The American Petroleum Institute (API) offers a certification program for individual in-service inspectors handling the in-service inspection of pressure vessels, pipework and storage tanks. API also manages an expansive catalog catalogue of API ‘codes’ which standardize practice. The certifications are a legal requirement for inspectors in many US states. However, the extension of US ownership to include international facilities and onshore plants, along with the lack of a similarly broad scope of recognized standards in other countries, has resulted in the widespread adoption of API practice within international plant industries. Many other countries regulatory authorities also use these codes to assess evidence of inspector competence. The API certification program is broken down into a series of API programs, programmes known as Individual Certification Programmes (ICPs).

Before applying for the API ICP exam candidates must ensure that they meet the minimum requirements defined by API. The table sets out the requirements for API 510/570/653;

 

EducationYears of Industry ExperienceExperience Required
BS or higher in engineering or technology1 yearSupervision or performance of inspection activities as described in API 510
2-year Associate’s degree or certificate in engineering or technology2 yearsDesign, fabrication, repair, operation, or inspection of pressure vessels, of which one year must be in supervision or performance of inspection activities as described in API 510
High school diploma or equivalent3 yearsDesign, fabrication, repair, operation, or inspection of pressure vessels, of which one year must be in supervision or performance of inspection activities as described in API 510
No formal education5 or more yearsDesign, fabrication, repair, operation, or inspection of pressure vessels, of which one year must be in supervision or performance of inspection activities as described in API 510

API certificates have become the most regarded, desired, and demanded credentials in the in-service inspection industry, providing a method to improve technical and code knowledge and strengthening the holder’s overall competence and career prospects.

Before applying for the API ICP exam candidates must ensure that they meet the minimum requirements defined by API. The table sets out the requirements for API 510/570/653

The API examination is held within a Prometric Test Centre or can also be completed remotely. There is a vast range of Prometric Test Centres located worldwide. Please visit the Prometric website to check available Prometric test centre locations near you.

All candidates wishing to complete an API ICP exam must apply to API to ensure suitability.

Ensure you qualify to take the exam by reviewing the requirements for your chosen program on the API website.

API Exam Application

  1. Create an ICP account on the API ICP portal
  2. Complete your application (you will be asked to provide evidence of previous employment/experience)
  3. Submit your application to API for review
  4. Pay API exam application fee
  5. Receive exam eligibility ID number (this may take up to 6 weeks)
  6. Book your exam

On submitting your application, you will be asked to pay the relevant API registration fee. This varies depending on the exam you are registering for. Following API’s successful review and approval of your application, you will be provided with an exam eligibility ID number. You require this number to book your exam with PROMETRIC. You will be provided with a link to PROMETRIC during your
API application. They have a range of test centers throughout the world, with the UK sites located in Manchester, London, Glasgow, and Edinburgh. For information on further test center locations please visit the PROMETRIC website for further information.

The processing of your exam application with API may take up to six weeks, so for the best selection of exam dates and locations, do not delay in submitting your application.

No, the fee payable to Wilkinson Coutts is for the API ICP Exam Preparation Training only. The API exam registration fee is payable direct to API on completion of submitting your exam application.

The API exam application deadline is the date in which you must submit your application to API for review for the given exam cycle.

The API examination window is the period in which you can sit your exam. The examination window typically opens the day immediately after our classroom training; however, we do stagger some of our training dates to accommodate individuals who may be on different work rotations and unable to attend specific classroom dates.

Please contact our helpful team at Wilkinson Coutts for advice should your API application be rejected. Thankfully, rejection of exam applications are rare and so please do not worry about this process.

Wilkinson Coutts is an approved ASME training provider for the three different levels of Plant Inspector, levels 1, 2, and 3 each with increasing levels of difficulty. These courses provide a measurable way for the participating delegates to demonstrate their breadth of skill and knowledge in the assessment and management of fixed pressure equipment. The plant inspector courses are held over one calendar week, typically with three to four days training followed by the exam on the final day. Importantly, these courses are delivered by experienced in-service inspectors and integrity engineers who can share their knowledge and provide real-life examples during the course. All successful candidates will be awarded an ASME certificate.

Yes, the full total cost includes online training, any classroom training, relevant training material, examination, and certificate costs.

If you choose to do the e-Learning only level 1 course, the examination is held at our company office in Aberdeen, or at our venue in Immingham. This can be arranged by appointment.

Unlike API training where the exam is held within a Prometric Test Centre, the ASME examination is held within the classroom on the final day of classroom training. If you opt to complete the ASME training through eLearning, then the ASME exam is completed online.

Results are issued within 5-7 days following course completion.

There is no registration required to sit the ASME examination. The delegate must complete the full duration of classroom training prior to sitting the exam.

Yes, the full total cost includes online training, classroom training, relevant training material, examination, and certification costs. Please note: Online training is not required within the ASME Plant Inspector Level 1 course.

If you fail your ASME exam, you have the option to either attend our premises to resit the exam only or alternatively there is the option to resit the full course and exam again at a nominal fee.

To be considered for direct entry to ASME Plant Inspector Level 2, we ask that the delegate holds at least 1 API, whether it be API 510/570 or 653. We do accept delegates to sit the training without having had API training prior however at the very minimum the ASME Level 1 certificate is required. It is possible to achieve the ASME Level 2 certificate without having undergone any form of API training, however, for the sake of the delegate, we do recommend having this to avoid any unnecessary struggle on the course.

Plant inspector Level 3 (Principal Level) is an intensive course suitable for candidates who wish to demonstrate the highest level of technical and management-related knowledge relating to plant inspection. Direct entry to level 3 would be ideal for those individuals who are Chartered Engineers or similar. Those who hold level 2 and have gained further experience at that level are also eligible. All suitability for this level will be reviewed to ensure that the minimum requirements have been satisfied as this course relies heavily on experience and prior knowledge.