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What Does it Take to Be an Embalmer?

Career Description Prepare bodies for interment in conformity with legal requirements.

What Do Embalmers Do On a Daily Basis?

  • Remove the deceased from place of death and transport to funeral home.
  • Attach trocar to pump-tube, start pump, and repeat probing to force embalming fluid into organs.
  • Arrange for transporting the deceased to another state for interment.
  • Press diaphragm to evacuate air from lungs.
  • Incise stomach and abdominal walls and probe internal organs, using trocar, to withdraw blood and waste matter from organs.
  • Serve as pallbearers, attend visiting rooms, and provide other assistance to the bereaved.

Embalmer Needed Skills

Embalmers state the following job skills are important in their day-to-day work.

Speaking: Talking to others to convey information effectively.

Active Listening: Giving full attention to what other people are saying, taking time to understand the points being made, asking questions as appropriate, and not interrupting at inappropriate times.

Critical Thinking: Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems.

Service Orientation: Actively looking for ways to help people.

Social Perceptiveness: Being aware of others' reactions and understanding why they react as they do.

Judgment and Decision Making: Considering the relative costs and benefits of potential actions to choose the most appropriate one.

Types of Embalmer Jobs

  • Manager, Embalmer, Funeral Director
  • Licensed Embalmer
  • Assistant Manager/Embalmer
  • Apprentice Embalmer
  • Embalmer Apprentice

Job Opportunities for Embalmers

In 2016, there was an estimated number of 3,700 jobs in the United States for Embalmer. There is little to no growth in job opportunities for Embalmer. There will be an estimated 600 positions for Embalmer per year.


The states with the most job growth for Embalmer are North Carolina, Colorado, and Tennessee. Watch out if you plan on working in Kansas, Kentucky, or Illinois. These states have the worst job growth for this type of profession.

Embalmer Average Salary

The average yearly salary of an Embalmer ranges between $25,260 and $71,920.


Embalmers who work in New York, Oregon, or Ohio, make the highest salaries.

Below is a list of the median annual salaries for Embalmers in different U.S. states.

State Annual Mean Salary
Alabama $40,780
Arizona $46,090
Arkansas $40,270
California $50,280
Colorado $40,180
Florida $47,070
Georgia $36,570
Hawaii $39,320
Illinois $48,750
Indiana $35,880
Kansas $47,180
Kentucky $39,790
Louisiana $47,320
Massachusetts $46,320
Michigan $48,160
Mississippi $38,890
Missouri $52,810
Nevada $33,260
New York $91,760
Ohio $56,010
Oklahoma $48,360
Oregon $51,960
South Carolina $41,720
Tennessee $44,840
Texas $44,450
Virginia $46,710

What Tools do Embalmers Use?

Although they’re not necessarily needed for all jobs, the following technologies are used by many Embalmers:

  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft Word
  • Microsoft Office
  • Web browser software
  • Corel WordPerfect
  • FPA Software MACCS
  • HMIS Advantage
  • Belmar & Associates Mortware
  • Custom Data Systems Sterling Management Software
  • Twin Tier Technologies MIMS

How to Become an Embalmer

What kind of Embalmer requirements are there?


How many years of work experience do I need?


Where Embalmers Are Employed


Embalmers work in the following industries:



Image Credit: Senior Airman Andrew Lee via Public domain

More about our data sources and methodologies.

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