What is Underwater Welding?
Underwater welding is a welding job that speaks for itself – welding underwater. It can also be known as hyperbaric welding, which defines the process of welding at elevated pressures. It is usually carried out wet and underwater or dry in enclosed positive pressure environments. Normally, steel is used for this form of welding as steel performs well underwater. Work is usually carried out on large steel bridges, ships, offshore oil sites and major pipelines.
Underwater welding directly exposes the welder and equipment to water at depths as far as 300 metres. The standard type of welding for this type of work is normally arc welding, however, it has also been known to use variations of shielded metal arc welding, using a waterproof electrode.
Using an electrode for welding underwater is similar to dry welding, however, there are more waterproofing elements to the equipment such as the cables. They are also heavily insulated to keep the equipment and materials warm as temperatures are considerably cooler underwater if the equipment was used on land it would overheat.
How Do I Get A Career in Underwater Welding?
It’s a career that can take years to master but is quite quick to learn. Many underwater welders are actually certified commercial divers and try their hand at welding and develop their skills into a career. You can expect to be paid well welding underwater with a well-paid welder earning £82,000 and an average welder with medium experience looking to take home £50-60,000 per year.
In order to become an underwater welder, you’ll need to have all the appropriate diving certificates in order for you to dive at certain depths. Becoming a certified commercial diver can be expensive but is vital in order to work underwater. So it’s important to have enough money to fund your training at a diving school first. You will then need to become a certified welder; there are a number of ways to do this such as becoming an apprentice or taking a course at an educational institution.
Once you’re fully qualified you can then join an underwater welding school for full training and combining the two skills together.
For more information on the types of welding and the equipment, you’ll need in order to train to become an underwater welder, call Arc Welding Services on 0121 327 2249 or fill in our contact form and we’ll be happy to offer advice.