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Outdoor Power Equipment Technician - Recreational Equipment


Outdoor power equipment technicians-recreational equipment technicians repair, service and maintain small gasoline and diesel-powered equipment such as snowmobiles, recreational multi-wheeled utility vehicles, inboard and outboard motors, jet drives in boats and personal watercraft.

In general, recreational equipment technicians perform the following main duties:

  • review and interpret work orders and technical manuals;
  • inspect and test engine, motors and other mechanical components using test devices to diagnose and isolate faults;
  • adjust, repair or replace mechanical or electrical system parts and components using hand tools and equipment;
  • test and adjust repaired equipment for proper performance;
  • perform scheduled maintenance service on equipment;
  • advise customers on work performed and general condition of equipment; and
  • estimate costs of repairs.

For more information regarding tasks and activities, please review the Trade Regulation.


Working Conditions

Outdoor power equipment technicians-recreational equipment technicians usually work indoors in shops and occasionally outdoors.  Most work a 40-hour, five-day week.  However, some evening, weekend or holiday work may be required, particularly during busier months.  Hours of work may vary due to the nature of seasonal work.


Skills and Abilities

The work is most rewarding for those who enjoy achieving expertise with precise work, problem-solving and working with their hands.

To be successful in the trade, recreational equipment technicians must have:

  • mechanical ability and an interest in all types of machinery and engines, electronics and precision equipment,
  • customer relations skills,
  • a willingness to work long hours in the busy season,
  • the ability to work alone or as part of a team,
  • the ability to think logically and keep current with changes in technology,
  • the strength, stamina, and ability to use proper lifting techniques to lift items weighing in excess of 25 kilograms,
  • the ability to work in a standing position for long periods of time, and
  • the ability to work in awkward, tight or confined spaces.


Employment and Advancement

Recreational equipment technicians are employed by a variety of employers in both the private and public sectors, in a number of different industries, based on specialized equipment.  Some employers may include equipment distributors, retailers, rental companies, construction companies, landscaping maintenance and builders, golf courses, parks and recreation, forestry companies and original equipment manufacturers.

Journeyman wage rates vary, but generally range from $21 to $28 an hour, plus benefits.

An experienced journeyperson may advance to supervisor or service manager positions and may be self-employed or start their own business.


Working in Alberta

To work as a recreational equipment technician in Alberta, a person must:

  • be a registered apprentice, an Alberta-certified journeyperson, hold a valid recognized credential OR
  • work for an employer who is satisfied that the worker has the skills and knowledge expected of a certified journeyperson, OR
  • be self-employed.

Individuals possessing a valid recognized credential in Alberta are eligible to receive a Blue Seal business credential after completing the necessary requirements.


Apprenticeship Training

The term of apprenticeship for a recreational equipment technician is 3 years (three 12-month periods) including a minimum of 1000 hours of on-the-job training in each of year, and 6 weeks of technical training in the first year, and 8 weeks in the second and third years.

  • An applicant who previously completed courses of study or work experience related to the recreational equipment technician trade or holds a related journeyperson certificate and has the employer's recommendation, may qualify for credit that could reduce the term of apprenticeship. Inquiries about credit for previously completed courses of study or work experience can be directed to an apprentice representative toll-free at 1-800-248-4823.
  • A person who has previous training or work experience in the trade and wants to determine their level of skill and knowledge for entry or advanced standing in an apprenticeship program may complete the online Prior Learning Assessment Application.  
  • A high school student can become an apprentice and gain credits toward apprenticeship training and a high school diploma at the same time under the Registered Apprenticeship Program (RAP).

To learn the skills required of an outdoor power equipment technician - recreational equipment in Alberta and be issued an Alberta Journeyman Certificate, a person must:

Most employers prefer to hire high school graduates and may select apprentices from among their current employees.

For holders of an existing trade certificate, it can serve as your entrance requirement equivalency when registering in an additional trade.

  • complete the online Apprenticeship Application and Contract
  • pay the non-refundable application fee as part of the application process 
  • complete the required on-the-job training
  • complete all program requirements as identified in the Course Outline
  • enroll in technical training
  • successfully complete all required (See Exam Counselling Sheets)
  • Technical Training Resource List
    • Each period of technical training requires apprentices to purchase specific resources and supplies.
    • Contact the training provider where you will be attending training for a complete list.

When apprentices attend technical training, they are required to pay the applicable tuition fee and purchase course supplies.

Student loans, grants, scholarships and other financial assistance may be available. For more information see Financial Assistance, visit an Apprenticeship and Industry Training office or call toll-free to 1-800-248-4823.


Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program

This trade does not participate in the Interprovincial Red Seal Program.


Qualification Certificate Program

For a Qualification Certificate based on a recognized credential or work experience in order to prepare for the exam(s) please refer to the Exam Counselling Sheets and review available Resource Materials.

Time spent on supervisory or foreman duties, counter work, heading the tool crib, or on training course is NOT counted as 'hands-on' work experience.


Equivalency Program

A person who holds a valid recognized credential does not require an Alberta equivalency document to work in the trade in Alberta.

However, some employers may require Alberta documentation as proof that the holder is allowed to work in the trade or that the holder's credential is recognized.

Click for more information on the Equivalency Program.