Many people pursuing a career in automotive technology probably envision working in an independent repair shop or at a car dealership. Of course these are obvious choices, but alternatives exist.
For example, USPS employs more than 4,000 vehicle maintenance technicians to maintain their fleet of 205,000 vehicles. If you’re interested in learning more about becoming an automotive technician with USPS, then check out our article.
Automotive Technician USPS In 2023
USPS Automotive Technicians perform routine and complex maintenance on vehicles in the USPS fleet. They also troubleshoot and diagnose more complex vehicle issues using computerized test equipment. Technicians earn an average of $55,789 per year and have access to benefits such as health insurance, paid sick leave and a retirement savings plan.
If you want to learn even more about how to become a USPS Automotive Technician, then make sure to read our article!
What Does A USPS Automotive Technician Do?
USPS Automotive Technicians perform routine and complex repairs and maintenance on a variety of vehicles in the USPS fleet. Vehicles include—but are not limited to—Grumman LLVs, Dodge Promasters and Mercedes Metris Vans.
Technicians may also be required to troubleshoot and diagnose more complex vehicle malfunctions using computerized test equipment.
Essentially, automotive technicians make sure USPS’ fleet vehicles are in good working order so that mail gets delivered as efficiently as possible.
What Are The Requirements To Be A USPS Automotive Technician?
There are several basic requirements for becoming a USPS Automotive Technician. Let’s look at each requirement in more detail.
- Age: At least 18 years old or 16 years old with a high school diploma
- Citizenship: Must be a U.S. citizen or permanent resident alien
- Criminal conviction history: A local criminal check is required prior to employment. A more extensive criminal history check is completed at employment.
- Drug screening: Employees must be drug-free, as determined by a urinalysis drug test.
- Medical assessment: Employees must show they are physically or mentally able to perform the position.
- Safe driving record: Required if the employee drives as part of their job.
In addition to these requirements, applicants must demonstrate a basic competency of the English language and be registered with the Selective Service System
Regarding past employment, USPS requires applicants to provide the names of all current and previous employers for the last 10 years. They note that military service is treated as prior employment.
How Much Do USPS Automotive Technicians Make?
USPS Automotive Technicians make $55,789 per year on average. That works out to about $26 per hour on average, however hourly rates can vary. They vary depending on education, certifications, additional skills and years of experience.
In addition to their base pay, Automotive Technicians also receive semiannual cost-of-living raises to protect their pay from inflation.
What’s more, Automotive Technicians are paid 1.5 times their hourly rate when they work more than 8 hours per day or more than 40 hours in a workweek (i.e. overtime pay). They are also eligible for Sunday premium pay, which is paid at 1.25 times their hourly rate.
Do USPS Automotive Technicians Get Any Benefits?
On top of their competitive salaries, Automotive Technicians at USPS also get lots of benefits. Here are some benefits they have access to:
- Health insurance: USPS pays most costs associated with the Federal Employees Health Benefits (FEHB) Program. Employee premium contributions are deducted on a pre-tax basis, making health insurance even more affordable.
- Retirement: The federal retirement program provides a defined benefit annuity at normal retirement age.
- Leave: Full-time career employees earn 13 days per year to be used for sickness or vacation. After 3 years of service, leave increases to 20 days. After 15 years, it increases to 26 days.
- Holidays: Employees receive 10 paid holidays throughout the year.
In addition to these benefits, there are a number of elective benefits for employees to choose from including a Thrift Savings Plan (TSP), life insurance and a flexible spending account.
How Do I Become A USPS Automotive Technician?
Previous training and experience as an automotive technician are incredibly valuable when it comes to getting a job as a USPS Automotive Technician. You must have a deep knowledge of auto mechanics and safe practices, as well as have good safety inspection skills.
If you think you have the necessary skills for the position, then the next step is to take the 943, 944 and 945 Vehicle Maintenance Tests on the USPS websites. These tests are computer-based.
Upon successful completion of these exams, you’ll need to pass the 941 Bench Exam at a USPS maintenance facility with a score of 70 or higher.
This is a hands-on test requiring applicants to understand common vehicle systems like brake shoes, engine timing and battery tests. You should also know about starting or charging systems, emissions gasses and alignment angles.
Where Do USPS Automotive Technicians Work?
Technicians work throughout the United States at state-of-the art Vehicle Maintenance Facilities. Click here to see a map of these facilities.
Is USPS Automotive Technician A Good Job?
Now that you have a better understanding of the USPS Automotive Technician position, you may be wondering if it’s a job worth pursuing.
While the answer to this question is subjective, online reviews do seem to paint the job in a positive light overall.
For example, current USPS Automotive Technicians appreciate the variety of work, the good health insurance and the generous sick leave system. They also note that once you become a career employee, it’s very hard for you to lose your job.
USPS Automotive Technicians are in-demand employees who receive a competitive salary and generous benefits. Becoming one requires an intimate understanding of auto mechanics and safety practices.
Applicants will have to pass a series of rigorous exams to secure the job, but once they do, they’re rewarded with interesting work and a secure position.