How Do I Become an Elevator Technician?

Jeremy Laukkonen

There are no universal requirements to become an elevator technician, though some jurisdictions do have official licenses or certifications. If you are interested in this type of career, you will need to check into the specific requirements in your state or country. There are also two different certifications you can obtain at the national level in the United States, which may help you find employment. You may also want to consider earning some type of degree from a technical school, community college, or university, though not all employers require that type of education. Depending on the area you live in, you may also need to join a union, and participate in some type of apprenticeship program, before you can become an elevator technician.

An elevator technician might focus on installing new elevators in a building.
An elevator technician might focus on installing new elevators in a building.

Elevator technicians are responsible for the repair and upkeep of elevator systems, though most of them are employed by general contractors to perform installation work. If you are interested in becoming an elevator technician, you will need to have a strong grasp of math and physics, in addition to upper body strength and stamina. In most cases, you will need the equivalent of a high school education before you can begin this type of career, though an associate's degree in electrical or mechanical engineering can also help prepare you, and may make advancement easier.

Before you try to become an elevator technician, you should first check into the specific requirements in your area. In some areas, all elevator technician jobs are held by union workers. If that is the case, you will typically need to sign up with the union and complete a four year apprenticeship program. Throughout the course of this type of program, you will learn the trade while helping an experienced technician perform his job.

Some states also require certification or licensing, so it is important to determine what the laws are in your area early on. If the elevator technician jobs in your area are unionized, and the state requires certification, you will typically need to apply for your certification after completing your apprenticeship. Other states have different licensing requirements, and you will typically need to have some combination of experience and training. After you have met any apprenticeship or certification regulations in your area, you will typically be prepared to become an elevator technician.

Either before or after you become an elevator technician, you may want to consider other certifications. There are two nationally administered certifications available in the United States, both of which are offered by the National Association of Elevator Contractors (NAEC). If you opt to obtain this type of additional certification, you may have better luck finding work. In some cases, you may even be required to obtain this type of national certification as a condition of employment.

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