Troubleshooting Your Welding Machine

Troubleshooting your welding equipment may mean the difference between finding and fixing a simple problem rather than replacing the entire unit.  If you know what to look for you can usually diagnose the problem and proceed to fix it or have someone who is more experienced fix the problem.  But knowing the basic troubleshooting steps for your welding machine, you may be able to avoid a lot of downtime and avoid spending a lot of money on repairs.

The first thing you will want to check is if the wire is feeding properly.  If you notice a problem, it may be a symptom of a worn drive roller.  Having a worn drive roller can affect how the wire is fed and may cause it to slip.  To detect a worn drive roller you will want to look for any debris or dirt on the liner.  Sometimes all you need to do is clean your welding machine properly and your wire will move freely once again.

The next thing to examine is the tip near the wire exit located inside the welding gun.  If your tip is too worn the electricity produced by your machine doesn’t effectively hit and can create extra work for the welder.  If you have experienced any burn back, that can also cause a bad wire.  If you notice any of these problems you will want to replace the tip of your welding gun as soon as possible to avoid further problems.

To properly troubleshoot your machine you will also want to insure that the welding cup is free of spatter.  This may seem like an unnecessary task but to properly troubleshoot your equipment, having a clean machine helps you to notice any problems.  It is also important to have a clean cup to achieve proper gas coverage when welding, if the cup is plugged the quality of the weld you produce may become affected.

Your next step should be inspecting the ground clamp.  If the ground clamp becomes coated with oxides, electrons can’t easily transfer.  If you have a bad ground clamp it can cause a lot of resistance and alter the way that the current flows back to the welding machine.  Examining the welding cable for any worn or frayed areas is also important.  A damaged cable can cause damage to your machine and other problems while you’re welding.  It is also important to adjust the brake on the wire spool; if it is set either too high or too low you can experience problems with your welding machine.

These are only a few tips to help you diagnose any problems you may be experiencing. If you follow these steps and are still having problems you may need to consult a repairman who is familiar with the type of machine you are using.

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23 thoughts on “Troubleshooting Your Welding Machine”

  1. jerry says:

    machine will arc only on hight setting why

    1. Ozkar says:

      I have a welding machine lincoln electric starts well but does not weld Why?

      1. Weldi says:

        Welding machine no output voltage qnd no earthing. others everything ok .

  2. Paul Barrette says:

    I have a Miller CP 200 with a S-52E wire fee and the wire is live with out pushing trig on gun?? any suggestions??

  3. shankar jha says:

    rs 400 esab current high not low .what prom

  4. Rick baker says:

    Welder will start and run but I can plug a drill into and nothing

  5. Gary says:

    onon Miller trailblazer 280 welder it will not start.

  6. sabuj says:

    good evening sir, I want to know about Otc xd500 welding machine. when I start machine that time machine no start. means start 2second later automatic stop and wearing light flashing.so I chang electromagnetic contractors, power switch, tharmostat, and Pcb also. but not ok. so kindly can you talk to me what happen?

  7. Taylor Bishop says:

    Thanks for going over some tips for troubleshooting a welding machine. You mentioned that the machine should be cleaned to properly notice any problems. I’m interested to learn if there are some good cleaning techniques that should be used, like if there are specific tools or cleaners that are very effective.

  8. Michael Foley says:

    Great troubleshooting guide! Thanks a bunch, Ed!

  9. Elson Juanillo says:

    Hi sir I’m a power tools technician like drill machine,grinder.ect. but also I can repair the welding machine but my machine is not coming output power is okay only output not working can give advise to tip for me check the welding machine name of welding machine is SAF-PRO thanks alot

  10. Azgar ali says:

    pls. I need hepl, suddenly our ARC welding machine make a abnormal sound & take 30 Amp.without load

  11. Jaco de winnaar says:

    Goeie dag ek sit met n Miller 342 hy stoot sy draad en als maar hy maar net die draad rooi as hy arc en dit lyk so voel kak kan iemand my dalk se wat is vout

  12. Ryan says:

    I have a HYL MIG/MMA-250Y
    Not getting an arc trying to mug weld…

    1. Ryan says:

      MiG **

  13. Monday Iyatse says:

    Please I have mos 170 Gen welding machine it just stop work ing but the cooling fan is working

  14. Abdalqadr says:

    I have chinese welding machine. It work very well but AFTER 5 minutes It is not welding and the fan not working?? What is the reasons please

  15. Iwayemi says:

    My machine is using both arc and argon welding but the gun of my arc didn’t sparks light at all what could be the problem?

  16. juju krishna prajapati says:

    poor welding and no on

  17. david says:

    hi i have miller syncrowave 275 ac dc start amperage stay to hi control knob not working pleas tel me were to look is it to
    do pcb or other part if i no i will find the fault my self i am handy man thanks

    1. bakersgas says:

      I would call Miller to trouble shoot 920-734-9821 or take it to your authorized Miller service center near you!

  18. smitty says:

    good afternoon I have a miller big blue 500d DC welding generator the engine runs but would not weld I don’t know whats wrong what can I do

  19. Raymond Fierro of big Spring says:

    I have a Lincoln electric classic three d welder that is always revved up.. The idle is always revved high

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