What License Do I Need to Start a Welding Business?

Welding is a skill that can open up many opportunities for you, whether you want to work as an employee or start your own welding business. Welding joins metal pieces using heat and pressure in industries like construction, manufacturing, automotive, and aerospace. As a welder, you will need to pass through some training in order to obtain a welding business license.

If you have a passion for welding and want to turn it into a profitable venture, you might be wondering what license you need to start a welding business. The answer depends on several factors, such as your location, the type of welding services you offer, and the level of specialization you have.

In this blog post, we will explain the general steps and requirements for obtaining a welding license and starting a welding business in the US. We will also provide some tips and resources to help you succeed in this competitive and rewarding field.

Welding Business license

Step 1: Get Certified as a Welder

The first step to starting a welding business is to get certified as a welder by a recognized organization. This will prove your skills and knowledge of various welding processes, techniques, and safety standards. It will also help you gain credibility and trust from your potential customers and employers.

One of the most common and widely accepted certifications for welders is the Certified Welder (CW) credential from the American Welding Society (AWS). To obtain this certification, you need to pass a written exam and a practical test that demonstrates your ability to weld according to specific codes and specifications.

AWS offers different types of CW certifications based on the welding process, position, material, and industry. For example, you can get certified in shielded metal arc welding (SMAW), gas metal arc welding (GMAW), flux cored arc welding (FCAW), or gas tungsten arc welding (GTAW). You can also get certified in specific sectors, such as structural steel, sheet metal, pipeline, or aerospace.

To prepare for the AWS certification exams, you can take courses at a vocational school, community college, or online platform. You can also find study guides, practice tests, and other resources on the AWS website.

Step 2: Obtain a Business License and Permits

The next step to start a welding business is to obtain a business license and permits from your state and local authorities. A business license is a legal document that allows you to operate your business within a certain jurisdiction. It also helps you pay taxes, keep records, and protect your business name.

The requirements and fees for obtaining a business license vary depending on your location and the type of business structure you choose. You can choose to operate as a sole proprietorship, partnership, limited liability company (LLC), or corporation. Each option has its advantages and disadvantages in terms of taxes, liabilities, and paperwork.

You can check with your state’s secretary of state office or Department of Revenue to find out how to register your business name and structure. You can also use online services or platforms that can help you form your business entity and obtain your business license.

In addition to a business license, you may also need to obtain other permits or licenses depending on the type of welding services you offer and the regulations in your area. For example, you may need:

  • A waste hauler license or permit to transport and dispose of hazardous waste materials
  • A vehicle registration and inspection certificate to operate your truck or trailer
  • A commercial driver’s license (CDL) to drive vehicles over a certain weight or size
  • A zoning permit or variance to operate your business from your home or a specific location
  • A fire safety permit or inspection to ensure compliance with fire codes and standards

You should check with your local environmental, health, transportation, fire, and zoning agencies for the specific requirements and fees for your area.

Also, read: How to start a roadside assistance business without towing

Step 3: Purchase or Lease Equipment and Vehicles

Welding Business license

The third step to starting a welding business is to purchase or lease the equipment and vehicles you will need to perform your welding services. The equipment and vehicles you will need depend on the type and size of your welding projects, but they generally include:

  • Welding machines or power sources
  • Welding torches or guns
  • Welding electrodes or wires
  • Welding consumables or accessories
  • Personal protective equipment (PPE) such as gloves, helmets, goggles, etc.
  • Hand tools such as hammers, pliers, wrenches, etc.
  • Measuring tools such as tape measures, calipers, levels, etc.
  • Cutting tools such as plasma cutters, oxy-fuel torches, saws, etc.
  • Grinding tools such as angle grinders, sanders, files, etc.
  • Cleaning tools such as brushes, rags, solvents, etc.
  • Trucks or trailers to transport your equipment and dumpsters
  • Dumpsters or containers to store and dispose of waste materials

You can either buy or lease the equipment and vehicles depending on your budget and preferences. Buying gives you more control and ownership, but leasing saves you money on maintenance and repairs. You should shop around for the best deals and compare the pros and cons of each option.

Step 4: Market Your Business and Attract Customers

The final step to starting a welding business is to market your business and attract customers. You can use various methods to promote your services, such as:

  • Creating a website and social media pages for your business
  • Listing your business on online directories and platforms (such as Google My Business, Yelp, Angie’s List, etc.)
  • Advertising on local newspapers, radio stations, billboards, or online platforms (such as Google Ads, Facebook Ads, etc.)
  • Networking with local contractors, businesses, homeowners associations, etc.
  • Offering discounts, referrals, or loyalty programs to attract and retain customers
  • Providing excellent customer service and quality work

Monitor performance and feedback regularly. Use tools like Google Analytics or SurveyMonkey to track website traffic, conversions, reviews, and ratings. Ask for referrals and testimonials from satisfied customers.


Starting a welding business can be a lucrative and rewarding venture if you follow the steps above. You will need to get certified as a welder, obtain a business license and permits, purchase or lease equipment and vehicles, and market your business effectively. You will also need to provide excellent customer service and quality work to stand out from the competition.

If you are ready to start your own welding business in 2023, we can help you with the license and permit requirements for your area. Contact us today to learn more about our welding license services and how they can help you grow your business.

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