Have you ever thought about who keeps all the postal vehicles in running order? The USPS has 211,654 vehicles (one of the largest civilian fleets in the world) and someone has to be able to maintain them and keep them up and running. What would they do without Vehicle Maintenance positions? These positions include: Lead Automotive Technician, Automotive Technician and Automotive Mechanic. These are very important positions in the USPS, because without them – the mail would come to a stand still. There are over 4000 Vehicle Maintenance positions. They are responsible for the maintenance and repair of light and medium delivery vehicles, tractor-trailers, service vehicles and automobiles that cover over a billion miles on our nation’s highways and byways. Below you will find more details on these Postal Service automotive technician jobs.
Most new employees are hired in as PTF (Part-time Flexible) employees. As a PTF, you are paid an hourly rate and work a flexible schedule as required by the workflow needed to maintain the postal fleet. Automotive technicians and mechanics work in a vehicle maintenance facility noted for a clean and safe environment, state-of-the-art diagnostic equipment, tools and shop equipment and environmentally friendly materials. The postal service has over 320 vehicle maintenance facilities and auxiliary garages that are located in all major metropolitan areas across the country.
Vehicle maintenance positions include the following:
LEAD AUTOMOTIVE TECHNICAN: Serves as a working group leader at a maintenance facility or an auxiliary garage without direct supervision. Personally performs the most complex automotive maintenance and repairs on all types of vehicles.
AUTOMOTIVE MECHANIC: Troubleshoots, diagnoses and performs routine repairs and scheduled maintenance on all types of vehicles.
AUTOMOTIVE TECHNICIAN: They are responsible for maintaining and repairing all types of motor vehicles used in the postal fleet, troubleshoot and diagnose more complex vehicle malfunctions using a variety of computerized test equipment; may provide assistance to lower level employees.
The salary range for Automotive Technician is $41,185 to $59,245 annually. This job requires applicants to take and pass the Automotive Mechanic and Technician 943 Exam.
The following sample test questions provide examples of the types of questions that you will find on the 943 Exam. Additional automotive technician exam questions are included in Chapter Four of the all new 6th edition of Post Office jobs: The Ultimate 473 Postal Exam Study Guide and Job Finder. The exam takes 1 hour and 30 minutes to complete.
Sample 943 Exam Questions
1. Which one of the following answers represents another way to open an Exhaust Gas Recirculation (EGR) valve other than with vacuum?
A. Spring Action
D. Hydraulic Pressure
2. What engine defect will a wet compressions test detect?
A. Head gasket leaking
B. Valve seals are worn
C. Worn piston rings
D. Worn valve seats.
Answers: 1 – B, 2 – C
Automotive Technician Job Duties and Responsibilities
1. Diagnoses operating difficulties on a variety of vehicles and performs operational checks on engines; its major supporting systems, parts, components, assemblies; including emissions systems, electrical, computer and electronic controlled components.
2. Performs various computerized and electronic diagnostic tests using specialized equipment; interprets trouble codes and other information from electronic scanners and test analyzers; uses reference materials such as service manuals and wiring
schematics to determine operational difficulties, drivability problems and evaluates performance efficiency.
3. Conducts visual and auditory vehicle inspections, road calls and road tests before and after maintenance and repairs; annotates vehicle problems on work orders.
4. Provides technical guidance and instructions to mechanics and technicians on more difficult repairs and in the use of specialized computer-aided diagnostic equipment.
5. Performs maintenance and repairs resulting from normal preventive maintenance inspections.
6. Prepares and updates vehicle records, maintains vehicle records; annotates labor time, parts and/or equipment and other pertinent data on work orders.
7. Performs engine tune-ups; removes, replaces, adjusts, cleans parts, components, assemblies and accessories; uses a variety of specialized test equipment to adjust systems and components to prescribed operating tolerances.
8. Troubleshoots malfunctioning vehicles resulting from road calls and identifies improperly functioning part(s) and repairs or replaces.
9. Repairs and replaces major components including transmissions, differentials, brake systems, power assist units, steering and suspension assemblies.
10. Performs other job related duties and responsibilities in support of primary duties.
11. Follows all established safety practices and procedures; complies with all postal, local, state and federal environmental regulations and policies.
If interested in any maintenance position or any other positions at the United States Postal Service, please visit http://www.postalwork.net to begin your job search. Good luck in your job-hunting endeavors.
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The information provided may not cover all aspects of unique or special circumstances, federal and postal regulations, and programs are subject to change. Our articles and replies are time sensitive. Over time, various dynamic human resource guidance and factors relied upon as a basis for this article may change. The advice and strategies contained herein may not be suitable for your situation and this service is not affiliated with OPM, the postal service or any federal entity. You should consult with school counselors, hiring agency personnel offices, and human resource professionals where appropriate. Neither the publisher or author shall be liable for any loss or any other commercial damages, including but not limited to special, incidental, consequential, or other damages.
About The Author
I began my postal career on June 1, 1991 at the General Mail Facility in Kansas City KS as a Distribution Clerk. Wanting to get closer to home, I transferred to the Pleasant Hill Post Office in Pleasant Hill MO in August of 1993. I have also worked in the Greenwood MO and Bates City MO Post Offices. I began a two year NTE detail in Personnel in October 2003, which turned into 5 years. I was responsible for the hiring of career and non-career employees in the 700+ offices in Missouri and Kansas. This was a very challenging and rewarding position. I retired February 28, 2013 and have been enjoying my free time with my husband, Denny.