Welding certification means “Certification in writing that a welder has produced welds meeting prescribed standards. “
It also means that the weld was performed by using a welding procedure specification (WPS).
Prescribed standards usually means the weld met visual inspection criteria as well as other tests like x ray, or bend testing.
Welding certification almost always involves complying with a welding code or standard of some kind.
There are structural welding tests, pipe welding tests, aerospace welding tests, food service welding tests and more. Structural welding like you see on high rises involves compliance to the American welding Society (AWS) D1.1 structural welding code.
Pipeline welding as in “Alaska pipeline” usually involves the American Petroleum Institute (API) 1104 code book.
Pressure vessels and boilers have their own welding code book too (ASME Section IX) and so does the Aerospace industry (AWS D17).
*The thing they all seem to have in common is this:
*The welding procedure itself must first be qualified ( or prequalified procedures can be purchased)
*Each welder must pass a certification test that resembles the tests used to qualify the procedure.
*Welders are only certified to weld within the limitations of the test they took to become a certified welder.
Why should I become a certified welder?
You should get certified because not every welder is certified or can pass a test and everyone knows that.
You will automatically jump over the heads of thousands of welders who never had the chance or maybe just never bothered to get certified.