Welders, cutters, solderers, and brazers weld or join metal parts. They also fill holes, indentions, or seams of metal products, using hand-held metal joining equipment.

Highly skilled travelling welders can earn over $100,000/year.


Average Hourly Earnings



  • Study blueprints, sketches, or specifications, and calculate dimensions to be welded
  • Inspect structures or materials to be welded
  • Lay out, position, align, and secure parts and assemblies before assembling them, using straightedges, combination squares, calipers, and rulers
  • Ignite torches or start power supplies
  • Operate safety equipment and use safe work habits, and monitor the welding process to avoid overheating
  • Recognize, set up, and operate hand and power tools common to the welding trade, such as shielded metal arc and gas metal arc welding equipment
  • Examine products to find defects and to rework defective parts
  • Maintain equipment and machinery

Work Environment

Welders almost always work indoors, sometimes in comfortable air temperatures and at other times in work spaces without climate control. On a typical workday, workers often use their hands to handle, control, or feel objects, tools, or controls. Noise levels in this setting are sometimes distracting or uncomfortable and workers may be exposed to contaminated materials or get minor injuries. To remain healthy, these workers must wear protective or safety equipment. Being able to work well within a team is very important in this work. You may experience stress in this job due to time pressures. Experienced welders can travel the world installing pipelines, working on cruise ships, and building infrastructure.

Key Traits

Conventional. Often involves following set procedures and routines. May include working with data and details more than with ideas. Usually have a clear line of authority to follow.