Is becoming an elevator mechanic right for me?

The first step to choosing a career is to make sure you are actually willing to commit to pursuing the career. You don’t want to waste your time doing something you don’t want to do. If you’re new here, you should read about:

What do elevator mechanics do?
Career Satisfaction
Are elevator mechanics happy with their careers?
What are elevator mechanics like?

Still unsure if becoming an elevator mechanic is the right career path? to find out if this career is right for you. Perhaps you are well-suited to become an elevator mechanic or another similar career!

Described by our users as being “shockingly accurate”, you might discover careers you haven’t thought of before.

How to become an Elevator Mechanic

To become an elevator mechanic, you can follow these general steps:

  • Obtain a high school diploma or GED: A high school education or equivalent is typically required to pursue a career as an elevator mechanic. It provides a foundation of knowledge and skills necessary for further training.
  • Complete an Elevator Mechanic Training Program: Look for vocational schools, community colleges, or trade schools that offer elevator mechanic training programs. These programs provide a combination of classroom instruction and hands-on training in elevator systems, electrical components, mechanical systems, and safety protocols. Completing a training program equips you with the necessary knowledge and skills to work as an elevator mechanic.
  • Gain Practical Experience: Seek opportunities to gain practical experience in the field. Consider apprenticeships, internships, or entry-level positions at elevator companies, construction firms, or elevator service providers. Practical experience allows you to apply your knowledge, develop your skills, and learn from experienced professionals in real-world situations.
  • Obtain Certifications: While not always required, certifications can enhance your credibility and demonstrate your competence as an elevator mechanic (see below).
  • Complete On-the-Job Training: Many elevator mechanics gain further training through on-the-job experience. As you work in the field, you will continue to learn and refine your skills under the guidance of experienced elevator mechanics. Take advantage of opportunities to work on a variety of elevator systems and gain exposure to different types of installations, maintenance, and repairs.
  • Stay Updated with Industry Advancements: The elevator industry evolves with new technologies, regulations, and safety standards. Stay informed about industry advancements and changes by attending training programs, workshops, and seminars. Regularly update your knowledge and skills to stay competitive in the field.
  • Obtain Required Licenses: Some states or local jurisdictions may require elevator mechanics to obtain licenses or certifications to work on elevators. Check the specific licensing requirements in your area and ensure compliance with any necessary legal or regulatory obligations.

There are several certifications available for elevator mechanics that can enhance their skills, knowledge, and professional standing. Here are some notable certifications:

  • Certified Elevator Technician (CET): The Certified Elevator Technician certification is offered by the National Association of Elevator Contractors (NAEC). It validates the knowledge and expertise of elevator mechanics in the installation, maintenance, and repair of elevators. The CET certification covers various aspects of elevator systems, including electrical systems, mechanical systems, safety codes, and regulations.
  • National Elevator Industry Educational Program (NEIEP): NEIEP is a joint labor-management education and training program for the elevator industry in the United States. NEIEP provides a comprehensive curriculum and training resources for elevator mechanics, including apprenticeship programs, continuing education courses, and certifications to enhance their knowledge and skills in elevator installation, maintenance, and repair.
  • Certified Accessibility and Private Residence Lift Technician (CAT): The Certified Accessibility and Private Residence Lift Technician certification is offered by the National Association of Elevator Contractors (NAEC). This certification focuses on accessibility lifts and private residence lifts, such as stairlifts and wheelchair lifts. It demonstrates proficiency in the installation, maintenance, and repair of these specialized lifting systems.
  • Qualified Elevator Inspector (QEI): The Qualified Elevator Inspector certification is offered by the National Association of Elevator Contractors (NAEC) and the American Society of Mechanical Engineers (ASME). The QEI certification is intended for individuals responsible for inspecting and certifying elevators for compliance with safety codes and regulations. It requires in-depth knowledge of elevator systems, safety codes, and inspection procedures.
  • Certified Elevator Technician - Supervisor (CET-S): The Certified Elevator Technician - Supervisor certification is an advanced level certification offered by the National Association of Elevator Contractors (NAEC). It is designed for experienced elevator technicians who have demonstrated leadership, managerial, and supervisory skills. The CET-S certification recognizes individuals who can oversee and coordinate the work of elevator mechanics, manage projects, and ensure compliance with safety standards.
  • Manufacturer-Specific Certifications: Some elevator manufacturers offer their own certification programs for elevator mechanics who specialize in their specific brand of elevators. These certifications focus on the installation, maintenance, and repair of the manufacturer's elevator systems. Examples include certifications from companies such as Otis, Schindler, KONE, and Thyssenkrupp.