Welding can be a profession, a side job, part of a home renovation project, or just a fun hobby you do in your spare time.
Many homeowners weld their own metal tables and chairs, weld coat racks and firewood bins, or use welding to make their own bicycle repairs, fix a broken shovel, or to make unique nick-nacks or garden art.
But, needless to say, welding quickly loses its charm when an accident occurs. Welding can be very dangerous if you don’t use the right protective gear, such as a proper welding helmet to protect your eyes against flash burn or tough, flexible, well insulated welding gloves to shield your hands.
Here are 5 key ways to make your welding projects as safe as possible:
1. Invest in top quality protective gear.
First of all, get full protective gear from top brands, such as the welding equipment you can peruse and order online from Welding Outfitter.
First of all, get a quality welding helmet that is up to current safety standards and, if possible, invest in an auto-darkening helmet that will better protect your eyes. Next, be sure to get a pair of leather, well insulated, and firmly stitched welding gloves.
You may also want to get a welding bib, wear a leather jacket while welding, and wear tough, leather, steel toed boots.
2. Pay attention to fire safety.
Aside from directly injuring yourself while welding, you also need to take proper fire safety precaution in the room where you weld. You may weld out of doors, but not in foul weather, so you need an indoor are that’s safe to weld in.
Have a functioning fire extinguisher close at hand (and know how to use it!) – or even keep two in the room to be extra safe.
Make the walls immediately around the welding zone fireproof or flame-retardant. And be sure that your work space is spacious and uncluttered so there’s not much of anything around to catch fire anway.
Remember that it’s easy to not notice when a fire starts when you’re focusing on welding and have your helmet on. So minimize the ability of a fire to exist in that space to begin with.
3. Consider investing in a welding positioner.
To boost your welding accuracy and efficiency (especially for beginners), a welding positioner is a desirable tool. But this tool also helps make welding a good deal safer.
The positioner keeps hold of the welded object so it won’t slip, makes it less likely for the weld puddle to drip out of the joint, and gives the welder the ability to focus on things other than worrying about the weld object moving out of position.
4. Take precautions against welding fumes.
Choose a location to weld in that is not in your home – it’s not just a fire hazard but also lets toxic fumes linger for hours or days.
And even in your garage or outbuilding, you need to ensure there is proper ventilation. Open windows and/or doors. Turn on vents and fans.
5. Let someone know you are welding.
Never weld “alone,” meaning, always be sure someone else knows you are welding and to check on you if you don’t show up again for a specific period of time.
Also let people living in or around your home know you are welding so they won’t accidentally walk in, get burned, or breathe in welding fumes. Announce “I’m welding” to the household and put up a “Welding In Progress” sign so even neighbors know if they stop by.
Welding can be a useful and enjoyable activity, but it can also be a dangerous one. Be sure you take all proper precautions before welding so you can have the peace of mind of knowing you’re maximally safe and can focus on your welding.