How to Become a TV and Video Equipment Repair Technician in 5 Steps

Research what it takes to become a TV and video equipment repair technician. Learn about education requirement, job duties, median wages, and job outlook to determine if this is the career for you. Schools offering Automobile Repair degrees can also be found in these popular choices.

Career Information at a Glance

A TV and video equipment repair technician is a technical specialist who examines, identifies and fixes televisions, video recorders and related devices. Prior to a repair jobs they may make cost estimates, taking into consideration the labor and parts required. When making repairs they often use technical schematics as guides. After putting equipment back together they also test it to make sure what they did fixed the problem. Consider the information in the following table to determine if a career as a TV and video repair technician is right for you.

Degree Required Most have a post-secondary certificate
Certification Professional certification available and often preferred
Key Skills Dexterity, problem solving, deductive reasoning
Job Growth (2014-2024) - 4% (for all electrical and electronics installers and repairers)*
Median Salary (2015) $37,790 (for all electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers)*

Source: *U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics.

What Does a TV and Video Equipment Repair do?

A TV and video equipment repair technician performs several essential tasks. Your duties include conferring with customers about the problem with their device; disassembling equipment; locating the source of a problem using schematic diagrams, service manuals and multitesters; providing customers with cost estimates; repairing loose connections and replacing defective components; and advising customers on equipment use and care. Sometimes you might have to travel to a customer's home to service a product.

Step 1: Prepare in High School

You can start learning how electronic devices work and how to repair them in high school shop classes or stand-alone electronics classes. Courses in math and physics could be helpful as well. You will also need a diploma or GED for admission if you plan to enroll in a postsecondary electronics training program.

Step 2: Consider Formal Training

Figures from O*Net OnLine show about 62% of those in the repair industry have some college education (www.onetonline.org). Community colleges, technical and vocational schools, and some 4-year schools offer certificate programs in electronics technology or consumer electronics repair that you can complete in 1-2 years. Programs use classroom instruction and labs to teach you electricity fundamentals and basic circuits. Microprocessors, control systems and robotics are other possible topics.

Step 3: Consider Certification

Employers increasingly prefer technicians who have certification, but it isn't mandatory otherwise. You can obtain certification from at least two organizations, the Electronics Technicians Association (ETA) or the International Society of Certified Electronics Technicians (ISCET).

Two credentials offered by the ETA are relevant for your occupation, including the Associate Electronics Technician (CETa) and the Residential Electronics Systems Integrator (RESI). The CETa is intended for technicians who have completed an electronics training program or have less than two years of experience as a technician. The RESI is more comprehensive, encompassing computer networking, security and surveillance, closed-circuit TV and environmental control systems, as well as audio and video systems.

Relevant certifications from ISCET include the Electronics Systems Associate (ESA) and the Journeyman Certified Electronics Technician. Students and technicians are eligible for the ESA exam, which covers semiconductors, and AC, DC and digital circuits. To obtain journeyman certification, you need to pass the associate exam and a consumer electronics exam.

Step 4: Pursue a Job

The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS) classifies TV and video equipment repair technicians as electronic home entertainment equipment installers and repairers (www.bls.gov). As a repairer, your leading employment prospects are with electronics stores, appliance stores and electronic equipment maintenance firms. In 2015, about 26,890 people worked as repairers and installers. Demand for your services will be driven by consumer demand for camcorders, video recorders and high definition TVs. As of May 2015, you could have earned a median annual salary of $37,790.

Step 5: Advance Your Career

Experience and further training could prepare you to become a head technician, providing troubleshooting and specialized support for lower level technicians. You may also advance to a supervisory position if you show a capacity for leadership. Finally, you could establish a repair business or open a shop if you feel you have a talent for business.

What Are Some Related Alternative Careers?

A few careers with similar job responsibilities to TV and video equipment repair technicians include broadcast and sound engineering technicians, telecommunications equipment installers and general maintenance and repair workers. Broadcast and sound engineering technicians install, maintain and operate sound equipment for broadcasters, concerts, recording studios and film productions. Telecommunications equipment installers connect and repair broadcasting equipment, receivers, telephone lines and internet connection equipment and lines. General maintenance and repair workers have just enough training to complete general equipment repairs, but may not have the specialized training to fix complex problems.

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