Popular Careers

Career Development

Career development resources for aspiring professionals.

Career Change Center

Career change guides, tutorials and resources for professionals in transition.

Job Search Resources

Job search resources, websites, guides and directories for job seekers.


Career and Education Opportunities for Outdoor Power Equipment Mechanics in Seattle, Washington

There is a wide variety of career and education opportunities for outdoor power equipment mechanics in the Seattle, Washington area. There are currently 830 working outdoor power equipment mechanics in Washington; this should grow 15% to about 960 working outdoor power equipment mechanics in the state by 2016. This is better than the nation as a whole, where employment opportunities for outdoor power equipment mechanics are expected to grow by about 6.4%. Outdoor power equipment mechanics generally diagnose, adjust, or overhaul small engines used to power lawn mowers, chain saws, and related equipment.

The income of an outdoor power equipment mechanic is about $15 hourly or $32,220 annually on average in Washington. In the U.S. as a whole, their income is about $13 per hour or $28,920 per year on average. Outdoor power equipment mechanics earn less than people working in the category of Specialized Equipment generally in Washington and less than people in the Specialized Equipment category nationally.

There are sixty-five schools of higher education in the Seattle area, including one within twenty-five miles of Seattle where you can get a degree to start your career as an outdoor power equipment mechanic. Outdoor power equipment mechanics usually hold a high school diploma or GED, so 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 Seattle 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.
  • Camera Repair Technician. Repair and adjust cameras and photographic equipment, including commercial video and motion picture camera equipment.
  • Commercial Diver. Work below surface of water, using scuba gear to inspect, repair, or install equipment and structures. May use a variety of power and hand tools, such as drills, sledgehammers, and welding equipment. May conduct tests or experiments, rig explosives, or photograph structures or marine life.
  • 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.
  • Industrial Machinery Mechanic. Repair, install, or maintain industrial production and processing machinery or refinery and pipeline distribution systems.
  • Machine Repairman. Lubricate machinery, change parts, or perform other routine machinery maintenance.
  • Mechanical Door Repairer. Install, service, or repair opening and closing mechanisms of automatic doors and hydraulic door closers. Includes garage door mechanics.
  • Medical Equipment Repairer. Test, adjust, or repair biomedical or electromedical equipment.
  • Millwright. Install, dismantle, or move machinery and heavy equipment according to layout plans, blueprints, or other drawings.
  • 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.
  • Motorcycle Mechanic. Diagnose, adjust, or overhaul motorcycles, scooters, or similar motorized vehicles.
  • Musical Instrument Mechanic. Repair percussion, stringed, or wind instruments. May specialize in one area, such as piano tuning.
  • Refrigeration Mechanic. Install and repair industrial and commercial refrigerating systems.
  • Rigger. Set up or repair rigging for construction projects, manufacturing plants, logging yards, ships and shipyards, or for the entertainment industry.
  • Vending Machine Mechanic. Install, service, or repair coin, vending, or amusement machines including video games, juke boxes, or slot machines.
  • Watch and Clock Repairer. Repair, clean, and adjust mechanisms of timing instruments, such as watches and clocks.

EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES: Outdoor Power Equipment Mechanic Training

Bates Technical College - Tacoma, WA

Bates Technical College, 1101 S Yakima Ave, Tacoma, WA 98405. Bates Technical College is a medium sized college located in Tacoma, Washington. It is a public school with primarily 2-year programs and has 2,807 students. Bates Technical College has a one to two year and an associate's degree program in Small Engine Mechanics and Repair Technology/Technician which graduated one and two students respectively in 2008.

LOCATION INFORMATION: Seattle, Washington

Seattle, Washington
Seattle, Washington photo by Dschwen

Seattle is located in King County, Washington. It has a population of over 598,541, which has grown by 6.2% in the past ten years. The cost of living index in Seattle, 126, is far greater than the national average. New single-family homes in Seattle are valued at $206,700 on average, which is well below the state average. In 2008, five hundred ninety-five new homes were built in Seattle, down from seven hundred seventy-five the previous year.

The three big industries for women in Seattle are health care, professional, scientific, and technical services, and educational services. For men, it is professional, scientific, and technical services, construction, and educational services. The average commute to work is about 25 minutes. More than 47.2% of Seattle residents have a bachelor's degree, which is higher than the state average. The percentage of residents with a graduate degree, 17.3%, is higher than the state average.

The unemployment rate in Seattle is 7.8%, which is less than Washington's average of 8.7%.

The percentage of Seattle residents that are affiliated with a religious congregation, 37.3%, is less than the national average but more than the state average. The largest religious groups are the Catholic Church, the LDS (Mormon) Church and the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America.

Seattle is home to the Berth 5 and the Akli Point Lighthouse as well as Lincoln Park and Myrtle Edwards Park. Shopping centers in the area include Lake City Shopping Center, Westwood Village Shopping Center and Oak Tree Village Shopping Center. Visitors to Seattle can choose from A-1 Motel, Arlington Suites and Marriott Sea-Tac Airport for temporary stays in the area.