Back-To-Basics: Vehicle Protection When Welding

Back-To-Basics: Vehicle Protection When Welding

Sometimes going back-to-basics can make the difference between a quality repair and a failed repair. When it comes to replacing panels and other body components, there are a few precautions to take in order to protect the vehicle while welding.

Here are a few common mistakes and how to avoid them when welding:

  • Be careful of burning painted surfaces, glass, moldings, and interior. Remove all moldings in the area to be welded and remove glass if possible. If unable to remove glass, make sure it is covered with a spark resistant material. Also cover painted surfaces and exposed interior to prevent a fire.
  • Avoid welding near NVH and other foams/sealers. Remove foams, sealers, adhesives, and inserts from the welding area. Products like those previously listed are highly flammable and can ignite rapidly and travel to other parts of the vehicle.
  • Avoid welding near electrical systems or with the battery connected. Make sure the battery is disconnected and all systems are shut down before the welding process. Electric current flowing through from the welder can damage or short circuit electrical components. If the vehicle contains a high-voltage battery system, check the service manual in order to shut down the hybrid system properly. Also make sure to remove any modules, batteries, sensors, wires and other electronic components from the welding area. This distance from the welding area that objects must be removed is typically specified by the OEM but is typically anything within 300mm (12”).

Follow vehicle maker recommendations and SOP’s to ensure a complete, safe, and quality repair.

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