Collision Repair Technology Required Skills/Job & Salary Outlook

Repair and refinish automotive vehicle bodies and straighten vehicle frames.

Sample of reported job titles

Auto Body Technician, Body Man, Auto Body Man, Body Technician, Auto Body Repairman, Automotive Painter, Auto Body Repair Technician, Auto Body Repairer, Autobody Technician, Body and Frame Man


Tasks

  • Follow supervisors' instructions as to which parts to restore or replace and how much time the job should take.
  • Review damage reports, prepare or review repair cost estimates, and plan work to be performed.
  • Sand body areas to be painted and cover bumpers, windows, and trim with masking tape or paper to protect them from the paint.
  • Fit and weld replacement parts into place, using wrenches and welding equipment, and grind down welds to smooth them, using power grinders and other tools.
  • Prime and paint repaired surfaces, using paint sprayguns and motorized sanders.
  • Remove damaged sections of vehicles using metal-cutting guns, air grinders and wrenches, and install replacement parts using wrenches or welding equipment.
  • Chain or clamp frames and sections to alignment machines that use hydraulic pressure to align damaged components.
  • Fill small dents that cannot be worked out with plastic or solder.
  • File, grind, sand and smooth filled or repaired surfaces, using power tools and hand tools.
  • Remove upholstery, accessories, electrical window-and-seat-operating equipment, and trim to gain access to vehicle bodies and fenders.

Tools used in this occupation

Pneumatic hammer - Air chisels; Air hammers; Pneumatic hammers; Pneumatic smoothing hammers

  • Power buffers - Buffing machines; Machine polishers; Portable buffers
  •  Pullers - Pick pull rods; Pull rods; Slide hammers; T pullers
  • Shears - Foot shears; Hand shears; Power shears
  • Trim or molding tools - Crown spoons; Door skin dollies; Toe dollies; Universal railroad dollies

Technology used in this occupation:

Accounting software - Accounts receivable software

  • Analytical or scientific software - Collision damage estimation software; Collision damage measurement software; Paint mixing and matching software; Swan River Estimiser Pro
  • Calendar and scheduling software - Appointment scheduling software
  •  Data base user interface and query software - AutoZone ALLDATA; Equipment management information software
  • Inventory management software - Materials management software

Knowledge

Mechanical - Knowledge of machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.

  • English Language - Knowledge of the structure and content of the English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
  • Customer and Personal Service - Knowledge of principles and processes for providing customer and personal services. This includes customer needs assessment, meeting quality standards for services, and evaluation of customer satisfaction.
  • Production and Processing - Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.
  • Public Safety and Security - Knowledge of relevant equipment, policies, procedures, and strategies to promote effective local, state, or national security operations for the protection of people, data, property, and institutions.

Skills

Repairing - Repairing machines or systems using the needed tools.

  • Active Listening - Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.
  • Complex Problem Solving - Identifying complex problems and reviewing related information to develop and evaluate options and implement solutions.
  • Monitoring - Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.
  • Operation and Control - Controlling operations of equipment or systems.
  • Speaking - Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Abilities

Oral Comprehension - The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.

  • Information Ordering - The ability to arrange things or actions in a certain order or pattern according to a specific rule or set of rules (e.g., patterns of numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
  • Manual Dexterity - The ability to quickly move your hand, your hand together with your arm, or your two hands to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
  • Near Vision - The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
  • Category Flexibility - The ability to generate or use different sets of rules for combining or grouping things in different ways.
  • Control Precision - The ability to quickly and repeatedly adjust the controls of a machine or a vehicle to exact positions.
  • Oral Expression - The ability to communicate information and ideas in speaking so others will understand.
  • Trunk Strength - The ability to use your abdominal and lower back muscles to support part of the body repeatedly or continuously over time without 'giving out' or fatiguing.
  • Visualization - The ability to imagine how something will look after it is moved around or when its parts are moved or rearranged.
  • Arm-Hand Steadiness - The ability to keep your hand and arm steady while moving your arm or while holding your arm and hand in one position.

Work Activities

Updating and Using Relevant Knowledge - Keeping up-to-date technically and applying new knowledge to your job.

  • Getting Information - Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
  • Inspecting Equipment, Structures, or Material - Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials to identify the cause of errors or other problems or defects.
  • Making Decisions and Solving Problems - Analyzing information and evaluating results to choose the best solution and solve problems.
  • Communicating with Supervisors, Peers, or Subordinates - Providing information to supervisors, co-workers, and subordinates by telephone, in written form, e-mail, or in person.
  • Handling and Moving Objects - Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, and moving materials, and manipulating things.
  • Identifying Objects, Actions, and Events - Identifying information by categorizing, estimating, recognizing differences or similarities, and detecting changes in circumstances or events.
  • Monitor Processes, Materials, or Surroundings - Monitoring and reviewing information from materials, events, or the environment, to detect or assess problems.
  • Operating Vehicles, Mechanized Devices, or Equipment - Running, maneuvering, navigating, or driving vehicles or mechanized equipment, such as forklifts, passenger vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
  • Performing General Physical Activities - Performing physical activities that require considerable use of your arms and legs and moving your whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling of materials.

Work Context

Spend Time Using Your Hands to Handle, Control, or Feel Objects, Tools, or Controls - How much does this job require using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls?

  • Importance of Being Exact or Accurate - How important is being very exact or highly accurate in performing this job?
  • Spend Time Standing - How much does this job require standing?
  • Exposed to Contaminants - How often does this job require working exposed to contaminants (such as pollutants, gases, dust or odors)?
  • Wear Common Protective or Safety Equipment such as Safety Shoes, Glasses, Gloves, Hearing Protection, Hard Hats, or Life Jackets - How much does this job require wearing common protective or safety equipment such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hard hats or life jackets?
  • Exposed to Hazardous Conditions - How often does this job require exposure to hazardous conditions?
  • Time Pressure - How often does this job require the worker to meet strict deadlines?
  • Freedom to Make Decisions - How much decision making freedom, without supervision, does the job offer?
  • Impact of Decisions on Co-workers or Company Results - How do the decisions an employee makes impact the results of co-workers, clients or the company?
  • Sounds, Noise Levels Are Distracting or Uncomfortable - How often does this job require working exposed to sounds and noise levels that are distracting or uncomfortable?

Interests

  • Realistic - Realistic occupations frequently involve work activities that include practical, hands-on problems and solutions. They often deal with plants, animals, and real-world materials like wood, tools, and machinery. Many of the occupations require working outside, and do not involve a lot of paperwork or working closely with others.

Work Styles

Attention to Detail - Job requires being careful about detail and thorough in completing work tasks.

  • Dependability - Job requires being reliable, responsible, and dependable, and fulfilling obligations.
  • Persistence - Job requires persistence in the face of obstacles.
  • Achievement/Effort - Job requires establishing and maintaining personally challenging achievement goals and exerting effort toward mastering tasks.
  • Cooperation - Job requires being pleasant with others on the job and displaying a good-natured, cooperative attitude.
  • Initiative - Job requires a willingness to take on responsibilities and challenges.
  • Integrity - Job requires being honest and ethical.
  • Self Control - Job requires maintaining composure, keeping emotions in check, controlling anger, and avoiding aggressive behavior, even in very difficult situations.
  • Stress Tolerance - Job requires accepting criticism and dealing calmly and effectively with high stress situations.
  • Independence - Job requires developing one's own ways of doing things, guiding oneself with little or no supervision, and depending on oneself to get things done.

Work Values

Support management that stands behind employees. Corresponding needs are Company Policies, Supervision: Human Relations and Supervision: Technical.

  • Relationships - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to provide service to others and work with co-workers in a friendly non-competitive environment. Corresponding needs are Co-workers, Moral Values and Social Service.
  • Independence - Occupations that satisfy this work value allow employees to work on their own and make decisions. Corresponding needs are Creativity, Responsibility and Autonomy.

State and National Wages & Employment Trends

Location

Pay

Period

2011

10%

25%

Median

75%

90%

United States

Hourly

$10.83

$14.44

$18.36

$24.14

$31.27

Yearly

$22,500

$30,000

$38,200

$50,200

$65,000

Pennsylvania

Hourly

$11.71

$14.87

$18.01

$22.61

$28.75

Yearly

$24,400

 

 

 

 

United States Employment Percent 
Change
Job Openings 1
2010 2020
Automotive Body and Related Repairers 152,900 181,100 +18% 6,520
Pennsylvania Employment Percent 
Change
Job Openings 1
2008 2018
Automotive Body and Related Repairers 7,950 7,700 -3% 190

1Job Openings refers to the average annual job openings due to growth and net replacement.


Note: The data for the State Employment Trends and the National Employment Trends are not directly comparable. The projections period for state data is 2008-2018, while the projections period for national data is 2010-2020.


Information provided by CareerOneStop, sponsored by the U. S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration