If you're new to metal fabrication and welding, you may not know how to recognize a problem with a weld when one exists. For those without experience, some welding flaws are harder to recognize. If you want to be sure that your fabrication projects are in the best condition that they can be in, it's important that you learn how to inspect welds for damage and identify the source of any problems. Here's a look at a few things that you should know about the signs that you need welding repair.
If you examine a weld and you see small holes throughout it, those are porous welds. You might think that a porous weld is no big deal, but it is actually a serious concern. When there are holes in a weld, the gaps created can weaken the strength and integrity of the weld, leading to an increased risk of breaking.
In most cases, porous welds are the result of grease or oil exposure, surface contaminants, or a coating on the surface of the metal. Usually, this occurs because the metal wasn't properly prepared before welding.
If you look at a weld and there are cracks anywhere in the welding material, that is a key indicator that there's a problem with the weld. Cracks can cause a weld to break completely, leading to total failure.
Cracks in a weld are often the result of a poor fit between the two metal components or the weld cooling too quickly. When it cools too quickly, whether due to drafts or a cold environment, the weld shifts rapidly, causing it to crack.
Poorly Fused Welds
Properly welded metals are smooth and consistently attached across the surfaces. There shouldn't be any gaps between the weld and the base metal. If you can see a gap where the weld didn't properly fuse to the base metal, that leaves the weld weak.
This can be caused by a poor welding technique, improper metal preparation, or a poor arc setting. In some cases, you can fill the gap, but many times you'll have to have that section of the weld ground away and replaced.
These are a few of the most common signs that you need weld fabrication repair before you finalize your fabrication project. Check every weld for signs of issues like these before you deliver on the work, and reach out to a welding repair contractor to help you ensure that your welds are in good condition.