Electrical and electronics installers and repairers install or repair a variety of electrical equipment.
Control Technician, E and I Mechanic (Electrical and Instrument Mechanic), E and I Mechanic (Electrical and Instrumentation Mechanic), Electrical and Instrument Technician (E and I Tech), Electrical Maintenance Technician, Electronic Technician, I and C Tech (Instrument and Control Technician), Instrument and Electrical Technician (I and E Tech), Repair Technician, Scale Technician
Electrical and electronics installers and repairers typically do the following:
- Discuss problems and requirements with customers
- Inspect and test equipment
- Reproduce, isolate, and diagnose problems
- Disassemble equipment as necessary to access problematic components
- Clean, repair, and replace components
- Reassemble and test equipment after repairs
- Keep records of repairs, tests, parts, and labor hours
Modern manufacturing plants and transportation systems use a large amount of electrical and electronic equipment, from assembly line motors to sonar systems. Electrical and electronics installers and repairers fix and maintain these complex pieces of equipment.
Because automated electronic control systems are becoming more complex, repairers use software programs and testing equipment to diagnose malfunctions. Among their diagnostic tools are multimeters—which measure voltage, current, and resistance—and advanced multimeters, which measure the capacitance, inductance, and current gain of transistors.
Repairers also use signal generators, which provide test signals, and oscilloscopes, which display signals graphically. In addition, repairers often use hand tools such as pliers, screwdrivers, and wrenches to replace faulty parts and adjust equipment.
The following are examples of types of electrical and electronics installers and repairers:
Commercial and industrial electrical and electronic equipment repairers adjust, test, repair, or install electronic equipment, such as industrial controls, transmitters, and antennas.
Electric motor, power tool, and related repairers—such as armature winders, generator mechanics, and electric golf cart repairers—specialize in installing, maintaining, and repairing electric motors, wiring, or switches.
Electrical and electronics installers and repairers of transportation equipment install, adjust, or maintain mobile communication equipment, including sound, sonar, security, navigation, and surveillance systems on trains, watercraft, or other vehicles.
Electronic equipment installers and repairers of motor vehicles install, diagnose, and repair sound, security, and navigation equipment in motor vehicles. These installers and repairers work with a range of complex electronic equipment, including digital audio and video players, navigation systems, and passive and active security systems.
Powerhouse, substation, and relay electrical and electronics repairers inspect, test, maintain, or repair electrical equipment used in generating stations, substations, and in-service relays. These workers also may be known as powerhouse electricians, relay technicians, or power transformer repairers.
Color vision. Electrical and electronics installers and repairers must be able to identify the color-coded components that are often used in electronic equipment.
Communication skills. Electrical and electronics installers and repairers work closely with customers, so they must listen to and understand customers’ descriptions of problems and explain solutions in a simple, clear manner.
Physical stamina. Some electrical and electronics installers and repairers must stand at their station for their full shift, which can be tiring.
Physical strength. Electrical and electronics installers and repairers may need to lift heavy parts during the repair process. Some components weigh over 50 pounds.
Technical skills. Electrical and electronics installers and repairers use a variety of mechanical and diagnostic tools to install or repair equipment.
Troubleshooting skills. Electrical and electronics installers and repairers must be able to identify problems with equipment and systems and make the necessary repairs.
- Electrical and electronics repairers, commercial and industrial equipment
- Electrical and electronics repairers, powerhouse, substation, and relay
- Electric motor, power tool, and related repairers
- Electronic equipment installers and repairers, motor vehicles
- Electrical and electronics installers and repairers, transportation equipment
Electrical and electronics installers and repairers must understand electrical equipment and electronics. As a result, employers often prefer applicants who have taken courses in electronics at a community college or technical school. Courses usually cover AC and DC electronics, electronic devices, and microcontrollers. It is important for prospects to choose schools that include hands-on training in order to gain practical experience.
In addition to technical education, workers usually receive training on specific types of equipment. This may involve manufacturer-specific training for repairers who will perform warranty work.
Before working independently, entry-level repairers usually develop their skills while working with experienced technicians who provide technical guidance.