10 Welding Problems and How To Fix Them!

You'll experience many welding problems as you get more into metal fabrication. 

You'll experience anything from porous welds and cracks, to ugly welds and magnetic blow. 

I've done my best to present the most common problems and solutions for you.

I think you'll find that the description of the problem and solution is easy to follow, and hopefully helpful!

The only thing is that the pictures are not the greatest. Over time I will get better ones. But they get the job done.

My Welds Are Porous!

porous welds

Why They're Porous:

  1. Short arc with exception low hydrogen and stainless
  2. Insufficient puddling time
  3. Impaired base metal
  4. Poor electrode
  5. Improper shield coverage

What To Do:

  1. Check impurities in base metal
  2. Allow sufficient puddling time for gases to escape
  3. Use proper current
  4. Weave your wield to eliminate pin holes
  5. Use proper electrode for job
  6. Hold longer arc
  7. Check shield gas

Poor Penetration!

poor penetration

Why Penetration Is Bad:

  1. Speed too fast
  2. Electrodes too large
  3. Current too low
  4. Faulty preparation

What To Do:

  1. Use enough current to obtain desired penetration – weld slowly
  2. Select electrode according to welding groove size
  3. Leave proper gap at bottom of weld

My Metal Is Warping!

warping metal

Why It's Warping:

  1. Shrinkage of weld metal
  2. Faulty clamping of parts
  3. Faulty Preparation
  4. Overheating at joint 

What To Do:

  1. Peen joint edges before welding
  2. Weld more rapidly
  3. Avoid excessive space between parts
  4. Perform parts before welding
  5. Use proper sequence
  6. Clamp or tack parts properly – back-up to cool
  7. Adopt a proper welding procedure
  8. Use a high speed, moderate penetration process

Weld Is Undercutting!

weld undercutting
undercutting weld

Why It's Undercutting:

  1. Faulty electrode or gun manipulation
  2. Faulty electrode usage
  3. Current too high

What To Do:

  1. Use a uniform weave in butt welding
  2. Avoid using an overly large electrode
  3. Avoid excessive weaving
  4. Use moderate current weld slowly
  5. Hold electrode at safe distance from vertical plane in making horizontal fillet weld

Too Much Spatter!

weld spatter

Why There's Spatter:

  1. Arc blow
  2. Current too high
  3. Arc too long
  4. Faulty electrodes

What To Do:

  1. Clean parts in weld area
  2. Adjust current properly
  3. Adjust voltage
  4. Pick suitable electrode

I Want Better Fusion Of My Weld!

poor weld fusion

Why There's Poor Fusion:

  1. Wrong speed
  2. Current improperly adjusted
  3. Faulty preparation
  4. Improper electrode size

What To Do:

  1. Adjust electrode to match joint
  2. Weave must be sufficient to melt sides of joint
  3. Select proper current and voltage
  4. Keep weld metal from flowing away from plates

Cracked Welds!

cracked weld

Why There's Cracks:

  1. Wrong electrode
  2. Weld and parts sizes unbalanced
  3. Faulty welds
  4. Faulty Preparation
  5. Rigid Joint

What To Do:

  1. Design structure to eliminate rigid joints
  2. Heat parts before welding
  3. Avoid welds in string beads
  4. Keep ends free to move as long as possible
  5. Make sound welds of good fusion
  6. Adjust weld size to parts size
  7. Allow joints a proper and uniform gap
  8. Work with amperage as low as possible

My Weld Is Ugly!

ugly weld

Why It's Ugly:

  1. Faulty electrode
  2. Overhang
  3. Improper use of electrode
  4. Wrong arc voltage and current

What To Do:

  1. Use a proper welding technique
  2. Avoid overheating
  3. Use a uniform weave
  4. Avoid overly high current

Brittle Welds?

brittle welds

Why They're Brittle:

  1. Wrong electrode
  2. Faulty preheating
  3. Metal hardened by air

What To Do:

  1. Preheat at 300° to 500° F. If welding on medium carbon steel or certain alloy steels
  2. Make multiple layer welds
  3. Stress relieving after welding
  4. Use low hydrogen processes for increased weld ductility

Magnetic Blow!

magnetic blow

Why The Arc Wanders:

  1. Magnetic fields cause the arc to deviate from its intended course   

What To Do:

  1. Use steel blocks to alter magnetic path around arc
  2. Divide the ground into parts
  3. Weld in same direction the arc blows
  4. Use a short arc length
  5. Locate the ground properly on the work
  6. Use AC welding