Automotive body and glass repairers essential career information:
- 2011 median pay: $38,380
- 2011, number of jobs: 135,610
- Employment growth forecast, 2010-2020: 19 percent
- Entry level education requirements: High school diploma or equivalent
Automotive body and glass repairers; what they do:
People who love working with their hands and seeing a physical outcome of their hard work may enjoy working as an automotive body repairer or an automotive glass repairer. Automotive body repairers and automotive glass repairers fix or replace vehicle body sections, frames, windshields and window glass breathing new life into a damaged vehicle.
Automotive body repairers and automotive glass repairers review damage reports and prepare cost estimates for customers. When customers wish to proceed, automotive body repairers do anything from pounding out small dents to realigning care frames to repairing structural damage. They remove all damaged body parts, then fit and reattach replacement parts, including weatherproofed windows. Automotive body repairers and automotive glass repairers make the vehicle beautiful again through grinding, sanding, buffing, prime refurbishing, or painting the areas they worked on.
The varied work of an automotive body repairer and automotive glass repairer involves tools ranging from simple hand tools such as pliers, wrenches, hammers, and screwdrivers to more involved tools such as metal-cutting guns, plasma cutters, and hydraulic jacks and hammers.
Depending on the size of the shop they work at and the size of the project, automotive body repairers and automotive glass repairers may work on a job alone or as part of a group.
Automotive body and glass repairers job titles:
- Collision Repair Technician
- Automotive Glass Installer and Repairer
- Automotive Body and Related Repairer
- Auto Body Technician
- Body Man
- Auto Body Man
- Body Technician
- Auto Body Repairman
- Automotive Painter
- Auto Body Repair Technician
- Body and Frame Man
Automotive Body and Glass Repairers Education, Certification and License Requirements
An automotive body repairer career or automotive glass repairer career can begin with a high school degree and then on-the-job training, but employers are increasingly hiring individuals with a formal training in automotive body repair or refinishing, which may be obtained through high school courses, community college courses, or through a trade and technical school.
Trade or technical school training lasts between six month to a year and results in a certificate. Community college programs typically last two years.
New automotive body repairers shadow a more experienced automotive body repairer for one to four years – although three to four years is most common – gradually receiving more complex tasks and increased autonomy. New automotive glass repairers and installers typically shadow a more experienced automotive glass repairer and installer for one year before working on projects alone.
Due to the constant technical advances in the automotive industry, professional automotive body repairers and automotive glass repairers typically take continuing education courses, read technical manuals, and attend seminars throughout their career to stay updated on the newest automotive technology.
Automotive body and glass repairers programs cover subjects such as:
Certification is not required of automotive body repairers and automotive glass repairers, although it is highly recommended, as certification is rapidly becoming more of an industry standard and employer preference.
The National Institute of Automotive Excellence provides the most common certification for automotive body repairers and automotive glass repairers, with further certification available through the Inter-Industry Conference on Auto Collision Repair. Additionally, some vehicle and paint manufacturers offer certification programs in specific technologies and repair methods.
Automotive Body and Glass Repairers Job Outlook
Forecast: 19 percent employment growth from 2010 to 2020 for automotive body repairers and automotive glass repairers, on par with the average for all occupations.
An increasing population also means an increased number of vehicles on the road, which calls for more automotive body repairers and automotive glass repairers. However, advances in technology slow down the job growth a bit, as the advances allow fewer workers to do more work faster. An increase in auto body parts also increases the chances of a car being declared ‘totaled’, rather than being fixed, which also slows the demand for automotive body repairers and automotive glass repairers.
Automotive Body and Glass Repairers Salary
- 2011 median annual wage: $38,380
- 2011, workers at the 75th percentile annual wage: $50,520
- 2011, workers at the 25% percentile annual wage: $29,930
- Automotive repair shops
- Automobile dealers