The Certified Welding Inspector certification is more than a rewarding position as a pipe fitter. It involves great responsibility and remarkable skill demonstration. The CWI is widely recognized, both nationally and internationally, and successful contractors have come to rely on this AWS certification when ensuring the highest level of quality workmanship. As a Certified Welding Inspector, you will find this path lucrative and rewarding. This certification can lead you to a career that is engaging and promising on all levels.


Local Union 597 offers 16 weeks of exam preparation at the Training Center, and a 60 hour Crash Course leading up to the CWI exam on the last day of the week. The CWI exam consists of three two-hour parts. Seminar preparation is organized to review and help prepare you to score as high as you possibly can.

Part A: Fundamentals. You will be prepped for this two-hour, 150-question closed-book test which covers all facets of welding processes and nondestructive examination. Members will receive complimentary copies of Welding Inspection Technology and the Welding Inspection Technology Workbook

Part B: Practical Applications. This two-hour, hands-on test will require you to answer 46 questions using actual visual inspection tools with plastic replicas of welds, and a sample codebook (“Book of Specifications”), which will be provided for the exam. Your hands-on skills will be sharpened by using the Visual Inspection Workshop, where you will work with inspection tools and weld replicas, and take practice exams. Members will receive a complimentary book, Visual Inspection Workshop Reference Manual.

Part C: Open-Book Code Application. This two-hour open-book test includes 46–60 questions establishing your ability to find and comprehend information in API 1104. This portion will show you how to tab your copy of the codebook before the test, to save you critical minutes and stress when you have to find information fast. They will also identify the most common pitfalls and misunderstandings in usage of each code, and will teach you the terminology specific to each code that will help you quickly locate the relevant paragraphs and charts. Most of all, you will improve your code usage skills by learning to better understand the core of the problem or question at hand. Members will practice open codebook testing under time constraints. Members will need to purchase their own codebook (API 1104), but will receive the API Code Clinic Study Guide (a $76 value).

Exam Scoring Requirements:
CWI: Completion of Parts A, B, and C with a minimum score of 72% in each part.
CAWI: Completion of Parts A, B, and C with a minimum score of 60% in each part.


Once you become a CWI, AWS endorsements can broaden your welding inspector credentials. Endorsements may also allow an inspector to perform inspections where previously excluded due to customer or jurisdiction requirements. When you pass endorsement exams, you are provided with a separate endorsement wallet card and a certificate of successful completion.

For inspectors who are up for nine-year recertification, passing codebook endorsement exams can satisfy the examination and continuing education requirements for the recertification.

Codebook Endorsement Exams
AWS D1.1 – Structural Steel
ASME Section IX: B31.1 and B31.3
ASME Sections VIII (Division 1) and IX
CRI -Interpreter