Meaning of Latero

A latero is the Tagalog term for tinker. To be definite, a tinker or a tinsmith is a person whose expertise is handling light metals. They specializes in bending or manipulating light based metal as to repair or create something new. Moreover when we say tinsmith, they commonly deal with tinwares are usually associated with kitchenwares.

Current Meaning in a Filipino Setting

The description above is the definite version of a tinker. However in the Philippines setting, that is not the exact case. Though the concept of handling light based metal is still present, the actual definition is far from dealing with kitchenwares. When we say “latero”, there are actually two notions coming out from it.

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Latero as an “Auto Denter”

The first impression is that someone who repairs damage to metal body portions particularly on automobiles. They are usually tasked to fix dents on the plates of a vehicle with the use of mechanical or hydraulic equipments. Aside from fixing dents, it is common for them to be also knowledgable in applying custom-designed spray painted layout to cars.

Latero as a Roofer

Another notion is that they specializes in installing roofing systems. In other words, they are roofers. They are the one in charge in roofing installation and are usually hired by contractors to handle such tasks. They are responsible for generating the necessary roofing materials needed as well as installing it. In layman’s term, they are laborers whose expertise are into roofing.


Both notion still preserves the idea of handling light metal based materials. However as one can observe, the actual English term is not enough when defining the meaning of the word latero. It can be interpreted as someone who repairs dents on automobiles or someone whose expertise is in handing roofing materials.