Boilermaking Career Guidance

What do Boilermakers do?

Boilermakers are specialised artisans who mark and fabricate structural steel and other metal stock to make or repair metal products and structures including boilers and pressure vessels.


What skills and abilities are required to become a Boilermaker?

  • Active Listening (Giving full attention to what other people say and taking time to understand the points being made);
  • Time Management (Must be able to manage their own time and the time of others effectively);
  • Equipment Selection (Be able to determine the kind of tools and equipment needed to do a job);
  • Equipment Maintenance (Perform routine maintenance on equipment and determining when and what kind of maintenance is needed);
  • Quality Control Analysis (Conducting tests and inspection of products services or processes to evaluate quality or performance);
  • Mathematics (It is used to solve problems);
  • Critical Thinking (Using logic and reasoning to identify the strengths and weaknesses of alternative solutions, conclusions or approaches to problems);
  • Have the ability to Speak (Talk to others to convey information effectively).

What duties and tasks does a Boilermaker do?

  • Develops layout and plans sequence of operations for fabricating and assembling structural metal products, applying trigonometry and knowledge of metal;
  • Locates and marks bending and cutting lines onto work piece, allowing for stock thickness and machine and welding shrinkage;
  • Hammers, chips, and grinds work piece to cut, bend, and straighten metal;
  • Reheats work pieces to make them soft (malleable), using a hand torch or furnace;
  • Positions, aligns, fits, and welds together parts using a welding torch and hand tools.

What are the working conditions of a Boilermaker?

Most Boilermakers work in workshops that are often noisy, however the correct safety equipment is provided to manage the environment. The work requires constant physical activity. Most workshops have modern equipment.

What are the minimum entry requirements to study Boilermaking at a TVET College?

At a TVET College, the normal entrance requirements for the Boilermaker course are

NC(V) Programme: a Grade 9 Certificate college requirements set per programme.

NATED Programme: Grade 9 for N1 admission; Grade 12 with a pass in Mathematics for N4 admission.

What should I do if I want to become a Boilermaker?

Contact Technical and Vocational Education and Training (TVET) Colleges to enquire about the entrance requirements to do the Boilermaker course;

Visit Boilermaker training centres and companies to gain more knowledge about the field and what it entails;

Contact DHET Career Development Services to provide you with free quality career information, advice and counselling services on 086 999 0123 or e-mail:

Go for an aptitude test to help understand if a career as a Boilermaker is for you; and

Attend Career Exhibitions in your area to liaise with higher learning institutions and obtain application forms.

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