Drilling Fluids Engineering Technology

DFE tech

Professional Mud School

Tyler, Texas

Career Overview

In order to become a Drilling Fluids Tech, you need to study and become proficient the field of Drilling fluids technology.

There are various schools around the country which that have been graduating fluids hands for years, but most are private, owned by the Big Mud Companies, and they have become more particular about when and whom they choose to send to school these days, and for good reason. Over the years, most schools have become more book & product oriented, and most have lost the practical aspect of properly running / engineering a drilling fluid.

As a mud hand for 32+ years, I have had the opportunity to work with mud technicians all over the world. A handful of techs actually "engineer" the drilling fluids, but the vast majority operate on check-to-check basis, 'checking the mud' and prescribing reactive, temporary treatments to repair the current, degraded property(s).

A mud hand graduating  from any professional Mud School should be able to analyze a fluid properly, administer treatment properly, and professionally manage any drilling fluid, on any rig.... anywhere.

Students graduating from DFE tech are able to step on a rig anywhere in the world and properly prescribe the correct fluids treatment within an hour or so of analysis.



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 Our technicians are trained in the mathematics of running mud properly instead of the reactive position of checking the mud and concocting a temporary fix each day to repair whichever property is in need of repair. This is what we call being 'run by the mud.' There are check and fix mud hands, and then there are Professional Fluids Technicians.

The Fluids Technician field is desperately in need of good hands that actually understand the process of "engineering" a drilling fluid. The industry needs technicians that can count, technicians that can operate a basic office computer, and are able to communicate well with other hands on the rigs. Engineering a fluid properly requires math, and the math is not difficult. Common sense, an ability to 'look ahead', and a solid understanding of proper fluids management processes will take you far in this occupation.

Average starting salary for fluids technicians is +/- $4500 to $5500 per month. That's 54K to 66K per year. This does not include 401K matching, a company vehicle, an expense account, all gasoline paid, inexpensive insurance benefits, and all equipment issued including computer & mud equipment. In my opinion, the Mud Technician's position is arguably the best job in the oilfield, and one of the least known and understood. Hands may work 7 days on: 7 days off, 14 and 14, 28 and 28, or make rig checks on a daily basis.