Petroleum Inspector

Inspect petroleum shipments for quality and impurities before shipment.
picture of Petroleum Inspector

Quick Stats


Salary Range
$20,000 – $56,000

Data from U.S. Department of Labor


What do Petroleum Inspectors do?

Petroleum Inspectors don’t mind getting their hands messy. Spending much of their day outdoors, they examine shipments of petroleum to ensure that they meet order specifications. Petroleum Inspectors test petroleum shipments from around the world before and after delivery.

As a Petroleum Inspector, you often work near a storage facility or port where boats bring new shipments each day. You control the petroleum stored and shipped to and from your area of work.

Your day starts in the field, where you take samples from petroleum containers. You lower buckets and other collecting equipment into a tank of petroleum, and pull out a heaping helping. First, you take a sample from the very bottom, then the middle, and finally the top. Testing each sample ensures that quality is the same throughout.

Once you have your samples, you send them back to the lab. Some days, you may analyze the samples yourself, while other days, a Lab Technician does it for you. Before leaving, you measure the tanks and calculate how much petroleum is stored inside.

When you have your lab results back, you compare your calculations and the results to the original order. Poor quality or small order sizes throw up red flags that this petroleum doesn’t measure up to the customer’s needs.

You act as a stringent Quality Assurance Manager keeping bad batches from slipping through. Clients would lose thousands of dollars on shipments that didn’t meet safety or performance regulations. By promoting responsible petroleum usage, you create a cleaner world.


Should I be a Petroleum Inspector?

You should have a high school degree or higher and share these traits:
  • Levelheaded: You hold your emotions in check, even in tough situations.
  • Team Player: You're able to listen, communicate, and work with tons of different people.
  • Reliable: You can always be counted on to do a good job.

  • How to become a Petroleum Inspector

    Most Petroleum Inspectors 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:9zcaaa&chl=no+college+%2869%25%29|certificate+%2828%25%29|associate%27s+%283%25%29|||&cht=p3&chs=466x180&chxr=0,69,69
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