What they do
Tyre fitters repair damage to tyres and fit and balance new tyres to vehicles. They inspect a vehicle's tyres and the related components, checking for signs of damage and wear, such as nails, stones and cracks in the rubber. Where possible they will repair the tyre, which may involve activities such as patching holes or replacing inner tubes. In other cases the whole tyre will need to be replaced. In these cases they will talk with the vehicle's owner, and may offer advice, to determine the type of replacement tyre. Once new tyres have been fitted, the wheel alignment is checked and balanced and road testing is carried out.
Tyre fitters work at specialist tyre centres, mechanical workshops, automotive dealers or organisations maintaining a large fleet of vehicles. Workshops can be noisy, dirty and hot, though they are usually well ventilated. Tyre fitters may also spend some time talking to customers in shop fronts or display rooms attached to the workshop. The work involves heavy lifting and standing for long periods. Most tyre fitters work standard business hours during the week, with many workshops also open on Saturdays.
Tools and technologies
Tyre fitters use hydraulic car lifts, jacks and wheel braces to lift and secure vehicles. They use specialised equipment such as air-operated tyre changers and tyre retreading machines, as well as a number of standard hand and power tools for removing, attaching and repairing tyres. They also use specialised measuring and testing equipment to ensure that tyres have been fitted properly, including wheel balances and wheel alignment machines. Tyre fitters that deal directly with customers may also use computers, cash registers and EFTPOS machines.
How do I become one?
Education and training
You can work as a tyre fitter without any formal qualifications and get training on the job.
You may improve your employment prospects if you complete a Certificate II in Automotive Tyre Servicing Technology, offered at TAFE Colleges and other registered training organisations in Western Australia.
Required registration and licensing
To work as a tyre fitter in WA, you will need to obtain a Motor Vehicle Repairer's Certificate, or work under the supervision of someone who holds a current certificate. The certificate is available from the Commissioner of Consumer Protection at the Department of Mines, Industry Regulation and Safety. A National Police Certificate is required to gain a Motor Vehicle Repairer's Certificate.