Above ground storage tanks are subject to a large number of regulations at the federal, state and local levels. As a result, the job of the API-certified inspector is especially important — it’s their job to ensure that all above ground storage tanks are up to the American Petroleum Institute (API)’s standards.
Because these inspectors play such a key role in keeping these storage tanks in ideal condition, you may be wondering what it takes to start a career as an API-certified inspector — especially for the API 653 program, which involve tank inspection, repair and alteration.
Want to become one of the many API-653 certified inspectors who perform above ground storage tank inspections across the country? Here’s a list of the three steps you should take to earn your certification:
Complete your education
All applicants to the API 653 certification program should ideally have completed at least their high school educations, though it’s not necessary. If you decide to get your associate’s (two-year) or bachelor’s (four-year) degree, be sure to study a field that’s relevant to above ground storage tanks such as engineering or technology.
Become experienced in above ground storage tanks
The amount of job experience required depends on your level of education. If you didn’t finish high school, you’ll need to complete at least five years’ worth of of design, construction, repair, or operation of above ground storage tanks. If you have a high school diploma, you will need to complete three years of this experience. For associate’s degree graduates, two years are necessary; for four-year college grads, you should have a year or more of supervision experience.
Pass the exam for API-653 certified inspectors
The final step for becoming a certified inspector? Passing the test. The API 653 certification exam is rigorous, consisting of 150 questions and taking 8.5 hours to complete. There is an open-book portion of the exam and a closed-book portion. It’s important to adequately prepare for the exam in order to pass it.
Have any other tips and hints for getting certified to perform the API 653 tank inspection? Share with us and your fellow readers by leaving a comment below.