Electrical Equipment Technician Careers: Job Description & Salary

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What are the pros and cons of an electrical equipment technician career? Get real job descriptions, career outlook and salary information to see if becoming an electrical equipment technician is right for you.
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Pros and Cons of an Electrical Equipment Technician Career

Becoming an electrical equipment technician, such as an electrical installer or repairer, will give you the opportunity to work on a variety of electrical devices in a number of different industries. Below are listed a few pros and cons to help you decide if working as an electrical equipment technician is the right choice for you.

Pros of Becoming an Electrical Equipment Technician
Often requires an associate's degree or only a high school diploma with a postsecondary certificate*
Opportunities for advancement*
Good job prospects in computer-related fields*
Good pay (up to $71,400 per year on average in 2014)*

Cons of Becoming an Electrical Equipment Technician
Work environments could be hot, noisy*
Work environments could also be dangerous*
Little to no job growth for some specialties*
Some jobs can be performed by automated robots*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Career Information

Job Duties

Job duties for electric equipment technicians could vary depending on their area of expertise. Generally, professionals in this field refer to manufacturer's schematics to install, maintain and fix electronic equipment. This could include diagnosing problems when they occur and replacing faulty electronic components, such as gaskets, motors and fuses. If part of your job is to test performance, you might have to disassemble a machine, test its parts and put it together again. Lastly, you must keep records of machine maintenance and costs associated with time, parts and labor.

Salary Information

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), electrical equipment repairers working on industrial and commercial equipment earned an average annual salary of about $54,640 as of May 2014 (www.bls.gov). Those working on transportation equipment also earned about $56,000 on average each year, while electronics repairers and installers who worked in power houses earned an average annual salary of about $71,400, according to the BLS.

Job Outlook

Employment for electrical equipment technicians working on commercial equipment is expected to change very little with an increase of only 3% between 2012 and 2022. This slow growth will likely be due to the declination of traditional manufacturing industries, which employ many professionals in this field. Electronics repairers and installers working in the transportation industry are also expected to experience little to no employment growth during the same time period. Professionals in this field who are employed at power houses or relay stations are set to experience little change in job opportunities between 2012 and 2022, according to the BLS.

Requirements

Education and Training

You can secure some electrical equipment technician jobs with a high school diploma, although many employers prefer job candidates who hold an Associate of Applied Science (A.A.S.) or an undergraduate certificate in electronic equipment technology. You might also be able to gain an entry-level position and then earn work experience through on-the-job training while working under the supervision of experienced technicians.

Job Postings

Employers looking to hire electrical equipment technicians usually require an associate's degree in electrical equipment technology or equipment maintenance, although some will accept relevant experience instead. Some employers may also ask for experience with specific electrical systems or a background in a particular industry. Here are a few examples of real job postings from May 2011 to give you an idea of what employers may be looking for.

  • A manufacturing maintenance technician is needed to perform preventative maintenance on manufacturing equipment at a packaging company in Pennsylvania. You can get this with a high school diploma, but you need about five years of relevant experience.
  • A company that contracts electrical and electronics services seeks an electrical maintenance technician in Chicago to plan and implement preventative maintenance strategies. This job requires a degree in electrical controls from an accredited school and five years of experience.
  • An industrial manufacturing equipment technician is needed to work on cranes at an industrial manufacturing company in Rhode Island. This position pays $22-$27 per hour.

How to Stand Out in This Field

You may be able to improve your employment chances as an electrical equipment technician if you earn a bachelor's degree in engineering or engineering technology. You could earn a Bachelor of Science or a Bachelor of Engineering. Some schools offer 4-year professional degrees in engineering as well, which could qualify you to sit for national engineering exams after you've gained experience as an engineering technician.

While you don't need a license or certification to get a job as an electrical equipment technician, you might be able to increase your chances of finding a job or securing a promotion by joining a professional society or earning professional credentials. For example, the Institute for Electrical and Electronic Engineers (IEEE) offers several continuing education programs that lead to certifications. For example, you could pursue Certified Biometrics Professional (CBP), Certified Software Development Associate (CSDA), Certified Software Development Professional (CSDP) or Wireless Communications Engineering Technologies (WCET) credentials.

Alternative Careers

Electrical Engineer

If you already have a bachelor's degree and some experience working as an electrical equipment technician, you might be eligible to work as an electrical engineer, though you must also get your Professional Engineer's license before you can offer your services directly to the public. Electrical engineers design, test and maintain electrical systems and machines. According to the BLS, professionals in this field earned a median annual salary of about $86,000 per year with top salaries of $132,000 or more.

Mechanical Engineering Technician

Mechanical engineering technician is a position with some similarities to electrical equipment technician that you can get with an associate's degree. In this position, you could be in charge of developing, testing and producing industrial machinery. You might also work on consumer products or computers. Job duties could include sketching drafts of designs and calculating estimated costs. Mechanical engineering technicians earned a median annual salary of about $51,000, according to the BLS.

Popular Schools

  • Campus and Online Programs
    1. South College

    Program Options

    Associate's
      • Associate of Science in Electrical Engineering Technology
      • Associate of Science in Electrical Engineering Technology
  • Campus Locations:
    2. Lincoln Tech

    Program Options

    Certificate
      • Electrical/Electronics
      • Electrical/Electronics
  • Online Programs Available
    3. Kaplan University

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • BSIT: Network Admin
      • BSIT: Network Admin
    Associate's
      • AASIT: Network Admin
      • AASIT: Network Admin
  • Online Programs Available
    4. Regent University

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • Bachelor of Arts in Leadership Studies - Information Technology
      • Bachelor of Arts in Leadership Studies - Information Technology
  • Campus Locations:
    5. Universal Technical Institute

    Program Options

    Certificate
      • Marine Technician Specialist
      • Diesel Technology
      • Motorcycle Technician Specialist
      • Automotive Technology
      • NASCAR Technology
      • Collision Repair and Refinish Technology
  • Online Programs Available
    6. ECPI University

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • Bachelor's - Electronics Engineering Technology
      • Bachelor's - Mechatronics
    Associate's
      • Associate's - Electronics Engineering Technology
  • Campus and Online Programs
    7. Full Sail University

    Program Options

    Bachelor's
      • BS - Cloud Technologies (Campus)
  • Online Programs Available
    8. Purdue University

    Program Options

    Master's
      • Master of Science in Engineering Technology
  • Campus Locations:
    9. CDI College

    Program Options

    Certificate
      • Diploma in Construction Electrician Foundation
  • Online Programs Available
    10. Penn Foster

    Program Options

    Certificate
      • Career Diploma - Electronics Technician

Featured Schools

South College

  • Associate of Science in Electrical Engineering Technology

What is your highest level of education completed?

Lincoln Tech

  • Electrical/Electronics

What year did you graduate High School / Receive GED?

Kaplan University

  • BSIT: Network Admin
  • AASIT: Network Admin

Which subject are you interested in?

Regent University

  • Bachelor of Arts in Leadership Studies - Information Technology

What is your highest level of education completed?

Universal Technical Institute

  • Marine Technician Specialist
  • Diesel Technology
  • Motorcycle Technician Specialist

What is your education level?

ECPI University

  • Bachelor's - Electronics Engineering Technology
  • Bachelor's - Mechatronics
  • Associate's - Electronics Engineering Technology

What is your highest level of education?

Full Sail University

  • BS - Cloud Technologies (Campus)

What is your highest level of education?

Purdue University

  • Master of Science in Engineering Technology

What is your highest level of education?