Why TIG Welding is Good for Home Use?

You think TIG welding is difficult, don’t you?

But is it really? In fact, some say it is really useful when it comes to your household. What is the truth then?

Yes, TIG welding is a good choice for home use, once the user understands how TIG works and learns to do it through practice. TIG welder has its benefits and can be a very useful home tool.

Why TIG Welding is Good for Home Use

Why is TIG welding said to be better than other methods?

If you are into welding or not, the following points can make you understand why a TIG welder can be a good choice to be your tool partner at home.

1. You hit a jackpot with TIG welding!

Yes, you didn’t read it wrong. You really do hit a jackpot with TIG because of the range of metals that you can work with. TIG can help to weld a wide range of metals and alloys. Be it stainless steel, aluminum, Chromoly, magnesium, brass, gold, and bronze.

Don’t you think that is a very huge advantage? Think of the variety of things that you can use it for. And at home, there are numerous areas where this would be beneficial. Maybe a musical instrument or that metal arch above your gate or maybe your old steel pipe. One can’t tell when and how a TIG welding machine can help you. So better have one at home!

2. Can be used in all positions

TIG welder rods can be used in all positions such as horizontal, overhead, vertical, etc. It therefore can be called an all-purpose welding tool or procedure.

You can see how with metals and positions how flexible these are. This gives the benefit of the capability to work in confined areas and places where only a flexible machine can work.

3. Clean as it can get

The most important reason why TIG welding can be handy at home is the kind of finishing that the work gives. The amount of deformation is very less that you get the best possible look for your product.

When it comes to welding, the cleanest way to do it is the ideal way. Smooth finishing can give the user much satisfaction and helps you to finish the work with minimal mess.

4. Only one type of gas

Argon is the only shielding gas that is required for TIG welding. This gas is compatible with almost all thicknesses and metals making it the most compatible in almost all situations that arise.

Again, the characteristic of having multiple usages for the same thing can act as a huge advantage over others. Will you prefer having many or one-for-all-purpose?

5. Precise control on heat

TIG welding has control over weld puddles and therefore the sparks and spatter are very less during the process. This is because the filler is placed using hands as and when needed.

Moreover, you get to control a foot pedal through which the heat emitted is determined. The more efficient you are in controlling the pedal, the smoother the procedure would be. 

5. Less contamination

The presence of Argon gas helps in the protection of the surface from any sort of contamination. The absence of slag ensures a better view of the weld and flux is not needed. In addition to this, fumes or smoke rarely occur and base metal needs to be kept clean all the time. 

What are the cons of TIG welding at home?

1. Slow process

Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) welding because of the number of components involved can take a considerable time to finish the welding. The requirement of having good coordination of the hands, the eyes, and the legs by itself shows how much of a detailed process it is.

A major part of the time is taken up for the manual filling of the weld pool. Therefore, TIG might take up a considerable time of yours unlike the other easy welding processes.

2. Requirement of skills

TIG welding because of its very detailed way of working requires a skilled person to do it. As mentioned in the other sections of this article, it needs time for a person to be comfortable in TIG welding and that time is required for the development of the specific skills to handle this particular welding process. One might not feel the need to develop these skills when there are other easier welding methods available.

3. The initial cost is high

Compared to arc welding TIG has a higher cost of welding. This is so, because of the expensive and advanced materials needed for TIG. The “high professional machines” are needed for TIG whereas other methods like MIG need a comparatively less number of such components.

Moreover, TIG demands a gas flow meter as the flow of gas needs to be regulated more than in MIG welding. As it is a critical part of TIG, the gas flow meter used should be of high quality. Therefore, there are a lot of costs incurred for and during the process.

4. Difficult to disassemble

A major difference between TIG and MIG is that when two pieces are welded together using TIG, it is difficult to disassemble them unless the individual pieces are destroyed. It is therefore difficult to undo the process like in MIG. Therefore the pieces once welded cannot be reused for other purposes.

So what should I keep in mind while TIG welding at home?

We know how things can take a turn for the worst if you are not careful with something. Imagine the same while doing a dangerous process like welding.

Risks are pretty high. And if you are not careful it can even cost your life. Let’s look into some precautionary measures that should be taken while doing TIG welding at home…

1. Exposure to different gases

The gases that are used by TIG for shielding can be very dangerous and the characteristics of them being colorless and odorless mean that the risk is high. Even though Argon is primarily used by almost all the TIG welding machines, some use Carbon dioxide for shielding as well.

Both these gases can have serious harmful effects on one’s health. You may feel dizzy, nauseous, vomiting if exposed to high levels of these gases. It may also lead to loss of consciousness and in extreme cases, death.

Be sure to keep a distance from where the core part of the exercise. Do not let the gases have an overwhelming effect on you. Better you do the complete procedure in a place where there is proper ventilation. 

See also: Steps on how to weld using a gasless MIG welder

2. Stay away from fumes

When the electrode touches different metals, certain fumes may arise even though it is comparatively less in TIG welding. Yet these fumes like the gases released can have ill effects. The particles and chemicals arising from the metals can get accumulated in one’s body. Imagine the long-term usage of these machines. 

But these are in conditions like factories where the work is hectic and takes a long time to finish. At home, as the work happens rarely, you need not have much concern. You need to be aware of how these things work and keep a good eye throughout the procedure to see if anything is off at any point in time.

3. Don’t get shocked!

One of the most common while doing TIG welding is doing it in a highly humid atmosphere or near water. As electricity is an important part of the procedure, wetness can cause huge problems.

You can get electrocuted if not vigilant enough. It is pretty common sense not to do tasks involving electricity in water or near water. Make sure that the area is dry and devoid of any liquid, not just water. 

4. Protect your skin

Like a sun burns the UV radiation released during TIG welding can affect your skin. In close proximity, it might burn your skin. Continuous exposure for a long term can cause diseases like skin cancer. Of course, the only way to prevent this is by wearing a welding helmet and long sleeves. Your skin must be covered in the best possible manner.

5. Your eyes shouldn’t pay the price

Of course, this is something that you would already know. Eyes are very delicate and they need to be protected at all cost during welding. The IR and the UV radiation can penetrate deep into your eyes. Just thinking about it is enough to make you cringe. Isn’t it? Imagine how harmful it would be for the eyes. These rays are said to be more intense than sun rays.

 A safe and strong welding helmet will do the trick. These helmets come with a shielding dark eye lens shade. They protect not only your eyes but also the different parts of your head from potential danger.

 There are various types of welding helmets available in the market like the battery-powered helmet, the solar-powered lens, auto-darkening welding helmets, passive welding helmet, and the fixed-shade lens welding.

6. Keep children away

At home, there will be numerous situations where children would run into what you are doing. Therefore, while welding do try to maintain a safe distance from them and if possible, try to do the welding in a place where they can’t easily come into.

Comparison with other methods of welding 

Type of welding Cost Materials  Portability Skill level Time needed
TIG Slightly expensive Suited for all metals but only with low thickness. Not easily portable Need to be skilled and proficient. Considerable time is needed to finish a work
MIG Affordable Can be used on different metals.

Especially for large and thicker materials.

Becomes more portable than TIG without gas. Low skill level Time Taken to finish a work is less
STICK SHIELDED METAL ARC Not very expensive Can be used on most metals and alloys but difficult to weld thinner metals Portable Requires skill and experience Slow in finishing work.
FLUX CORED ARC Expensive compared to Stick metal arc welding Works only on thick materials Lightweight  & Portable Low skill level needed Faster compared to MIG, yet in certain aspects takes time than others.

Is a course necessary to learn TIG welding even for small household purposes?

Well, now this is a question whose answer depends on each person. Some naturally find TIG welding much easier than the rest as they have prior experience of welding. As mentioned earlier, it is not the complication in the process but, how well you can coordinate the same matters. 

But, you can get to know the process by taking a vocational course and see if you can handle the different components. Learning about it before trying it can give you an idea better than going for the practical part initially. If you have knowledge about other welding methods, you might not even need much time to learn as well.

Nothing comes easily, it might take even months, but if you give it your best shot, eventually you will be comfortable in TIG welding.

TIG welding can get interesting once you get into it. You just need to give it some time. And once you are a pro, you can have numerous uses of it.

Hope you now know what you need the next time your door handle or fender breaks!

 So why wait? Venture into it and see the wonder!

Steve Goodman
Experienced welder with 7+ years of expertise in all the latest welding techniques MIG, flux and stick welding, drill press, crane operation and metal fabrication. Welding certificate course graduate and 2018 Excellence in Welding award winner.

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