Automotive Refinishing Technician

Note: This trade is transitioning to a Pan-Canadian Harmonized program, so it is important that Apprentices understand how that impacts their program path. Details on the transition can be found via SkilledTradesBC, or contact your trainer for the most current updates.

Automotive Refinishing Technicians paint and refinish the surfaces of motor vehicles, whether it's a result of a collision, restoration work or a custom-design paint job. Technicians are involved in removing layers of old coatings, matching colours and mixing paints, preparing surfaces for painting by spot filling, sanding, and masking; applying primers, sealers, base coats, protective coatings, and cleaning and polishing painted surfaces.

Technicians may work in close contact with Auto Body and Collision Technicians who tend to work in multi-shop businesses, independent or dealership auto-body and collision shops. Their duties may overlap with Auto Body and Collision Technicians’ duties, particularly in small shops. Refinishing Technicians may also work as specialists after body repairs have been completed.

Automotive Refinishing Technician is a nationally designated trade under the Interprovincial Standards Red Seal Program.


The following education is recommended: Grade 10 or equivalent (Grade 12 preferred), including English 10, Math 10, Science 10.


The Apprenticeship Program is comprised of a common Level 1 for both Automotive Collision and Refinishing trades, with the in-school portion taking 7 weeks (210 hours) to complete. This is followed by Level 2, requiring 3 weeks (90 hours) of in-school training. In addition, apprentices are required to accumulate 3,300 hours of work-based training.


The Foundation program —formerly called “Automotive Refinishing Prep. Technician”— can jump-start your career without employer sponsorship by supplying the knowledge and skills to enter directly at Level 2 (refer to SkilledTradesBC for alternative pathways into the occupation).







Univ. of the Fraser Valley

Trades and Technology Centre (CEP)

Sep 03 2024May 09 2025

Automotive Collision Repair & Refinishing

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