Heat Treating Equipment Operators

Manufacturing > Production

Projected Growth: Decline

Projected Job Openings

Some Preparation Needed

Job Description

Your job is to Set up, operate, or tend heating equipment, such as heat-treating furnaces, flame-hardening machines, induction machines, soaking pits, or vacuum equipment to temper, harden, anneal, or heat-treat metal or plastic objects.

Common job titles of Heat Treating Equipment Operators include:

Experience and Education

Some previous work-related skill, knowledge, or experience is usually needed. For example, a teller would benefit from experience working directly with the public.

  • 69.85% said they needed a High School Diploma.

  • 20.06% said they needed a Less than a High School Diploma.

Tasks & Responsibilities

Wondering what Heat Treating Equipment Operators REALLY do throughout a day at work? Perhaps you should know what you’ll be doing all day before pursuing a career. So here are some tasks that Heat Treating Equipment Operators can be found doing during the work day. Hover over each task for information about relevance and importance. Scroll further to find a list of other careers that have similar tasks.

Essential Tasks

    Move controls to light gas burners and to adjust gas and water flow and flame temperature.

    Mount fixtures and industrial coils on machines, using hand tools.

    Set up and operate or tend machines, such as furnaces, baths, flame-hardening machines, and electronic induction machines, that harden, anneal, and heat-treat metal.

    Read production schedules and work orders to determine processing sequences, furnace temperatures, and heat cycle requirements for objects to be heat-treated.

    Adjust controls to maintain temperatures and heating times, using thermal instruments and charts, dials and gauges of furnaces, and color of stock in furnaces to make setting determinations.

    Record times that parts are removed from furnaces to document that objects have attained specified temperatures for specified times.

    Remove parts from furnaces after specified times, and air dry or cool parts in water, oil brine, or other baths.

    Start conveyors and open furnace doors to load stock, or signal crane operators to uncover soaking pits and lower ingots into them.

    Load parts into containers and place containers on conveyors to be inserted into furnaces, or insert parts into furnaces.

    Set and adjust speeds of reels and conveyors for prescribed time cycles to pass parts through continuous furnaces.

    Examine parts to ensure metal shades and colors conform to specifications, using knowledge of metal heat-treating.

    Reduce heat when processing is complete to allow parts to cool in furnaces or machinery.

    Test parts for hardness, using hardness testing equipment, or by examining and feeling samples.

    Determine types and temperatures of baths and quenching media needed to attain specified part hardness, toughness, and ductility, using heat-treating charts and knowledge of methods, equipment, and metals.

    Determine flame temperatures, current frequencies, heating cycles, and induction heating coils needed, based on degree of hardness required and properties of stock to be treated.

    Signal forklift operators to deposit or extract containers of parts into and from furnaces and quenching rinse tanks.

    Heat billets, bars, plates, rods, and other stock to specified temperatures preparatory to forging, rolling, or processing, using oil, gas, or electrical furnaces.

    Position stock in furnaces, using tongs, chain hoists, or pry bars.

    Mount workpieces in fixtures, on arbors, or between centers of machines.

    Clean oxides and scales from parts or fittings, using steam sprays or chemical and water baths.

    Place completed workpieces on conveyors, using cold rods, tongs, or chain hoists, or signal crane operators to transport them to subsequent stations.

Regular Tasks

    Set up and operate die-quenching machines to prevent parts from warping.

    Position parts in plastic bags, and seal bags with irons.

    Repair, replace, and maintain furnace equipment as needed, using hand tools.

Occasional Tasks

    Stamp heat-treatment identification marks on parts, using hammers and punches.

    Instruct new workers in machine operation.

What Tools and Technologies do Heat Treating Equipment Operators use?

The future of work is gonna be… techy🤖. No matter the career path, you’ll have to understand what the experts use to get the job done. Employers want to see practical experience with these tools and technologies. Use these lists to figure out what tools you need to learn and see trends about up and coming tech. Scroll further to find a list of other careers that use similar tools.


Winch stackers

Wheeled forklifts

Vacuum leak detectors

Vacuum heat treating furnaces

Tempering furnaces

Suction hoods

Steel hardness testers

All Tools

Steel hardness scopes

Soaking pits

Slotted screwdrivers

Shot blasters

Shock freezers

Shaker hearth furnaces

Sand blasters

Quench presses

Pry bars

Protective clothing

Power grinding tools

Personal computers

Pallet riders

Pallet jacks

Order pickers

Open end hand wrenches

Mechanical vacuum pumps

Lubricant guns

Kevlar gloves

Industrial furnace tongs

Induction hardening furnaces

Heat resistant face masks

Gas powered generators

Free-standing jib cranes

Flame-hardening machines

Finger protection gloves

Fiberglass gloves

Exhaust gas collection systems

Electronic hand trucks

Digital thermocouples

Continuous hardening furnaces

Conductivity testers

Claw hammers

Chain hoists

Carbonitriding equipment

Bridge cranes

Batch type hardening furnaces

Automated salt bath furnaces

Atmosphere furnaces

Annealing furnaces


No abilities found

Everything Heat Treating Equipment Operators Should Know…

Heat Treating Equipment Operators typically have vast knowledge of the subjects below. Think about this a lot… if you’re not a fan of the subjects, chances are this career isn’t for you. But, there’s plenty of time to learn and continue to learn throughout your career 🎓


Production and Processing

Knowledge of raw materials, production processes, quality control, costs, and other techniques for maximizing the effective manufacture and distribution of goods.


Knowledge of arithmetic, algebra, geometry, calculus, statistics, and their applications.

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