MIG vs. TIG Welding: What’s the Difference?
Welding is a fabrication process that uses heat and pressure to create a durable joint between two separate metal pieces so that they effectively become one. As people have used welding to accomplish various industry specifications on components, two prominent welding techniques have risen to the top: MIG and TIG welding. But what’s the difference between MIG vs. TIG welding? Let’s cover how each one works.
MIG welding, or metal inert gas welding, is best for welding large and thick materials. They use a consumable wire that both acts as an electrode and a filler material. This is a quicker method than TIG welding that allows for shorter lead times and cheaper production costs. MIG welding is a simple process to learn and has little cleaning and finishing involved. However, it doesn’t create as strong or precise of a weld as TIG welding.
TIG welding, or tungsten inert gas welding, is highly versatile and can weld small and thin materials together. This welding technique uses a non-consumable tungsten electrode to heat the metal and doesn’t require a filler to accomplish a task. Compared to MIG welding, TIG welding is a slower process that results in longer lead times and higher production costs. Part of these higher production costs come from the specialized training necessary to perform TIG welding properly. In return, you benefit from the greater precision and accuracy TIG welding provides. When aesthetics are important, TIG welding is necessary. It allows you to achieve the clean and subtle appearance MIG can’t create.
Now you understand what the difference between MIG vs. TIG welding is. However, you can’t perform them without knowing how to do either welding technique safely. Welding masks, safety glasses, heat-resistant welding gloves, and jackets that effectively cover your skin are necessary to protect you from the heat, sparks, and blinding lights created during the welding process. Taking the necessary safety precautions will ensure no injuries or accidents occur.