Are Boilermakers in Demand? Exploring the Future of Boilermaking Industry

When it comes to the construction industry, many people automatically think of architects, engineers, and builders. However, one profession that tends to fly under the radar is that of boilermakers. These skilled tradespeople work in a variety of settings, including power plants, chemical plants, and refineries. Boilermakers are responsible for constructing, installing, and repairing large tanks, boilers, and pressure vessels. With the demand for energy and industrial production on the rise, the question arises – are boilermakers in demand?

In recent years, the answer to that question has been a resounding “yes.” The Bureau of Labor Statistics predicts that employment of boilermakers will grow by 6% from 2019 to 2029 – faster than the average for all occupations. This growth is due, in part, to the increasing need for renewable energy sources, such as wind and solar power. As more power plants and refineries make the shift toward these cleaner energy sources, they require skilled workers to install and maintain the necessary equipment. This demand for boilermakers is also driven by the need for infrastructure improvements and maintenance, particularly in the oil and gas industry.

So, why are boilermakers in such high demand? For one, the work they do is highly specialized and requires a unique set of skills that can’t easily be replaced by automation or technology. Additionally, the complexity of the equipment they work on makes it essential that it is installed and maintained with precision and care. With the demand for energy and infrastructure improvements only expected to increase in the coming years, boilermakers are well-positioned for a career that is both financially lucrative and professionally fulfilling.

Boilermaker Job Outlook

Boilermakers represent an important trade in the construction and manufacturing industries. These skilled professionals are responsible for designing, building, and maintaining boilers and other large containers that hold gases and liquids.

The job outlook for boilermakers is positive. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, employment opportunities for boilermakers are projected to grow by 1% over the next decade, which is about as fast as the average growth rate for all occupations.

  • Increased demand for boilers: The demand for boilers is expected to continue growing due to the expansion of the energy sector, as well as industrial development. This demand for new boilers will create more opportunities for boilermakers.
  • Retirement of experienced workers: As experienced boilermakers retire, there will be a need to replace them. This will create job openings for new workers in the field.
  • Skilled trade: Boilermaking is a skilled trade that requires a high level of expertise. Thus, boilermakers are in high demand due to the level of expertise required in the field.

As a boilermaker, you can expect to earn a median annual salary of $62,150, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. The highest-paid boilermakers earn over $87,000 annually, while the lowest-paid earn less than $38,000. Factors such as experience, location, and industry can affect your earning potential as a boilermaker.

IndustryMedian Annual Salary
Utility System Construction$75,140
Petroleum and Coal Products Manufacturing$73,660
Building Equipment Contractors$59,970
Iron and Steel Mills and Ferroalloy Manufacturing$59,260

Overall, if you have the skills and expertise required for boilermaking, this can be a lucrative and stable career path with opportunities for growth and advancement.

Boilermaker training and certification

Boilermakers are skilled tradespeople who build and repair boilers and other large containers that hold liquids and gases. This trade involves a combination of welding, fabrication, and construction skills. To become a boilermaker, individuals must undergo rigorous training and earn certifications to demonstrate their competence in the field.

  • Apprenticeship: Aspiring boilermakers can enter a formal apprenticeship program, which typically lasts four years. These programs provide on-the-job training and classroom instruction, covering topics such as blueprint reading, welding techniques, and safety procedures. Apprentices work under the guidance of experienced boilermakers, honing their skills and gaining practical experience. Upon completion of the program, apprentices become journeymen boilermakers.
  • Certifications: Boilermakers can obtain various certifications to demonstrate their expertise and proficiency. For example, the National Board of Boiler and Pressure Vessel Inspectors offers a certification in boiler and pressure vessel welding. The American Welding Society offers certifications in various welding techniques, including those used in boiler construction. Other organizations offer certifications in rigging, crane operation, and other skills relevant to the boilermaker trade.
  • Continuing education: Boilermakers must stay up-to-date with the latest developments in their field. They may attend seminars, workshops, and other training sessions to learn about new welding techniques, advances in boiler technology, and changes in safety regulations. By continuing to learn and improve their skills, boilermakers can remain in demand and advance in their careers.

Boilermaker training and certification are essential for ensuring the safety and reliability of boilers and other pressure vessels. These skilled tradespeople play a crucial role in a variety of industries, including power generation, manufacturing, and construction. By investing in training and certification, boilermakers can ensure that they are equipped with the skills and knowledge needed to thrive in this dynamic field.

Industries that employ boilermakers

Boilermakers are highly skilled tradespeople who construct, install, and repair boilers, tanks, and other large vessels that hold liquids and gases. They are employed in a variety of industries that rely on these vessels to operate their businesses. Here are some of the primary industries that employ boilermakers:

  • Construction: Boilermakers are often employed in the construction industry where they build boilers, tanks, and pressure vessels for industrial plants and other facilities. They may also install and repair these systems at construction sites.
  • Manufacturing: Many manufacturers rely on boilers and other pressure vessels to operate their factories and production lines. Boilermakers are tasked with installing, repairing, and maintaining these systems to keep production running smoothly.
  • Mining: The mining industry relies heavily on large boilers and pressure vessels to power mining equipment and process minerals. Boilermakers are responsible for constructing and maintaining these vessels, ensuring that they operate safely and efficiently.
  • Power generation: Boilermakers play a critical role in the power generation industry. They build and maintain the boilers and reactors that produce steam, which is used to power turbines and generate electricity.
  • Transportation: Boilermakers are also employed in the transportation industry where they work on boilers and pressure vessels used in ships, planes, trains, and other vehicles. They may also work on the systems that power these vehicles, such as steam engines and gas turbines.


Boilermakers are highly skilled tradespeople who are in demand across a variety of industries. From construction to transportation, boilermakers play a critical role in keeping many businesses and industries operational. As industries continue to grow and evolve, the demand for boilermakers is likely to remain steady.

Power generation29%

Source: Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS)

How technology is impacting the boilermaker profession

The boilermaker profession has seen significant technological advances that have transformed the way they operate. These advancements save time, increase efficiency and accuracy, and improve overall safety in the field. Below are a few ways technology is making an impact on the boilermaker profession:

  • Computer-aided design (CAD): Boilermakers can now use CAD technology to create 3D models of their work before they even begin construction. This technology allows them to detect any potential design flaws or issues, reducing the risk of costly mistakes down the line.
  • Welding technology: Welding has been a critical component of the boilermaker profession for years. However, new welding technology has made the process more efficient and results in higher-quality welds. Some boiler manufacturing companies now use robotic welding systems, which increase the speed and accuracy of welding while reducing the need for labor-intensive manual welding.
  • Virtual reality (VR): VR systems in the boilermaker profession allow workers to experience a virtual environment that mimics the real-life one they will be working in. VR training provides an immersive experience that allows boilermakers to learn and practice skills in a safe and controlled environment.

Additionally, technological advancements have allowed for better monitoring and tracking of boiler systems. For example, data logging devices can be attached to boilers to track performance and detect any problems before they occur. This technology allows boilermakers to make data-informed decisions about when to perform maintenance, reducing downtime and improving efficiency.

TechnologyImpact on Boilermaker Profession
Computer-Aided Design (CAD)Increase efficiency and accuracy
Welding TechnologyHigher-quality welds and faster production times
Virtual Reality (VR)Safe training experience and increased skill development
Data Logging DevicesBetter monitoring and tracking of performance, reducing downtime

As technology continues to advance, we can expect even more improvements in the boilermaker profession. As a result, the demand for boilermakers is likely to increase, as they will be needed to operate and repair these new and technologically advanced systems.

Average boilermaker salary and wages

Boilermaking is an in-demand profession, and the average boilermaker salary and wages reflect this. Below are some key points to consider when evaluating the earning potential of boilermakers:

  • The average hourly wage for boilermakers in the United States is $28.56, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics (BLS). This translates to an average annual salary of $59,460 based on a typical 40-hour workweek.
  • The top 10% of boilermakers earn more than $92,000 per year, while the bottom 10% earn less than $38,000 annually.
  • The highest-paying industries for boilermakers include aerospace product and parts manufacturing, natural gas distribution, and spectator sports.

When evaluating the salary and wages of boilermakers, there are a few key factors that can impact earnings:

  • Experience: Like many professions, boilermakers with more experience typically command higher wages. Those just starting out may earn less than experienced boilermakers with years of experience under their belts.
  • Location: Boilermakers in certain geographic regions may earn more than those in other areas. For example, boilermakers in Alaska, Hawaii, and Illinois earn some of the highest wages in the country.
  • Certifications: Some boilermakers may hold certifications that allow them to command higher wages. These certifications can demonstrate a higher level of expertise and experience in the field.

For a more detailed breakdown of boilermaker salaries by location and experience level, consult the BLS’s Occupational Employment Statistics data. This data provides comprehensive information on boilermaker wages and salaries nationwide.


Overall, the average boilermaker salary and wages reflect the high demand for skilled workers in this profession. With experience, certifications, and a solid work ethic, boilermakers can earn a comfortable living in an industry that shows no signs of slowing down.

Boilermaker Skills and Qualifications

Boilermakers are highly skilled professionals who work in various industries, including construction, manufacturing, and maintenance. They are responsible for assembling, installing, and repairing boilers, tanks, and other vessels that hold liquids and gases under pressure. Boilermakers must have a unique set of skills and qualifications to thrive in this challenging profession.

  • Physical Strength: Boilermakers need to be physically fit and able to lift heavy objects, climb ladders and work in confined spaces.
  • Technical Knowledge: The role requires in-depth knowledge of engineering and construction, including the ability to read and interpret blueprints and schematics.
  • Problem-solving: Boilermakers need to be able to identify and troubleshoot problems with boilers and tanks, and find ways to fix them quickly and efficiently.

Boilermakers must also have specific qualifications to begin their careers in this field. Some of these include:

  • High School Diploma or GED: Most boilermaker apprenticeships require this as a minimum educational requirement.
  • Apprenticeship Program: Boilermakers typically participate in a 4-5 year apprenticeship program that provides hands-on training and education, culminating in journeyman status.
  • Certifications: Boilermakers may also need certifications in welding, rigging, and crane operation, depending on the industry and the job requirements.

To give you an idea of the type of technical knowledge boilermakers need, here is an example of a chart that shows one type of welding commonly used in the profession:

Weld TypeAdvantagesDisadvantages
Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW)Produces high-quality welds; suitable for thin materials; good control of heat and filler metal.Slow welding speed; requires high skill level; not cost-effective for large projects.

Overall, boilermakers are in demand due to their highly specialized skills and the critical role they play in various industries. With the right skills and qualifications, a boilermaker can attain journeyman status and enjoy a rewarding career in this field.

Benefits and drawbacks of a career as a boilermaker

Boilermakers are skilled craftsmen who construct, install, and repair various types of boilers, vats, and other containers that hold liquids and gases. They work in a variety of industries, including construction, oil and gas, manufacturing, and power generation. Boilermakers are in demand in today’s job market, and there are numerous benefits to pursuing a career in this field. However, there are also some drawbacks to consider.

  • Pros:
  • Job security: Boilermakers are in high demand, and the need for their specialized skills is expected to grow over the next decade. This means that their job security is generally excellent, and there are typically numerous job opportunities available, both locally and worldwide.
  • High pay: Boilermakers are well-compensated for their work. According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, the median annual wage for boilermakers was over $62,000 in 2020. This figure is significantly higher than the median wage for all occupations, which was just under $42,000.
  • Opportunities for advancement: Boilermakers have the opportunity to advance their careers by moving into supervisory or management roles. Additionally, some boilermakers choose to specialize in a particular type of boiler or container, such as nuclear reactors or water treatment plants, which can lead to higher-paying and more specialized work.
  • Work on interesting projects: Boilermakers work on a variety of interesting projects, including the construction of large, complex structures like oil refineries and power plants. This work can be challenging and rewarding, and the sense of accomplishment from completing a project can be significant.

While there are many benefits to a career as a boilermaker, there are also some drawbacks to consider. These include:

  • Cons:
  • Physical demands: Boilermakers perform physically demanding work, often in confined spaces or at heights. They also work with heavy machinery and equipment, which can be dangerous. As a result, the job can be physically and mentally challenging.
  • Travel requirements: Boilermakers may be required to travel for extended periods to work on projects. This can be challenging for those with families or other obligations.
  • Work environment: Boilermakers often work outdoors, and the job can be dirty and noisy. They may also work in high temperatures or in hazardous environments, which can be uncomfortable and dangerous.

Overall, a career as a boilermaker can be both lucrative and rewarding. However, it is essential to consider both the benefits and drawbacks of the job before deciding to pursue this career path.

Job securityPhysical demands
High payTravel requirements
Opportunities for advancementWork environment
Work on interesting projects

Ultimately, boilermaking is a solid career path for those who enjoy working with their hands, don’t mind a physically demanding job, and are willing to travel for work. With strong job security, high pay, and opportunities for advancement, a career as a boilermaker can be a rewarding choice for those willing to put in the work.

FAQs: Are Boilermakers in Demand?

1. What do boilermakers do? Boilermakers fabricate, assemble, and repair boilers, vats, and other large metal structures used in a variety of industries.

2. Are boilermakers in demand? Yes, boilermakers are in demand in various industries such as construction, manufacturing, and power generation.

3. What is the job outlook for boilermakers? The job outlook for boilermakers is positive and projected to grow by 6% from 2020 to 2030, according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

4. What skills do boilermakers need? Boilermakers need technical skills in welding, cutting, and blueprint reading, as well as physical strength and mechanical aptitude.

5. How much do boilermakers earn? Boilermakers earn a median annual wage of $64,240 according to the US Bureau of Labor Statistics.

6. Can boilermakers work in multiple industries? Yes, boilermakers can work in various industries such as construction, manufacturing, and power generation.

7. How can one become a boilermaker? Typically, boilermakers need a high school diploma or equivalent, and then complete an apprenticeship or on-the-job training program.

Closing: Are You Interested in Pursuing a Career as a Boilermaker?

Thank you for reading our frequently asked questions about whether boilermakers are in demand. Boilermakers are currently in demand in various industries, and the job outlook is projected to grow positively over the next decade. If you are interested in pursuing a career as a boilermaker, there are a variety of paths you can take, including an apprenticeship or on-the-job training program. We hope this article was informative and helpful in your career exploration. Please visit us again for more valuable information and resources.