Pipeline Construction, Pipefitting and Plumbing

Long-distance pipelines carry several types of products, including gasoline, crude oil, diesel, jet fuel, natural gas and propane. Consequently, welders and fitters are employed by many different organizations that build and maintain transmission lines. Utility companies, refineries, oil and gas corporations, offshore rigs and construction contractors are your most likely prospects in a job search. This page introduces all the professions that recruit pipe welders, with plenty of links in the lower box on the right. After finishing here, use the Jobs page to research specific companies.

The next video provides an overview of the entire pipeline process:

Pipefitting and Steamfitting

Welders also work as maintenance mechanics, pipefitters and steamfitters at dams, water pumping facilities, shipyards and power plants. These pipes may carry steam, chemicals, water, sewage (aka waste water) or other liquids, or be used for hydraulic applications (i.e. to move heavy objects). In the shipyards, the pipework is custom built, then installed on ships or submarines.

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Plumbing and Related Trades

Plumbers, sprinkler fitters and HVAC specialists (heating and ventilation) also use welding and fitting skills to construct and maintain pipes inside commercial buildings, hospitals, government installations and manufacturing plants. Since these jobs encompass the traditional "skilled trades", many workers learn the ropes through union apprenticeship programs. For info on how to sign up, check out the Schools and Training section of Welders Universe, as well as the apprenticeship section of Advice and Tips.

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Resources/Docs

Pipeline Construction Process
Welded Construction, L.P.

Pipeline Construction
Pipeline Basics
Oil and Gas Exploration
U.S. Dept of Transportation

National Pipeline Mapping System (NPMS)

Natural Gas 101
Spectra Energy

Pipeline Glossary

All About Pipe
Keidel

Plumbing Parts and Fittings (PDF)

Types of pipe and their uses
Home Depot

Understanding pipe systems
HealthyBuilding.net

DWV Pipe & Fittings Catalog and Guide (PDF)
IPLEX

American Petroleum Institute (API)

Interstate Natural Gas Association of America (INGAA)

Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration (PHMSA)

Plumbing Apprenticeship Curriculum New Hampshire Dept. of Education

Emergency Response Guidebook

Basics of Home Plumbing
Video from Home Depot

Welding with the Big Blue 350 PipePro System
Video from Miller Electric

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