What Mechanical Engineering Technicians Do
Mechanical engineering technicians help mechanical engineers design, develop, test, and manufacture mechanical devices.
Mechanical engineering technicians assist with manufacturing processes in factories or with development phases in research and development labs before manufacturing takes place.
How to Become a Mechanical Engineering Technician
Most employers prefer to hire candidates with an associate’s degree or other postsecondary training in mechanical engineering technology. Prospective engineering technicians should take as many science and math courses as possible while in high school.
The median annual wage for mechanical engineering technicians was $56,980 in May 2019.
Employment of mechanical engineering technicians is projected to grow 3 percent from 2019 to 2029, about as fast as the average for all occupations. There should be opportunities for those who can master new software and technology in addition to traditional manual skills.
Mechanical engineering technicians help mechanical engineers design, develop, test, and manufacture mechanical devices, including tools, engines, and machines. They may make sketches and rough layouts, record and analyze data, make calculations and estimates, and report their findings.
Mechanical engineering technicians typically do the following:
- Evaluate design drawings for new or changed tools by measuring dimensions on the drawings and comparing them with the original specifications
- Prepare layouts and drawings of parts to be made and of the process for putting the parts together, often using three-dimensional design software
- Discuss changes with coworkers—for example, in the design of a part and in the way it will be made and assembled
- Review instructions and blueprints for projects in order to ensure that test specifications and procedures are followed and objectives are met
- Plan, produce, and assemble new or changed mechanical parts for products, such as industrial machinery or equipment
- Set up and conduct tests of complete units and their components, and record results
- Compare test results with design specifications and with test objectives and make recommendations for changes in products or in test methods
- Estimate labor costs, equipment life, and plant space
Some mechanical engineering technicians test and inspect machines and equipment or work with engineers to eliminate production problems. For example, they may assist in testing products by setting up instrumentation for vehicle crash tests.
Mechanical engineering technicians held about 43,500 jobs in 2019. The largest employers of mechanical engineering technicians were as follows:
|Architectural, engineering, and related services||21%|
|Transportation equipment manufacturing||12|
|Scientific research and development services||6|
|Computer and electronic product manufacturing||6|
Some mechanical engineering technicians may be exposed to hazards from equipment, chemicals, or toxic materials, but injuries are rare as long as proper procedures are followed.
Most mechanical engineering technicians work full time.
This table shows a list of occupations with job duties that are similar to those of mechanical engineering technicians.
|Occupation||Job Duties||Entry-Level Education||Median Annual Pay, May 2019|
Drafters use software to convert the designs of engineers and architects into technical drawings.
Industrial Engineering Technicians
Industrial engineering technicians assist industrial engineers in creating systems that integrate workers, machines, materials, information, and energy to make a product or provide a service.
Machinists and tool and die makers set up and operate machine tools to produce precision metal parts, instruments, and tools.
|See How to Become One||$45,750|
Mechanical engineers design, develop, build, and test mechanical and thermal sensors and devices.
For more information about general engineering education and career resources, visit
For information about accredited programs, visit
For information about certification, visit
Bureau of Labor Statistics, U.S. Department of Labor, Occupational Outlook Handbook, Mechanical Engineering Technicians,
at https://www.bls.gov/ooh/architecture-and-engineering/mechanical-engineering-technicians.htm (visited ).