Underwater welding can be a great career opportunity for you. This is a high payable job around the world. Becoming an underwater welder is not an easy job.
Despite this fact, if you are a person who loves taking on challenges, this underwater welding job can be a suitable solution for you.
Underwater welders need to travel to various places for the sake of the job. They are highly trained for this job.
Well, what is this underwater welder? How to become an underwater welder?
These questions must be clicking in your mind.
Worry not. This article will describe underwater welding and how to become one of them. Let’s begin!
Table of Contents
Who are underwater welders
Underwater welders are the type of people who are not only welders but also can be defined as divers also.
They are specialized welders for doing welding operations that include cutting, repairing, and welding metallic things that are situated in an aquatic setting.
Underwater welding needs great expertise in diving also. You need to be a good diver for this job along with your welding qualifications.
Tasks of an underwater welder
An Underwater welder needs to do some specific tasks as follows:
- You need to take pictures of underwater structures as an underwater welder for planning welding operations and projects.
- You may need to help the project managers with planning projects and further developments.
- You need to repair metallic components, further, you have to do fabrication, cutting, fitting, etc operations also for the job.
- You have to ensure the safety of underwater structures by evaluating them.
How to become an underwater welder in 7 steps
Underwater welding is not child’s play. You need to be highly qualified and trained for the job.
This is also one of the most paid welding jobs. Opposite to this, it is also one of the most dangerous jobs.
You need not worry, we have prepared 7 steps for you to become a successful professional underwater welder.
The steps are described for your easy consideration.
Step 1: Mentally prepare for spending some money
You need to spend some money and time on becoming the best welders out there. The amount of money needed for tuition and the certifications varies from institution to institution.
The journey to becoming an underground welder might cost you a minimum amount of a few thousand at least.
Therefore, you must have some savings for this or find a sponsor for this journey to pay the necessary education fees and certifications.
Another option for you can be going to technical schools that are state-funded for saving a bit of money. These colleges include the least expenses and scholarship opportunities. You may find one of them.
Step 2: To get your GED or high school diploma
This is the beginning step after deciding to have a career in underwater welding.
You have to finish your basic level of education. In addition, you need to finish a high school diploma for the process. You can also get your GED in case you return to school after a break or absence.
Let us inform you that your college degree is not a necessary one for becoming an underwater welder. But you need it to stand out from other welders. This will be helpful for you when it comes to applying for your starting job.
As a result, you need to choose the right school for your basic education.
To get a proper high school diploma or GED, you need a considerable amount of time.
Step 3: To get certified as a topside welder
There are some accredited schools for welding that provide training and certifications.
You need to seek some formal training from these types of institutions in several individual welding processes to become the best professional.
Besides, there is an option to become an AWS-certified welder. All you have to do is –
- Completing certified welding program
- Attending written as well as practical hands-on exams
- Getting certifications.
The main objective is to get a proper certification as a part of recognition as a welder.
Step 4: Applying to a commercial diving school to pass the physical exam
You are on a mission to seek a job that will make you work in water for hours. For this, you need proper training in diving to cope with underwater nature.
You will need to sign for a physical test in the first order. This can be done in the same institution where you seek to get diver certification also.
The physical test will be a head-to-toe examination of your body.
- Your swimming abilities will be tested
- The cardiovascular condition will be tested here to ensure the proper physical state for the job.
- You dare not take any alcohol or drugs. This reason is enough to disqualify you from the test and receive a diver certification.
- Symptoms like infection, asthma, motion sickness, claustrophobia or lung sickness can lead you to rejection.
- This physical test is highly recommended for you before going to attend any further diving school.
The physical test is very important for you if you want to work underwater. If you fail or are rejected for some limitations in the test, it will be wise for you not to go forward pursuing underwater welding as a career.
Step 5: Earn certified diver certifications
The next step after passing the physical test is becoming a certified commercial diver.
For this, you should enroll in an accredited diving academy.
This can be anywhere in your state or nearside of the place you live. The selection is yours. Mostly, diving programs are expected to be finished in a period of 5-6 months including about 900 training hours.
After completing your diving program, it’s time for you to receive a validated certification as a commercial diver.
Note that, in order to get the certifications, some diving academies prefer and make it mandatory to sit on written assessments as an entrance exam.
Step 6: Attending an underwater welding school
It is highly important for you to attend an underwater welding school.
This school will help you achieve the most important skill needed for underwater welding, welding, and diving together.
Underwater welding programs course contents vary from surface welding and a specified group of skill sets needed. Your schooling can be the solution for this.
The time to complete these courses may differ from 6 months to 2 years. You will find these schools located in water borders that include transportation, drilling industries and thriving fish.
Step 7: Achieving a commercial diving position as an underwater welder
You may not find a highly valued position in this job just after your schooling and certifications.
Most of the time, underwater welders start their work as dive tenders. It means they will work to assist experienced professionals during work underwater.
This will give you a new experience as a fresher and boost you to get into the business.
You need to send your resume to coastal companies, construction sites, shipbuilders, engineering firms, etc, and get your job as an assistant welder or dive tender.
You must research and select the unique procedure you want to expertise in and work hard. This will help you work at your peak level in the entry jobs.
You need to continue improving your skills in underwater welding. With experience and hard work, you will be able to get the highest pay for the job.
Underwater welder school
In order to get proper training, you need to attend underwater welder school.
This school can vary in its teachings and training courses but they must be accredited.
You need to pass their programs that are combined with the American Welding Society and their standard.
Note that, you need to consider the tuition fees, registration fees, book, equipment, etc with your own costs.
The Best underwater welding schools and college names in the US are mentioned here.
- Diver’s Institute of Technology ( Seattle, Washington )
- National University Polytechnic Institute (NUPI) (San Diego, California)
- The Ocean Corporation ( Houston, Texas)
- South Louisiana Community College (Lafayette, Louisiana)
- CDA Technical Institute ( Jacksonville, Florida)
- Divers Academy International (Erial, New Jersey)
- Hydroweld USA (Miami, Florida)
Besides, you can find a welding school in your nearby place or city.
Underwater Welder Salary
Underwater welding is a high payable job that will ensure you a great amount of money.
It is seen that, in the USA, the average income of an underwater welder is about $42,000 yearly.
In the first few days of your job, it is hard to get paid this amount of money but surely increases over time as you gain experience and professionalism.
The yearly income will be at least $ 25,000 and can increase up to $ 80,000 also. The amount is different based on the place and types of work also.
Is underwater welding dangerous?
Underwater welding is one of the risky jobs for a welder. Yes, it is a dangerous one.
There are many reasons for this. Let’s have a quick overview.
- A welder has to expose himself underwater, therefore, there is a chance to get attacked by harmful marine creatures.
- There is a high risk of getting an electric shock.
- The harmful gasses can create danger and sickness.
- There is always a risk of explosions in the workplace.
- The dry welding process has a high-pressure environment that can create health issues.
- Toxic fumes created can make a welder severely ill.
- Decomposition illness may occur due to active pressure change in water.
Know Details: Why Is Underwater Welding Dangerous?
Underwater welding can be a great career choice for anyone who is interested in the field of welding. It is one of the most payable as well as challenging jobs for its challenges and risks.
Therefore, you need to take proper schooling and training along with certifications.
The article shows you the steps to become an underwater welder and get the best pay.
The steps are tough ones without any doubt. You need to finish every step with excellence and patience.
Surely, you will end up as one of the best underwater welders in the coming days.