mechanics. Currently, 1,900 people work as outdoor power equipment mechanics in California. This is expected to grow 5% to about 2,000 people by 2016. This is not quite as good as the national trend for outdoor power equipment mechanics, which sees this job pool growing by about 6.4% over the next eight years. In general, outdoor power equipment mechanics diagnose, adjust, or overhaul small engines used to power lawn mowers, chain saws, and related equipment.

Outdoor power equipment mechanics earn approximately $14 hourly or $30,880 annually on average in California. Nationally they average about $13 per hour or $28,920 annually. Compared with people working in the overall category of Specialized Equipment, people working as outdoor power equipment mechanics in California earn less. They earn less than people working in the overall category of Specialized Equipment nationally.

There are twenty-two schools of higher education in the Stockton area, including one within twenty-five miles of Stockton where you can get a degree to start your career as an outdoor power equipment mechanic. Given that the most common education level for outdoor power equipment mechanics is a high school diploma or GED, you can expect to spend only a short time studying to be an outdoor power equipment mechanic if you already have a high school diploma.

CAREER DESCRIPTION: Outdoor Power Equipment Mechanic

Outdoor Power Equipment Mechanic video from the State of New Jersey Dept. of Labor and Workforce Development

In general, outdoor power equipment mechanics diagnose, adjust, or overhaul small engines used to power lawn mowers, chain saws, and related equipment.

Outdoor power equipment mechanics dismantle engines, using hand tools, and examine parts for defects. They also test and inspect engines to establish malfunctions, to identify missing and broken parts, and to confirm fixes, using diagnostic instruments. Equally important, outdoor power equipment mechanics have to repair or remove faulty parts such as magnetos and carburetors, using hand tools. They are often called upon to perform routine maintenance such as cleaning and oiling parts, honing cylinders, and tuning ignition systems. They are expected to reassemble engines after repair or maintenance work is complete. Finally, outdoor power equipment mechanics remove engines from equipment, and position and bolt engines to repair stands.

Every day, outdoor power equipment mechanics are expected to be able to control and manipulate objects at a fine level of detail. They need to maintain precise control of objects and devices through a range of movements. It is also important that they move quickly in order to hold onto or control objects and devices.

It is important for outdoor power equipment mechanics to sell parts and equipment. Somewhat less frequently, outdoor power equipment mechanics are also expected to grind and retap parts to obtain specified clearances, using grinders, lathes, taps, reamers, boring equipment, and micrometers.

Outdoor power equipment mechanics sometimes are asked to repair and maintain gasoline engines used to power equipment such as portable saws and compressors. They also have to be able to remove engines from equipment, and position and bolt engines to repair stands and record fixes made and parts used. And finally, they sometimes have to perform routine maintenance such as cleaning and oiling parts, honing cylinders, and tuning ignition systems.

Like many other jobs, outdoor power equipment mechanics must be thorough and dependable and want to innovate to meet new challenges.

Similar jobs with educational opportunities in Stockton include:

  • Boat Mechanic. Repairs and adjusts electrical and mechanical equipment of gasoline or diesel powered inboard or inboard-outboard boat engines.
  • Bus or Truck Garage Mechanic. Diagnose, adjust, or overhaul trucks, buses, and all types of diesel engines. Includes mechanics working primarily with automobile diesel engines.
  • Heating Equipment Installer. Install, service, and repair heating and air conditioning systems in residences and commercial establishments.
  • Household Appliance Repairer. Repair, adjust, or install all types of electric or gas household appliances, such as refrigerators, washers, and ovens.
  • Mobile Heavy Equipment Mechanic. Diagnose, adjust, or overhaul mobile mechanical, hydraulic, and pneumatic equipment, such as cranes, bulldozers, and conveyors, used in construction, logging, and surface mining.
  • Refrigeration Mechanic. Install and repair industrial and commercial refrigerating systems.
  • Vending Machine Mechanic. Install, service, or repair coin, vending, or amusement machines including video games, juke boxes, or slot machines.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Outdoor Power Equipment Mechanic Training

San Joaquin Delta College - Stockton, CA

San Joaquin Delta College, 5151 Pacific Ave, Stockton, CA 95207. San Joaquin Delta College is a large college located in Stockton, California. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 20,480 students. San Joaquin Delta College has a two to four year program in Small Engine Mechanics and Repair Technology/Technician.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Stockton, California

Stockton, California
Stockton, California photo by Ron Reiring

Stockton is situated in San Joaquin County, California. It has a population of over 287,037, which has grown by 17.7% over the last ten years. The cost of living index in Stockton, 91, is below the national average. New single-family homes in Stockton cost $262,500 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, one hundred sixty-four new homes were built in Stockton, down from six hundred seventeen the previous year.

The top three industries for women in Stockton are health care, educational services, and accommodation and food services. For men, it is construction, agriculture, forestry, fishing and hunting, and public administration. The average travel time to work is about 27 minutes. More than 15.4% of Stockton residents have a bachelor's degree, which is lower than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 4.9%, is lower than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Stockton is 19.4%, which is greater than California's average of 12.3%.

The percentage of Stockton residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 38.2%, is less than both the national and state average. Peniel Ministries for Stockton Neighborhood Center, Corinthian Missionary Baptist Church and Kingdom Hall of Jehovahs Witnesses are among the churches located in Stockton. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Southern Baptist Convention.

Stockton is home to the Calaveras Landing and the Stockton Country Club as well as Atherton Park and Williams Brotherhood Park. Shopping malls in the area include Saint Marks Plaza Shopping Center, Hammer Ranch Shopping Center and Weberstown Shopping Center. Visitors to Stockton can choose from Best Western Inn, Best Value Inn and Acorn Inn for temporary stays in the area.