Whether an arc becomes erratic, the wire for your MIG welder feeds unevenly, or your machine starts to run hot, maintenance for welding equipment is critically important for the longevity of your welding machine and for preventing these performance issues. Depending on what kind of unit you have, different amounts of maintenance will be required.
Follow Specs to Maintain Welding Equipment
The most basic way to maintain your welding equipment is to use it within its specifications. A duty cycle will keep you from pushing your welding beyond its limits for a 10-minute period. You can keep track of this by selecting projects that won’t push your welder too far beyond its limits. In this case, make sure you buy the right welder for your projects.
Maintain Welding Equipment by Prevention
Each week, welders take off the covers of their equipment and blow compressed air into the units in order to remove all dust and debris from the mechanical parts of the welder. It’s also a good idea to use a cover for your welder and to do all of your grinding far enough away from your machine that nothing gets sucked into the welder while it’s operating.
It’s a good safety tip in general to always do woodworking in a separate location from your welder since the sawdust can catch a spark from your weld and smolder for a while until it becomes a flame. However, with the risks of sawdust getting caught in your welder, this is all the more important for the long term durability of your welder.
Maintain Welding Equipment by Cleaning
Sometimes parts of your welding equipment needs the grease to be redistributed or a new application of grease. Most of the time new parts or compressed air will get the job done, but not always.
Maintain Welding Equipment Regularly
One of the best things you can do for your welding equipment is to establish a routine maintenance schedule. Some shops have procedures for each week, month, and year that keeps their machines running in top condition without the risk of burning them out. It’s not uncommon for welding shops to have their equipment serviced professionally once a year, but that schedule is something you’ll need to set up based on your own usage.
Replace Parts to Maintain Welding Equipment
It’s no secret that the tips or nozzles on welding torches will need to be replaced frequently. However, don’t forget that certain parts of your welding equipment may need to be replaced sometimes, such as the brushes inside of a wire feeder. Maintenance for MIG welders is especially critical, as a MIG welder has a lot of moving parts with the wire feeder. Depending on how often you use your machine, you will have to replace the liner in order to keep the wire feeding smoothly.