Find Trade Colleges

Study Area & Zipcode

Pump Operator

Find Schools Near

What Do Pump Operator Do?

Job Description: Tend, control, or operate power-driven, stationary, or portable pumps and manifold systems to transfer gases, oil, other liquids, slurries, or powdered materials to and from various vessels and processes.

Daily Life Of a Pump Operator

  • Monitor gauges and flowmeters and inspect equipment to ensure that tank levels, temperatures, chemical amounts, and pressures are at specified levels, reporting abnormalities as necessary.
  • Clean, lubricate, and repair pumps and vessels, using hand tools and equipment.
  • Connect hoses and pipelines to pumps and vessels prior to material transfer, using hand tools.
  • Test materials and solutions, using testing equipment.
  • Plan movement of products through lines to processing, storage, and shipping units, using knowledge of interconnections and capacities of pipelines, valve manifolds, pumps, and tankage.
  • Collect and deliver sample solutions for laboratory analysis.

Pump Operator Needed Skills

Below is a list of the skills most Pump Operators say are important on the job.

Operation Monitoring: Watching gauges, dials, or other indicators to make sure a machine is working properly.

Monitoring: Monitoring/Assessing performance of yourself, other individuals, or organizations to make improvements or take corrective action.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Operation and Control: Controlling operations of equipment or systems.

Reading Comprehension: Understanding written sentences and paragraphs in work related documents.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Types of Pump Operator

  • Pipeline Dispatch Operator
  • Tank Tender
  • Caustic Pump Operator
  • Day Light Relief Operator
  • Grease and Tallow Pumper

Are There Job Opportunities for Pump Operators?

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 11,900 jobs in the United States for Pump Operator. New jobs are being produced at a rate of 13.4% which is above the national average. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts 1,600 new jobs for Pump Operator by 2026. Due to new job openings and attrition, there will be an average of 1,700 job openings in this field each year.


The states with the most job growth for Pump Operator are North Dakota, Idaho, and Nevada. Watch out if you plan on working in Kentucky, North Carolina, or New Jersey. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

How Much Does a Pump Operator Make?

The average yearly salary of a Pump Operator ranges between $28,930 and $73,010.


Pump Operators who work in Indiana, California, or Alaska, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Pump Operators in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $54,960
Alaska $52,990
Arizona $51,260
California $54,750
Colorado $46,580
Florida $43,530
Georgia $45,010
Illinois $53,050
Indiana $55,230
Kansas $37,260
Kentucky $47,260
Louisiana $50,270
Michigan $47,440
Minnesota $50,350
Mississippi $40,590
Missouri $38,160
Montana $50,950
Nebraska $33,470
New Hampshire $50,410
New Jersey $47,230
North Dakota $45,540
Ohio $42,550
Oklahoma $46,510
Oregon $48,950
Pennsylvania $42,370
Texas $44,230
Utah $53,060
Washington $45,670
West Virginia $50,010

Tools & Technologies Used by Pump Operators

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Pump Operators:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Data entry software
  • Supervisory control and data acquisition SCADA software
  • Computerized maintenance management system CMMS

How to Become a Pump Operator

Education needed to be a Pump Operator:


What work experience do I need to become a Pump Operator?


Where Pump Operators Are Employed


The table below shows the approximate number of Pump Operators employed by various industries.


Other Jobs You May be Interested In

Are you already one of the many Pump Operator in the United States? If you’re thinking about changing careers, these fields are worth exploring:


Image Credit: via

More about our data sources and methodologies.

Featured Schools

Find Trade Schools Near You

Our free school finder matches students with accredited trade schools across the U.S.