Car Cooper

Prepare railroad freight cars for loading with grains, and packaged goods.
picture of Car Cooper

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$16,000 – $32,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor

What do Car Coopers do?

Prepares railroad freight cars for loading with grain, ores, packaged goods, and other items: Opens side drop or hopper-bottom doors of cars. Sweeps, scrapes, and shovels rubbish from floors. Hammers down or removes protruding nails from floors and sides. Closes car doors and hammers wooden wedges through latches to secure them. May line interior of cars and doors with paper or cardboard. May repair holes in floors and sides by nailing boards over them. May mix caulking compound and caulk cracks in cars, using handtools. May patch holes in roofs with asphalt coating. May wash interior and exterior of cars, using water hose, disinfectants, brushes, and brooms [CLEANER III]. May seal doors of loaded cars. May move cars on track, using capstan winch or car bar. May spray cars with insecticides to destroy insects and rodents. May record data, such as car number, condition of car for shipment, and date fumigated.

Should I be a Car Cooper?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Ready for a Challenge: You jump into new projects with initiative and drive.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Detail Oriented: You pay close attention to all the little details.

  • Also known as: Car Carder, Car Conditioner, Car Groomer, Car Sweeper, Car Whacker, Car Wiper, Kettle Chipper

    How to become a Car Cooper

    Most Car Coopers have no higher education and get on-the-job training. Think about earning a Certificate or Associate's degree to increase your competitiveness in the field. Chart?chd=s:9gsaaa&chl=no+college+%2872%25%29|certificate+%287%25%29|associate%27s+%2821%25%29|||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,72,72
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