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Industrial Machinery Mechanic  What They Do

Just the Facts


Repairs, installs, adjusts, or maintains industrial production and processing machinery or refinery and pipeline distribution systems.

This career is part of the Manufacturing cluster Maintenance, Installation and Repair pathway.


A person in this career:

  • Repairs or replaces broken or malfunctioning components of machinery or equipment.
  • Repairs or maintains the operating condition of industrial production or processing machinery or equipment.
  • Disassembles machinery or equipment to remove parts and make repairs.
  • Observes and tests the operation of machinery or equipment to diagnose malfunctions, using voltmeters or other testing devices.
  • Reassembles equipment after completion of inspections, testing, or repairs.
  • Cleans, lubricates, or adjusts parts, equipment, or machinery.
  • Examines parts for defects, such as breakage or excessive wear.
  • Operates newly repaired machinery or equipment to verify the adequacy of repairs.
  • Analyzes test results, machine error messages, or information obtained from operators to diagnose equipment problems.
  • Records parts or materials used and orders or requisitions new parts or materials as necessary.

Working Conditions and Physical Demands

People who do this job report that:

  • You would often handle loads up to 20 lbs., sometimes up to 50 lbs. You might do a lot of lifting, carrying, pushing or pulling.
  • Work in this occupation involves bending or twisting your body more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves use of protective items such as safety shoes, glasses, gloves, hearing protection, a hard hat, or personal flotation devices
  • Exposure to pollutants, gases, dust, fumes, odors, poor ventilation, etc.
  • Requires getting into awkward positions
  • Lighting is either extremely bright or inadequate
  • Conditions are very hot (above 90 F) or very cold (under 32 F)
  • Work in this occupation involves using your hands to hold, control, and feel objects more than one-third of the time
  • Exposed to conditions such as high voltage electricity, combustibles, explosives, and chemicals more than once a month
  • Exposed to hazardous equipment such as saws, machinery, or vehicular traffic more than once a month
  • Work in this occupation involves kneeling, crouching, stooping, and/or crawling more than one-third of the time
  • Sound and noise levels are loud and distracting
  • Work in this occupation involves standing more than one-third of the time
  • Work in this occupation involves walking or running more than one-third of the time
  • Work at heights above 8 feet more than once a month on structures such as ladders, poles, scaffolding, and catwalks

Working in this career involves (physical activities):

  • Picking out a particular sound in the presence of other sounds
  • Identifying color and seeing differences in color, including shades and brightness
  • Judging how far away an object is, or which of several objects is closer or farther away
  • Bending, stretching, twisting, or reaching
  • Seeing clearly at a distance
  • Detecting sounds and hearing the differences between sounds of different pitch and loudness
  • Seeing clearly up close
  • Speaking clearly enough to be able to be understood by others
  • Identifying and understanding the speech of another person
  • Lifting, pushing, pulling, or carrying objects
  • Using abdominal and lower back muscles repeatedly or over time without tiring

Work Hours and Travel

  • Overtime work

Specialty and Similar Careers

Careers that are more detailed or close to this career:

  • Bakery Machine Mechanic -- Repairs and maintains bakery machinery and equipment, for example ovens, conveyors, and slicing and packaging machines.
  • Boilerhouse Mechanic -- Construct, assemble, maintain, and repair stationary steam boilers and boiler house auxiliaries.
  • Compressed Gas Equipment Mechanic -- Inspects, tests, repairs, and installs equipment, for example liquid gas converters and compressors in field installations to supply compressed gas for industrial and therapeutic use.
  • Conveyor Mechanic -- Repairs and adjusts conveyor systems, using handtools.
  • Fluid Power Mechanic -- Fabricates, assembles, services, maintains, repairs, and tests fluid power equipment, such as power steering units, and components.
  • Foundry Equipment Mechanic -- Repair, install, adjust, or maintain industrial production and processing machinery or refinery and pipeline distribution systems.
  • Screen and Cyclone Repairer -- Repairs sizing screens and cyclones (centrifugal separators) used in processing iron ore, using handtools and chain hoist.
  • Sewing Machine Mechanic -- Services industrial sewing machines.
  • Wind Tunnel Mechanic -- Constructs, modifies, maintains, and services wind and propulsion tunnel research facilities used to test models of aircraft components.