Can You Weld Galvanized Pipe? And How to Weld it Correctly

Can You Weld Galvanized Pipe? And How to Weld it Correctly

Welding galvanized pipe can be difficult and requires special equipment and technique.

When done incorrectly, welding galvanized pipe can be dangerous and may even cause long-term health problems related to toxic exposure.

In this article, we will discuss the process of welding galvanized pipe, the safety precautions that should be taken, and the necessary tools and techniques required to do the job correctly.

We will also provide some tips and tricks to help you weld galvanized pipe safely and efficiently.

Can you weld galvanized pipe?

Yes, you can weld galvanized pipe.

Welding galvanized pipe can be done using the Shielded Metal Arc Welding (SMAW) process, which involves using a flux-coated electrode to create an arc between the pipe and the electrode.

This arc melts the galvanized coating and the pipe, allowing them to fuse together.

Additionally, other welding processes such as Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW) and Flux Cored Arc Welding (FCAW) can also be used.

How to weld galvanized pipe?

Welding galvanized pipe can be a bit tricky, as the galvanization process adds a layer of zinc to the outside of the pipe which can interfere with the welding process

However, with the right technique and materials, welding galvanized pipe is possible. Here is a step-by-step guide to welding galvanized pipe:

  1. Prepare the pipe: Before welding galvanized pipe, it is important to clean and prepare the pipe. In order to do this, use a wire brush to remove any rust, dirt, or debris from the pipe. Removing any of these contaminants will ensure a good, clean weld. 
  2. Set up your welding station: Once the pipe has been cleaned, it is important to set up the welding station. This involves setting up the welder, such as a MIG welder, and setting the correct welding parameters. It is important to select the correct type of welding rod, such as an E7018, and the correct amperage for the job. 
  3. Position the pipe: Once the welding station is set up, it is time to position the pipe. Make sure the pipe is in the correct position for welding. Also, make sure the pipe is firmly clamped into place, as this will ensure a good, solid weld.
  4. Prepare the weld: Now that the pipe is in position, it is time to prepare the weld. This involves first cleaning the weld area with a wire brush to remove any contaminants. Once the weld area is clean, it is important to apply a flux to the weld area. This will help to protect the weld from oxidation and will aid in the welding process.
  5. Perform the weld: With the pipe in position and the weld area prepared, it is time to perform the weld. Start the welding process by striking an arc and slowly moving the welding rod along the joint. Keep the welding rod in motion and maintain a steady speed as you move along the joint. Once you have completed the weld, let it cool and inspect it for any defects.
  6. Clean the weld: Once the weld is completed, it is important to clean the weld area. This can be done by using a wire brush to remove any flux or slag from the weld. This will help to ensure a strong, clean weld.

Welding galvanized pipe requires the right technique, materials, and equipment. Following these steps will ensure a good, solid weld.

What is the best welding technique to weld galvanized pipe?

The best welding technique to weld galvanized pipe is Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW). GMAW is a process that uses a continuous, consumable wire electrode and an electric arc to produce a weld.

The process is relatively simple, cost-effective, and produces high-quality welds.

GMAW is ideal for welding galvanized pipe because it can produce full penetration welds with minimal heat input and spatter.

Safety Precautions for Welding Galvanized Pipe

  1. Wear Proper Safety Gear: Welders should always wear proper safety gear including a fire-resistant welding jacket, welding gloves, protective eyewear, a welding helmet, and welding boots.
  2. Remove Excess Galvanizing: Before welding, any excess galvanizing should be removed from around the weld area, as this can create dangerous fumes when heated.
  3. Use the Right Technique: It is important to use the right welding technique to avoid fumes and prevent damage to the pipe. For example, tungsten inert gas (TIG) welding and metal inert gas (MIG) welding are both safe for galvanized pipes.
  4. Use a Suitable Ventilation System: Welders should ensure that the area is well-ventilated to avoid inhaling toxic fumes. A suitable ventilation system should be used to ensure that dangerous fumes are vented away from the welding area.
  5. Use the Right Gas Mixture: When welding galvanized pipes, it is important to use the right gas mixture in order to avoid creating dangerous fumes. Argon gas is often used in combination with oxygen and hydrogen to create the correct gas mixture.
  6. Wear a Respirator: Welders should also wear a respirator to protect themselves from inhaling toxic fumes. The respirator should be fitted correctly to ensure that it is effective.
  7. Avoid Sparks: Sparks can cause hot metal to fly off the pipe and burn the welders or anyone nearby. To avoid this, it is important to keep the welding area clear of any flammable materials, and to use the right welding technique.
  8. Keep the Area Clean: After welding, the area should be cleaned to remove any debris and slag that may have been created during the welding process. This will ensure that the area is safe to work in.

Tips for welding galvanized pipe:

  1. Ensure Proper Ventilation: As with any welding process, it’s important to ensure the area is well ventilated to reduce the risk of exposure to toxic fumes.
  2. Wear Proper Safety Gear: This includes a welding helmet, heavy duty gloves, and long sleeve shirts.
  3. Clean the Pipe: Before welding, it’s important to remove any dirt, grease, or other contaminants that may be on the pipe.
  4. Use a Back Purge: This is a method of adding an inert gas to the back of the weld, which helps to protect the back side of the weld from oxidation.
  5. Don’t Use Too Much Heat: Galvanized pipe can be sensitive to heat, so it’s important to not use too much heat when welding.
  6. Use the Right Filler Metal: It’s important to use the correct type of filler metal for the type of pipe being welded.
  7. Preheat the Pipe: Preheating the pipe will help reduce the risk of warping due to the heat.
  8. Use a Slow Travel Speed: Slow travel speed helps to ensure a good weld penetration.
  9. Avoid Excessive Arc Length: An excessive arc length can cause the weld to be too hot and cause a burn-through.
  10. Keep Welding Area Dry: It’s important to keep the welding area dry to prevent the pipe from corroding.

What are the signs of galvanized poisoning?

Galvanized poisoning, also known as zinc fume fever, is a condition caused by the inhalation of zinc oxide fumes generated during welding on galvanized steel. Symptoms of galvanized poisoning may include: 

  • Coughing 
  • Chills 
  • Headache 
  • Fever 
  • Weakness 
  • Shortness of breath 
  • Chest pain 
  • Nausea 
  • Vomiting 
  • Metallic taste in the mouth 
  • Fatigue 
  • Muscle aches and pains

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs:)

Can you weld galvanized with a MIG welder?

Yes, you can weld galvanized with a MIG welder. It is important to use a wire specifically designed for galvanized steel and to use short arc welding with a lower amperage. Additionally, you should use a welding gas that is designed to prevent zinc oxide fumes.

Can you weld galvanized with a TIG welder?

Yes, you can weld galvanized metal with a TIG welder. You must first use a grinder to remove the galvanized coating, as the high heat generated by the TIG welding process will release toxic fumes that can be harmful to your health. After removing the galvanized coating, you can weld the metal using a TIG welder.

Can you weld galvanized with a Stick welder?

Yes, you can weld galvanized with a Stick welder. Before welding, it is important to make sure that the galvanized surface is clean and free of any coating.

You should also use a flux-coated electrode, as it helps to reduce the amount of zinc fumes generated.

Finally, you should take proper safety precautions, such as wearing a respirator, to protect yourself from inhaling any fumes that may be produced.

Why drink milk after welding galvanized?

Drinking milk after welding galvanized metal can help reduce the risk of zinc poisoning.

Zinc fumes are released when welding galvanized metal and can cause a wide range of symptoms including nausea, vomiting, and difficulty breathing.

Drinking milk helps neutralize the acidity of the zinc fumes, which can reduce the risk of zinc poisoning.

Will JB weld work on galvanized pipe?

Yes, JB Weld will work on galvanized pipe. It is an epoxy-based adhesive that can be used to bond many different types of metals, including galvanized steel.

However, it will not work if the galvanized surface has been damaged or corroded. In these cases, other methods of repair should be used.

Can you weld galvanized pipe to steel?

Yes, you can weld galvanized pipe to steel. The process is known as “galvanized welding” and involves using a flux-coated electrode to join the two metals together.

Galvanized welding is a more complex process than welding plain steel and requires special knowledge and skill.

It is important to be aware that welding galvanized pipe can produce toxic fumes, so proper ventilation and protective gear should be used.


In conclusion, welding galvanized pipe is a process that requires special knowledge and skill.

It is also important to take safety precautions, such as using proper safety gear and ventilation, to ensure that you are not exposed to any toxic fumes that may be generated during the welding process.

Additionally, it is important to use the right technique and materials to ensure a strong, clean weld. Following these steps will help ensure that galvanized pipe welding is done safely and correctly.

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