How to Become a Welding Inspector? The Job Outlook For Them

Today, Certified Welding inspectors play an important role in both the commercial and industrial sectors. With so many projects available, from construction and manufacturing to mining, aerospace, as well as shipbuilding, all types and levels of welding inspection jobs are in growing demand. But with that comes an increase in safety standards and skill expectations. Whether you’re new to the industry or you want to increase your chances of getting the best welding inspector job available, this guide can help you learn how to become a welding inspector.

What is a welding inspector?

Welding inspectors are responsible for checking the quality of construction equipment and ensuring that welders adhere to strict guidelines that help make buildings safe, improve vehicle design, and extend the life of infrastructure. They also make sure the equipment is working properly and the welding consumables are in good condition. If a project is not up to standard, the welding inspector will suspend production until the violation is rectified. Welder testers have certifications that demonstrate their in-depth knowledge and experience of welding practices and techniques.

What is a welding inspector?

What does a welder inspector do?

Prior to commencing construction, welder inspectors ensure that equipment and materials used to complete welds are operating properly and in good condition. They also prepare the necessary procedures and documentation to conduct and document the inspections. When conducting production or construction, welder inspectors review the work of other welders, including the use of appropriate welding procedures and temperature control methods.

What does a welder inspector do?


  • Competitive salary
  • Travel – many certified welding inspectors can explore the world through their work
  • Working in any industry can allow you to meet top experts in the field, adding to your networking possibilities.
  • Constantly learning and advancing – you can improve your skills and knowledge as you continually handle the latest tools and equipment and master the latest methods in the profession.


  • Comply with local tax rules when working internationally
  • Risks – working on construction sites and projects means facing certain risks.
  • Responsibility both for the quality of the work conducted and the safety of the workplace, as well as a range of industry-specific compliance requirements.

How to become a welding inspector?

Becoming a welder inspector requires work experience and some level of education before passing the certification exam. Here are the steps to becoming a welder inspector:

Complete welding education

Welding courses and programs may be available at the high school level and can prepare you to enter the field. If you don’t complete welding courses before you graduate, you can join a full-time program at a technical college. The number of years of welding training you complete will affect your ability to find work as a welder and later as an inspector.

How to become a welding inspector?

Accumulate work experience

To be certified as a welder inspector, you need a combination of education and experience as a welder. Gaining experience in different industries can help you prepare for certification exams and increase your job prospects. Welding areas you can explore include:

  • Construction
  • Aviation
  • Shipbuilding
  • Building maintenance

Get Inspector Certificate

Income certification demonstrates your knowledge and competence and can improve your income and job security. The American Welding Society is the only source of certification for those who want to become a Certified Welding Tester or CWI. To register for the exam, you need to mail your application and fee to AWS six weeks in advance. You need an 8th-grade education and four years of welding experience, which is equivalent to a high school diploma and two years of experience or a college degree and six months of experience to be eligible for CAWI. CAWI is valid for three years and is not renewable.

Get Inspector Certificate

Renew your certificate as needed

To maintain your certification, you must apply for renewal every three years. This involves paying the renewal fee and submitting a notarized renewal form. You are not required to take continuing education courses, but you must pass a vision test again and continue working as a welder inspector for two of the three years between visits terms.

The job outlook for welder inspectors

Thanks to high demand in many fields, the salaries of certified welding inspectors and hourly rates can be quite high. There is no specific salary data for welder inspectors. However, the average salary for a similar role for a welder in the United States is $38,188 per year. Geographic location, experience, risk, and education can all affect your salary as a welder tester.

For example, welding inspectors who inspect aircraft are often paid more. The difference could also be due to the cost of living in different regions – the more expensive the country, the higher the salary. The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that job growth for those in welding will grow at a rate of 3% per year, which equates to 13,600 individual jobs annually.


Every person involved in the welding process makes the world a safer place and our modern life easier and more convenient. Welding inspection contributes greatly to the construction of safe, sturdy buildings, transportation systems, as well as energy systems. Becoming a CWI takes time and welding experience, but it’s one of the most essential and important careers you can take on in any industry. Use this guide to help you understand how to become a welder inspector and ensure that you are properly qualified for certified welding inspection jobs.

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