If you enjoy precise work, problem solving and working with your hands, you will like a career as an agricultural equipment technician. As an agricultural equipment technician, you will repair, overhaul and maintain agricultural equipment including tractors, tillage equipment, seeding equipment and harvesting equipment.
You may specialize in service and repair of fuel injection pumps and injectors, engine overhaul, hydraulic systems, power shift transmissions or specific types of equipment (combines, forage harvesters, tractors, etc.).
In general, you will:
- Service and repair engines, transmissions, hydraulic systems, and the electrical and electronic systems of agricultural equipment
- Pinpoint problems by discussing equipment operation with owners, visually checking and listening to machinery in operation, and using testing equipment
- Take defective units apart and repair or replace broken, worn-out or faulty parts, reassemble, adjust, lubricate and test repaired units
- Assemble and adjust new agricultural equipment
- Learn and apply precision farm technologies such as automated steering systems Agricultural equipment technicians must keep up-to-date with new developments in the agricultural equipment field.
This is a non-compulsory trade – individuals can work in the trade without certification if the employer deems the individual to have the skills of a journeyperson. However, individuals who are working in the trade and learning the trade must become a registered apprentice.This is a non-compulsory trade – individuals can work in the trade without certification if the employer deems the individual to have the skills of a journeyperson. However, individuals who are working in the trade and learning the trade must become a registered apprentice.
Start your career by finding an employer who is willing to indenture you as an apprentice. Most agricultural equipment technicians are employed by retail agricultural equipment dealerships. Where a number of technicians are employed by one business, the opportunity exists for advancement to supervisory positions.
Journeyperson wage rates vary, but generally range from $30 to $45 an hour, plus benefits, depending on the region.
After becoming a journeyperson, you may advance to supervisory positions, specialize in a type of repair or take on new apprentices. You can move into sales positions or become manufacturers' service representatives. Individuals may move into management positions with the company or purchase an agricultural equipment dealership. Some journeypersons go on to run their own businesses – we can help you build your business with our Blue Seal business certificate
The work is most rewarding for those who enjoy working with their hands and who are capable of diagnosing a variety of complex mechanical, hydraulic and electrical problems. To be successful in the trade, agricultural equipment technicians need:
- Mechanical ability and good eye-hand coordination
- The strength required to lift heavy machine parts
- The ability to read and understand technical information
- The ability to work independently with little supervision
- Flexibility in working extra hours when required
- Some experience in the agricultural industry
- Math, communication and computer skills
- Effective interpersonal skills in meeting the challenges of the workplace
- A valid driver's license
Upon successfully completing the required working hours and technical training periods, graduates will be awarded journeyperson status by Alberta’s Apprenticeship and Industry Training. Welders are a Red Seal Endorsed trade – a recognizable standard that allows tradespeople to work across Canada.
Admission and Completion
To enter an apprenticeship, you must have the educational qualifications required or recommended education for the trade to which you apply.
Entrance Requirements are monitored and set by Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training.
Successful completion of the following courses:
- English 20-2
- Math 20-3
- Science 10
A pass mark in all five Canadian General Educational Development (GED) tests
Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training Entrance Exam
Apprentices with an Alberta High School Diploma that includes the following courses:
- English 30-2
- Math 30-3
- Physics 30 OR Chemistry 30
- Related career and technology studies (CTS) courses
How to register
Registration for technical training is run through Alberta Apprenticeship and Industry Training. Learn how you can register for your next intake.
After you register
Email is the primary source of communication after you have registered for your intake. Please ensure your personal email account is managed appropriately to receive our emails, files and communications. We recommend you add the sait.ca domain to your safe senders' list or you risk missing critical email messages.
Apprentices in this trade will spend 4 years (four 12-month periods) of on-the-job training and technical training at SAIT. Technical training will be 8 weeks each year.
|Find an employer willing to indenture you as an apprentice|
|Apply as an apprentice with AIT and your employer|
|Sign contract and recieve record book|
|Written entrance examination or get approved for previous transcripts|
|Complete first period of on-the-job-training (1500 hours)|
|Register at Technical Training Institution|
|Attend first period of technical training for 8 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass first period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Complete second period of on-the-job training (1500 hours)|
|Register at SAIT|
|Attend second period of technical training for 8 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass second period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Complete third period of on-the-job training (1500 hours)|
|Register at SAIT|
|Attend third period of technical training for 8 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass third period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Complete fourth period of on-the-job training (1560 hours)|
|Register at Technical Training Instiution|
|Attend fourth period of technical training for 8 weeks at SAIT|
|Pass fourth period Trade Qualification Exam|
|Become a Journeyperson|
Technical Training Performance
To be successful in technical training, an apprentice must pass each section of the course and pass the AIT exam. The passing grade for each section in the course is a 65%. A passing mark on each Trade Qualification Exam and the Interprovincial Qualification (or Red Seal Exam) is 70%.
Domestic tuition and fees*
|Period||Tuition fees||SAIT fees||Saitsa fees||Lab & Material Fee||2020/21 total|
Student support fee: $25
Student technology fee: $25
Books and supplies*
- Books or modules along with other items for class average out to $600 per period.
- It is recommended that you do not purchase books or modules ahead of time as they might be outdated by the time you attend classes and they cannot be returned to the bookstore.
- Personal Protective Equipment will be required for the program, which may be an additional cost to apprentices.
*Tuition, fees, books and supply costs are subject to change.
Membership to the SAIT Wellness centre - including an ice arena, swimming/diving pool, gymnasium, squash and racquetteball courts and eight room is available to apprentices at a discounted rate.
Our apprenticeship cost calculator can help you make a financial plan by identifying and adding up your expected expenses while attending SAIT — find out exactly how much money you need to save, seek or borrow to get you through your studies.