How to Earn a Welder Salary Per Year

We released an article on the top states with the highest welder pay a few years ago. Which states have the highest welder salaries? What is the hourly pay for welders in each state?

The story highlighted a USA Today series on careers that focused on middle-skill occupations like welding that students might train for with a community college diploma. The Wall Street Journal’s report on a 24-year-old Texas resident who earned $140,000 in 2014 as a welder after graduating from Texas State Technical College was also included in the article.

Because of how well-liked the first iteration of our essay did, we decided to evaluate the information and update it. It’s also important to keep in mind that it doesn’t necessarily need a four-year degree to secure a solid position and comfortable wage, especially with the number of individuals returning to higher education to upgrade their skills or change their sector of employment as a result of the present economic upheavals.

The data used to compare the top 10th percentile of welders’ 2013 earnings in the top and lowest six states for welders with the median wages in those states was available when we produced this article back in 2015.

So, How to earn a welder salary per year?

Those who work as welders make a low-middle-class salary, with opportunities for growth. However, they should be careful about electrocuting themselves and melting their fingers together. While welding, they may be exposed to radiation and may even become electrocuted underwater. As a result, they must wear gloves and goggles, and avoid swimming in the water.

Pipeline welders make $40,000 to $60,000 per year

Pipeline welders in Canada enjoy high salaries, with average base salaries ranging from $72k to $100k per year. Their salaries are especially high in Alberta, Canada’s third largest province. The province is famous for its flat prairies and majestic mountains, and it is also home to some of the country’s largest oil fields. As a result, Alberta pipeline welders make some of the highest salaries in the country.

Pipeline welders in the United Kingdom earn between PS30k and PS45k a year, on average. This figure is significantly higher than the national median, but is still significantly below the national average. While pipeline welders in Scotland earn a high salary, the job market is relatively untapped in the region, with fewer pipeline jobs available. Pipeline welders in Scotland earn approximately PS30k per year on average, while welders in the Yorkshire region make an average of PS30k per year.

As infrastructure is a necessary part of society, pipeline welders who are skilled in industrial pipelines will be in demand. The risk of an oil spill is high, and a pipeline welder who is capable of repairing it will earn more than someone who does not specialize in this field.

Although pipeline welders can earn a great salary, it is important to remember that they will be working long hours. Some welders take months off each year, while others will work long days for weeks on end. In addition to long working hours, pipeline welders may have to work in wet environments, and their jobs are often in difficult conditions.

In addition to a high salary, pipeline welders are also rewarded with excellent benefits and a great work environment. According to, the average pipe welder salary in the United States is $60,000 per year. The exact amount may vary depending on the state where you live and the type of work you perform. The cost of living in your location may also determine the amount you make in a given year.

Welders in the oil and gas industry can work on rigs and platforms. Their work is often hazardous, and they must be physically fit to carry out their duties.

Offshore welders make $40,000 to $60,000 per year

Offshore welding is a lucrative career choice, with jobs that pay between $40k and $60k. You’ll be working on rigs and other oil rig equipment in locations all over the world, including Alaska and Texas. Offshore welding is not for beginners; the work is intense and the environment can be dirty and harsh. You will also work long hours, and you may not get a lot of appreciation from your higher-ups.

As an offshore welder, your salary will depend on the type of welding you do. You’ll work under water and be exposed to cold, freezing temperatures. As you work, you’ll use ultra-hot torches to weld underwater. In addition, you’ll work in harsh conditions that require you to be extremely careful, as there are very high currents and little visibility. However, most people who start in this position will move on to other careers within five to ten years.

While the average salary for offshore welders is $40k to $60k per year, it can be more than twice that. In Alberta, you’ll earn a low-middle-class salary, but you’ll be able to earn more if you’re willing to relocate. Moreover, British Columbia has many coastal cities.

You can earn good money as an offshore welder by working in dangerous environments. However, you need to be experienced and be willing to risk your life. The job demands years of experience and requires extreme training, so this job is not for the faint of heart.

The pay for this job varies depending on the type of diving and the method you use for welding. For example, there are Scuba divers and saturation divers, both of which are used for welding. Those with these two methods will have longer stays at higher depths and use different types of gasses instead of air.

In addition to scuba certification, offshore welders may also need to have commercial diving certification. Most underwater welding positions are outside the U.S. and international waters, so certification is important if you plan to work on an international site. You’ll be required to have a good understanding of the ship’s piping systems, as well as knowledge of the equipment’s safety features.

Contract welders make up to $300,000 per year

You might not know this, but there are many ways to earn as a contract welder. This job can be very lucrative. Employers want skilled welders. Not only do they want someone who can do the job correctly, they also want someone who can work with other people. This job requires a lot of practice and training.

A contract welder can work in a wide variety of jobs, ranging from repairing pressure piping to welding pipelines. These jobs are always in demand. While these jobs can be hazardous, they offer lucrative incomes. You may be required to travel to war zones or work underwater.

If you’re seeking the best pay, then you’ll need to make your way up the ranks. But it is not impossible to make a fortune as a contract welder if you’re willing to spend the time learning the trade. The higher the pay, the more risk and expertise you need to have. So, you should decide what level you want to reach, and compare that to other welding positions. Then, compare each company’s Total Rewards package, which includes pay, pension, insurance, and benefits.

Related – Welder Salary Near Me

If you’re a skilled underwater welder, you can earn up to $300,000 per year. However, keep in mind that this job is dangerous and will require a lot of overtime. Underwater welders work with ultra-hot torches. They must be able to work in freezing temperatures and strong currents. This career is not for everyone, and many will not stay in the job for more than five or ten years.

In addition to being skilled, welders must be able to follow safety standards. They need to wear protective gear and store their tools properly. Welders also need to practice constantly to improve their skills. This job requires a high level of skill, experience, and training.

Wages for welders vary widely depending on location. In some states, such as Alaska and North Dakota, hourly wages are higher than in other states. This is partly because these states’ economies are closely linked to domestic energy production. Other states that have high welder wages include Hawaii and California. However, these states have higher living costs than Deep South states.

The Highest Welder Salaries In the US

Welders in Alaska’s top 10% earned the highest hourly wages at the time this data was retrieved, at $43.83. North Dakota ($39.05) and Hawaii ($39.75) were next close behind. Top-end welder wages in these states range from $83,000 to $91,000 for full-time employment (40 hours per week for 52 weeks).

The top 6 states for welders, including North Dakota, Alaska, and Hawaii, were as follows:Alaska

  • Hawaii
  • Dakotas, North
  • North Carolina
  • Wyoming
  • Nevada

These were the lowest 6 states:

  • Tennessee
  • Vermont
  • Nebraska
  • Arkansas
  • Iowa
  • Dakota, South

How much does a Welder make?

In the US, welders typically make $39,696 a year, or $19.08 an hour. The poorest 10% of welders in that range, or around $29,000 annually, while the highest 10% make $54,000 annually.

How much a welder makes depends on their location. In Massachusetts, New Jersey, Alaska, Delaware, and Wyoming, welders earn the highest salaries.


The pay for welders might vary based on the sector. In fact, according to our research, welders often earn substantially higher incomes in the automotive, energy, and technology sectors. For instance, welders in the automotive business earn a staggering average income of $45,059 annually. In contrast, professionals in this sector in the oil business make $44,367, and those in the technology industry make $43,526.

Due to its lowest average wage of $38,765, the transportation sector may not be the best choice for welders.


Depending on the number of years of experience a person has, a welder’s wage might range from entry level to senior level. A mid-career professional with 3-6 years of experience makes an average annual pay of $39,696, while a senior level accountant with 7–12 years of experience gets an average annual compensation of $57,970. An accountant with 0–2 years of experience typically makes $27,118. The Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS), whose National Compensation Survey is based on variables including knowledge, complexity, contacts, and surroundings, provides information on how experience level influences overall compensation.

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Offshore welders are exposed to radiation

Offshore welders face a variety of dangers and risks while they work. For example, welding around electrical wires and power lines can result in fatal shock if they accidentally touch them. Welders must also be careful to separate fuel and ignition sources from their welding area. Additionally, they should lock the work area and cover combustible materials with water before welding. However, even the safest welding procedures can still expose welders to dangerous levels of radiation.

A typical welding arc generates a narrow range of radiation and visible light. This radiation can cause damage to the retina of the eye. It is a painful burning sensation that usually leads to eye irritation and, in severe cases, blindness. Welders should wear eye protection.

Workers should wear protective eye wear and skin protection when welding underwater. The most effective solution is a dry chamber system. For this, temporary hyperbaric chambers are designed to keep water out of the welding area and contain up to three welders at a time. In addition to being pressurized, these chambers can also reduce the risks of pressure sickness. Wet welding is another option, but it’s not always practical.

Underwater welding requires special training and unique skills. These professionals typically work on offshore oil rigs and pipelines. While the job can be lucrative, it is also one of the most hazardous. Thousands of people are employed underwater to construct, repair, and install structures underwater. In addition to oil and gas pipelines, these welders also work on submarines, subsea habitats, and nuclear power facilities.

A common hazard for underwater welders is electrical shock. Welders must wear special protective equipment to prevent electrocution. They must also be cautious about the presence of marine life and follow safety protocols. Offshore welding is a lucrative career, but it is important to take proper precautions. A safety helmet and face screen are essential for underwater welders.

Offshore welders are also exposed to a high amount of radiation during welding. The radiation can be absorbed by inhaling it or swallowing it. Recently, radiation inspectors found that radium levels in pipeline cleaning yards were so high that full-time pipe cleaners were exposed to more radiation than an average nuclear industry worker. To protect workers, Louisiana has implemented laws requiring pipe cleaners to wear protective masks.

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