Volkswagen vehicles have been in production since 1937. During this time, the manufacturer has become the most popular in all of Europe, which is no small feat when you consider it’s also the homeland to prestigious names like Volvo, Audi and BMW. The company has managed to dominate the market there by creating high-quality vehicles that are still relatively affordable. It’s why they’ve also claimed quite the foothold here in America and why you may be interested in automotive technician jobs that focus on these vehicles.
Learn to work on Volkswagens and you will never be without work. Not only can you work at a local dealership, but considering how far back this company goes, you’ll have plenty of collectors seeking your help too. Old Volkswagen Beetles remain popular amongst this passionate set of owners.
Becoming Volkswagen dealership certified
There is no one way to become Volkswagen dealership certified. Unlike a lot of other manufacturers, they don’t have a single training program, nor is there a certain organization tasked with creating or dispensing one (there are some exceptions to this rule like with their collision repair).
However, this shouldn’t be seen as a bad thing. Just the opposite, it means you may not need to leave your hometown in order to get trained in working on Volkswagens. That being said, you should probably check to make sure that there are ample automotive tech jobs available in your area before you pursue this path. Confirm that they are looking for mechanics who have been through this type of training too. Otherwise, your hard work may not amount to much.
Getting started on the path to certification
Another thing you need to do before you enroll in a program to become certified in working on Volkswagens is to simply gain experience as a mechanic first. This isn’t just important for helping you get through the certification program; it’s going to be important for landing work at a dealership or an auto body shop.
While there are many ways to do this, a large number of mechanics got their education from going through the National Institute for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE). This is an independent, non-profit organization with a reputation that goes all the way back to 1972.
One of the great things about going through ASE for training is that you can test out of a number of programs and receive your certifications without ever having to go through any classes. This is ideal for those of you who may have already worked a number of automotive technician jobs in the past – or spent years in the same position – and don’t want to spend a lot of time “learning” what you already know.
The organization also has almost 500 testing locations throughout the country, so it’s easy to find a place nearby.
Choosing a school for Volkswagen dealership certification
Once you have your ASE certificates, it’s time to consider where you’ll be going to school to become certified in working on Volkswagens. Much of this decision will depend on where you live and how far you’re willing to travel.
When assessing a potential program, you’ll want to research how other graduates have felt about the training they received and how much help it was in securing mechanic jobs afterward. It would also be wise to look at Volkswagen dealerships in your area and see where their Master Technicians went to school. Being certified by the same school would probably give you a leg up against the competition.
Any school offering Volkswagen certifications should have a curriculum that covers:
Volkswagens are unique in all regards, so you’ll need to understand these elements thoroughly.
Becoming a Master Technician
For those of you who are willing to put in the work to someday earn an above-average auto mechanic salary, becoming a Volkswagen Master Technician is a great long-term goal. However, keep in mind that this is truly “long term” and will indeed require a lot of hard work on your end. Master Technicians can easily spend eight years acquiring this prestigious title and will still need to attend ongoing education classes as time goes on.
That being said, you’d have a hard time finding better job security. As we touched on earlier, people love their Volkswagens and generally don’t trust them to mechanics who don’t specialize in them. This is especially true for those who collect older models. Becoming a Master Tech will make you a sought-after professional in your area.
Now that you understand the requirements for becoming certified in working on Volkswagens, get started by either signing up with ASE or checking for schools in your local area that offers training in this particular manufacturer.
If you’re already a certified mechanic and you’re interested in working with YourMechanic, submit an online application for an opportunity to become a mobile mechanic.
This article originally appeared on YourMechanic.com as How to Get Volkswagen Dealership Certified and was authored by Valerie Johnston.