What are the 4 Types of Welding?

What are the 4 types of welding processes? There are four general categories of welding processes: gas metal arc welding (GMAW), the open-dip (ODW), the gas torch welding (TIG), and the plasma arc welding (PIG). These four types of welding are the most common and therefore the first step to any welders training should be to identify what type they are and how to recognize them. If you want start you welding journey Here you learn Best MIG Welder for Home Use.

What are the 4 Types of Welding?


4 Most Popular Types of GMAW Welding Systems. Gas Metal Arc Welding, or GMAW, is the simplest type of welding system. In this system, a high pressure jet of gas (usually nitrogen) passes over the electrode, igniting the metal and welding the seam together. GMAW is the standard method in which all MIG welders are operated.


Gas Metal Arc Welders (TIG), on the other hand, is similar to GMAW, except that it uses an arc of high energy rather than gas. In TIG, a tungsten electrode is placed in between two metal sheets. When the electrode is struck, it generates a gas arc which heats up the metal sheets. As the heated metal cools, it hardens into a metal sheet, which is then passed onto a filler wire for welding.


Plasma Arc Welders (PIG) and Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) are similar to each other, but they use different techniques. For instance, PIG uses a gas stream to heat the metal before it is passed on to the filler wire; TIG uses an electrode with a very small heating element. 

When the metal heats up, it creates a plasma, which is a gas in which electrons are being knocked off in certain amounts. This causes the electrons to have a slightly higher energy, and they collide with the opposing hydrogen atoms creating ions, which in turn generate an electric current.

Gas Tungsten Inert Gas Welders.

As you can see, PIG and TIG are both similar in how they create the plasma, but they use different ways to pass it on to the metal. Gas Tungsten Inert Gas Welders (TIG) use the same type of electrodes as a PIG, but their use the gas stream of argon to generate the plasma, while plasma arc welding uses the same type of electrode as GMAW.

Difference between TIG and GMAW.

The best way to recognize the difference between TIG and GMAW is by looking at the shape of the electrodes. Tungsten in TIG has a very narrow head and a wide center. Pugs on the other hand, have a wider head and a wider center. This is why TIG electrodes are sometimes called “pugs” instead of “tungsten electrode.”

Where to use PUGs.

Pugs are used more often for the production of welds. It’s not uncommon to see this welding system used on large fabrication projects such as aircraft or boats. Pugs are also used to weld many different metals, from stainless steel and brass to steel and aluminum. You can see them in welding shops, and you can find pug welders that are made specifically for this purpose.

TCA and SS.

5 Tungsten Carbide (TCA) and Stainless Steel (SS) are the next most common welding applications. TCA electrodes are generally used to weld stainless steel, and also some types of plastic. The main difference between TCA and SS is that TCA electrodes are thicker than SS, but not very much in terms of electrode size. They also have a larger center, which allows for a much wider electrode surface to work on.

TCA electrodes are great for fast welding but have a low melting point and therefore they need to be welded at very high speeds. Because of this, these are usually used in smaller areas, and with small projects. SS is generally used in larger jobs or in welding shops. They are also used in welding on stainless steel, but their surface area is relatively small compared to TCA.


If you are interested in welding, you should learn more about the 4 types of welding, and what type of electrodes to use. You can get more information from your local welding shop, or you can search online for specificelding information.

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