Motor Vehicle Technician

Motor vehicle technicians in local councils are responsible for the day-to-day repair and maintenance of council vehicles. This could include cars, vans, lorries and passenger transport vehicles, such as buses and trams and motorised plant.  Vehicles and motorised plant must be kept in safe working condition at all times.

Work Environment
Motor vehicle technicians usually work in garages, however they may also need to go out to the roadside to recover vehicles that have broken down. They are normally required to wear protective clothing, such as boots and overalls.

Motor vehicle technicians normally work 37 hours per week on a shift basis.  Sometimes they may required to be on call for a 24-hour breakdown cover rota also they may be required to work contracted hours on Saturday mornings.

Daily Activities
Motor vehicle technicians inspect, work on and maintain all local council vehicles and motorised plant. Their duties include:

  • conducting vehicle inspections as per VOSA testers guide for Large Goods Vehicles, Cars & Light Commercial vehicles and Buses;
  • conducting motorised plant inspections in line with PUWER regulations;
  • diagnosing faults in vehicles and deciding on the work required, for example, whether a faulty unit should be repaired or replaced;
  • carrying out routine servicing and tuning;
  • fitting accessories such as hands-free mobile phone kits or Tracker and vehicle management kits;
  • overhauling and reconditioning parts;
  • carrying out road tests to make sure their work has been effective;
  • keeping records of faults on each vehicle and noting the replacement of parts and repairs carried out;
  • working to time limits and deadlines to get repairs done;
  • explaining problems with vehicles in simple terms and recommending relevant repairs;
  • using electronic equipment to repair electrical faults;
  • using hand and power tools including spanners, screwdrivers, drills and soldering equipment and welding kits to include gas and mig welding sets;
  • attending broken down vehicles at roadside locations.

Some more experienced technicians may act in a supervisory capacity managing a small team of motor vehicle mechanics.

Skills & Interests
Motor vehicle technicians need to be:

  • practical, with the ability to use hand and power tools safely, and electronic diagnostic equipment;
  • methodical, with good attention to detail;
  • aware of safety procedures at all times;
  • good team members with the ability to use their initiative and make decisions;
  • good at communicating with lots of different people.

Entry Requirements
There may not be any set requirements to enter as a trainee, but in some cases you may need four GCSEs/S Grades (A*-C/1-3) or equivalent including maths. You would also need a full driving licence - some councils may ask for an LGV licence.  Trainees would then learn whilst working towards relevant N/SVQs or an Apprenticeship. Relevant NVQs/SVQs include Maintaining Automotive Vehicles, Vehicle Fitting, Vehicle Maintenance and Roadside Assistance and Recovery.  Some councils may ask for qualified vehicle maintenance technicians with previous experience. They may require you to have a BTEC, an HND or City and Guilds qualifications in relevant subjects.

Future Prospects & Opportunities
As well as moving into more senior managerial roles, with the right training and experience, there may also be opportunities to move into other technical jobs such as electrician or facilities maintenance technician.

Further Information & Services
Apprenticeship information
People First
Retail Motor Industry Training (Remit) Ltd
Road Haulage Association
The Institute of the Motor Industry

You may find further information about this area of work through Careers Wales ( or in your local library, careers office or school careers library.

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