Have you ever desired a career in welding? If you are passionate about it, welding is worth investing in. Given construction projects and industrial development globally, the profession is always in high demand across all sectors. But, can you get better pay if you are a certified welder?
A certified welder can earn way better than an apprentice. Certification demonstrates a certain level of competency. It also portrays experience, giving employers confidence that there would be fewer job incidents and injuries in the workplace, unlike noncertified employees.
Therefore if you are a welder or looking forward to becoming one, earning multiple certifications will position you in a good place to make a good salary. Just like a person with an MBA earns a more lucrative wage than a simple degree graduate, that’s the case with the welding industry.
What Are the Types of Welding Certifications?
As said, welders’ salary increases based on the level of certification. If you are a welder or an aspiring welder, it’s good to understand the types of accreditation available for you. Welding certifications involve assessments offered by professional organizations to confirm how well a welder is in their skills and practices.
Some organizations offering the welders certification include the American Welding Society(AWS). The organizations certify welders by giving them assessment tests to confirm their knowledge, whereby they receive the certificates after passing the tests. The certifications depend on the levels of operation.
Below are some of the certifications you should consider as a welder;
- Certified Welders (CW)
The certified welder program is the lowest level of welders certifications and does not require any initial qualifications. It’s always the bridge to higher certifications. This level covers the procedures observed in fields such as; pipelines, steel, petroleum, sheet metal, and chemical refinery welding industries. Besides, the program allows welders to bag numerous certifications based on preference.
- Certified Welding Inspector Certification (CWI)
CWI advances weld inspection training for the already trained welders. The people holding this certificate are highly recognized as leaders possessing greater skills and knowledge in the welding industry. It opens greater opportunities and job security as those having it work directly with leaders to verify various welding works.
- Certified Resistance Welding Technician Certification (CRWT)
CRWT is a highly demanded industry and offers its holders proof of their highly advanced capabilities in the resistance process. To obtain this certificate, you should have some courses as a prerequisite and a certain period of experience. This type of welding certification involves operation processes on the materials such as automobiles, sheet metal, appliances, and wire.
- Certified Welding Educator (CWE)
This certification holder is responsible for preparing welding instructions and offering skill and technical training to the students. They also assess the qualifications of the trainees towards the educational requirement for various training levels. CWE is also responsible for checking the limitations of welder testings and understanding all the procedures and processes on different pieces of training.
- Certified Welding Supervisor Certification (CWS)
CWS is the highest certification in this field and is recommended for those who have attained managerial qualifications. It’s also ideal for industry experts who are highly knowledgeable in problem-solving and quality assurance.
- Certified Radiographic Interpreter Certification (CRI)
CRI is the certificate offered to welders with qualifications in analyzing weldments radiographs. The CRI holders can analyze radiographic media in the whole weldments and adjacent base metal process.
- Certified Welding Engineer (CWE)
CWE certification is available for welding engineers who wish to certify their welded joint preparations, assembly, and fabrication knowledge. Certified welding engineers play a crucial role in all the processes involving welding plans and the welding itself.
Do Welders With Certificates Get Better Pay?
As you’ve seen, certified welders earn way higher than non-certified welders. Most companies value them for their extensive training. The years spent training to acquire the certifications tell it all, exhaustively building their experience in their respective field. Certification also makes welders more specific, specializing in one area of interest and gathering expertise there. This is contrary to the apprentice who tends to juggle between so many fields at the same time. In this way, they do not perfect in any areas; rather, they get little knowledge, making them less versatile.
Also, welding involves many risks that demand high-quality risk management skills. Before earning a certificate, welders are trained in epic skills to manage such risks. Therefore, the certifications build employers’ confidence in such welders and pay them well.
According to the BLS, there is a shortage of welders across America, something that positions certified welders in the most advantageous place.
What Is the Welders’ Approximate Salary in the US?
According to the BLS report, the salary of an average welder in 2020 in the United States was $46690. Besides certification, welders earn different wages based on several other factors such as location, demand, industry, specialty, experience, and training quality.
By looking at the welders’ salary from the specialty point of view, you’ll notice that some sectors within the same industry pay more than the rest.
On average, the welders, brazzers, cutters, and soldiers working in the fabricated metal products manufacturing pocketed up to $43 650 in 2020. On the other hand, welders working in the pipelines or natural gas distribution earned $77 850 in 2020, a figure much higher than an average welder made. But a blasting truth comes with the air soldiers, cutters, blazers, and all the welders; they earned a whopping $90 000 on average in 2020.
Another major factor that influences welders’ salaries is location. In the United States, different states pay different welding prices. For example, in 2020, the highest paying cities included Fairbanks, AK, which paid an average of $75,080, Wheeling, WV-OH, $74,970, and Anchorage, AK, which paid $73,790.
If you’re looking forward to becoming a welder, certification is an essential part of it, unless your interest is not to make a killing through it. Therefore, consider earning the first certificate and don’t stop at that, but do your best to climb up the ladder.