Finding the best welder for aluminum may be tough as aluminum is considered to be one of the most unique metals that can be welded. aluminum has a low melting point so, many people think any low quality welder can be used to weld aluminum. But the truth is you need a great quality welding machine to weld aluminum. let’s learn in details why and what type of welders are best for welding aluminum.
5 best aluminum welders
Table of Contents
Top 5 Best Welder For Aluminum
SUNGOLDPOWER 200Amp MIG MAG ARC MMA Stick DC Welder | Best overall
SUNGOLDPOWER 200Amp MIG MAG ARC MMA Stick DC Welder is the top choice for welding aluminum. You will be capable of welding not only aluminum but also any type of material including cast iron, carbon steel to mild steel. It has the ability to perform both solid wire MIG welding and gasless flux core welding.
Though you will not get an aluminum spool gun included with the package, you can easily fit one. You will be able to weld aluminum ¼ inches thick plate with the machine as you can adjust the current flow between 20 amps to 180 amps giving you a wide range of variety.
The welder has a variety of wire feed, and amplifier cord adjustments, enabling you to mount smooth and minimal scatter welds. The arc quality is also one of the best allows you to weld from .023 to 0.039 inches.
The most wonderful feature is 60% duty cycle, which allows you to weld for a longer period. You will not need to stop your work for a while to let it cool down. You can continue your project for a longer period allowing you to finish your project quickly.
You may link it to a standard 110v or a 220v power supply. In addition, it uses inverter technology, which ensures that there is not much power consumption.
Though the leads are short, the quality is good, so you don’t need to worry about the durability. So, you will get a wonderful product at an affordable price, which is under 500$.
Unfortunately, not, but you can fix one easily.
It weighs 33 lbs. You may think it is quite more than other MIG machines. But keep in mind this machine has a full-bridge circuit board while others have a half-bridge. It also contains a good quality transformer.
It has automatic overload protection.
The speed range of the wire feed is from 1.5 to 16 meter per minute
2018 AHP AlphaTIG 200X | Best TIG/Stick aluminum welder
With its special foot pedal feature, the AHP AlphaTIG 200x offers you the ease of use and much better control. It’s a professional-grade TIG/stick welder that gives you a lot at an affordable price.
It is possible to use the 200-amp aluminum welding device for professional purposes. This machine is ideal simultaneously for hobby welders. This is certainly one of the best welding equipments on the market in this price range.
This provides a full range of pulsing functions and regulates the cleaning of AC products. High-end welding jobs are quickly done by the AlphaTIG. The versatility of the voltage criterion allows various types of work to be done. The unit uses state-of-the-art technology, including advanced IGBT technology, and adjustment of the pulse width.
The Alpha TIG 200x comes fitted with IGBT technology and guarantees reliability and longer longevity. The Pulse Width Modulation also helps to achieve an optimal power supply efficiency.
The duty cycle rate is also very high by 60%. You can do so without interruption for 6 minutes out of 10 if you choose to operate at maximum capacity (200 amperes).
The fact that this TIG welding machine works well on thin materials is an important function. On thin materials, the majority of devices do not operate smoothly. learn more
It consists of three pulse frequency, amperage percent, and time.
No, it is a TIG welder. You may modify it with a spool gun, but it will cost more than buying a MIG welder.
You can weld ¼ inches aluminum and 3/8 inches mild steel.
Yes, it has. It will be automatically shut down when the machine is overheated.
LOTOS MIG175 175AMP Mig Welder | Best value for the money
This versatile cuboid-shaped welder has been designed both for professional and beginner’s welder. A high-speed MIG spool gun is included with the package that allows you to weld 3/16 inches or thinner aluminum plate easily.
It will save you hundreds of dollars as MIG torch, Aluminum Spool Gun, Ground Clamp Cable, Gas Hose, Argon Regulator, Contact Tips, Welding Mask, and Wire are included with the package. It is ready to use out of the box.
The high quality, robust aluminum wire feeder provides a much more reliable and enhanced aluminum welding experience.
Lotos MIG 175 can be the best choice for your money. The customer service of the company is also better than most of its competitors.
Overload protection will increase the life span of your welder.
Though the overall performance is awesome, we found a small problem with the portability. The 5 feet gas hose will not allow you to move around the machine much while welding. You will probably have to continue your job staying in a standard position.
Unfortunately, not. It is only designed to be used on 220/240V.
You would need a generator having power more than 7000 watt as this machine runs on 30 amp under 220v.
At 175-amp duty cycle is 20% and at 135-amp 30%
Though it is DC, you can weld aluminum as it includes a spool gun.
Hobart - 500553 Handler 210 | best MIG aluminum welder
The design and technology used in this device make the welding process extremely easy. This robust machine is suitable for non-industrial applications. Hobart 500554001 can weld materials up to 5/16-inch-thick and up to 24 gauge thin. It has a very good power ranking too.
The tool can be used in a single pass to melt 3/8-inch thick steel. You can change the voltage settings if you choose to use it for a large project. It lets you change seven different power output settings to match your needs.
It has seven choices of voltage, increased magnetism, and the controls of the infinite speed of the wire. The system will run on 25-190 amplifiers.
Ideal for construction and repairs, lighting, vehicles, agricultural and garden work, as well as for home projects. Nevertheless, you should not overlook that while this product is very durable, it cannot be used constantly or for heavy work in the industry.
Depending upon the requirement, you can repair the voltage entry either at 115V or 230V. With no tools needed, the plug is easy to adjust.
Almost all you need to start working on your project is in the toolbox. The kit consists of a MIG welding gun, a 210MVP handler, a gas tank, a double-gauge monitor, a clamp cord, a welding wire, and a multi-voltage plug adapter. It also provides a manual for installing and starting the system and welding equipment.
A spool runner 100 spool gun along with aluminum wire and pure argon gas will be required.
The duty cycle is 20% at 90 amps and 30% at 150 amps.
The multi-voltage plug makes it not only portable but also competent.
Hobart 500551 EZ-TIG 165i AC/DC TIG Welder 230V
Hobart 500551 EZ is one of the best TIG welders for aluminum weighing only 50 lbs. makes it lightweight and portable. You can easily weld 22-gauge thin material and 3/6 inches thick material as well. The arc begins at high frequencies reduces the likelihood of a filler rod getting in touch with the electrode. It, therefore, prevents contamination of the tungsten thread.
Though it is suitable for both beginners and professionals’ beginners may find this little pricey. But you will not regret this as the unit worthy it.
Both AC and DC switching options are available. You can choose as your requirement. We suggest you AC option for aluminum and magnesium and DC option for steel, stainless steel, copper, etc.
The inverter-based power source will cause you to save some electricity bill as it consumes less power. It will also give you good quality consistent arc.
Overheating protection is included that will give you a long-time service and prevent you from repairing cost.
There is an on-demand fan to protect the device while it is packed. The fan can be switched on and off the dust and other particles. It can weld metals of different thicknesses in terms of efficiency.
Though the machine can weld any type of metals easily, you may need more amperage to weld aluminum.
WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENT TYPES OF WELDERS ARE THERE TO WELD ALUMINUM?
The most common method for aluminum welding is TIG. You will need a TIG machine that can provide a sufficient amount of heat to weld aluminum because aluminum needs an adequate amount of heat to be welded. Aluminum can retain the heat for a long time, and TIG machines are excellent to avoid the overheating of these heated sections. You should not trigger a burn-through while using a TIG unit.
TIG welding can be used both for thick aluminum and thin aluminum sheets. As a filler rod is needed, the person using the machine must select a separate rod whose alloy is as similar as possible to the alloy of the base metal.
You have at least some understanding of the process when you choose to weld aluminum with the aid of a TIG tool. TIG is much more difficult to dominate than MIG welding, but it can achieve better aluminum welding. learn more
Pros of TIG welding aluminum
- A neat & clean weld
- Absence of spatters
- You can weld parts of minimal thickness
- You can work on small arc currents (from 5 Amps)
- Better control of arc parameters
- more durable weld
Cons of TIG welding aluminum
- Not for beginners
- Expensive for consumable accessories
- Slower, less efficient
MIG welding aluminum
MIG welding is also effective and easiest way to weld aluminum for the beginners. You will have to choose whether you are to take pulse welder or spray arc welding techniques when selecting the right welder.
The first requirement is an inverter power supply. Lastly, the voltage and current are continuously needed.
When you want to weld thin aluminum sheets, it is recommended to weld MIG mainly because of the energy required to do this. Consider 100 percent argon as the best-known option for MIG-aluminum welding when selecting a safe gas. learn more
Pros of MIG welding aluminum
- An easy method for beginners
- MIG welding is faster
- beneficial for long, complex welds
- excellent penetration on different metals
cons of MIG welding aluminum
- Not so deep and beautiful weld seam
- Not suited for outdoor welding
Torch welding aluminum
Finally, torch welding is possible but much more technical than MIG and TIG. This should be determined by seasoned practitioners because they can monitor the heat applied to the workpiece, but it is likely that others who are new or not so masterful with the torch are away for a while.
If you do torch welding, a burn-through is even more likely. You have to be a skillful welder to do it well.
How can you clean aluminum workpieces prior to weld?
The metal-generated oxide layer causes critical problems during the welding process. Operators new to this business may not be aware of the maintenance issues.
In the melting points of aluminum oxide and base material, you can see a big difference.
Aluminum oxide melting points are about three times higher than the base material. You can face problems such as oxide inclusion and decreased welder power if you leave any oxides on the surface of the piece you are working on.
Clean the coating before welding with a carbide cutter or brush in stainless steel.
But oxide has an excellent reforming ability, note. So, weld right after the cleaning the metal.
ADDITIONAL CONSIDERATIONS BEFORE CHOOSING BEST WELDER FOR ALUMINUM
A very significant aspect is the budget. When you buy your welding machine, always keep your budget in mind. You know what kind of welding machine can be supplied if you have a fixed budget. You will, therefore, be safe from unplanned purchases of any kind.
Consider voltage as an essential factor. You cannot execute a heavy-duty project with a welder having less power. Your welder must have the power of 200 amps to melt or weld 1/8 inches of aluminum.
Therefore, you have to finalize what type of welding project you will do and choose the duty cycle that matches your project. We recommend going for the welder that has more amp, so; you can do small as well as big projects.
Established brand & warranty
Before purchasing a welder, make sure the brand is established and well known. It will ensure you a satisfied after sell service. Check the warranty before buying so that you will not have to pay for the repair of your welder during the warranty period. If your welder becomes bad, you can ask the supplier to replace it.
Maintaining a welder is a significant issue. Find out the best product available in the market.
You should eat as long as your stomach can hold. If you eat up to the throat, it may cause feel your discomfort.
In the same way, there is a level of temperature below which it is safe to continue your job. But above the safe temperature, it may cause massive damage to your machine.
Therefore, the automatic overload protection feature must be included with your device. It will shut down your device automatically when your machine reaches above the safe temperature level. You will not be able to restart it again until it cools down and safe to use.
It is also a smart idea to use a welder with pulse welding. The pulse welding retains the power to turn the full power to low power. Thus, the chance of metal deformation is reduced.
Consider the attribute as necessary.
This feature not only keeps you safe but also increase the lifespan of your machine.
The working cycle means that the welder will work for a certain period of time prior to departure. For instance, you can operate it continuously for 3 minutes when your welder is 30% of the duty cycle. The more the duty cycle of your welder, the more time you can continue your project.
It takes at least 7 minutes to rest before it begins again. At 10 minutes of time, the percentage is measured.
It is heated up and melting the electrical circuit when the welder is worked longer than the time indicated.
Anyway, if you want to get a welder with more duty cycles, you will have to spend more. We recommend you to get a welder with more duty cycle if you want to weld thick materials.
AC or DC
AC stands for Alternating Current, the direction of the electric charge will be changing periodically
DC stands for Direct current, here the electric charge flows in only one direction.
AC is more efficient relative to DC, according to specialists.
While welding aluminum AC current has more advantages as it provides cleaning action and penetration by the positive half cycle and negative half cycle respectively.
AC is recommended in Both MIG and TIG processes while DC stick welder gives better results while stick welding aluminum.
Since cathode cleaning occurred in DC, which is responsible for significantly raising the temperature.
Even such refractive metals as tungsten electrode continue to collapse because of the electrode.
If you think that your work is done after you purchase the best aluminum welding tool, you’d be mistaken. You must take security measures to complete the welding project successfully. You will need to purchase welding accessories such as mask, boot, apron for welding, gloves, etc.
Which welding process is best suited for aluminum welding?
While welding aluminum, MIG and TIG both are perfectly suited. But if you are a beginner welder MIG is the recommended process as it is easier than the other two processes. Before choosing a welder for aluminum welding consider which method will be used, spray arc welding or pulse welding. You have to choose a constant voltage machine for spray arc welding while pulse welding requires an inverter power supply.
What is the recommended inert gas while aluminum welding?
As aluminum is a non-ferrous metal the recommended inert gas is 100 percent argon gas. But if the material you are welding is thicker than ½ inch, add a mixture of helium in anywhere between 25% to 75% to get better penetration.
Warning: never use a shielding gas containing carbon-di-oxide or oxygen as it will contaminate your aluminum metal.
Is it important to use a balled tungsten electrode?
Balling the tungsten may give you a stable arc and better performance but traditionally pointed tungsten is widely used. Nonetheless, it is dangerous to ball the tungsten tip as some tungsten is radioactive and harmful to health.
Which series of aluminum alloys are heat treatable?
Heat treatable series: 2000, 6000, 7000.
Non-heat treatable: 1000, 3000, 4000, 5000.
Why it is difficult to weld aluminum?
It's not inherently easier to weld aluminum than steel . It's unique. While you weld aluminum, you must go quicker. I If you are MIG welding, the cone (and the gas) must be forced into the weld and not pulled backward like steel. So you'd like your beads to be circles instead of the arrow-shaped beads that steel receives. It's not complicated to do, it's not something other welders have to deal with.
Which flux is used in aluminium welding?
It is up to you to melt it for casting, and you can then use a mixture of sodium and potassium chloride, which is a liquid layer on the top of the molten aluminum that keeps the air off and therefore reduces the formation of the aluminum oxide and aluminum nitride.
Hope you have liked our article about the best welders for aluminum welding. We review every product with proper research therefore, we make it easier for you to research.