4 Tips for Identifying Automotive Welding Issues After Automotive School

Welding issues on a vehicle can lead to disastrous outcomes, which is why manufacturing companies need to meet certain quality standards for their parts. However, with a desire to increase efficiency and profits, many companies are trying to “do more with less” when it comes to the amount of time and materials used throughout the manufacturing process.

Automotive Training Centres in Toronto covers many key elements throughout our automotive technology training program. One of these, Welding Fundamentals, will help you in your future on the job when it comes to identifying faulty welding that may be causing problems on a vehicle. On the job as an auto mechanic, discover four tips you’ll need to know for spotting welding issues.

1. Get Used to Checking Uniformity During Automotive School

As you may learn in automotive school, issues with MIG welding, the most widely used welding technique, will often show a lack of uniformity when the welding wasn’t completed to industry standards. This technique is used with thinner materials such as mild steel, stainless steel, and aluminum. Whether the welder was traveling too fast, too slow, or using the wrong voltage, the imperfections will show.

Gaps along the weld line, lack of discoloration of the parent metal, bumpy sections, and varying thickness will all be signs of welding issues for this technique.

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After automotive school, be sure to check for uniformity along a weld line

2. Look Out for Insufficient Penetration

Soft metals, such as copper and bronze, may be welded using oxy welding. Oxy welding is mostly used today for maintenance work as well as gas metal cutting. With this technique, you’ll be able to spot issues after auto mechanic school if you check the underside of the weld for insufficient penetration. 

Excessive globules of metal, too thin or too thick of welding lines, incomplete fusion, undercuts, and overlapping are all things to look out for when assessing an oxy weld. Stick welding can also exhibit similar irregularities when the weld isn’t up to standards, but running tests will always be important for determining the quality of any weld.

3. Learn to Test Welding Whether it Looks Good or Bad

In some cases, a visual inspection isn’t enough. Just because these common visual irregularities show up, doesn’t always mean that the weld will cause issues. Similarly, some welds that look like they were completed correctly may in fact have a weak point that you can’t see.

Getting into the habit of testing the strength and capacity of the weld, no matter how it looks, can save you from missing an issue that could be causing a problem in the vehicle. Welding tests such as x-ray tests, magnaflux tests, dye penetrant tests and ultrasonic tests will identify any voids between the metals or lack of fusion.

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Weld tests are essential to determine if a weld is truly faulty

4. Figure Out if the Right Welding Technique Was Used

Specific welds are used based on the intended function of the welded parts. Getting familiar with which welding techniques are used with which metals will help you learn to quickly spot an incorrect weld. Ensuring the weld is operating correctly, and that it will be able to withstand the conditions found within the vehicle, can help save your clients from further problems with their vehicles.

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