The Future of Women Auto Mechanics

Despite being the largest automotive customer, women auto mechanics are rare. Find out why the future is bright for women in the automotive industry.

Current State of Women in the Automotive Industry

The automotive industry has historically been a toxic environment for women. As a result, women are not equally represented within automotive technician occupations. Consequently, this can be seen not only in the employment statistics but also in how women are treated by auto technicians. According to Volvo, two-thirds of vehicle maintenance jobs are done for women. Therefore, it would only make sense that women would represent at least half of the field. This is not the case. In fact, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, only 9.7% of employees in the automotive repair and maintenance industry in 2018 were women.

This is horrible representation for women and has resulted in a horrible consumer experience as well. Therefore, a few researchers from Northwestern University (Meghan Busse and Florian Zettelmeyer), Harvard University, and AutoMD got together and conducted an experiment. As a result, they found that women who are uninformed on what a repair may cost are consistently quoted a higher price than men in the same situation. Naturally, women try not to go to the auto shop as much as possible. This is slowly changing as we see more women auto mechanics in the auto industry.

FAQ’s for a Female Auto Mechanic

If you are aspiring to become an auto technician these are some of the most asked questions for a female auto mechanic.

How much do female mechanics make?

Average Annual Salary in $

According to data gathered by the Bureau of Labor Statistics in 2014, women maintenance employees made about 88% of men’s earnings. So, female mechanics make about $725 a week or $37,000 annually. In contrast, this is a little lower than the average automotive technician which earns about $39,000 a year.

How many female mechanics are there in the US?

The Bureau of Labor Statistics found that there are 19,236 female auto mechanics (2.1% of all auto mechanics) and a total 130,174 women in the automotive repair and maintenance field. Furthermore, women account for 9.7% of the 1,342,000 total employees in the auto repair and maintenance industry in the US. In contrast, there were only 12,000 female auto mechanics out of 837,000 total mechanics in 1999. Therefore, in 1999 only 1.4% of auto mechanics were women while in 2018 2.1% of auto mechanics were women.

What percentage of car buyers are women?

Even though automotive maintenance is a horrible environment for women, women account for 53% of all new cars purchased each year. Even more, women make up a $200 billion market with the purchase of new cars and vehicle maintenance. So, it really makes no sense that the automotive industry would be such an uncomfortable place for women. Therefore, women auto mechanics are seeking to transform that. In fact, there are some women in the automotive industry that are truly transforming the way things are done.


Percent of Car Buyers are Women

Influential Women in Automotive Field

Perhaps one of the largest reasons female auto mechanics are a rare sighting is because of a lack of role models in the past. As a result, it is hard for young girls to look up to women in the automotive industry and realize they can go into that field as well. Even though, this is slowly but surely changing and these are some of the women leading the charge.

Patrice Banks

An ex-engineer for a Fortune 500 company and a current automotive technician/founder of Girls Auto Clinic, Patrice Banks is leading women auto mechanics. After being fed-up with such a horrible consumer environment, Banks decided to start her own auto shop in Pennsylvania. In the end, she did it. She employed, educated, and empowered female auto mechanics and she catered to female automotive consumers.

Audra Fordin

Another very influential woman in automotive is Audra Fordin who is the owner of Great Bear Auto Repair in New York state. She has been working in the field for 27 years and has dedicated her career to educating and empowering other women in the automotive industry. To do this, she founded Women Auto Know and is teaching future women auto mechanics all over the country. Along with that, she is connecting trained women with auto shops.

Mary Barra

In a different area than Patrice and Audra, Mary Barra is the CEO General Motors. Barra took over GM in 2014 just 5 years after the company filed for bankruptcy and has transformed their strategy. Before her takeover, GM was focused on sliding by as long as they could. In contrast, Barra has brought GM to a place that will not only last but be a leader in the automotive industry. Hence, she is truly an influential woman in the automotive industry.

Future of Women Auto Mechanics

With the growth of organizations committed to educating and empowering future women auto mechanics, the future is bright for an aspiring female auto mechanic. For example, Girls Auto Clinic has many different resources for women. First of all, you can schedule a private workshop to learn more about automotive technologies or you can attend one of their free monthly workshops. Through these, they will teach common maintenance tasks and schedules, common auto failures & costs, what is under your hood, and what you can and can’t touch under your hood. Therefore, women will learn these essential tips and help transform the industry.

Shops like this and like the Great Bear Auto Repair shop run by Audra Fordin are leading the industry. Most noteworthy, they have realized that the number one customer in the automotive industry are women. Therefore, tailoring their auto shops to women will make them more successful and create a better consumer experience for everyone.

In the end, now is truly the time to become a female auto mechanic. Browse our site to find the right school and program for you!

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