Men account for the majority of Pipefitters in the United States. The overall average income for this group is approximately $24.71 per hour. The most important factor affecting compensation for this group is residence, followed by the company and experience level. Unfortunately, some people in this line of work are without benefits — nearly one in four lack coverage. On the flip side, a fair number have medical insurance and over one-half receive dental plans. Job satisfaction is high and work is enjoyable for most Pipefitters. Figures cited in this summary are based on replies to PayScale's salary questionnaire.
Job Description for Pipefitter
A pipefitter installs and fits various piping for commercial and residential use. The pipes are often meant to deal with high pressure, so it is important that the job is done right. The pipefitter will often personally have to plan the layout and design of piping systems, so that they fit in a customized manner. The pipes and related equipment used will usually be chosen by the pipefitter.Read More...
Pipes will be installed with the use of clamps and welding equipment. Sometimes, the pipefitter will be given the job of periodically inspecting existing pipes. It may also be necessary to repair piping if there are leaks or if the pipes are otherwise not performing optimally. It is necessary to be able to read blueprints. Strong mathematical skills are essential, in order to carry out proper measurements and to cut materials to certain specifications. This job requires the ability to use various hand and power tools. It is also important to have physical strength, such as the ability to lift heavy items, to bend and stoop, and to stand and walk for long periods of time. The hours of this job are often long.
Some jobs will require the pipefitter to have attended technical schooling relating to pipefitting and to have experience in pipefitting, which can be obtained through previous employment or apprenticeships.
- Handle and install pipes of various materials.
- Test equipment and piping for pressure and leaks.
- Visually inspect pressure and vacuum gauges and recommend repair work if necessary.
- Install, inspect and maintain repairs or replace pipes, pipelines filters, steam traps and strainers valves.
Common Career Paths for Pipefitter
Pipefitters' salaries tend to stay somewhat constant even when they advance into higher-level positions like Maintenance Pipefitter. On average, Maintenance Pipefitters get paid about the same as Pipefitters do. Pipefitters most often advance into Plumber and Sprinkler Fitter positions even though the median salaries are $3K lower and $10K lower, respectively.
Pipefitter Job Listings
Search for more jobs:
Popular Employer Salaries for Pipefitter
Pipefitters seeking a sizable paycheck can earn the most at Bechtel Corporation, where the average salary comes to $80K.
Popular Skills for Pipefitter
Survey results imply that Pipefitters deploy a substantial tool kit of skills at work. Most notably, facility with rigging, Pipefitter, and Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) Welding are correlated to pay that is significantly above average, leading to increases of 72 percent, 13 percent, and 9 percent, respectively. Plumbing and Pipe Fitter, on the other hand, are typically associated with much lower pay. Most people who know Blueprints also know Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW).
Pay by Experience Level for Pipefitter
Median of all compensation (including tips, bonus, and overtime) by years of experience.
Experience and income seem to be closely related; in general, the survey respondents who had worked for more years reported higher incomes. Relatively untried employees who have less than five years' experience make $44K, but folks with five to 10 years under their belts enjoy an appreciably larger median of $60K. On average, Pipefitters make $64K following one to two decades on the job. Old hands who claim more than two decades on the job enjoy average earnings of $69K.
Pay Difference by Location
For Pipefitters, working in the bustling city of Chicago has its advantages, including an above-average pay rate. Pipefitters will also find cushy salaries in Phoenix (+25 percent), Boston (+21 percent), Detroit (+13 percent), and Houston (+7 percent). Location significantly influences compensation, with Cincinnati Pipefitters earning much less — 31 percent less — than the national average. Charlotte and Norfolk are a couple other places where companies are known to pay below the median — salaries are 23 percent lower and 22 percent lower, respectively.
Related Job Salaries
Key Stats for Pipefitter
Rated 5 out of 5
based on 103 votes.