Three simple steps to protect vehicles when welding

Taking the time to take some precautions before beginning a welding job could be the difference between success and failure. Taking these back-to-basic steps will help you protect the vehicle you’re working on when replacing panels and other body components.

Here are three simple steps you should follow to protect the vehicles you’re working on.

1. Avoid burning surfaces

Be careful not to burn painted surfaces, glass, moldings, and interior. Removing moldings in the area to be welded and removing glass whenever possible. If glass can’t be removed, cover it with a spark resistant material. Cover painted surfaces and exposed interior, too, to prevent marring the surface or starting a fire.

2. Avoid welding near sealers

Noise, vibration, and harshness (NVH) sealants and other types of foams and sealers are highly flammable. If ignited, the fire can travel quickly to other parts of the vehicle. Remove all foams, sealers, adhesives and inserts from the area where you’ll be welding.

3. Avoid welding near electrical systems

Before starting any welding job, make sure to disconnect the vehicle’s battery and ensure all systems are shut down. Electrical components in the vehicle can be damaged or shorted by the current flowing from the welder. Be sure to remove any modules, batteries, sensors, wires, and other electronic components from where you’ll be welding. Consult the OEM specifications for the distance from the welding area that objects must be removed. Typically, however, it is anything within 300mm (12”).

I-Car Canada has welding skills development and certifications courses running in most provinces across the country. Find out how to build your welding skills at