Difference Between Tig and Mig Welding

April 15, 2022

The welding industry has many different options and techniques for arc welding. Every welder knows his/her requirements and chooses one with caution. But there are two main types of welding that everyone mainly uses, and these are for sure the most known welding techniques. One is the MIG welding technique and the second is TIG welding. One should choose any of these taking the requirements into consideration because it may cause problems or even the binding of the weld may not happen in the first place.

There are a lot of similarities between these two, but sometimes you will see that one is more beneficial to your project than the other. This is because of some differences between MIG and TIG welding that we'll explain further.

MIG Welding

Metal Inert Gas (MIG) welding is also famous by its other name Gas Metal Arc Welding (GMAW). In this method, a feeding mechanism is involved that has a feeding wire that continuously goes from the welding gun to the arc. The wire continuously moves at a constant speed so that the welding process keeps going. The wire comes out of the welding gun and touches the electric tip. And that meeting of both creates the weld. Now after the weld creates, the continuity of the feeding wire helps as a filler material joins the two metals together with a weld.

Because of the ease of use and the speed of the process, this gun is called the “hot glue gun.” The feeding wire acts both ways, as an electrode and the filler material, and this way you won't need to heat the metal all the way through to fuse them.

TIG Welding

Tungsten Inert Gas (MIG) welding, which is also famous by its other name Gas Tungsten Arc Welding (GTAW). In this method of welding, the two metal pieces are joined together directly with each other using the long rods. Heat, shielding, and filler metal are the three main components of the TIG process. It is the process of producing the heat by making the electricity pass through the electrode that is tungsten to form an arc to the metal piece. The shield is provided by the compressed gas in a bottle that, when turned on, protects the welding specific area from the air.

There are two main procedural factors involved in this process. One is with the welding gun, and the second is that when the welding gun does its work, in the meanwhile the welder manually dips the filler wire into the arc that helps create a single piece of metal with a joint. TIG welding process requires a constantly available power source to melt the two metal pieces bypassing the current from them and producing heat and tungsten as a non-consumable electrode. By the way, if not the constant power source used, then tungsten can cause problems in the long run practically. Therefore, this process is clean and versatile but requires the expert skills of a welder.

Main differences between MIG and TIG welding

MIG Welding

  • There forms an electric arc between the consumable electrode and the metal.
  • Electrode type is consumable wire electrode.
  • Works with both, DC and AC power sources and constant voltage.
  • Non-ferrous materials, aluminum, and steel are the metals that it can weld.
  • No high skills are needed to perform MIG welding.
  • High weld deposition rate.
  • No external filler metal is required because of the feeding wire.
  • Thick metal sheets of up to 40mm can be welded by this method easily.
  • Lesser weld quality as compared to TIG.
  • There has to be a continuous wire feed.
  • A welding gun, feed wire unit, welding power supply, welding electrode wire, and a shielding gas supply is the required equipment for this process.
  • Faster welding process.
  • Filler metal is compulsory.
  • Cannot work in any position, has to be in a certain position.

TIG Welding

  • There forms an electric arc between the non-consumable tungsten electrode and the metal.
  • Electrode type is a non-consumable tungsten electrode.
  • Requires constant current power supply for welding.
  • Non-ferrous metals like aluminum, copper alloys, and magnesium and stainless steel are the metals for which it is commonly used.
  • A very skilled welder is required to operate the TIG welding process.
  • If we compare the weld deposition rate with MIG, it is low.
  • May require some external filler metal when needed.
  • Only thin metal sheets can be welded by this method up to 5mm.
  • Because of its greater control over the welding area, it produces great quality welds.
  • Does not use continuous wire feed.
  • A welding torch, non-consumable tungsten electrode, a constant-current welding power supply, and a shielding gas source are the required equipment for this process.
  • Slower process of welding than the MIG process.
  • Filler metals are not compulsory in this welding method as they are in the MIG welding process. One can use it if needed and not use it as an optional thing.
  • Can be worked with this process in any position.

Cost

The TIG welding process is slower and has a lower deposition rate which makes the cost per foot of bead very expensive. On top of that, a very skilled welder is required to operate this system. Hence, it becomes even more expensive.

MIG welding process is cheaper as compared to TIG because of less prep time, faster speed, and the no special skills of the welder required.

Conclusion

As we have mentioned at the start that both of these methods of welding have their similarities with each other but there are still some differences. And those differences between MIG and TIG welding make a huge point of view about selecting one of these for a certain project.

Thankfully, we have explained the difference with full clarity that everyone can understand. But, if you still have any issues or questions about the topic, write them down in the comment section below.