How Much Do Construction Machine Operators Make in 2021 (including Starting Salary)

Stan T.Career, SalaryLeave a Comment

Annual Salary, Salary Range, and Highest Paying States and Industries

Construction Equipment Operators

Construction Equipment Operators operate one or several types of power construction equipment, such as motor graders, bulldozers, scrapers, compressors, pumps, derricks, shovels, tractors, or front-end loaders to excavate, move, and grade earth, erect structures, or pour concrete or other hard surface pavement. May repair and maintain equipment in addition to other duties.

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Table of contents
  1. Average salary
  2. Starting salary
  3. Salary rank
  4. Salary range
  5. Highest paying states
  6. Highest paying industries

Average salary

Annual salary
$55280 per year
Hourly wage
$27 per hour

Starting salary

Entry-level annual salary
$32,980 to $39,150 per year
Entry-level hourly wage
$16 to $19 per hour

Entry-level Operating Engineers and Other Construction Equipment Operators with little to no experience can expect to make anywhere between $32,980 to $39,150 per year or $16 to $19 per hour. Similar to any other job, their salary will increase as they gain experience.

Salary rank

Salary rank

We wanted to make it easy for our readers to compare the salary of Operating Engineers and Other Construction Equipment Operators to all the other careers out there. So we created Salary Rank. We compared the salary of all careers then we gave them a rank of A, B, C, or D depending on where their average salary sit in comparison to other careers.

Salary range

Level Hourly Annual
Highest (Top 10%) $42 $87,220
Senior (Top 25%) $32 $65,640
Middle (Mid 50%) $24 $49,770
Junior (Bottom 25%) $19 $39,150
No experience (Bottom 10%) $16 $32,980

Highest paying states

State Hourly Annual
NY $41 $85,700
NJ $40 $82,200
IL $39 $81,290
HI $39 $81,120
CA $38 $78,420
WA $37 $76,350
MA $36 $74,490
CT $34 $70,640
MN $33 $69,640
AK $33 $68,550

Another simple way to increase your salary as an Operating Engineer and Other Construction Equipment Operator is to move to a higher paying state. However moving to a higher paying state like NY doesn’t guarantee that you will make more because the expenses at NY might be much higher than where you are currently living at right now.

According to BLS, the highest paid Construction Machine Operators are in the states of NY, NJ, IL, HI and CA.

Highest paying industries

Salary by industry Annual Hourly
Scientific Research and Development Services $74430 $35.78
Spectator Sports $72370 $34.79
Natural Gas Distribution $71890 $34.56
Merchant Wholesalers, Nondurable Goods $69560 $33.44
Building Equipment Contractors $66440 $31.94
Electric Power Generation, Transmission and Distribution $64890 $31.20
Rail Transportation $64040 $30.79
Fabricated Metal Product Manufacturing $62680 $30.14
Highway, Street, and Bridge Construction $62040 $29.83
Architectural, Engineering, and Related Services $61910 $29.76
Nonresidential Building Construction $61850 $29.74
Building Finishing Contractors $60760 $29.21
Other Heavy and Civil Engineering Construction $60750 $29.21
Foundation, Structure, and Building Exterior Contractors $60740 $29.20
Federal Executive Branch $60080 $28.89
Other Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services $59430 $28.57
Real Estate $59300 $28.51
Chemical Manufacturing $58680 $28.21
Utility System Construction $58670 $28.21
Oil and Gas Extraction $58130 $27.95
Pipeline Transportation of Crude Oil $57230 $27.51
Petroleum and Coal Products Manufacturing $57000 $27.40
Machinery Manufacturing $56430 $27.13
Residential Building Construction $56250 $27.04
Services to Buildings and Dwellings $55390 $26.63
Other Specialty Trade Contractors $55090 $26.48
Waste Treatment and Disposal $54970 $26.43
Management of Companies and Enterprises $54930 $26.41
Remediation and Other Waste Management Services $54760 $26.33
Pipeline Transportation of Natural Gas $54520 $26.21

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