Automotive Electricians install, maintain and repair electrical wiring and electronic components in motor vehicles.
Also known as: Automotive Electrical Fitter.
A certificate III in automotive electrical technology is usually needed to work as an Automotive Electrician.
using test equipment to locate electrical and electronic malfunctions
dismantling and removing electrical and electronic assemblies and components
installing electrical equipment and electronic components in motor vehicles
connecting power-operated vehicle equipment and accessories to power supply
adjusting engine control systems and timing
testing and replacing defective alternators, generators, voltage regulators and starter motors
repairing and replacing faulty ignition and electrical wiring
replacing defective parts such as fuses, lamps and switches
Vocational Education and Training (VET)
The NSC produces employment projections to show where likely future job opportunities may be. The latest data are for the five years from November 2021 to November 2026. Over this period, the number of workers in this occupation is likely to remain stable.
Source: National Skills Commission Employment Projections to 2026.
Notes: The number employed includes people who work in this occupation as their main job. People who work in more than one job are counted against the occupation they work the most hours in.
Employment projections figures are rounded to the nearest 100. Calculations based on these rounded figures may result in differences to the numbers that are displayed on this page. Employment projections data (including occupations) can be downloaded from the Employment Projections page.
Number of Workers
Source: ABS Labour Force Survey, ABS seasonally adjusted data to November 2021 and National Skills Commission Employment Projections to 2026.
Earnings and hours
Around 90% of people employed as Automotive Electricians work full-time hours, in all their jobs combined. This is 24 percentage points above the all jobs average (66%).
Full-time workers work an average of 48 hours per week in their main job. This is 4 hours more than the all jobs average (44 hours per week).
More than half of workers regularly work overtime or extra hours (either paid or unpaid).
Median full-time earnings are $1,352 per week, this is much lower than the all jobs median ($1,593):
- 3 in 4 workers earn more than $1,347
- 1 in 4 earn more than $1,582
Median hourly earnings are $36, this is lower than the all jobs median ($41 per hour).
Sources: Full-time share and full-time hours: ABS, 2016 Census, customised report. Compared to the all jobs average. Overtime hours: ABS, Characteristics of Employment, 2021. Full-time median earnings and median hourly earnings: ABS, Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021. Compared to all jobs median.
Weekly Earnings (Before Tax)
|Earnings||Automotive Electricians||All Jobs Average|
Source: Based on ABS Survey of Employee Earnings and Hours, May 2021, Customised Report. Median weekly total cash earnings for full-time non-managerial employees paid at the adult rate. Earnings are before tax and include amounts salary sacrificed. Earnings can vary greatly depending on the skills and experience of the worker and the demands of the role. These figures should be used as a guide only, not to determine a wage rate.
Employment across Australia
Employment by State and Territory (% Share)
|State||Automotive Electricians||All Jobs Average|
Around 56% of Automotive Electricians live outside of capital cities, compared with the all jobs average of 38%.
Western Australia and Queensland have a large share of employment relative to their population size.
The regions with the largest share of workers are:
- Perth - South East
- Mackay - Isaac - Whitsunday
- Perth - North West
- Perth - North East
- Melbourne - South East.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Share of workers across Australian states, territories and regions, in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Age and gender
The median age of Automotive Electricians is 37 years. This is similar to the all jobs average of 40 years.
A large share of workers are aged 25 to 34 years.
Females make up 2% of the workforce. This is 46 percentage points below the all jobs average of 48%.
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile and gender share compared to the all jobs average.
Age Profile (% Share)
|Age Bracket||Automotive Electricians||All Jobs Average|
|65 and Over||2.4||4.2|
Source: Based on ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Age profile of workers in this job compared to the all jobs average.
Education, training and experience
A certificate III in automotive electrical technology is usually needed to work as an Automotive Electrician.
- My Skills to compare Vocational Education and Training (VET) courses, providers and student outcomes.
- AAPathways website to explore Automotive Retail, Service and Repair VET training pathways.
Highest Level of Education (% Share)
|Type of Qualification||Automotive Electricians||All Jobs Average|
|Post Graduate/Graduate Diploma or Graduate Certificate||0.1||10.1|
|Year 10 and below||3.3||12.5|
Source: ABS Census 2016, Customised Report. Highest qualification completed by workers in this job (in any field of study). Qualifications needed by new workers might be different from the qualifications of workers already in the job.
Skills and Knowledge
Employers look for Automotive Electricians who are reliable, work well in a team and who work hard.
Skills can be improved through training or experience.
Fixing machines or systems.
Figuring out why a machine or system went wrong and working out what to do about it.
Thinking about the pros and cons of different ways to solve a problem.
Reading work related information.
Listening to others, not interrupting, and asking good questions.
Installing equipment, machines, wiring, or programs.
Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.
43%Complex problem solving
Noticing a problem and figuring out the best way to solve it.
43%Coordination with others
Being adaptable and coordinating work with other people.
43%Operation and control
Controlling equipment or systems.
43%Quality control analysis
Doing tests and checking products, services, or processes to make sure they are working properly.
Talking to others.
Managing your own and other peoples' time to get work done.
Maintaining equipment and deciding what maintenance will be needed in the future.
41%Judgment and decision making
Figuring out the pros and cons of different options and choosing the best one.
Keeping track of how well work is progressing so you can make changes or improvements.
Looking for ways to help people.
Understanding why people react the way they do.
Writing things for co-workers or customers.
Deciding on the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job.
These are important topics, subjects or knowledge areas.
Machines and tools, including their designs, uses, repair, and maintenance.
62%Computers and electronics
Circuit boards, processors, chips, electronic equipment, and computer hardware and software, including applications and programming.
Arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, or statistics.
52%Engineering and technology
Use engineering, science and technology to design and produce goods and services.
48%Education and training
Curriculum and training design, teaching and instruction for individuals and groups, and the measurement of training effects.
Design techniques, tools, and principles used to make detailed technical plans, blueprints, drawings, and models.
44%Customer and personal service
Understanding customer needs, providing good quality service, and measuring customer satisfaction.
English language including the meaning and spelling of words, rules of composition, and grammar.
42%Administration and management
Business principles involved in strategic planning, leadership, and coordinating people and resources.
34%Sales and marketing
Showing, promoting, and selling including marketing strategy, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
31%Public safety and security
Use of equipment, rules and ideas to protect people, data, property, and institutions.
The physical laws of matter, motion and energy, and how they interact through space and time.
28%Building and construction
Materials, and methods used to construct or repair houses, buildings, or other structures like highways and roads.
Chemical composition, structure, and properties. How chemicals are made, used, mixed, and can change.
Moving people or goods by air, rail, sea, or road.
Transmission, broadcasting, switching, control, and operation of telecommunications systems.
Word processing, managing files and records, stenography and transcription, designing forms, and other office work.
20%Communications and media
Media production, communication, and dissemination. Includes written, spoken, and visual media.
19%Personnel and human resources
Recruiting and training people, managing pay and other entitlements (like sick leave), and negotiating pay and conditions.
13%Economics and accounting
Economics and accounting, the financial markets, banking and checking and reporting of financial data.
Workers use these physical and mental abilities..
Listen to and understand what people say.
Keep your hand or arm steady.
Put together small parts with your fingers.
Bend, stretch, twist, or reach with your body, arms, and/or legs.
Imagine how something will look after it is moved around or changed.
Notice differences between colours, including shades of colour and brightness.
See details that are up-close (within a few feet).
Quickly move your hand to grasp, manipulate, or assemble objects.
46%Sorting or ordering
Order or arrange things in a pattern or sequence (e.g., numbers, letters, words, pictures, mathematical operations).
Come up with different ways of grouping things.
Quickly change the controls of a machine, car, truck or boat.
Use general rules to find answers or solve problems logically.
Use lots of detailed information to come up with answers or make general rules.
Notice when something is wrong or is likely to go wrong, even if you can't solve the problem.
Pay attention to something without being distracted.
Use your arms and/or legs at the same time while sitting, standing, or lying down.
Communicate by speaking.
Pay attention to a certain sound when there are other distracting sounds.
Read and understand written information.
Use your abdominal and lower back muscles a number of times without 'giving out' or fatiguing.
These are kinds of activities workers regularly do in this job.
87%Handling and moving objects
Using hands and arms in handling, installing, positioning, moving and manipulating objects.
82%Keeping your knowledge up-to-date
Keeping up-to-date with technology and new ideas.
73%Doing physically active work
Use your arms, legs and whole body, such as climbing, lifting, balancing, walking, stooping, and handling objects.
Using your own ideas for developing, designing, or creating something new.
68%Making decisions and solving problems
Using information to work out the best solution and solve problems.
65%Planning and prioritising work
Deciding on goals and putting together a detailed plan to get the work done.
60%Monitoring people, processes and things
Checking objects, actions, or events, and keeping an eye out for problems.
59%Giving expert advice
Providing guidance and expert advice to management or other groups.
58%Collecting and organising information
Compiling, coding, categorizing, calculating, tabulating, auditing, or checking information or data.
57%Working with computers
Using computers to program, write software, set up functions, enter data, or process information.
54%Training and teaching others
Understanding the needs of others, developing training programs, and teaching or instructing.
50%Making sense of information and ideas
Looking at, working with, and understanding data or information.
50%Communicating within a team
Giving information to co-workers by telephone, in writing, or in person.
47%Researching and investigating
Looking for, getting and understanding different kinds of information.
46%Checking for errors or defects
Inspecting equipment, structures, or materials for errors, problems or defects.
43%Assessing and evaluating things
Working out the value, importance, or quality of things, services or people.
43%Guiding and directing staff
Guiding and directing staff, including setting and monitoring performance standards.
42%Explaining things to people
Helping people to understand and use information.
41%Looking for changes over time
Comparing objects, actions, or events. Looking for differences between them or changes over time.
39%Driving vehicles or equipment
Running, manoeuvring, navigating, or driving things like forklifts, vehicles, aircraft, or water craft.
Interests and demands
Learn about the daily activities, and physical and social demands faced by workers. Explore the values and work styles that workers rate as most important.
Interests are the style or type of work we prefer to do. All interest areas are shown below.
Practical, hands-on work. Often with plants and animals, or materials like wood, tools, and machinery.
Ideas and thinking. Searching for facts and figuring out problems in your head.
Following set procedures and routines. Working with numbers and details more than with ideas, usually following rules.
Working with forms, designs and patterns. Often need self-expression and can be done without following rules.
Starting up and carrying out projects. Leading people and making many decisions. Sometimes require risk taking and often deal with business.
Working with people. Helping or providing service to others.
Supportive management that stands behind employees. Workers are treated fairly by their company, they are supported by management, and have supervisors who train them well.
Work alone and make decisions. Workers are able to try out their own ideas, make decisions on their own, and work with little or no supervision.
Serve and work with others. Workers usually get along well with each other, do things to help other people, and are rarely pressured to do things that go against their sense of right and wrong.
Results oriented. Workers are able to use their strongest abilities, giving them a feeling of accomplishment.
Advancement and the potential to lead. Workers are recognised for the work that they do, they may give directions and instructions to others, and they are looked up to in their company and their community.
Job security and good working conditions. There is usually a steady flow of interesting work, and the pay and conditions are generally good.
94%Being exact or accurate
Be very exact or highly accurate.
93%Loud or uncomfortable sounds
Be exposed to noises and sounds that are distracting or uncomfortable.
93%In an enclosed vehicle or equipment
Work in a closed vehicle (e.g., car).
93%Using your hands to handle, control, or feel
Spend time using your hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools or controls.
91%Exposure to contaminants
Be exposed to pollutants, gases, dust or odours.
Work to strict deadlines.
Talk with people face-to-face.
Work with people in a group or team.
84%Wear common protective or safety equipment
Wear equipment like safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hard hats or life jackets.
83%Freedom to make decisions
Have freedom to make decision on your own.
82%Spend time standing
Spend time standing at work.
81%Frequent decision making
Frequently make decisions that impact other people.
80%Making repetitive motions
Spend time making repetitive motions.
79%Indoors, not heat controlled
Work indoors without heating or cooling (e.g., warehouse without heat).
78%Cramped work space
Work in an awkward position or in cramped work spaces.
Have freedom to decide on tasks, priorities, and goals.
75%Impact of decisions
Make decisions that have a large impact on other people.
Talk on the telephone.
75%Bending or twisting your body
Spend time bending or twisting your body.
74%Contact with people
Have contact with people by telephone, face-to-face, or any other way.
O*NET is a trademark of the U.S. Department of Labor, Employment and Training Administration.
The skills and importance ratings on this page are derived from the US Department of Labor O*NET Database Version 21.2, 49-2096.00 - Electronic Equipment Installers and Repairers, Motor Vehicles.