hourly pay for Respiratory Therapists
do Respiratory Therapists make a lot of money

Respiratory Therapists

Other names for this job might include Cardiopulmonary Rehabilitation Respiratory Therapist, Cardiopulmonary Technician and EEG Tech (Cardiopulmonary Technician and Electroencephalogram Technician), Certified Respiratory Therapist (CRT), Clinical Coordinator of Respiratory Therapy, Inhalation Therapist, Oxygen Therapist, Registered Respiratory Therapist (RRT), Respiratory Care Practitioner (RCP), Respiratory Therapist (RT), Respiratory Therapy Director

  • $60640
  • 74%
    Job satisfaction
  • Medium
    Becoming one
  • High
    Job growth
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How Much Do Respiratory Therapists Make In 2018

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

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

Average salary

Annual salary
$60640 per year
Hourly wage
$29.150 per hour

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

According to BLS, the average annual salary of Respiratory Therapists is $60640. Their salary can also be as low as $42490 if you’re still a newbie with no experience to over $81550 if you have a ton of experience under your belt.

The typical hourly pay is $29.150 and can range from $20.430 to $39.210 which also depends if you’re a newbie or a professional.

Just like any other job, the salary of A Respiratory Therapist 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 Respiratory Therapist 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 Respiratory Therapists make with other careers, they have a salary rank of B.

Become one

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Salary range

Highest (Top 10%)$39.210$81550
Senior (Top 25%)$33.970$70650
Middle (Mid 50%)$28.210$58670
Junior (Bottom 25%)$23.720$49340
No experience (Bottom 10%)$20.430$42490

Entry-level Respiratory Therapists who starts out at $49340 can expect to make $58670 after 3-5 years of experience in the field.

The bottom 10% makes less than $20.430 per hour while the top 10% makes over $39.210 per hour.

While the median wage is $58670 per annum or $28.210 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
Outpatient Care Centers33.1769000
Educational Services, Local government owned32.0866730
Employment Services31.164690
Sector 56- Administrative and Support and Waste Management and Remediation Services31.0564580
Administrative and Support Services31.0564580
Educational Services, State government owned30.5763590
Colleges, universities, and professional schools, State government owned30.5663570
Residential Intellectual and Developmental Disability, Mental Health, and Substance Abuse Facilities29.9262220
Residential Intellectual and Developmental Disability Facilities29.9262220
Outpatient Mental Health and Substance Abuse Centers29.6361620
Ambulatory Health Care Services29.4861310
Home Health Care Services29.4361220
Ambulance Services29.4361220
Offices of All Other Health Practitioners29.1460620
Local Government, excluding schools and hospitals29.0460410
Specialty hospitals, Privately owned28.8159930
State Government, excluding schools and hospitals28.7959890
Specialty (except Psychiatric and Substance Abuse) Hospitals (including private, state, and local government hospitals)28.7759850
Offices of Other Health Practitioners28.5959470
Nursing Care Facilities (Skilled Nursing Facilities)28.3558960
State government, including schools and hospitals28.3258900
Hospitals, Privately owned28.2858820
All industries, private ownership only28.2758800
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals, Privately owned28.2358720
Health Care and Social Assistance (including private, state, and local government hospitals)28.2258690
Nursing and Residential Care Facilities28.2258690
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals, State government owned28.2158680
All industries28.1258490
Hospitals, State government owned28.1158470
Hospitals (including private, state, and local government hospitals)28.158450
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals (including private, state, and local government hospitals)28.0658360
Offices of Physicians28.0358300
Offices of Physical, Occupational and Speech Therapists, and Audiologists28.0258290
Pharmacies and Drug Stores27.7757770
Federal, state, and local government, including government owned schools and hospitals, and the US Postal Service27.0256200
Specialty hospitals, State government owned26.9456040
Other Ambulatory Health Care Services26.8555850
Local government, including schools and hospitals26.7755690
Hospitals, Local government owned26.6955510
General Medical and Surgical Hospitals, Local government owned26.6855500
Professional, Scientific, and Technical Services26.2254530
Other Residential Care Facilities26.1654420
Health and Personal Care Stores26.0354140
Retail Trade26.0254130
Consumer Goods Rental25.4752970
Real Estate and Rental and Leasing25.4352900
Rental and Leasing Services25.4352900
Federal, State, and Local Government25.3552740
Federal, State, and Local Government, excluding state and local schools and hospitals, and the US Postal Service25.3552740
Psychiatric and Substance Abuse Hospitals, Privately owned25.352620
Professional and Commercial Equipment and Supplies Merchant Wholesalers25.1752360
Merchant Wholesalers, Durable Goods25.1652330
Wholesale Trade25.1152230
Medical and Diagnostic Laboratories2551990
Psychiatric and Substance Abuse Hospitals (including private, state, and local government hospitals)24.9851950
Continuing Care Retirement Communities and Assisted Living Facilities for the Elderly24.8551680
Commercial and Industrial Machinery and Equipment Rental and Leasing24.5751110
Psychiatric and Substance Abuse Hospitals, State government owned24.2650460
Federal Executive Branch24.2650460
Federal government, including the US Postal Service24.2650460
All Other Ambulatory Health Care Services23.8149520

Not all industries pay the same for Respiratory Therapists.

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 Respiratory Therapist is to move to a higher paying state. However moving to a higher paying state like CA doesn’t mean you will make more overall. This is because the expenses at CA may be 2x higher than where you are currently living at right now.

According to the BLS, the highest paid / most successful Respiratory Therapists are in the states of CA, NJ, AK, NV and MA. The average salary in CA is $79370.

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Rank: A
Salary: $48800

They provide respiratory care under the direction of respiratory therapists and physicians.
Rank: A
Salary: $55210

They conduct tests on pulmonary or cardiovascular systems of patients for diagnostic purposes. May conduct or assist in electrocardiograms, cardiac catheterizations, pulmonary functions, lung capacity, and similar tests. Includes vascular technologists.
Rank: A+
Salary: $83710

They provide radiation therapy to patients as prescribed by a radiologist according to established practices and standards. Duties may include reviewing prescription and diagnosis; acting as liaison with physician and supportive care personnel; preparing equipment, such as immobilization, treatment, and protection devices; and maintaining records, reports, and files. May assist in dosimetry procedures and tumor localization.
Rank: A+
Salary: $68390

They produce ultrasonic recordings of internal organs for use by physicians.
Rank: B+
Salary: $43420

They care for ill, injured, or convalescing patients or persons with disabilities in hospitals, nursing homes, clinics, private homes, group homes, and similar institutions. May work under the supervision of a registered nurse. Licensing required.

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