How To Choose a Welder? The Ultimate Guide

Today, not only professionals but also amateur “welders” buy themselves a welding machine to serve different purposes.

Choosing the best welding technique might be challenging for a beginner because there are so many different ones. Depending on the approach you commonly employ, you must choose a welding machine that is appropriate to finish a job.

You should also think about whether you weld often or perhaps sometimes. Finding a machine that completes the assignment the quickest is the main objective for each welder. ESAB, Hobart, Miller, and Lincoln are the top welder manufacturers.

The welding machine is widely available with many types. Hence, you will have more choices but it will more difficult if you do not have a certain knowledge of these machines.

This article will guide you on How to choose a welder for your purposes.

Characteristics of Popular Types of Welder

To choose an appropriate welder, the first factor we should consider is the welding method. Any buyers should be aware of the working mechanism of welders.

Flux-Cored Welders

  • Works as well as Stick on dirty or rusty material
  • Out-of-position welding
  • Deep penetration for welding thick sections
  • Has high metal deposition rate
  • Easier to clean when welding on dirty or rusty metalwork

TIG Welders

  • Provides the highest quality, precise welds
  • Highly aesthetic weld beads
  • Allows adjustment of heat input and torch while welding by use of a foot control
  • Has shielding gas
  • Uses both AC and DC

TIG Welder (Tungsten Inert Gas): TIG welding is similar to MIG welding in that it also employs an electric arc, but it varies in a few key areas.

A TIG welder joins the metal by manually feeding long tungsten welding rods into the weld puddle in place of a continuous spool of consumable wire.

Gas, often argon, is needed for TIG welding in order to shield and cool the weld puddle from outside impurities.

Thinner materials like stainless steel and aluminum are more suited for TIG welding since you may lower the power to lessen the chance of blow through and even join two different metals.

TIG welders may, depending on the equipment, weld larger materials and are ideal for difficult welds like S curves.

As the procedure is significantly more manual and involves controlling the torch and welding rod by hand (and foot for the gas), TIG welding requires more experience than MIG welding but, once learned, will yield the highest-quality welds.

Due to the manual procedure, it is the least productive option but is best when flawless, accurate welds are required.

MIG Welders

  • The easiest  to learn
  • High welding speeds
  • Better control on thinner metals
  • Cleaner welds possible with no slag to clean
  • The same equipment can be used for Flux-Cored Welding
  • Has shielding gas
  • Using filler metal

A suitable all-purpose, universal welder that can join heavy steel to thin gauge sheet metal is the MIG welder (Metal Inert Gas). It’s easy to learn and requires little practice to make welds of good quality.

In order to create an electric arc between a wire and the metal workpiece, a MIG welder requires a wire feed gun to continuously feed a spool of thin filler wire into the electrode.

This warms the metal of the workpiece and the electrode, causing them to melt and combine to form the weld.

Both gas and gasless MIG welding have their advantages.

Gasless welding is much more portable than gas MIG since there is no gas bottle to transport, saving money on the cost of gas bottles and regulators. It is also easier on positional welds and can penetrate deeper.

Gas MIG welding is somewhat better on thinner metals, creates far cleaner welds with no slag or spatter, and the welding wire is less expensive than gasless MIG wire.

In either case, MIG welding is most likely the best option for both light industrial applications and the home and hobby market.


One of the first types of welding is called ARC welding. To melt and combine the metals, an electric arc is produced between the welding rod and the workpiece using either an AC or DC power source.

Although this kind of welding is reasonably affordable and portable, it does take some skill to create nice, consistent welds, and the after-weld cleanup will probably be necessary.

Although thinner materials are less well suited for ARC welding, there are many different types of specialized electrodes (welding rods) available for ARC welders depending on the materials you are welding.

Stick Welders

  • Better suited for windy, outdoor conditions
  • More forgiving when welding on dirty or rusty metal
  • Use a huge power supply to work well on thicker materials

Types of Projects and Corresponded Metal Thickness

Next, identify the types of welding projects and materials you will weld most of the time.

Are you a professional welder or just a hobbyist? Do you want to create metal works or simply fix broken metal materials or attach metal pieces to each other?

Based on the types of work you want to do with welders, refer to the  information below to know what kind of welding machine you should choose.

Possible Projects Average Material Thickness
Auto body 3/16-inch or less
Trailer frames and fencing 1/4-inch to 5/16-inch
Farm, ranch, and landscape 5/16-inch to 3/8-inch
Thick structural components Over 3/8-inch
Bicycles, lawnmowers or tube frames 1/16-inch
Boats, cars, and motorcycles 1/16-inch to 1/8-inch
Hunting stands and utility trailers 1/16-inch to 1/8-inch
General to heavy repair 3/16-inch to 1/4-inch

After looking at the type of project and the thickness of the metal, another factor you need to keep in mind is the type of metal you usually have to handle in your work.

Here, I will give you one more table indicating the compatibility of the welding process and types of metal.


Welding Process

MIG Welding

Stick Welding

TIG Welding





Stainless Steel




Aluminum Alloys




Cast Iron
















Exotic Metals (Magnesium, Titanium, etc.)




How To Choose a Welder Brand?

When you buy something, a brand is a very important factor that ensures the quality of the product.

When it comes to welders, the top brands in this market are Lincoln, Miller, and ESAB. Besides, Thermal Arc, Hobart, Kempii, and Fronius, which receive many positive reviews from users.

Some of them may get a few negative feedback but it is normal. Every brand may have those problems, but it is still better for you to choose big brands with an excellent warranty.

For your own convenience, feel free to pick the best brand in your region.

Final Words

It takes careful preparation and study to choose a decent welding machine. Always put the material you’re welding, the method, and the thickness of the material first. Observe the workspace, the power situation, and the gas cylinder as well. Get a welding equipment with a decent duty cycle as well for efficient outcomes.

Before you go shopping for the sewing machine for your forthcoming tasks, you may make a good shopping strategy by utilizing this article as a buying guide.

Finally, I have provided you with the most basic and necessary information about welders.

I believe that with this useful information, you now know how to choose a welder that suits your needs, goals, and usability.

If you have any questions, please comment below and contact us through Tools Working.

Thanks for reading!

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