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7 common welding issues + welding tips and tricks

These days, the welding industry is at its best. While we have the greatest and latest in welding equipment and supplies, this sometimes means that we can often overlook some essential steps while working on a job.

We look at 7 common welding issues and how to deal with them, plus give you some handy welding tips and tricks along the way!

1. Cracks

1. Cracks

Aside from being unsightly, cracks can lead to a host of problems and dangers. They also take some work to be fixed, which can be time-consuming (and annoying!).

Preventing cracks is as simple as taking the time to grind, clean, fill and/or deburr the edges of your plates, as well as to reheat both sides of the joint. Before starting your weld, make sure the temperature you’re using is right for the CJT (Combine Joint Thickness), as well.

2. Slag Inclusion

One of the most common issues in welding is slag inclusion – the small particles of flux that become trapped in the weld metal.

Prevent it by using the correct current and voltage, and by making sure your flux-coated consumables are well-maintained and in good shape. Also important is to use the correct electrode angle.

 

3. Spatter

3. Spatter

In gas metal arc welding, spatter is common… but unwanted! Spatter is droplets of molten material that are produced near the welding arc and it happens when currents are too high, you’re using the incorrect polarity or there is insufficient gas shielding.

Avoid spatter by reducing the welding current and arc length. Check on your consumable’s polarity, shielding gas type and flow rate, and make sure your gas nozzle is clean.

WELDING TIP: Use a welding blanket to protect surrounding areas from spatter and anti-spatter spray on your welding instruments to prevent spatter stick.

3. Spatter
4. Porosity

4. Porosity

Porosity is another common issue during a weld. It’s caused by the absorption and subsequent release of gases, namely: nitrogen, oxygen and hydrogen. These gases become trapped in the weld metal and can cause the weld to have holes. Insufficient gas shielding, small gaps of air and the presence of moisture, rust, grease or paint on your plate edges can also cause porosity.

WELDING TIP: Avoid weld porosity by using dry, well-kept welding consumables and checking your welding torch for leaks.

Make sure your plate is dry and clean, check the shielding gas type and flow rates, clean your gas nozzle and make sure the torch-to-plate angle is just right. Also ensure you are not welding in an area where there are drafts or wind that will disturb the shielding gas.

5. Undercut

If your arc voltage is too high, your arc is too long, your travel speed is too quick or you’re using an incorrect electrode, undercuts can become an issue.

To overcome the dreaded undercut, watch your speed, check that your electrode is correct and check your current settings. Using a bigger electrode than necessary can cause the production of too much molten metal.

6. Distortion

6. Distortion

Distortion occurs when the welded metals are heating and cooling. If your welding sequence is not suitable for the intended weld, there are too many thin beads or your plate fit-ups are insufficient, you might encounter distortion.

Avoid distortion by changing the sequence of welds, the location of the joint, or making fewer passes can also help to prevent deformation.

6. Distortion

7. Incomplete Penetration and Lack of Fusion

Lack of fusion is when the weld fails to fuse or penetrate on one side of the joint in the root, while incomplete penetration occurs when both sides of the joint aren’t fused together.

Prevent these issues by using a wider root gap and electrodes with a diameter that is approximately the size of the root’s gap width.

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DIY, Trade and Professional

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Cutting edge safety equipment

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A superior welding experience

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High quality and superb craftsmanship!

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