Hydroelectric Plant Technicians are critical in monitoring and controlling the activities associated with hydropower generation. They operate a wide variety of plant equipment and are responsible for the maintenance of that equipment, ensuring optimal performance. Many people begin this career path as a Hydro Helper, assisting apprentices and journeymen as they begin to learn about the job.
Also known as: Hydro Plant Technician, Plant Mechanic, Hydroelectric Operations and Maintenance Technician, Power Plant Technician, Power Plant Mechanic
$104,110 in 2021 in WA
$80,850 in 2021 in U.S.
High School Diploma, Apprenticeship
30 through 2030 in WA
2,100 through 2031 in U.S.
The career path to becoming a hydroelectric mechanic often begins with the entry level position of hydro helper, before moving into a hydro mechanic apprenticeship, and becoming a journeyman hydro mechanic.
Training & Requirements
Hydro mechanics need a high school diploma and strong math skills prior to starting an apprenticeship. The apprenticeship is 6,000-8,000 hours and results in becoming a journey-level hydro mechanic.
- Machine shop knowledge- operation of lathes, grinders, drill press, etc.
- Proper use of hoisting equipment
- Operation and maintenance of heavy equipment
- Able to read a blue print or layout
- Basic computer usage (email and Microsoft Office)
- Identify and address malfunctions of hydroelectric plant operational equipment such as generators, transformers, and turbines
- Operate energy production equipment
- Inspect and diagnose equipment malfunctions
- Start, adjust, or stop generating units or auxiliary equipment