Gas welding is one of the most widely used and popular welding processes in the world. In the United States alone, there are over
5 million welding processes occurring every day, with gas welding accounting for an estimated 62% of those processes. But, what gas is needed for mig welding? MIG welding is one of the most unique and versatile types of welding processes available.
This type of welding uses a gas along with an electrical current to generate a weld that is strong, reliable, and cosmetically appealing. As such, it has become very popular in applications such as automotive repair and construction, as well as in manufacturing and fabrication. The gas most commonly used in MIG welding is a combination of 75% Argon and 25% CO2, called “Ar/CO2”.
This blend provides a number of advantages, including a higher welding speed and a more stable arc.
What Gas is Needed for MIG Welding?MIG welding is a process that is used to permanently join two pieces of metal together.
The process itself uses an electric arc between a continuous bare wire electrode and the workpiece, which heats up the metal and melts it. While it is an effective and relatively simple welding process, it does require a gas to ensure that the weld remains stable as it is deposited. For that reason, it’s important to understand what gas is needed for MIG welding and why.
Types of Gases Used for MIG WeldingThere are a few different types of gases that can be used for MIG welding. Each of them has its own advantages and disadvantages, so it is important to understand which one would be best for a particular job.
- Argon: Argon is the most commonly used gas for MIG welding and is also the most efficient. It is relatively cheap and helps to provide a stable arc for the welding process. It is often used with steel, aluminum and stainless steel.
- Carbon Dioxide: Carbon Dioxide (CO2) gas is often preferred for welding mild steel and other ferrous metals. It is relatively inexpensive, easy to use and helps to produce a stable arc and deeper penetration than with other types of gas.
However, it is not as efficient as argon and can increase spatter.
- Oxygen: Oxygen is typically used when welding aluminum or other non-ferrous metals. It is extremely efficient and helps to create a clean, smooth weld with minimal spatter.
However, it can be difficult to use and is generally only used by experienced welders.
- Tri-Mix: Tri-Mix is a combination of argon, carbon dioxide, and oxygen. It is often used in jobs that require deep penetration and a smooth, clean weld. Due to the added complexity of combining multiple gases, it is often more expensive than other gases.
- Helium: In certain circumstances, helium may be used for MIG welding. It helps to create an extremely hot arc and produce deep penetration. However, it is very expensive and is typically only used in industrial applications.