Tips for a Successful Mobile Welding Business

Mobile-welding-truck-equipmentWelders are in demand from both commercial and residential clients. A mobile welding business requires little more than welding equipment, a van or truck, and insurance. Bonus points if you’re certified through an accredited school. Apply for your welder’s license and take the exam. (View certification articles.) Contact your state license board to ensure you have the necessary documentation. If you do quality work and have strong word-of-mouth recommendations, your business can be both rewarding and lucrative.

Necessities

Before you quit your day job, it is recommended that you have several months’ worth of cash. It may be several months before you earn a profit, depending on how much equipment you already possess. You’ll need welding equipment, tools, and safety supplies. This may include: a tig welder, mig welder, gas cylinders, stick welders, plasma cutters, fume extractor, welding helmets, respirator helmets, protective clothing, welding blankets, welding goggles, welding clamps, turntables, ground clamps, cable connectors, power tools, abrasives, and hoists. Liability insurance is essential. Industrial customers will ask to see a copy of your insurance certificate. Your insurance should cover the value of any property that you work on. A truck (and maybe a trailer) needs to be set up for efficient work. A laptop computer and wireless internet service that can travel with you are nonnegotiable.

Present a Professional Image

When you have a mobile welding business, you are your business. You’ll want to design (or have someone else design) a logo. Choose your company colors. Vehicle signage is important. It should coordinate with your business cards and website (and any other printed or online marketing materials). Your business card should offer more than one way to contact you. Your website may be simple, but you DO need one. Prepare a resume or portfolio, complete with references that potential clients may call. Answer your phone every time it rings.

Growing your Business

Of course providing your clientele with high quality work is one of the best ways to ensure you stay in business. Starting a referral program and cross promoting with related contractors is helpful. Earn, ask for, and reward referrals and testimonials. Refer other local professionals (that provide quality work) to your clients.

Remember, what doesn’t get measured, won’t improve. You must have a business plan with clear goals. Budget your expenses and expected income. Meet with an accountant who will show you what records you need to keep. Decide if you will be full-service or specialize in something. Consider expanding your home base. How far are you willing to travel? Can you offer emergency service? Evening, weekend, and next day service demands a premium.

Join a local trade group and a local general-purpose group, like a chamber of commerce. Network with gas and water main installation teams or air conditioning engineers; they are always looking for welders to subcontract to.

Other Tips for Mobile Welders

Consider keeping a small refrigerator in your vehicle to save on beverages and meals. A large water jug is crucial. Join preferred member card clubs at local building supply stores.

By all means, please share your mobile welding tips, tricks, and success stories below.

Image Source: www.moyerswelding.com

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22 thoughts on “Tips for a Successful Mobile Welding Business”

  1. shawn henley says:

    I mostly stick weld bussiness cards work just something simple as a stranger asking you for directions or giving them a hand with something keep bussiness cards in your wallet at all times and hand them one you may be surprised that they call you and inquire about your services people are always looking for welders I’m being told more and more..just make it clear on your card how far your willing to travel.

  2. carlos ramsey says:

    i have a welding certification but my goal small busniess for welding with stick travel but problem one thing im deaf..i want be suess..

  3. Poston Welding Services, LLC says:

    I have started my mobile welding business and have implemented a lot of what this site suggested. Very helpful!!

    1. rohith says:

      hi my name is rohith, i am staying in bangalore,india.
      i am running welding shop from 5year, now i am planing to do mobile welding business.
      so can you please tell me how to start, what all woke can do, how to do marketing and what type of customer i will get.

      please do reply, thanks in advance

      1. Bob Seivert says:

        Can you guys tell me how this has worked out for you?

  4. Chris Winters says:

    It makes sense that every welding service should have a lot of safety equipment in order to function properly. I have always been amazed at the power behind industrial machinery. It definitely makes sense that welding services would be necessary in order to make sure that the machinery is in proper condition and safe for use.

  5. Christopher says:

    Could anyone give me some tips on how to get into the welding rig business and how to go into it the right way i just love welding and working were i dont have 100 people standing around is my best working space and the way i work the beat ao this is the way i figured would worj the best

  6. Randall. Mills says:

    I ,m starting small welding. Job becauce l enjoy it meeting. And. Talking. With others. In the. Trades. I. Have. My. Welding. Lic. I have a small. Welder. Right. Now. Who. Knows.

    1. Shahnawaj says:

      I’m complete apprentice from BHEL Haridwar.
      My Trade Welder. If anyone wants to select me. I want to join and I want to give my 100 percent.

    2. Shahnawaj says:

      I’m complete apprentice from BHEL Haridwar.
      My Trade Welder. If anyone wants to select me. I want to join and I want to give my 100 percent.

      Send me your mail

  7. Kevin Dusza says:

    Hello, My name is Kevin
    I am starting my mobile welding company, I have just decided to do this in the last few weeks. I am looking into what welder should I get?
    also what type of insurances should I get? The last question I have is what should I focus on starting out job wise ? I have fixed all types of things and welded in all types of positions. I don’t know how to get started and am looking for some guidance with that.

    Thank You
    Kevin Dusza

    1. Jim says:

      How did it work out for you so far Kevin? Did you figure out your insurance and which type of welder to get?

  8. shawn henley says:

    I been running my own welding bussiness successfully get a little slow now and then but the internet and bussiness cards and the name and phone number of your business on a hoodie or old denim jacket works.You don’t need to know how to do every welding process but dont cheat yourself learn more than 1.And don’t be afraid to tell a potential client No I’m not welding that for you its not street legal or otherwise unless you like jeopardize your business.More time you have under the hood the better people don’t argue about experience.Back up your work with a warranty and keep learning.

  9. Taylor Bishop says:

    Thanks for these tips for a mobile welding service. I didn’t know that it’s important for the business to have references that potential clients can call. I’m kind of interested to learn if you should have a lot of references, or if a few will suffice.

  10. John Davis says:

    I started a mobile welding business April 2017. Kept working and didn’t promote once except through facebook. My welding background included world wide travel and all across north America. I had the pleasure to work with some of the best in the business. November 2017 I decided to get serious. On craigslist I found small labor gigs welding and non welding and stuck to my word and did the best job I could no matter what I touched, often working 7 days a week. Word traveled slowly until a post on craigslist with pictures of my work. First call from an industrial client! I shot what I thought was fair $ and won the bid. Turns out I was so low I was granted with all their work and an office manager suggested a price increase which I followed and to this day no one bats an eye when I hand over my invoice! Quality work doesn’t come cheap and cheap work doesn’t earn you a call back! I have done at least two jobs for every client I have ever worked for. Some I get a call once or twice a month. All together if you keep true to your word and show up on time and go the extra mile your business will take care of itself and you’ll find it starting to grow. Business cards are a must and you can’t be afraid to knock on a farmers door if that’s what it takes! If you under shoot a job and end up eating the whole thing, it’s better to learn from it instead of gouging yourself out of more work. Become friends with local company receptionists. If your hard on them your card may never make it any further than the secretaries trash can! Don’t kiss @$$! Big companies will respect you more if you’re upfront and honest. But if you say it you’d better be able to deliver! An 18 hour day with no food seldom comes around but if it does, suck it up and finish. No matter what keep a record of what is discussed for scope of work. There’s always the client out there that will try to squeeze extra work in without paying. It may only take 10 minutes to them but if your equipment is running your still on the clock. I make deals “cut breaks” on a case by case basis only. It’s up to you the business owner to decide what’s fair to you and your companies growth and the client in question. If they can’t agree, politely suggest rescheduling when they have a little more work to go with it. Emergencies are a sensitive subject. I have learned and read a lot of replies on this matter. Stay humble and work hard. If it’s an emergency and you dog off other work to take care of them remember to take account for loss of time on the other job, and how it affects them to suffer as well as your time and effort. As your company grows, if you take care of people they will end up taking care of you. The biggest ting I can recommend to anyone starting off is honesty! That applies to yourself as well! You will starve to death running “GOOD INTENTIONS LLC”! (a running joke between my partner and I) Best of luck

    1. bakersgas says:

      Thanks for the insight! We appreciate it and so do all the others reading this post! Keep up the good work!

  11. Charles says:

    I have 30 years experience welding. But every day shows me something new. Started working for myself due to “capped wages” offered by employers. It was extremely frustrating. My advice is do the best you can. Every weld reflects your craftsmanship. Take pride in your work. It will pay off. Be confident.
    Slowly purchase equipment. While working for other employers. That way when you start working for yourself you do not start out in debt. Start taking side jobs. be cautious of off season. Save for that time. Learn marketing strategies. Ask advice. There is no complete answer for everyone. It takes a special type of person to work for themselves. Everyone has that dream. Few actually achieve it. Remember, as a mobile welder you need to be a troubleshooter, fabricator,laborer, technician, salesman, and consultant. Oh yes you need to weld multiple processes. example- stainless welds need to be completed on 308 plate butt weld – easy grab the mig gun- oops it is 90 ft in the air. 90 ft = usually more wind. Grab the 308/309 rod.
    Or hull of a ship. Coworker washing old bulkhead weld off hull below water line decides to pressure wash by hitting oxygen.punches through. If you a true welder you will know what to do. If not then you will owe more money then you could ever earn welding. Learn your trade completely. Then work for yourself.
    Come to think of it, disregard everything I wrote. I make more money fixing other people’s mistakes.

    1. ELAINE buz says:

      Amazing advice.

  12. Cullen Hopson says:

    I started my mobile welding business December of 2017 here in southeast Texas. It’s taken off like a rocket my first year and I’m already turning a profit with more work than I can handle gonna start hiring soon. Best advice I can give is be a man of your word and stick to your prices, business cards vehicle magnets and yard signs with Facebook and google advertise as much as you can and don’t limit yourself to only 1 or 2 types of jobs if they call then accept the job and get it done oh and rework is double

  13. Alec palmer says:

    I’m thinking of starting a mobile weld company. then go to a shop when I get enough clients an custom fab work. Where should I start an what do I need to get going I have 20 years of welding under me certified. Just need to know the best way to start up an go.

  14. Greg Carpenter says:

    Starting mobile welding service. Nervous, because I have to use wheelchair at times, but I’m determined to not give up. Will do smaller repair work, metal-art crafts, and hopefully build up a customer base to hire a stronger welder. (I got ran over by a car while on foot, so I have limitations) I learned to weld to repair mowing equipment/tractors in a former business, so I know there is a need out there. Thanks for all the advice so gar, and look forward to more.

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