BMW/Mini High-Voltage Technician Levels

As electric-only, hybrid, and fuel cell electric vehicles are increasing in sales, they are becoming more commonplace in repair facilities. Along with the unique powertrains that come with these vehicles, also comes unique safety concerns. Regardless of vehicle maker, high-voltage (HV) systems pose a threat of injury or death if not handled properly. Only personnel with the proper training, PPE, tools, equipment, and service information should perform work on the HV systems.

Many OEMs have specific training requirements for different levels of high-voltage technicians. Typically, these levels range from no interaction with any high-voltage part of the vehicle (even after the high-voltage battery is disconnected/isolated), to the ability to work on the vehicle under live conditions at the highest OEM HV education level you can earn. The number of levels in between these two ends varies by OEM. Always check the OEM requirements before attempting to disable an HV system. Let’s see what BMW/Mini has to say.

BMW/Mini does not specify HV technician levels for performing certain procedures. However, BMW/Mini requires that only certified technicians can work on HV systems, along with additional vehicle-specific training.

Per the BMW/Mini Repair Manuals & Diagrams home page:

"Hybrid Cars and Electric Vehicles

Repair work may only be performed by specialists who are specially trained in working on intrinsically safe high-voltage systems. Each hybrid car and electric vehicle requires additional vehicle specific training with training achievement controls. Before work is started it is essential that the applicable safety information is read and noted. Work on live high-voltage components is expressly prohibited. Before every step that affects a high-voltage component, the high-voltage system must be de-energised and locked out against unauthorised start-up. If not handled correctly, there is a risk of subsequent damages and the associated safety risks."

Per BMW/Mini Safety instructions for handling electric and hybrid vehicles document:

"1 - Qualification. All repair work on high-voltage components may only be performed by specially trained personnel (qualification: Work on high-voltage inherently save vehicles) must be performed by qualified technicians. Each hybrid car requires additional vehicle specific training with training achievement controls. Required training is offered by the BMW Training Academy."

Understanding high-voltage safety, including OEM-specific high-voltage technician levels, will help ensure a complete, safe, and quality repair.

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