Occupation Profile for Electronic Home Entertainment Equipment Installers and Repairers

Repair, adjust, or install audio or television receivers, stereo systems, camcorders, video systems, or other electronic home entertainment equipment.

 
 

Significant Points

  • Employers prefer applicants who have basic knowledge and skills in electronics; many applicants gain these skills at vocational training programs and community colleges.
  • Employment is expected to grow more slowly than the average for all occupations because it often is cheaper to replace equipment than to repair it.
  • Job opportunities will be best for applicants with knowledge of electronics, related hands-on experience, and good customer service skills.

 

 
 
Overview
$29,980.00 Median Annual Wage 0 Average Job Openings Per Year
4.2 Average Unemployment Percentage 44.9 Percentage That Completed High School
40,000 Employment Numbers in 2006 44.0 Percentage That Had Some College
41,000 Employment Numbers in 2016 (est.) 11.1 Percentage That Went Beyond College Degree

Sample Job Titles
Audio Installer
Audio-Video Repairer
Cable Installation Technician
Dish Network Installer
Electric Organ Checker
Electric Organ Inspector and Repairer
Electronic Organ Technician
Electronic Systems Technician (EST)
Electronic Technician
Electronic Video Games Servicer
Engineer, Maintenance
Engineer, Television Service
Field Service Representative
Field Service Technician
Home Theater Installer
In Shop Service Technician
Information Transport Systems Technician
Installer
Low Voltage Electrician
Maintenance Worker
Mechanic
Mechanic, Audio Video
Mechanic, Electronic Organ
Mechanic, Phonograph
Mechanic, Tape Recorder
Mechanic, Television
Mechanic, Video Player
Mechanic, Video Recorder
Radio Repairer
Repair Technician
Repairer, Electronic Home Entertainment Equipment
Repairer, Satellite Dish
Repairer, Stereo Equipment
Repairer, Television and Radio
Repairer, Video System
Satellite Dish Installer
Satellite Installer
Satellite Technician
Service Technician
Stereo Equipment Installer
Tape Recorder Repairer
Technician
Technician, Electronic Organ
Technician, Electronic Sales and Service
Technician, Television
Television Analyzer
Television and Radio Repairer
Television Installer
Television Maintenance Man
Television Maintenance Worker
Television Mechanic (TV Mechanic)
Television Repairman
Television Servicer
Television Technician
Video Technician
Wireless Internet Installer

Training
  • These occupations usually involve using communication and organizational skills to coordinate, supervise, manage, or train others to accomplish goals. Examples include funeral directors, electricians, forest and conservation technicians, legal secretaries, interviewers, and insurance sales agents.
  • Most occupations in this zone require training in vocational schools, related on-the-job experience, or an associate's degree. Some may require a bachelor's degree.
  • Previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is required for these occupations. For example, an electrician must have completed three or four years of apprenticeship or several years of vocational training, and often must have passed a licensing exam, in order to perform the job.
  • Employees in these occupations usually need one or two years of training involving both on-the-job experience and informal training with experienced workers.

Employers prefer applicants who have basic electronics skills, good problem-solving skills, and previous repair experience. Good customer service skills are essential for field technicians, as they spend a majority of their time working in customers’ homes.

Education and training. Employers prefer applicants who have basic knowledge and skills in electronics as well as previous repair experience. Many applicants gain these skills at vocational training programs and community colleges. Training programs should include both hands-on experience and theoretical education in digital consumer electronics. Entry-level repairers may work closely with more experienced technicians, who provide technical guidance.

Other qualifications. Field technicians work closely with customers and must have good communication skills and a neat appearance. Repairers also must have good problem solving skills, as their main duty is to diagnose and solve problems. Employers also may require that field technicians have a driver’s license.

Certification and advancement. Various organizations offer certification for electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers. Repairers may specialize in a variety of skill areas, including consumer electronics. To receive certification, repairers must pass qualifying exams corresponding to their level of training and experience.

Experienced repairers with advanced training may become specialists or troubleshooters, helping other repairers to diagnose difficult problems. Workers with leadership ability may become supervisors of other repairers. Some experienced workers open their own repair shops.

Nature of Work

Electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers—also called service technicians—repair a variety of equipment. They may specialize in one type of product, or may be trained in many different ones. The most common products include televisions and radios, stereo components, video and audio disc players, and video cameras. They also install and repair home security systems, intercom equipment, satellite television dishes, and home theater systems, which consist of large-screen televisions and sophisticated surround-sound audio components.

Customers usually bring small, portable equipment to repair shops for servicing. Repairers at these locations, known as bench technicians, are equipped with a full array of electronic tools and parts. When larger, less mobile equipment breaks down, customers may pay repairers to come to their homes. These repairers, known as field technicians, travel with a limited set of tools and parts, and attempt to complete the repair at the customer’s location. If the job is complex, technicians may bring defective components back to the shop for diagnosis and repair.

When equipment breaks down, repairers check for common causes of trouble, such as dirty or defective components. Many repairs consist simply of cleaning and lubricating equipment. If routine checks do not locate the trouble, repairers may refer to schematics and manufacturers’ specifications that provide instructions on how to locate problems. Repairers use a variety of test equipment to diagnose and identify malfunctions. Multimeters detect short circuits, failed capacitors, and blown fuses by measuring voltage, current, and resistance. Color-bar and dot generators provide onscreen test patterns, signal generators test signals, and oscilloscopes and digital storage scopes measure complex waveforms produced by electronic equipment. Repairs may involve removing and replacing a failed capacitor, transistor, or fuse. Repairers use hand tools, such as pliers, screwdrivers, soldering irons, and wrenches, to replace faulty parts. They also make adjustments to equipment, such as focusing and converging the picture of a television set or balancing the audio on a surround-sound system.

Improvements in technology have miniaturized and digitized many audio and video recording devices. Miniaturization has made repair work significantly more difficult because both the components and the acceptable tolerances are smaller. Also, components now are mounted on the surface of circuit boards, instead of plugged into slots, requiring more precise soldering when a new part is installed. Improved technologies have lowered the price of electronic home entertainment equipment to the point where customers often replace broken equipment instead of repairing it.

Work environment. Most repairers work in well-lighted electrical repair shops. Field technicians, however, spend much time traveling in service vehicles and working in customers’ residences.

Repairers may have to work in a variety of positions and carry heavy equipment. Although the work of repairers is comparatively safe, they must take precautions against minor burns and electric shock. Because television monitors carry high voltage even when they are turned off, repairers need to discharge the voltage before servicing such equipment.

Related Occupations

Sources: Career Guide to Industries (CGI), Occupational Information Network (O*Net), Occupation Outlook Handbook (OOH)
Earnings

Median hourly earnings of wage-and-salary electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers were $14.42 in May 2006. The middle 50 percent earned between $11.52 and $18.24. The lowest 10 percent earned less than $8.96, and the highest 10 percent earned more than $22.42. In May 2006, median hourly earnings of electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers were $14.46 in electronics and appliance stores and $13.18 in electronic and precision equipment repair and maintenance.

For the latest wage information:

The above wage data are from the Occupational Employment Statistics (OES) survey program, unless otherwise noted. For the latest National, State, and local earnings data, visit the following pages:

  • Electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers
  • Job Outlook

    Employment is expected to increase more slowly than the average for all occupations. Job prospects will be best for applicants with knowledge of electronics, related experience, and good customer service skills.

    Employment change. Employment of electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers is expected to grow by 3 percent from 2006 to 2016, which is slower than the average for all occupations. Demand will be driven by the rising sales of home entertainment equipment.

    The need for repairers is expected to grow slowly, however, because home entertainment equipment is less expensive than in the past. As technological developments have lowered the price and improved the reliability of equipment, the demand for repair services has decreased. When a malfunction does occur, it often is cheaper for consumers to replace equipment than to pay for repairs.

    Employment growth will be spurred somewhat by the introduction of sophisticated digital equipment, such as high-definition digital televisions and digital camcorders. So long as the price of such equipment remains high, purchasers will be willing to hire repairers when malfunctions occur. There also will be demand to install sophisticated home entertainment systems, such as home theaters.

    Job prospects. Job openings will come about because of employment growth and from the need to replace workers who retire or who leave the occupation. Opportunities will be best for applicants with knowledge of electronics and who have related hands-on experience and good customer service skills.

    Employment

    Electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers held about 40,000 jobs in 2006. Many repairers worked in electronics and appliance stores that sell and service electronic home entertainment products or in electronic and precision equipment repair and maintenance shops. About 12 percent of electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers were self-employed, compared to 7 percent for all installation, maintenance, and repair occupations.

    Knowledge
    • Mathematics — Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.
    • Engineering and Technology — Knowledge of the practical application of engineering science and technology. This includes applying principles, techniques, procedures, and equipment to the design and production of various goods and services.
    • Sales and Marketing — Knowledge of principles and methods for showing, promoting, and selling products or services. This includes marketing strategy and tactics, product demonstration, sales techniques, and sales control systems.
    • Medicine and Dentistry — Knowledge of the information and techniques needed to diagnose and treat human injuries, diseases, and deformities. This includes symptoms, treatment alternatives, drug properties and interactions, and preventive health-care measures.
    • Physics — Knowledge and prediction of physical principles, laws, their interrelationships, and applications to understanding fluid, material, and atmospheric dynamics, and mechanical, electrical, atomic and sub- atomic structures and processes.
    Skills
    • Equipment Maintenance — Performing routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed.
    • Coordination — Adjusting actions in relation to others' actions.
    • Active Learning — Understanding the implications of new information for both current and future problem-solving and decision-making.
    • Writing — Communicating effectively in writing as appropriate for the needs of the audience.
    • Troubleshooting — Determining causes of operating errors and deciding what to do about it.
    Abilities
    • Near Vision — The ability to see details at close range (within a few feet of the observer).
    • Stamina — The ability to exert yourself physically over long periods of time without getting winded or out of breath.
    • Explosive Strength — The ability to use short bursts of muscle force to propel oneself (as in jumping or sprinting), or to throw an object.
    • Oral Comprehension — The ability to listen to and understand information and ideas presented through spoken words and sentences.
    • Hearing Sensitivity — The ability to detect or tell the differences between sounds that vary in pitch and loudness.
    Tasks
    • Core — Keep records of work orders and test and maintenance reports.
    • Core — Make service calls to repair units in customers' homes, or return units to shops for major repairs.
    • Supplemental — Position or mount speakers, and wire speakers to consoles.
    • Core — Disassemble entertainment equipment and repair or replace loose, worn, or defective components and wiring, using hand tools and soldering irons.
    • Core — Install, service, and repair electronic equipment or instruments such as televisions, radios, and videocassette recorders.
    Activities
    • Monitoring and Controlling Resources — Monitoring and controlling resources and overseeing the spending of money.
    • Guiding, Directing, and Motivating Subordinates — Providing guidance and direction to subordinates, including setting performance standards and monitoring performance.
    • Assisting and Caring for Others — Providing personal assistance, medical attention, emotional support, or other personal care to others such as coworkers, customers, or patients.
    • Repairing and Maintaining Electronic Equipment — Servicing, repairing, calibrating, regulating, fine-tuning, or testing machines, devices, and equipment that operate primarily on the basis of electrical or electronic (not mechanical) principles.
    • Getting Information — Observing, receiving, and otherwise obtaining information from all relevant sources.
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