Coded Welders What You Need To

coded welders

In the welding world, there are two types of professional welders and these are the coded welders and the certified welders. However, both can have the same title which means a coded welder can be a certified welder and vice-versa. We already know much about the certified welders being the professionals that hold documents to prove their skills and mastery of the type of welding they were trained to. 

A coded welder, on the other hand, doesn’t need to have a certificate to prove his skills in the art of welding, especially of complicated work. In short, he must show physical evidence that he can do a specific welding task that the test personnel must approve. In most cases, some employers prefer to hire coded welders because of their ability to complete welding work which most professional welders cannot do. But how does a coded welder earn such skills? Through training, experience, attending programs and the ability to adapt to the complexities of the required work, of course.

On the one side, one cannot be called a certified coded welder if he has not passed a Welder Approval Test. This test would be given to the welder by accredited personnel such as from the ASME (American Society of Mechanical Engineers). When the test personnel has provided the specific welding codes, the welder should be able to understand the configuration of the code and must complete the welding requirements.  

coded welders
coded welders

What Is It About

Coded welding is the use of codes that indicates welding specifications. Once the weld has been completed, the testing personnel will assess the result to see if it has met the standard requirements set by accredited certifying bodies. There are 3 welding methods that are commonly used in coded welding and these are the stick welding, TIG and MIG welding. So depending on the code, you must choose the type of electrode and filler materials for every code. 

Many times people ask are there actually codes involved in the coded welding? Yes, there are. When you are applying for a welding job and the employer asks you if you understand codes and you say yes, he expects that once he gives you the metal to fuse and the codes, you know what to do. So what are these codes? 

Welding codes are a combination of letters and numbers that specify specific welding work. The general welding code standards being used today are the BS 4872, BS EN 15614, EN 287, ASME IX, BS EN 287-1, EN ISO 9606-1 and the CAA A8-10. Each code specifies a certain position in welding as well as the required thickness of the weld. For example, the ASME IX is the American code qualification that generally applies to an inclined joint while the BS 4872 is the British version that refers to beam welding joints or plate work. Note that there could be differences and similarities among these codes for every country. Like the BS EN 287-1 which is the European standard and is used in Europe’s machinery and industries almost has the same qualification standards as the ASME IX.

welding codes

How Important Are Coded Welders in

Coded welders are essentially important because companies who need welders with unique skills are not easy to find and this is where coded welders can be of great help. For example, there’s this company that needs to install stainless steel tubing in many positions for their boilers by following configurations. However, calling a certified welder to assess the work, the welder would know what welding process to use but finds it difficult to understand the configurations. Examples of these configurations are the thickness of the weld, the design of the joint and other specific details which the work requires. 

In coded welding, there are different processes of welding involved as well as configurations to consider when fusing metals. For instance, in joining joints, the MIG process is preferred for vertical position, the MMA Stick process is for horizontal and the TIG process is for all positions. Most shipping companies that cruise the oceans prefer the service of coded welders with BS EN 287-1 or ASME IX certifications because these welders were trained to use stick welding. Why stick welding on an offshore welding work? Stick welding doesn’t produce arc like with the MIG and TIG that uses gas as a shield or the sea’s windy conditions can badly influence the weld pool. 

And these are just a few examples of how our industries can benefit much from the certified coded welders.   A coded welder may have an easy time in welding up simple coded configurations. But as he progresses and learns more codes he will be able to understand more complex configurations until he becomes a “multi-coded welding professional”. 

coded welding

How To Become a

Welders should also be trained and attend coded welding courses to obtain their coded welder certifications. Because they use their skills in the design and fabrication of metal structures, vessels and joints they can work with various industries like construction, automobiles, manufacturing and shipbuilding. They can serve as important assets to employers around the world like the certified welders and they can also continue learning while working. 

There are certain requirements, though, before you can enroll in coded welder courses. First, you should not  be more than 18 years old and must have a high school diploma. Or if you lack the HS diploma, a GED (General Education Development) certificate would suffice for the diploma. A GED certificate can be obtained by attending school programs designed for individuals who need to prove that their knowledge can equal that of HS graduates. 

Second, you have to enroll in a welding school that offers coded welding courses. The training period will depend on your welding skills and experience. So for the newbies, they may need to be trained for weeks while those who are already experienced may only need about a week to master a welding code. This means that some schools may require you to pay daily for their instructors and facilities.  Finally, you will be given the “coding test” using a welding code and you must exactly follow the code’s configurations. Once you passed this test, you are now considered a coded welder.

Important Info About Coded

In some schools, they require their new students to attend assessment tests with their instructors to discover their welding skill level. This is for the instructors to create welding plans and be able to fulfill their students’ desired result. A coded welding course is not like the ordinary classroom set up wherein you all got to sit and listen to an instructor and then do practical tasks.

As a student, you will be trained personally by a certified instructor to ensure that you will pass the coded welding test. And that’s why your pay for all the efforts and use of the school’s facilities will be on a daily basis. The longer your training takes, the more money you have to spend. However, payments are affordable and once you have earned your coded welder certificate you can have a better chance of getting hired by companies who need coded welders.    

What is good about attending coded welding courses is that sometimes your instructors could be some of the accredited personnel of the certificate giving bodies being part of the schools’ program. So if ever you will weld inland or offshore, you are ensured that your learning was imbued to you by none other than the people who are responsible for producing high-skilled coded welders. Since there is no limit in learning code welding, you can easily become a multi-coded welder. And the more coded welding course you take, the higher your chance of hooking it up with the biggest companies that need coded welders. 


If welding certificates can get you to places, welder coding certificates can help you find employers that can heavily rely on your skills. Still wondering which is more  significant,  welding certificates or welding code certificates? We should say both are important. Welding certificates can help you cover a lot of opportunities and you can work in various industries. In short, you won’t be running out of jobs once you become a professional all-around welder.  

But when it comes to more specific welding jobs that require more detailed work, this is where the coded welders are on the vantage side. Does this mean that most professional welders were not trained for coded welding? Yes, but that remains to be their option. There are now certified professional welders also being certified coded welders thus opening for themselves better opportunities with higher pay. And accordingly, when it comes to employers that are involved in the shipbuilding, manufacturing, automobiles and the like, most of them would prefer coded welders. As we have said, there is no need for the coded welders to wave out their certificates. Once they are given the codes, they must show physically what they can do.  

The certificates of coded welders are required to get renewed every 6 months by accredited organizations. This is to ensure that the welders won’t fail in producing the right welds that meet the coding standards.

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