Welding is one of the most critical processes used to join two materials together. Understanding the fundamentals of welding is critical to any shop floor – Professionals and hobbyists alike.
A crucial part of the welding process is welding flux, one of the oldest and most basic welding materials used for centuries. It is estimated that up to 80% of all welds are performed with flux. It has been estimated that the global market for welding flux is valued at around
7 billion USD and is expected to grow at a compound annual rate of 1 percent by 202
With flux being such an important part of welding, it is important that we understand what exactly it is used for and how it works. This article will explain precisely what welding flux is and its important role in welding.
What is Welding Flux?Welding flux is an important part of the welding process. It is a material which is used in arc welding and gas welding processes to prepare the surfaces for welding, prevent oxidation of the welding process, and help the weld form correctly.
Welding flux can come in the form of a powder, paste, or wire.
The Role of FluxFlux serves an important role in the welding process.
- Helps prevent oxidation by soaking up oxygen in the welding area.
- Forms a protective coating over the welding area.
- Keeps contaminants and impurities away from the weld area.
- Provides a more uniform and consistent weld.
Types of Welding FluxThere are several different types of flux which can be used in welding processes.
- Active fluxes – Active fluxes are used when the weld area is contaminated or has a high level of oxidation. These fluxes are designed to reduce the amount of oxidation in the welding area.
- Inactive fluxes – Inactive fluxes are used when the weld area is clean, and there is no need for additional protection from oxidation.
These fluxes are designed to provide extra protection to the weld area.
- Defect fluxes – Defect fluxes are designed to improve the appearance of the weld by reducing the amount of imperfections in the weld area.
Types of Welding ArcThere are two main types of welding arc used in arc welding processes:
- Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW) – SMAW is a welding process which uses a consumable electrode covered in an insulating flux. The flux helps protect the weld area from harmful contaminants and oxidation.
- Submerged Arc Welding (SAW) – SAW is a welding process which uses a consumable wire covered in an insulating flux. The flux helps protect the weld area from harmful contaminants and oxidation.