How Much do Underwater Welders Make?

If you have been contemplating deeply on becoming an underwater welder especially because of that juicy pay that they collect, you had better act fast on it if you have got the willpower, energy, and the time. Leaving the small pep talk, maybe it is even better to ask that big question of how many underwater welders are paid annually.

Before we go into this we definitely don’t need a reminder of how dangerous and difficult welding itself can be. And if welding can be so dangerous as you can imagine, what would you say of underwater welding. It definitely is one of the riskiest careers on the planet and so you will always be correct when we say underwater welders are worth much more than they are paid. 

To answer the big question well, again it is necessary to throw a general question of what underwater welders do. Well, just like the normal welding they also work on metal alloys but not on the ground this time, around the water. And the many places where they are likely to work could be on ships, on oil rigs, on pipelines in the sea and many other places as such.

Now to the main question of how much would an underwater make annually? Well, since they do very difficult work in difficult places, it is expected that they would be paid more than many other professionals of other specialties. And generally, the average pay of underwater welders starts from a $100, 000 in a year. 

On average, it is estimated that an underwater welder is paid about twenty-five dollars for an hour and as for an underwater welder, whose tasks would often not be in the water, their least pay is around thirty thousand dollars. As expected, the pay of an underwater welder is based on the kind of task they perform and the location of that task.

Also, there seem to be other factors that come into play, with regard to the salary of an underwater welder, and it is all these factors that affect other conditions such as the job chances and how marketable you are of yourself which all come together to influence how many underwater welders make. An examination of the factors that influence underwater welders’ pay will assist you in deciding on whether you should go on following the path of an underwater welder. 

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Factors that Determine the Annual Pay of Underwater Welders. 

  • Experience 

Of course, the experience of the professional has always been a large determinant in the amount they get in their work. And this is the same for underwater welders. The experience of the underwater welder has a big say in the salary figure.  And in most cases, the diving experience of the welder is usually favored over the welding experience.

But there must have been some reasonable level of experience both in the diving and welding operation before you can be given something as huge. Before an underwater welder can collect a pay as huge, the years of experience in the welding and diving functions should not be less than 3 years, however, it is very normal that the salary of a professional will definitely be far higher than a beginner. 

  • The Location of the Job

Since most of the jobs of an underwater welder is usually international, there is bound to be different variations in the salary pay. It all depends on the country, their pocket weight and how much value they see the job. However, there is a standard pay across the globe and underwater welding is generally seen as a tough man’s job. 

  • Qualifications

The certification of the underwater welder also takes part in determining how much welders make annually. When you are very much qualified and with the necessary certifications the evidence eliminates any prior doubts about your professionalism and hence it guarantees you more pay. If you have got certification for both welding and diving skills, then huge pay is guaranteed. 

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  • Working Conditions

The environment where the underwater welder will be working is also a huge determinant in how much will be paid for the job you do. In some situations, the atmosphere of the environment might be very severe and extreme. The pay of the underwater welder will definitely be huge in such situations. For instance, in areas where you will be working in very deep waters with extreme temperatures, or with high current waves the pay will surely be higher than other less severe circumstances.  So the obstacles encountered in the water determine how many underwater welders make. 

  • Work Type and Duration

The type and duration of the work project that will be done to determine the pay of an underwater welder. If the work is a difficult one and then it will last for a while, then there is guaranteed to be a higher pay than a shorter and easier one. 

  • Overtime Payment. 

Since the job of the underwater welder comes in seasons and the job conditions usually allow for overtime, most underwater welders avail themselves of the extra time in doing other jobs and make more money. So an underwater welder would tend to make more than enough money that would last them till another project. 

They are some other factors that affect the salary of an underwater welder. For instance, factors such as the performance, speed, literacy level, and the method of diving also affect the payment figure of an underwater welder. Underwater welders whose method is the mixed gas saturation are likely to collect more money than other methods. 

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How Much is Paid to Underwater Welders?

The average pay per hour for an underwater welder is around twenty-five dollars and for a month, the salary figure given to underwater welders could be as high as $6000 and as low as $3000. And again, your diving method determines the amount paid to underwater welders.

For instance, saturation divers make more money than other divers. Saturation divers can earn more than half a million dollars in a year. This means they earn nothing less than the $50000 in a month. So who are saturation divers? 

Saturation divers go to the deepest part of the sea, for as deep as 350 feet,  to work for very long durations. Since the pressure of the deep waters is much more than the water at the sea level, divers tend to develop decompression sickness when they stay too long in the water and dive against the high pressure of the deep waters. So saturation divers survive for long underwater by using oxygen mixed gases such as helium to breathe while working underwater.

This gas eliminates the effect of high-pressure on the CNS system of the saturation diver. Saturation divers can work for weeks underwater by surviving and working from underwater chambers that eliminate the high pressure so that there is no decompression and the diver does not develop any decompression sickness throughout their stay in the water. 

Saturation divers are paid according to the depth they go and the amount paid is measured according to each foot they cover. After the first hundred feet, the deeper a saturation diver goes the higher the pay they collect. 

Also, some extra bonuses are given to saturation divers because of the long duration in water and the amount of stress they undergo when doing the job. So the depth of their work, the duration, and the difficulty of the job all come into play in determining how much is paid to underwater welders who are saturation divers.

These conditions may seem interesting in the mind and their pay even more tempting but you need several deep contemplations before deciding to embark on the journey of becoming a saturation diver.

The process is a very long one and saturation divers pass through very difficult training and experiences in the commercial diving school before they can become one. And these difficult processes involved is what makes saturation divers very rare. 

Also, the kind of underwater welder determines how much they are paid. There are basically two kinds of underwater welders: offshore and onshore diving underwater welder. 

Offshore Welders

As for offshore welders, their work takes place mostly on the sea, gulfs, and oceans. Offshore welders usually must have had some training and gotten certified in the commercial diving school. And the job of offshore divers, usually a maintenance or oil extraction project, takes place on oil rigs, on large ships, and other project works related to the oil and gas industry. 

The backup that is provided to offshore divers usually comes from the surface of the water from a small boat or stable structure on the water. The work of offshore welders is usually a difficult one and in most cases, it would take a lot of days or even weeks to work under the water.

They would have to adapt very quickly to the different climate and enhanced darkness and very high pressure that comes from the water. The duration used in working on a project can range from three to six weeks in the seek and they can be given overtime of about 12 hours for a project. 

There is much cash here, but the job requires a lot of experience, skill, and talent because of the many dangers the come during operations. So it is a brave man’s job.  And when we are talking about how many offshore divers are paid there definitely would be a distinction between an experienced professional and a newly certified offshore welder with little or no experience.

As for experienced professionals, their annual pay most times ranges from $60,000 to around $90,000. And for new offshore underwater welders, their salary usually comes between $45,000 to $60,000. And the season for offshore projects usually starts from late  March and stops late October to November. It stops here because of the irregularities that are experienced in the climatic conditions of Winter. 

Onshore Divers

Onshore welding is also called inland welding. The job of onshore welders usually happens in the rivers, dams, lakes, or under the bridge. The support given to onshore welders can be on small boats or a scuba. It all depends on how deep the dive is. And since the environment of the job is usually on or around freshwaters, the corrosion is not as much on their gears. 

And contrary to the maintenance or extraction projects that are common to the offshore welding, the job of onshore divers is usually related to the construction and civil engineering field.

Their job may range from repairing the weakened structures on or in the water, running a check and repair on the walls of the dam, repairing a broken or leaking pipe in the sewers, repairing a broken part on a vessel, or even constructing some structure in water. 

As for onshore welders, their job is almost constant and even more during the spring or winter due to the high current flow of water and storms during such seasons. And the job is usually a busy one that can last for up to forty-five hours on weekdays. And the amount pay of onshore welders is also basically determined by their years of experience. 

The salary for an experienced onshore diver is very much higher than that of a new onshore welder. For new rookie onshore welders, their annual pay can range from about $30,000 to $ 45,000. And for the experienced onshore welders with about four to six years and above experience, their annual pay can start from $45,000 to around $80,000. 

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Clearly, underwater welders make quite a reasonable amount of money, And their pay is very much worth it because of the difficult challenges they are often faced with during their welding operations. And this is very much the reason why the training they pass through in the commercial diving school is usually a long difficult one.

In fact, many usually quit before their training completion and end up following another career path. So you might need to weigh in all the options very well before following the path of an underwater welder. 

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