hourly pay for Chemists
do Chemists make a lot of money


Other names for this job might include Agricultural Chemist, Air Quality Chemist, Analytical Chemist, Astrochemist, Bench Chemist, Ceramic Chemist, Cereal Chemist, Chemical Analyst, Chemical Economist, Chemical Laboratory Chief

  • $80820
  • 58%
    Job satisfaction
  • Quite Hard
    Becoming one
  • Low
    Job growth
OwlGuru Rank


How Much Do Chemists Make In 2018

In this salary guide, you will find out how much do Chemists make.

After reading this, you will be able to make a decision if working as a Chemist will suit your financial goals (e.g: buying a home, BMW or just your target salary goal).

Average salary

Annual salary
$80820 per year

Hourly wage
$38.860 per hour

One of the most popular questions we get from our readers here at OwlGuru is how much do Chemists make per year and what is their hourly wage.

According to BLS, the average annual salary of Chemists is $80820. Their salary can also be as low as $42180 if you’re still a newbie with no experience to over $129670 if you have a ton of experience under your belt.

The typical hourly pay is $38.860 and can range from $20.280 to $62.340 which also depends if you’re a newbie or a professional.

Just like any other job, the salary of A Chemist will vary based on your education and experience level.

# = Over $100 per hour or $200,000 per year.
Salary rank

We wanted to make it easy for our readers to compare the salary of A Chemist to all the other careers out there. So we created Salary Rank.

This compares the salary of all careers and we give them a rank of A, B, C or D depending on how high or low is their average salary.

After comparing how much do Chemists make with other careers, they have a salary rank of A.

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Salary range

Highest (Top 10%)$62.340$129670
Senior (Top 25%)$48.380$100630
Middle (Mid 50%)$35.450$73740
Junior (Bottom 25%)$25.990$54060
No experience (Bottom 10%)$20.280$42180

Entry-level Chemists who starts out at $54060 can expect to make $73740 after 3-5 years of experience in the field.

The bottom 10% makes less than $20.280 per hour while the top 10% makes over $62.340 per hour.

While the median wage is $73740 per annum or $35.450 per hour.

Depending on who you work for, you might also get overtime pay.

# = Over $100 per hour or $200,000 per year.

Highest paying industries

Industry nameHourly wageAnnual salary
Petroleum and Petroleum Products Merchant Wholesalers56.6117730
Waste Collection52.87109980
Federal Executive Branch51.55107220
Federal government, including the US Postal Service51.54107200
Oil and Gas Extraction45.3194250
Computer Systems Design and Related Services45.0893780
Natural Gas Distribution44.5592660
Resin, Synthetic Rubber, and Artificial Synthetic Fibers and Filaments Manufacturing44.3392210
Support Activities for Mining43.9891480
Research and Development in the Physical, Engineering, and Life Sciences43.3790200
Scientific Research and Development Services43.3690190
Management of Companies and Enterprises42.9989430
Professional and Commercial Equipment and Supplies Merchant Wholesalers42.4488270
Metal Ore Mining42.2287820
Other Support Services42.0987560
Aerospace Product and Parts Manufacturing41.8687070
Federal, State, and Local Government41.7686860
Federal, State, and Local Government, excluding state and local schools and hospitals, and the US Postal Service41.7686860
Electric Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution41.586310
Other Fabricated Metal Product Manufacturing41.2985890
Agriculture, Construction, and Mining Machinery Manufacturing41.0285330
Coal Mining40.1883570
Engineering Services40.0683320
Pesticide, Fertilizer, and Other Agricultural Chemical Manufacturing39.9983190
Mining (except Oil and Gas)39.4382010
Printing and Related Support Activities39.1181350
Federal, state, and local government, including government owned schools and hospitals, and the US Postal Service39.0381180
Converted Paper Product Manufacturing38.9781050
Machinery Manufacturing38.9480990
Transportation Equipment Manufacturing38.8980890
Hospitals, Privately owned38.8180730
Medical Equipment and Supplies Manufacturing38.6880460
Other General Purpose Machinery Manufacturing38.5780220
Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services38.5580180
Nonmetallic Mineral Product Manufacturing38.4679990
Pharmaceutical and Medicine Manufacturing38.2179470
Fabricated Metal Product Manufacturing38.279460
Other Food Manufacturing38.1279290
Petroleum and Coal Products Manufacturing38.179250
Motor Vehicle Parts Manufacturing38.0779180
All industries38.0579140
Chemical Manufacturing38.0179070
All industries, private ownership only37.8778770
Miscellaneous Manufacturing37.8678740
Paint, Coating, and Adhesive Manufacturing37.7178430
Merchant Wholesalers, Durable Goods37.6178230
Paper Manufacturing37.3177600
Other Electrical Equipment and Component Manufacturing37.2477460
Electrical Equipment, Appliance, and Component Manufacturing37.2177400
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals, Privately owned37.1177190
Tobacco Manufacturing36.976760
Textile and Fabric Finishing and Fabric Coating Mills36.5476010
Chemical and Allied Products Merchant Wholesalers36.4775870
Other Chemical Product and Preparation Manufacturing36.3475590
Coating, Engraving, Heat Treating, and Allied Activities36.3175520
Nonferrous Metal (except Aluminum) Production and Processing36.1375140
Computer and Electronic Product Manufacturing35.8174490
Navigational, Measuring, Electromedical, and Control Instruments Manufacturing35.874460
Wholesale Trade35.7974440
Basic Chemical Manufacturing35.7774410
Wholesale Electronic Markets and Agents and Brokers35.7474340
Administrative and Support Services35.7274300
Merchant Wholesalers, Nondurable Goods35.6474120
Nonmetallic Mineral Mining and Quarrying35.674050
Cement and Concrete Product Manufacturing35.3473500
Primary Metal Manufacturing35.373420
Sector 56- Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services35.2273250
Soap, Cleaning Compound, and Toilet Preparation Manufacturing35.0872970
Other Miscellaneous Manufacturing35.0772950
Management, Scientific, and Technical Consulting Services34.9772730
Iron and Steel Mills and Ferroalloy Manufacturing34.8772520
Employment Services34.7372230
Drugs and Druggists' Sundries Merchant Wholesalers34.5671890
Semiconductor and Other Electronic Component Manufacturing34.4771700
Hospitals (including private, state, and local government hospitals)34.4471630
Rubber Product Manufacturing34.3871520
Food Manufacturing34.0170730
Textile Mills33.8870460
Health Care and Social Assistance (including private, state, and local government hospitals)33.6369960
Ambulatory Health Care Services33.4969660
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals (including private, state, and local government hospitals)33.4569580
Plastics and Rubber Products Manufacturing33.0968830
Commercial and Service Industry Machinery Manufacturing32.9968630
Local Government, excluding schools and hospitals32.9768580
Local government, including schools and hospitals32.8368280
Machinery, Equipment, and Supplies Merchant Wholesalers32.8268270
Plastics Product Manufacturing32.667810
Pulp, Paper, and Paperboard Mills32.4967580
Medical and Diagnostic Laboratories32.4167420
Beverage and Tobacco Product Manufacturing32.3267230
Waste Management and Remediation Services32.1366820
Sugar and Confectionery Product Manufacturing31.9966540
Waste Treatment and Disposal31.9766500
Transportation and Warehousing31.9666480
Dairy Product Manufacturing31.6365780
Beverage Manufacturing31.3965300
Miscellaneous Nondurable Goods Merchant Wholesalers31.264890
Architectural, Engineering, and Related Services30.7764010
Fabric Mills30.4863400
Hospitals, Local government owned30.3563130
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals, Local government owned30.3563130
Grain and Oilseed Milling30.1762760
Testing Laboratories30.0262440
Other Services (except Federal, State, and Local Government)29.7861930
Educational Services, State government owned29.661570
Colleges, universities, and professional schools, State government owned29.661570
Other Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services29.4961350
Support Activities for Transportation29.4161180
Colleges, Universities, and Professional Schools (including private, state, and local government schools)29.2860890
Educational Services (including private, state, and local government schools)29.2660860
State government, including schools and hospitals28.6159500
Remediation and Other Waste Management Services28.4659200
Educational Services, Privately owned28.1158460
Colleges, universities, and professional schools, Privately owned28.1158460
State Government, excluding schools and hospitals27.2256620

Not all industries pay the same for Chemists.

One of the easiest way to increase your salary is to change industries and find a higher paying one.

Highest paying states


Another simple way to boost your pay as A Chemist is to move to a higher paying state. However moving to a higher paying state like DC doesn’t mean you will make more overall. This is because the expenses at DC may be 2x higher than where you are currently living at right now.

According to the BLS, the highest paid / most successful Chemists are in the states of DC, MD, VA, AK and CA. The average salary in DC is $117610.

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Rank: B+
Salary: $96350

They design or plan protocols for equipment or processes to produce products meeting internal and external purity, safety, and quality requirements.
Rank: C+
Salary: $47390

They conduct chemical and physical laboratory tests to assist scientists in making qualitative and quantitative analyses of solids, liquids, and gaseous materials for research and development of new products or processes, quality control, maintenance of environmental standards, and other work involving experimental, theoretical, or practical application of chemistry and related sciences.
Rank: B+
Salary: $96350

They develop usable, tangible products, using knowledge of biology, chemistry, or engineering. Solve problems related to materials, systems, or processes that interact with humans, plants, animals, microorganisms, or biological materials.
Rank: B+
Salary: $60560

They perform complex medical laboratory tests for diagnosis, treatment, and prevention of disease. May train or supervise staff.
Rank: B
Salary: $91150

They evaluate materials and develop machinery and processes to manufacture materials for use in products that must meet specialized design and performance specifications. Develop new uses for known materials. Includes those engineers working with composite materials or specializing in one type of material, such as graphite, metal and metal alloys, ceramics and glass, plastics and polymers, and naturally occurring materials. Includes metallurgists and metallurgical engineers, ceramic engineers, and welding engineers.

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