Power Plant Technician

Maintain hundreds of wires or components that make up a modern power plant.
picture of Power Plant Technician

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$41,000 – $85,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Power Plant Technicians do?

A standard power plant contains hundreds, if not thousands, of small pieces of machinery running 24 hours a day to generate electricity. If one of those small pieces breaks, the power supply to homes and businesses could suddenly shut off. A Power Plant Technician spends the day testing, adjusting, and repairing this equipment so the power supply stays constant.

When you’re a Power Plant Technician, you look at the gauges and write down the numbers you see when you arrive at a power plant. If one gauge is showing an extremely high or low number, you turn off the flow from that area and strap on your tools to investigate. You test the pipes, pumps, wiring, and motors, and replace any defective parts that you find.

As a Power Plant Technician, you don’t have computers to help you diagnose the problem. Instead, you use your own smarts and extensive experience. Once repairs have been made, you turn the flow back on in that quadrant, keeping detailed records of your repairs along the way.

You inspect a portion of the power plant each day, lubricating motors, replacing worn springs and wiring, and checking the flow to and from that quadrant. You also look at the gauges several times per day and write down readings. You may never have to go to the gym for a workout because you spend much of the day walking back and forth between the gauges and the machinery.

If a catastrophic outage occurs, you shut down the power plant and turn on emergency generators. Working quickly, you determine what caused the problem and scramble to make repairs. While these may be stressful days and you’ll definitely come home from work feeling tired, you’ll be proud of your ability to respond quickly. You’ll try not to brag about your skills, though.


Should I be a Power Plant Technician?

You should have an associate's degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.
  • Trustworthy: You are known for your personal integrity and honesty.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • Also known as: Coal Gasification Technician, Cogeneration Technician, Powerhouse Tender

    How to become a Power Plant Technician

    Power Plant Technicians often have an Associate's degree. Chart?chd=s:q29aaa&chl=no+college+%2827%25%29|certificate+%2834%25%29|associate%27s+%2839%25%29|||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,27,39
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