9 Best Auto Mechanic Schools in San Diego, CA

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Auto Mechanic Schools in San Diego, CA

Ever wonder how to become an automotive technician?

It’s pretty simple: enroll in an auto mechanic program near your location.

If you are passionate about cars and love getting your hands dirty, you can turn this passion into a rewarding career.

Most auto mechanic programs will have in-person training, and you will work in an automotive repair shop to gain real-world experience.

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Whether you are passionate about cars or are seeking a career change from a white-collar career, auto mechanic programs empower you to be a skilled technician.

Here are some schools offering auto mechanic programs in San Diego, CA.

Check out and kickstart your automotive journey today!

1 UEI College - Chula Vista

UEI College-Chula Vista is a trade school offering hands-on training and personalized attention for career success.

The campus is located near Broadway Plaza and Otay Valley Regional Park, giving easy access to students from Imperial Beah, San Diego, El Cajon, Spring Valley, and more.

It provides various trade school programs and career training in healthcare, business, and skill trades.

The school opened its doors in 2019, providing students access to its career training facilities and the hands-on education needed to enter new and exciting fields.

Its friendly staff will guide students and provide personalized career service through its small class sizes to give students the attention and help they need.

The campus holds accreditation from the Accrediting Council for Continuing Education and Training (ACCET) to ensure students receive a well-rounded education.

About The Auto Mechanic Program

UEI College-Chula Vista offers an Automotive Technician Program that spans ten months.

It blends online and in-class learning to train students to become professional automotive technicians.

The program combines theoretical aspects of automotive diagnostics and hands-on training in a shop environment.

It allows students to service and repair various types of automobiles.

It equips students with how to test, diagnose, repair, and maintain the following systems:

  • Transmissions
  • Emissions systems
  • Engines
  • Steering and suspension systems
  • Braking systems
  • Fuel systems
  • Climate control system

The program aims to teach students entry-level professional skills they can apply in servicing, diagnosing, and repairing vehicles.

Upon completing the program, students will join the candidate pool equipped with skills, knowledge, and hands-on shop training that employers look for during hiring.

AddressAddress: 1261 3rd Ave. Suite A Chula Vista, CA 91911


2 San Diego Miramar College

San Diego Miramar College was established in 1969 and is one of the three colleges in the San Diego Community College District system.

It offers two-year bachelor’s degrees, certificates of completion, and associate degrees.

The college served over 14,000 students annually during its inception.

It has grown over the years, serving 22,000 students with its 164 degrees and certificates offering 40 programs.

Aside from 70 associate degrees and 9o career technical education certificates, it also provides 150 online sections across all programs.

It partners with local industry and the City and County of San Diego, preparing students for in-demand and well-paying careers in a competitive market.

The school offers paralegal (ABA approved), biotechnology, advanced transportation and energies, diesel, automotive, aviation (FAA-certified), and more.

Accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC) and Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) to ensure students receive the best possible education.

About The Auto Mechanic Program

San Diego Miramar College offers an Automotive Technology program to train students for entry-level employment or professional upgrading in the automotive industry.

It blends classroom theory and extensive hands-on training in actual automotive shops in areas tested for ASE and Automotive Repair training for state licenses.

Students will earn the following certificates in the program:

  • Automotive Chassis
  • Automotive Electrical
  • Automotive Engine Performance
  • Automotive Transmissions
  • Advanced Emissions Specialist

The program also offers Specific ASEEF Certified training in Toyota Motor Sales and American Honda Motors.

Students will also have internship opportunity training if available.

They are also encouraged to earn at least two Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) Certifications while still in training.

AddressAddress: 10440 Black Mountain Road San Diego, CA 92126-2999


3 San Diego College of Continuing Education

San Diego College of Continuing Education (SDCCE) is California’s largest provider of non-credit education, founded in 1914.

It’s an adult education division of the San Diego Community College District (SDCCD) providing accessible, innovative, and equitable career training and quality education.

For over 100 years, SDCCE has offered over 70 free career training programs and thousands of free classes.

Aside from its traditional schedule (fall, spring, and summer semesters), most of its program is an open-entry and open-exit format enrollment all year round.

SDCCE offers short-term free career training programs, including Automotive, Business, Accounting/Business Information Worker, Computers and Information Technology, Digital Media, HVAC, Welding, and more.

It also offers High School Diploma/Equivalency, English as a Second Language, and Emeritus.

About The Auto Mechanic Program

SDCCE offers an Automotive Certificate Program with diverse career training certificates for entry-level positions or college transition.

Students will gain hands-on experience with cutting-edge equipment and learn from top-rated faculty.

Here are the programs SDCCE offers:

  • Auto Body and Paint Technician
  • Auto Technician
  • Quick Service Inspection Technician
  • Service Advisor

The program aligns with industry standards, offering specialized training in auto body repair, paint, or both.

Its courses are based on I-CAR and NATEF standards, ensuring students receive a high-quality education.

Students can pursue careers in auto body repair, engine diagnostics, quick service inspection, and service advising.

Upon completion, students can pursue roles such as Auto Body Technician, Automotive Technician, Lubrication Technician, Painter’s Helper, Service Advisor, Service Writer, and SMOG Technician.

AddressAddress: 4343 Ocean View Boulevard San Diego, CA 92113-1915


4 Mossy Auto Group

Mossy Auto Group is a premier dealer in San Diego, California that delivers exceptional service with low prices and incentives on new and used vehicles.

It serves San Diego, Carlsbad, El Cajon, and Kearny Mesa, a one-stop shop for all automotive needs.

It is a family-owned business with a commitment to customer service since 1921. Mossy offers various vehicles including Toyota, Ford, Honda, Nissan, Mitsubishi, and Infiniti, ensuring customers find what they need.

It has a state-of-the-art service department that keeps customers’ vehicles running in excellent condition with friendly staff ensuring your every visit is pleasant.

Mossy also has certified service technicians keeping customers’ vehicles running and in good condition to ensure their safe drives.

About The Auto Mechanic Program

Mossy offers Auto Mechanic Programs at Mossy Toyota and Mossy Honda.

It partners with San Diego Toyota, Lexus, Scion, Honda dealerships, and San Diego Miramar College.

These programs blend automotive, academic, and technical skills to ensure a well-rounded education.

Students can gain hands-on experience, and product training, and earn college credits toward an Associate Degree.

Mossy Toyota and Mossy Honda provide technical training and education opportunities, shaping aspiring mechanics into industry-ready professionals.

Students can also explore the T-Ten program for Toyota, Scion, and Lexus, or the PACT program for Honda, both offering certificate and degree options.

AddressAddress: 4555 Mission Bay Drive San Diego, CA 92109


5 Cuyamaca College

Cuyamaca College was established in 1978 providing a solid education for beginner students aiming for university degrees or returning students.

Its vision is to learn for the future, offering various courses from child development, drafting technology, information science, or ornamental horticulture to automotive technology, paralegal training, and more.

It provides 91-degree programs and 74 certificates of learning opportunities with dynamic instructors who love teaching.

Cuyamaca College is known for its student-focused faculty and staff helping students reach their goals, whether earning Associate degrees, certificates, or transfer programs.

It also offers financial aid including the first-year and fee waiver programs with extra assistance in academic, and personal support services.

Accredited by the Western Association of Schools and Colleges (WASC) region of the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC), Cuyamaca ensures to provide top-notch education.

About The Auto Mechanic Program

Cuyamaca College offers various degrees and certificates in Automotive Technology.

All of the programs align with the National Standard for Automotive Service Excellence (ASE).

It emphasizes theoretical and practical skills utilizing cutting-edge technology and equipment provided by industry-leading manufacturers.

Students who complete their ch0sen programs with the fulfillment of general education requirements will earn a degree.

Those who focus on the program-specific coursework will receive an official state certification of program completion.

Here are the following programs Cuyamaca College offers:

  • Automotive Technology
  • Automotive Service Councils of California ASCCA
  • Automotive Technology Chasis Specialist
  • Automotive Technology Drivetrain Specialist
  • Automotive Technology Electronics and Electric Vehicle Specialist
  • Automotive Technology Engine Repair Specialist
  • Automotive Technology – Ford Asset
  • Automotive Technology- General Motos ASEP
  • Automotive Technology Service Management

The programs also encourage proactive engagement in valuable work experiences with automotive repair facilities to ensure students will have a well-rounded education.

AddressAddress: 900 Rancho San Diego Parkway El Cajon, California 92019


6 Southwestern College

Southwestern College was established in 1961, as a public community college in Chula Vista California.

It is a member of the Southwestern Community College District with over 25, 228 across its all-campus in San Diego County.

It is the only public institution of higher education within southern San Diego County, providing various dynamic and high-quality academic programs.

The college also encourages the development and growth of the region with its education, workforce,  economic opportunities, community partnerships, and services.

It utilizes instructional modalities providing educational and career opportunities in associate degrees, certificate programs, professional, technical, career advancement, transfer programs, and more.

Accredited by the Accrediting Commission for Community and Junior Colleges (ACCJC), Southwestern College adheres to the highest standards of education.

About The Auto Mechanic Program

Southwestern College offers various Automotive Technology career programs.

It provides maintenance and repair of both foreign and domestic autos.

Students will work on everything from simple engine systems to power and performance machines as the training goes on.

They will also earn credit toward professional certifications and gain industry-related experience to prepare them for an in-demand career.

Students will learn the automotive processes including, repair procedures, service techniques, shop safety, diagnostic analysis, and problem-solving skills.

Here are the programs Southwestern offers:

  • Associate in Science Degree in Automotive Technology
  • Certificate of Achievement in Advanced Emission Specialist
  • Certificate of Achievement in Automotive Performance Systems
  • Certificate of Achievement in Automotive Technology
  • Certificate of Proficiency in Automotive Brake and Suspension
  • Systems (ABS and Four-Wheel Alignment)
  • Automotive Performance Systems – CT
  • Automotive Technology – CT

All programs meet Automotive Service Excellence (ASE) guidelines and National Automotive Technicians Education Foundation (NATEF) certification.

AddressAddress: 900 Otay Lakes Rd, Chula Vista, CA 91910-7297


7 Automotive Training Group

Automotive Training Group (ATG) is an educational institution dedicated to training automotive professionals.

It offers highly technical courses with unmatched technical information and trainer experience.

ATG aims to balance its classes to present complex information and techniques that everyone will understand yet also challenge the most experienced technicians.

Its top instructors have an average of 15 years of experience and know every technician’s problems.

ATC training seminars allow technicians to sharpen their skills, increase their knowledge, and apply new repair techniques on popular import and domestic vehicles.

Its dedication to the automotive industry creates quality products and services that are essential in the field ensuring your investment is worth it!

About The Auto Mechanic Program

ATG offers 21 technical courses in Automotive Technology to train future professional automotive technicians.

Here are the technical courses ATG offers:

  • Advanced Circuit and Electrical Testing
  • Advanced Scan Tools Diagnostics
  • Chrysler Drivability & Code Diagnostics
  • Cummins 5.9L & 6.7L Common Rail Diesel
  • Direct Air Injection & Air Induction System Diagnostics
  • Drivability Best Practices
  • Duramax LML & LGH Diesel
  • Evaporative Emission Systems: Leak, Flow & Function System
  • Ford 6.0L, 6.4L & 6.7L Powerstroke Engine Performance
  • Ford 6.0L & 7.3L Powerstroke Engine Performance (11998-2003)
  • Ford 7.3L Powerstroke
  • Ford & Code Diagnostics
  • General Motors Drivability & Code Diagnostics
  • General Motors Duramax Diesel
  • Hybrid System Diagnostics
  • Intermittent Electrical Drivability Diagnostics Strategies
  • Mechanical & Variable Timing Valvetrain Diagnostics
  • Small Diesel Diagnostics
  • Toyota & Ford Hybrid Diagnostics
  • Transmission In-Car Diagnostics
  • Vehicle Network Diagnostic Strategies

For more info about each course, you can contact them through their website, visit the onsite location, or call 858-486-8525.

AddressAddress: 7827 Convoy Ct #408, San Diego, CA 9211


8 MiraCosta College

MiraCosta College has been a beacon of academic excellence and innovation in San Diego County since 1934.

It was formerly an Oceanside-Carlsbad Junior College and started with 122 students and 20 faculty members.

Over the years, it grew and quickly gained recognition as the second community college in the county.

The college continuously invests in academic excellence, offering associate degrees aligning the first two years of a bachelor’s degree.

It offers 147 degrees and certificate programs including short-term training in specific career areas in less than a year or two years.

MiraCosta is also one of the 15 California community colleges that is authorized to ward a bachelor’s degree program.

Aside from academic pursuits, MiraCosta also emphasizes athletics, arts, and community engagement.

It renovated its theatre and creative arts buildings and opened its Concert Hall in 2010 for music performances.

About The Auto Mechanic Program

MiraCosta College offers an Automotive Technology Program preparing students for an entry-level automotive mechanic position.

It also provides training for individuals seeking career advancement in the automotive field.

Here are the programs MiraCosta offers:

  • Automotive Alignment, Brakes, and Suspension – Certificate of Proficiency
  • Automotive Electronics – Certificate of Proficiency
  • Automotive Electronics, Computers and Emissions, and/or HVAC – Certificate of Achievement
  • Automotive/Motorcycle Maintenance and Light Repair – Certificate of Achievement
  • Automotive Quick Service Assistant – Certificate of Proficiency
  • Automotive Repair: Drive-Train Specialist – Certificate of Proficiency
  • Automotive Technology – Associate Degree
  • Automotive Technology – Certificate of Achievement
  • Basic Engine Performance – Certificate of Proficiency
  • Electric Vehicle, Hybrid Vehicle, and Engine Performance – Certificate of Proficiency
  • California Smog Check Technician – Certificate of Achievement
  • Electric, Hybrid, and Alternative-Fuel Vehicle Technician – Certificate of Achievement
  • Master Technician – Certificate of Achievement

These programs will prepare students for various state licenses and national certifications including ASE tests.

AddressAddress: 1831 Mission Avenue Oceanside, CA 92058


9 Palomar College

Palomar College is a public two-year community college in north San Diego that offers diverse educational opportunities.

It was established in 1946 with a mission to respect students’ experience and support them to succeed academically.

Over the years, providing educational and support services for a diverse student body regardless of age, lifestyle, and ethnicity has evolved.

The college is committed to enriching a community where students can embrace themselves and prepare them to engage with local and global communities.

It offers programs leading to associate’s degrees or certificates, ensuring students are well-prepared for their chosen career paths.

It also builds strong relationships and collaborates with universities, employers, student assistance programs, and other institutions to strengthen its commitment to community learning and career goals.

About The Auto Mechanic Program

Palomar College offers a top-notch Automotive Technology program that equips students with the skills and knowledge to thrive in the automotive field.

It focuses on practical and hands-on training to ensure graduates are well-prepared for entry-level positions.

The program allows students to work with state-of-the-art equipment under the guidance of experienced faculty.

Here are the programs Palomar offers:

  • Auto Collision Repair: Students will learn the intricacies of automotive collision repair.
  • Auto Chassis and Drive Lines: The program emphasizes drive-line repair, preparing students for entry-level positions across various aspects of the Automotive Industry.
  • Electronic Tune-Up and Computer Control Systems: The program focuses on electronic tune-up and computer control systems. It ensures graduates are adept at addressing modern drive-ability concerns in vehicles.
  • Mechanics – General: It covers general aspects of the industry, from engine systems to overall vehicle maintenance, for those who want to broaden their knowledge.

The program also aligns with industry standards. It ensures graduates are well-versed in the latest advancements and technologies in the automotive field.

AddressAddress: 1140 West Mission Road San Marcos, California 92069


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Earn your accredited, affordable Auto Repair career diploma online with Penn Foster in as little as 8 months!

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Schools Summary Table

Rank School
#1 UEI College - Chula Vista
#2 San Diego Miramar College
#3 San Diego College of Continuing Education
#4 Mossy Auto Group
#5 Cuyamaca College
#6 Southwestern College
#7 Automotive Training Group
#8 MiraCosta College
#9 Palomar College

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