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How Much Do Oil Rig Welders Make in the UK? 2022 Salary Statistics

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oil rig

If you wish to be an oil rig welder in the UK, or you are already one but don’t know how much salary you should start with, this guide is for you.

Salary is one of many factors you should consider as you search for employment or even before you get onto any career path. So, what is a typical oil rig welding salary? Ideally, this may vary depending on your employer, skills, experience, etc.

In this article, we will look at the average wages for oil rig welders in the UK. We’ll also discuss several duties and responsibilities of an oil rig welder so that as you learn about salary expectations, you can also determine if you are ready for the work involved.


What Does Oil Rig Welding Entail?

The oil rig welding industry is one of the most demanding industries. This welding takes place mainly in oil rigs, and this pertains maintenance of oil rigs. The field needs extensive training and experience, as well as extensive knowledge of different metals. Excellent communication skills and a high concentration level are a plus.

The work environment for oil rig welders is harsh. Usually, it involves long periods in confined spaces or working at heights. If you can work in these conditions and produce high-quality welds, this job is for you.

The duties and responsibilities of an oil rig welder vary depending on the region, employer, and activities performed.

General oil rig welding duties include:
  • Maintaining equipment such as torches, electrodes, and other tools
  • Making sure that all welding work complies with safety regulations set by the company or agency that owns the oil rig
  • Reading blueprints to determine the type of steel required for each project
  • Cutting steel using a grinder or torch
  • Working with various types of steel products including pipes, valves, and fittings
  • Installing bolts and nuts onto pipes during construction projects
  • Inspecting welds for quality control purposes before and after completion of a project
  • Repairing broken pipes and other equipment on an oil rig
  • Installing new pipeline or equipment on an oil rig
  • Installing new machinery on an offshore drilling platform
oil rig welder

Image Credit: Tawansak, Shutterstock

Types of Oil Rig Welders

There are two primary types of oil rig welders in the UK. They include:

Land-Based Oil Rig Welders

Land-based oil rig welders work on land rather than at sea. Usually, they work with other skilled workers such as pipefitters and plumbers.

Their job is to install piping systems, pumps, and valves to ensure that everything is working well. When they find a problem, they have to fix it immediately.

This way, production can continue without interruption. Land-based welders receive a high salary.

Offshore Oil Rig Welders

Offshore oil rig welders work on an offshore platform or ship. They work in high temperatures, humidity, and pressure. It can be dangerous to the health of any worker, and one has to be physically fit and mentally strong. Usually, offshore oil rig welders receive a higher salary than land-based oil rig welders.

oil rig construction

Image Credit: Pixabay

How Do You Become an Oil Rig Welder in the UK?

If you want to become an oil rig welder, you must first complete a welding course at a vocational school or college.

The duration of this training will vary depending on your chosen career path. Then, you can work with an experienced oil rig welder.

It’ll help you gain experience before becoming a certified oil rig welder. It usually takes around three years to become a qualified oil rig welder in the UK.

Average Salary of an Oil Rig Welder in the UK

The average salary of an oil rig welder in the UK is £31,320 per year. But this can go higher depending on several factors such as experience and levels.

In an hour, oil rig welders earn £15.06. Besides the salary, they also receive bonuses amounting to £529 annually.

The expertise of the welder plays a role in the amount of salary to be expected. For instance, entry-level oil rig welders earn an average salary of £23,196. They have one to three years of experience in the field.

On the other hand, seasoned or senior-level oil rig welders receive 38,108 GBP annually. Usually, seasoned oil rig welders have more than eight years of experience in oil rig welding.

Oil rig welding is a competitive job market. So, if you have the training and experience, you can earn more than this.

Here’s a table summarizing the annual average salary of oil rig welders in the UK.

The Oil Rig Welder’s Level Average Annual Salary
Entry-Level Oil Rig Welder £23,196
Senior-Level Oil Rig Welder £38,108
Average Oil Rig Welder Salary £31,320

Point to note: The average salary, in this case, doesn’t include bonuses and benefits.

oil rig welder at work

Image Credit: somkhuanfoto, Shutterstock

Oil Rig Welder Benefits and Bonuses

Many oil companies in the UK offer certain benefits and bonuses to their employees. These bonuses are a reward to employees who work hard during the year. For instance, you can get a bonus when a company you work for hits a milestone in its operations. These bonuses are incentives for workers to give their best during the coming year.

Besides bonuses, there are also health and life insurance, pension plans, personal accident insurance, among numerous other benefits. These benefits may vary from company to company, but overall oil rig welders are well taken care of.

How Can You Earn More as an Oil Rig Welder in the UK?

It’s possible to boost the welder’s basic salary and earn a little more following the tips below.

Get Your Training Certificate

Professionals make more money compared to learners in the field. You need a welding training certificate to be identified as a professional welder. You can get this training from a welding school.

Join a Union

Joining a union is another way of boosting your salary as an oil rig welder. It’ll help you gain access to many job opportunities in the industry. Also, it’ll improve your chances of getting paid more for your work.

Improve Your Skills

You can also increase your income by improving your skills as an oil rig welder. The more skilled you are, the more money you’ll earn as an oil rig welder in the UK.

The best way to learn is by watching a professional working. You can even ask questions about their techniques if you’re interested in learning more about oil rig welding. It’ll help you understand how everything works and what mistakes to avoid while doing your job.

inspection of oil rig

Image Credit: noomcpk, Shutterstock

What Challenges Do Oil Rig Welders in the UK Face?

Oil rig welding is a specialized field. It has a whole different set of challenges than the average job. Before you determine if a career in oil rig welding is worth it, consider the challenges faced in day-to-day activities. Below are some of the risks involved:

Working Environment

Oil rig welders must be aware of their surroundings at all times. They often work on platforms suspended above water bodies. So, they’re exposed to danger if they don’t take proper precautions.

Dangerous Equipment

One of the biggest challenges that rig welders face is handling dangerous equipment such as blowout preventers. They stop any leaks from occurring in offshore wells.

There have been instances where blowout preventers have failed, causing explosions and fatalities.

Working Long Hours Away from Home

Oil rig welders travel great distances to remote locations, working long hours with little sleep. It can take a toll on both mental and physical health.

Injuries and Accidents

Accidents can happen at any time. Usually, they result from human error or equipment failure. It can lead to severe injuries, such as cuts, burns, or fractures. It’s crucial to follow safety procedures to reduce the risk of injury or death when working on oil rigs.


Conclusion

Ultimately, a career in oil rig welding isn’t for those looking for a get-rich-fast scheme. It needs hard work, time, and the ability to handle stress.

But if you’re up to the challenge, several benefits can come along with it. The salary may not be high at first, but as you gain more experience, you can command a higher salary.

As this article has shown, a career in oil rig welding can also be rewarding down the line. The UK is one of the best places you can be if you want to become an oil rig welder.

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Featured Image Credit: WORKSITE Ltd., Unsplash

Cameron Dekker
 

Cameron grew up in Allentown, Pennsylvania, a once-proud steel town on the Lehigh River, where he got a taste of TIG welding in his high school shop class. He holds certificates for Certified WeldingEducator (CWE) and Certified Resistance Welding Technician (CRWT) from the American Welding Institute. His interests include scuba diving, sculpture, and kayaking.