Boilermaking is a specialist trade occupation that focuses on fabricating and welding a range of metal products, typically those that hold liquids and gases under pressure.
Boilermakers work in a variety of environments including industrial, marine, mining and manufacturing sectors. They use blueprints and other technical drawings to measure and cut materials such as steel, plate, and tubing to build and assemble boiler parts.
A career pathway through a boilermaker apprenticeship will see you tackling a range of hands-on metal repair, fabrication and production work. As a boilermaker apprentice, you will need the focus and attention to detail to work with metals and produce high quality ships, tanks, boilers, pipelines and other pressurised systems.
If you’re interested in becoming a boilermaker apprentice, MIGAS can connect you with leading employers from across Australia.
How Long is a Boilermaker Apprenticeship?
A boilermaking apprenticeship takes around 4 years to complete and involves hands-on, paid work where you will learn practical skills under supervision, as well as the completion of a nationally accredited qualification, MEM31922 Certificate III in Engineering – Fabrication Trade (Boilermaking).
It is part of the Manufacturing and Engineering training package that includes other trade specialisations like Sheetmetal, Fabricator, and Casting and Moulding.
MIGAS Boilermaker Apprentice Caileb working on a chassis.
What is a Boilermaker
Boilermakers play an essential role in ensuring that industrial facilities are able to operate safely and efficiently by maintaining the integrity of the boilers and vessels that make up these systems.
With advanced skills in various metals, industries and welding technologies (including TIG and MIG welding), boilermakers focus on welding, assembling, repairing and fabricating metal products.
The sorts of tasks that boilermakers undertake include:
- Marking precise guidelines for the cutting, drilling, welding, bending and punching of metal
- Assembling parts and structures with the aid of cranes and other equipment
- Maintaining, repairing and rebuilding machinery
- Using tools such as vices, hydraulic presses, thermal cutting equipment and rolling machines
- General hand tool work such as sanding, grinding, cutting, polishing, drilling
Many industries employ boilermakers including mining, oil and gas, manufacturing, and transport.
In 2024, the salary range for a qualified boilermaker in Australia is around $115,000 to $135,000. (Seek)
Boilermaker apprentices are paid under Manufacturing Award. Your weekly salary depends on your age and if you have completed Year 12, and the host company where you complete your on-the-job training, in addition to any Modern Award inclusions and host-specific benefits.
Indicative weekly wages for a boilermaker apprentice in 2024:
Aged under 17 years: $497.50 to $875.60 per week
Aged 17 to 20 years: $547.25 to $914.90 per week
Aged over 21 years: $796.00 to $914.90 per week
Boilermaker Apprentice Skill Requirements
A boilermaker apprenticeship requires you to work to the highest quality standards. Skilled boilermakers with a focus on attention to detail can find work with employers across Australia.
If you’re considering a boilermaker apprenticeship, you’ll need to possess a few personal attributes to succeed:
- Mechanical Aptitude
Boilermaker apprentices need to have a natural curiosity and interest in how machines work, and be able to troubleshoot and solve problems related to boilers and other large vessels.
- Physical Fitness
Boilermaking can be physically demanding, requiring the ability to lift heavy objects and work in confined spaces, at heights, and in various weather conditions.
- Attention to Detail
You must be meticulous and detail-oriented, as the safety of the facility and workers depends on boilermakers’ work being precise.
- Technical Knowledge
Boilermakers must have a strong understanding of welding techniques, blueprint reading, and other technical skills related to metal fabrication and repair.
Boilermaker apprentices must follow strict safety protocols to ensure you and your workmates are not at risk of injury or harm while on the job.
Find a Boilermaker Apprenticeship
If that sounds like you, a boilermaker apprenticeship could be the ideal engineering apprenticeship you’re looking for.
Get started in a boilermaking apprenticeship with MIGAS Apprentices & Trainees. We will match you with a host company where you will complete your on-the-job training, coordinate your off-the-job qualification study, and support you through to the completion of your apprenticeship.
Explore current opportunities below or visit our Jobs Board for similar apprenticeships in Fabrication Engineering trades.
MIGAS boilermaker apprentices (L to R) Charlie, Elizabeth, Skye and Haylee in the Hunter region of NSW.