Types of Welding Inspections

Do you want to learn more about welding inspections? If you have a metalwork business, understanding how welding works and why welding inspections are important is crucial.

Welding is a necessary component of many pieces of machinery, structures, pipelines, and other important materials and equipment. Therefore, welding inspections are needed to ensure standards are met and risks understood.

Most of the time, welding inspectors perform several quality control checks as part of the welding inspection process. Welding inspectors can use different forms of welding inspection. But what are these methods, and which welding inspection techniques are the most widely used and trustworthy?

Let’s take a look.

How many types of welding inspections are there?

A welding inspector can analyze the weld and its features without causing damage using non-destructive testing (NDT) methods.

In the UK, there are five typical NDT inspection techniques for welding.

  • Visual
  • Radiographic (or X-ray)
  • Ultrasonic
  • Magnetic Particle
  • Liquid Penetrant

Each method of welding inspection has its own set of benefits and drawbacks. We provide all of these services to our clients, thus, understanding them is essential for you to pick the right one.

The most basic type of NDT welding inspection is a visual inspection or VT. In this scenario, the welder inspector visually inspects the weld to see whether there are any surface faults. Weld size can also be evaluated to rule out any potential problems.

This type of welding inspection examination is inexpensive and can be performed while work on a structure or material is being completed. Welding inspection businesses will frequently start with a visual assessment to verify there are no evident flaws. However, visual welding checks, are limited because only surface faults may be identified.

Radiographic Inspection

Radiographic inspection (RT), sometimes known as X-ray, is a versatile non-destructive testing technology used to assess the internal quality of a weld. It can detect internal weaknesses like cracks, non-metallic inclusions, burn-through, and other defects.

This approach is advantageous because the inspection is documented on film, which can be evaluated to provide further insight. However, there are some limitations to this method.

First and foremost, the quality of the inspection is determined by the inspector’s skills and abilities, as well as the equipment employed. Furthermore, not all welds are appropriate for this type of evaluation.

Magnetic Particle Inspection

MT, or magnetic particle testing, finds faults that are surface and near-surface-based.

This NDT technique will spot any welding flaws right away. Sensitivity can also be changed, which enables different tiers of defect detection. It is because of this that tight cracks and discontinuities can be found during welding inspections using MT.

Unfortunately, ferromagnetic materials, such as iron and steel, are the only ones that can be tested using magnetic particles. Additionally, this type of inspection won’t work on all surfaces, such as those with a thick coat of paint.

Liquid Penetrant Testing

Surface cracks that cannot be seen with the human eye are found via liquid penetrant inspection or PT. This technique is frequently used to find leaks caused by welding errors.

PT can be used to analyze magnetic and nonmagnetic materials, in contrast to Magnetic Particle Inspection. This technique can assist in finding extremely minute faults. Plus, PT can find flaws in materials with intricate structures.

Liquid Penetrant Inspection has limitations though. This is due to the fact that only superficial defects can be found. Additionally, proper pre and post-inspection cleaning is needed for this welding inspection.

Ultrasonic Welding Inspection

Both internal and external faults can be found with ultrasonic testing, often known as UT weld inspection. UT can also pinpoint a discontinuity’s exact location and measurement.

Due to its high sensitivity, this technology enables inspectors to pick up on minute flaws that other NDT techniques miss.

Phased array technology enables even more intricate and precise inspections. Through the use of phased array ultrasonic testing (PAUT), welding inspectors can assess a component from several perspectives. This means that complex geometric components can be swiftly and precisely inspected.

Why are welding inspections necessary?

A weld’s compliance with specific norms and standards can be ascertained through welding inspections. These rules aid inspectors in ensuring that equipment and materials may be used efficiently and safely.

Exams are performed by certified welding inspectors utilizing a variety of instruments and methods. These examinations provide information about the size and calibre of the weld. Most importantly, they point up any imperfections or shortcomings.

Defects and flaws can lead to subpar performance and safety concerns. Therefore, by identifying potential faults before they happen, welding inspections also assist businesses in saving money. In addition to lowering incident and asset loss costs, this safeguards workers, the general public, and the environment.

Gammax has welding inspection solutions for you!

Gammax provides NDT welding inspection services to keep you in line with UK welding standards. Our licensed professionals evaluate buildings, industrial structures, machinery, pipelines, plumbing, and more using cutting-edge technologies. Contact us to request a free estimate or to schedule your service.

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