Set up lights for movie, TV, and theater sets.
Hydraulic Technicians diagnose and fix hydraulic equipment and machines when they’re broken. And because a vast majority of the equipment used in the manufacturing and transportation industries is hydraulic — that is, it’s powered by pressurized liquid, such as oil or water — Hydraulic Technicians get a lot of work.
If it’s big and it moves, chances are it’s hydraulic. Cars and trucks, for instance — specifically, automatic transmissions, power breaks, and power steering — are hydraulic. Automatic doors at supermarkets are hydraulic. The lifts and presses used in factories are hydraulic. The offshore drills used by oil companies are hydraulic. Even the flaps on airplane wings are hydraulic. When you’re a Hydraulic Technician, therefore, you’re the go-to person when these and other contraptions malfunction.
Like most Mechanics, your job as a Hydraulic Technician is fixing stuff — specifically, fluid power systems. You might work for the company that manufactures the hydraulic equipment, in which case you travel around from customer to customer on service calls. Or, you might work for the company that uses the hydraulic equipment, in which case you’re probably stationed at a single post.
Either way, here’s how it works: When equipment or machinery goes haywire, you visit the plant, shop, factory, or jobsite where it’s kept. You then examine it, often using computers and various other devices to detect and diagnose potential problems. Finally, you get out your toolbox and adjust, repair, or replace any problem parts that are causing issues.
A Hydraulic Technician isn’t just a Mechanic, however. Because you’re such an expert on all things “hydraulic,” you also collaborate with Engineers to initially design, test, and install hydraulic systems — long before they need service!