How Much Do Auto Mechanics Make Per Hour: A Comprehensive Guide

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As an aspiring auto mechanic or someone considering a career in the automotive industry, it’s essential to have a clear understanding of the earning potential within this field. One of the most common questions that arise is, “How much do auto mechanics make per hour?” In this article, we will delve into the factors that influence an auto mechanic’s hourly wages, provide average wage statistics, explore high-paying industries, and address frequently asked questions to help you make an informed decision. So, let’s get started!

Factors Affecting Auto Mechanics’ Hourly Wages

Several factors come into play when determining an auto mechanic’s hourly wage. These factors can vary significantly and may include:

  1. Experience: Just like any other profession, experience plays a crucial role in an auto mechanic’s wage. Typically, as an auto mechanic gains more experience and expertise, their earning potential increases.

  2. Location: Geographic location can have a significant impact on an auto mechanic’s hourly wage. Wages tend to be higher in urban areas where there is a higher cost of living or a higher demand for skilled mechanics.

  3. Industry: The industry in which an auto mechanic works can greatly influence their hourly wage. For instance, working in specialized fields such as motorsports or luxury car repair can offer higher wages compared to general automotive repair shops.

  4. Certifications and Training: Holding relevant certifications and undergoing continuous training can boost an auto mechanic’s earning potential. Certifications from reputable organizations demonstrate a higher level of expertise and can result in higher wages.

  5. Specialization: Auto mechanics who specialize in specific areas like electrical systems, transmissions, or hybrid vehicles often command higher wages due to their specialized knowledge and skill set.

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Average Hourly Wages for Auto Mechanics

Now that we have discussed the factors affecting an auto mechanic’s wages, let’s delve into some average hourly wage statistics. It’s important to note that these figures are approximate and can vary based on the factors mentioned earlier.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), the median hourly wage for auto mechanics and technicians in the United States was $20.24 as of May 2020[^1^]. However, it’s essential to remember that this is just a median value, and wages can range from as low as $12 per hour to as high as $36 per hour or more, depending on the factors we mentioned earlier.

Furthermore, it’s worth noting that auto mechanics can often earn additional income through overtime, bonuses, and commissions, which can further enhance their overall earning potential.

High-Paying Industries for Auto Mechanics

While the automotive repair and maintenance industry as a whole provides employment opportunities for auto mechanics, certain sectors offer higher wages due to various reasons. Here are a few examples:

Motorsports Industry

The motorsports industry, which includes NASCAR, Formula 1, and other racing organizations, is known for offering lucrative opportunities for skilled auto mechanics. The demanding nature of motorsports requires highly specialized mechanics who can handle high-performance vehicles, leading to higher wages and exciting career prospects.

Luxury Car Repair

Luxury car dealerships and specialized repair shops often pay higher wages to auto mechanics due to the complexity of working on high-end vehicles. These luxury cars require meticulous attention to detail, advanced diagnostic tools, and specialized training, resulting in higher earning potential for mechanics with the necessary expertise.

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Government Agencies

Auto mechanics employed by government agencies, such as municipal fleets or state transportation departments, can enjoy competitive wages and benefits. These positions often require skilled mechanics to maintain and repair a wide range of vehicles, including emergency response vehicles, heavy equipment, and public transportation.

FAQ: Frequently Asked Questions about Auto Mechanics’ Hourly Wages

Q: What is the national average hourly wage for auto mechanics?

The national average hourly wage for auto mechanics in the United States, as of May 2020, was $20.24[^1^]. However, it’s important to consider that wages can vary based on factors like location, experience, specialization, and industry.

Q: Do auto mechanics earn more in urban areas compared to rural areas?

Generally, auto mechanics tend to earn higher wages in urban areas where the cost of living is higher, and the demand for skilled mechanics is greater. However, it’s crucial to consider other factors such as competition and industry focus within specific regions.

Q: How does experience impact an auto mechanic’s hourly pay?

Experience plays a significant role in determining an auto mechanic’s hourly pay. As mechanics gain more experience and develop expertise, they become more valuable to employers, leading to higher wages and potentially better job opportunities.


In conclusion, the hourly wages for auto mechanics can vary based on several factors, including experience, location, industry, certifications, and specialization. While the national average hourly wage for auto mechanics stands at $20.24, it’s crucial to remember that this figure is a median value, and wages can vary significantly above or below this mark. By considering these factors and exploring high-paying industries such as motorsports, luxury car repair, and government agencies, aspiring auto mechanics can make informed decisions about their career paths. So, if you’re passionate about cars and enjoy working with your hands, the automotive industry offers promising opportunities to earn a competitive wage while pursuing your passion.

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[^1^]: Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Employment and Wage Statistics, May 2020. Link

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