How many mechanics are there in the U.S.? 2024

Author pictureAuthor picture
Author picture
Author picture
Edited by:
a female mechanic working on a car engine

As the auto mechanic industry races to fill jobs to meet the growing consumer demand for car repair, underrepresented groups, like women and Hispanics/Latinos, are beginning to take on and flourish in these roles. There are currently over half a million auto mechanics and technicians in the United States, but by the end of 2024, at least 1 million mechanics will be needed to correspond with the number of cars on the road.

Though highly populated states like California have the most auto mechanics, those working in the industry may move to states such as Alaska or Washington to get the most value from their skill set. Future auto mechanics should also consider the value of computer literacy as automakers move toward electric vehicles and standard cars with high-tech components.

Key insights

There are currently approximately 592,000 auto mechanics in the U.S.

Jump to insight

Men represent over 87% of auto mechanics in the industry, but the number of women increased significantly during the COVID-19 pandemic.

Jump to insight

Texas has the largest number of auto mechanics (61,200), but those in Alaska earn the most on average per year, at over $53,000.

Jump to insight

Hispanic and Latino representation in the auto mechanic industry hit almost 25% in 2021.

Jump to insight

As modern vehicles incorporate more technology, auto mechanics will be expected to have some sort of computer literacy skills, signifying a cultural shift within the trade .

Jump to insight

General mechanic statistics

As of 2023, there are 592,211 people employed in the auto mechanic industry and over 286,000 auto mechanic businesses in the U.S. On average, there are two auto mechanics employed at each business, though this number may vary widely based on location and the services they offer.

In 2023, automotive repair and maintenance workers made up the majority (63%) of the repair and maintenance sector, followed by commercial and industrial machinery and equipment mechanics (15%) and car wash technicians (9.6%).

Repair industry by sector, 2023

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics

Auto mechanic employment statistics

There is an urgent need to recruit and retain new auto mechanics in the coming months and years, as car maintenance and repair will always be a necessity for vehicle owners. Currently, there are approximately 56,000 auto mechanic positions available, and by the end of this year, over 1.3 million technicians will be needed to keep up with demand.

Top sectors for auto mechanic employment, 2022

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Most mechanics are employed at car dealerships, auto repair/maintenance shops, and auto parts, tires, and accessories retailers. The mid-range salary for auto mechanics is $22.58 per hour, or just under $47,000 per year. However, the highest-paying industries employ the fewest people due to the high level of expertise required and low job availability. Auto mechanics in the telecommunications industry can expect to be one of only 370 employees while earning an annual salary of almost $92,000.

Highest paying industries for auto mechanics, 2022

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Auto mechanics by gender

Although the industry is historically dominated by men, who comprise 87% of the field, the number of female auto mechanics is on the rise thanks to a public focus on women in STEM. In 2022, the number of female auto mechanics reached its highest point so far, at approximately 19,000 employees. This came two years after the height of the pandemic, which saw the largest decrease in female auto mechanics, from 12,000 in 2019 to 4,000 in 2020. In total, over 130,000 women work in the entire auto repair and maintenance industry, representing 10% of the field.

Additionally, there is an increased consumer demand for women in the auto mechanics trades. Over one-third of car owners in the U.S. are women who, among other customers, may feel more comfortable working with female technicians.

Although women are a growing presence in auto mechanics, according to the Institute for Women’s Policy Research, there are still too few to accurately estimate their earnings. Current data shows that women employed in the installation, repair, and maintenance trades make a median of $229 less than men per week.

Median weekly earnings in repair, installation, and maintenance by gender, 2023

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Auto mechanics by state

The most populous states in the U.S., Texas, California, and Florida, have the highest representation in the auto mechanics industry, with Texas being home to over 61,000 employees. California has the highest proportion of auto mechanic businesses, at nearly 33,000.

Though these states house the most auto mechanics and shops, they are not necessarily the most profitable locations for auto mechanics. The highest-paid mechanics by average salary are in Alaska ($53,050), New Jersey ($52,560), Hawaii ($51,940), Washington state ($51,320), and Massachusetts $(50,920).

States with the most auto mechanic businesses, 2022

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

In recent years, an increase in population density, a diverse economy, an older population, and a focus on environmental sustainability has led to an increase in auto mechanic businesses in the Northeastern and mid-Atlantic regions of the U.S.

States with the most auto mechanic employees, 2022

Source: U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

Auto mechanics by race/ethnicity

Even though auto mechanics are predominantly white, there has been a steady increase in the number of minorities who are joining the field.

 Native American, American Indian, and Alaskan Native auto mechanics have seen the largest proportional  increase in representation at 22% since 2014. White auto mechanics had the largest decrease, down 6% during the COVID-19 pandemic, with poor recovery compared to other races and ethnicities during the same year.

Hispanic/Latino auto mechanics have consistently been the largest represented minority group at over 20% every year since 2014, reaching almost a quarter of the total in 2021. The number of Black and Asian technicians decreased slightly over the majority of the seven-year period, but has seen upticks post-pandemic.

Auto mechanics by age

The majority of auto mechanics in the U.S. are young, white males, between the ages of 25 and 29 years old, according to the latest data. The average age of men in auto mechanics is around 40 years old, while the average age of women is 36. Male mechanics skew slightly younger than female mechanics. Most of the men range from ages 20-34 years, while the women’s ages range from 20-49 years.

Men who are nearing retirement, between the ages of 60 and 64, had the highest unemployment rates; nearly 28,000 of those men found themselves unemployed in 2021. Many older employees lost their jobs during the pandemic, which in turn led to over 70% of middle-aged individuals being unemployed long-term.

Auto mechanics by education level

Over one-third of auto mechanics have a high school education, but relatively few receive any formal schooling beyond their diploma. A degree is not required for the auto service industry. Instead, auto mechanics can earn certifications from the National Institute of Automotive Service Excellence (ASE), the national standard and leading certifier in auto repair. About 250,000 auto technicians are ASE certified, which can bring more specialized work opportunities and higher pay.

Auto mechanic education level, 2021

Of auto mechanics with college degrees, the most common majors in 2021 were business (6,830), engineering (5,776), and engineering technologies (2,020); these have consistently been the top three majors since 2014.

Around 2016, some of the top-ranked college majors for auto mechanics shifted from education and social science to computer technologies, mechanical technologies, and public safety and protective services.

Future projections

Automotive maintenance and preventative services will always be a necessity as long as people need cars, which ensures some sort of sustainable revenue for mechanics. Experts project that there will be 67,700 new job openings for auto mechanics and technicians every year until at least 2032 due to vacancies created by retirement or auto mechanics leaving the industry.

Though auto repair and maintenance shops were deemed essential businesses during the COVID-19 pandemic, many had to downsize their operations, which led to decreases in revenue, employment, and customer satisfaction due to mistrust and price discrepancies. However, the few years after COVID-19 have seen a resurgence in employment  thanks to an increase in minority presences. As consumer trust in auto mechanics improves and prices stabilize, their growing presence in auto mechanic shops should continue to sustain the job market.

While auto mechanic jobs may be widely available now, the increase in electric vehicles and  cars that use electronic and computer components, are redefining what is expected of auto mechanics. As evidenced by the surge of computer majors in the industry, IT and computer literacy are becoming more valuable, if not required, skills in the automotive service industry; some experts predict a loss of 75,000 auto mechanic jobs by 2030 due to this shift.


What does an auto mechanic do?

An auto mechanic provides mechanical and electrical repair and maintenance for various vehicles, including cars, trucks, and vans. However, they do not perform auto bodywork.

How many auto mechanics are in the U.S.?

Approximately 592,000 auto mechanics in the U.S.

What race are most auto mechanics?

Most auto mechanics are young, white men.

How many female auto mechanics are there in the U.S.?

As of 2022, there are 15,000 women auto mechanics in the U.S.


  1. "Auto Mechanics in the US - Employment Statistics 2004–2029." IBISWorld. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  2. "Auto Mechanics in the US - Market Size, Industry Analysis, Trends and Forecasts (2024-2029)" IBISWorld. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  3. "Occupational Employment and Wages, May 2022 49-3023 Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics" U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  4. " HOUSEHOLD DATA ANNUAL AVERAGES 18. Employed persons by detailed industry, sex, race, and Hispanic or Latino ethnicity" U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  5. "Auto Mechanics in the US - Number of Businesses" IBISWorld. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  6. "Occupational Outlook Handbook: Automotive Service Technicians and Mechanics" U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  7. "Employed full time: Wage and salary workers: Automotive service technicians and mechanics occupations: 16 years and over: Women" FRED, Federal Reserve Bank of St. Louis. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  8. "Women Earn Less Than Men Whether They Work in the Same or in Different Occupations" Insititute for Women’s Policy Research. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  9. "Women in the Auto Repair Industry: What’s Driving the Change?" Good Works Auto Repair. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  10. Tate, R. "A History of Alice Ramsey & Women Who Became Auto Mechanics." Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  11. "U.S. car owners as of 2021, by gender" Statista. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  12. Walsh, L. "The Continuing Shortage of Auto Technicians: How Do We Fix It?" MarketSource. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  13. Leggett, D. "Auto industry ready to witness job losses and major skill transitioning" JustAuto. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  14. "Automotive service technicians & mechanics" DataUSA. Evaluated on Jan. 22, 2024. Link Here
  15. "Highest Paying States In United States For Auto Repair Professionals" Philadelphia Technician Training Institute. Evaluated on Jan, 22, 2024. Link Here
  16. "Take a closer look at ASE Certified professionals and their specialties" National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence. Evaluated on Jan, 22, 2024. Link Here
  17. Schramm, J. "Many Older Jobseekers are now Long-Term Unemployed." AARP. Evaluated on Jan, 22, 2024. Link Here
  18. "39. Median weekly earnings of full-time wage and salary workers by detailed occupation and sex." U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics. Evaluated on Feb. 13, 2024. Link Here


Back to ConsumerAffairs

Journal of Consumer Research