Welding Rods: The Complete FAQ Guide

Are you in search of quality welding rods to complete your various welding applications on different materials?

Or do you fall amongst a list of several people looking for the best welding rods manufacturing company in China?

Look no further, Syndent can provide you with amazing welding rods for your perfect welding needs.

Our welding rods can make your welding functions on various materials quite easy and faster.

What Is a Welding Rods?

welding rods

Also known as welding electrode, welding rod simply means a generic name that refers to electrodes or filler metals. You use them in joining other base metals especially when you perform shielded metal welding (SMAW).

welding rods

A core wire present in the SMAW electrode can feature a cast material, solid drawn rod or fabricated core wire.

The core wire can feature alloy or not and we have different grades of typical core wires. This may include low-alloy electrodes and steel for mild steel.

Also, we have 304L, 308L, 309L and 316L stainless steel core wires for the stainless steel electrodes.

Syndent also provides several specialty wires that may include aluminum as well as the ones for hard facing and buildup. Such electrodes consist of a core wire composition.

The composition complements both the design of the electrode and the coating for classification as well as application.

You connect the welding electrodes to your welding machine to make an electric arc. Current goes through the welding rod or electrode and produce the arc. This generates plenty of heat that melts and fuses a metal for welding.

Do We Have Different Classifications of Welding Rods?


We classify welding rods either as consumable or non-consumables based on their uses. Consumable rods usually disintegrate or melt, forming a bond material to hold two pieces of metal together.

Non-consumable rods on the other hand provides plenty of catalytic reaction with base metals. This propagates the fusing in an atmospheric environment rich in oxygen.

The length of a given continuous weld bead lies directly in proportion to the welding rod length.

Non-Consumable Welding Rods

Non-consumable electrodes feature tungsten electrodes and carbon electrodes.

Tungsten rods for the TIG welding remain the most common residential and industrial application rods compared to carbon rods.

welding rods

Carbon Welding Rods

Carbon arc welding (CAW) refers to an older and the least common way of welding. Although some industries still use it today, you can unlikely see the CAW in modern home workshops or welding shops.

Unlike the standard arc welder, the CAW uses a total of two non-consumable carbon welding rods. Carbon welding rods produce a larger arc which you can’t control easily unlike other process arcs.

The giant arc can perfectly heat metals and you can use it to cut holes and channels in metals. However, it doesn’t suit detailed welds applied on thin metals.

Tungsten Welding Rods

Very popular non-consumable used with the Tungsten Inert Gas (TIG) welder. Syndent designs Tungsten electrodes from pure tungsten. Sometimes it may feature a blend of either tungsten and zirconium or tungsten and thorium.

Tungsten/zirconium welding rods provide perfect applications when dealing with heavier metals.

Tungsten/thorium as the most popular tungsten electrodes produces the strongest welds featuring high amperage.

The chart below shows the four different types of tungsten welding rods and how you can know them by color:

ElectrodeColor Classification
Pure TungstenGreen
1% ThoriumYellow
2% ThoriumRed
.3% – .5% ZirconiumBrown

Consumable Electrodes

Consumable welding rods comes as the most commonly used type of welding rods.

You can either use Metal Inert Gas (MIG) as well as shielded Metal ARC Welders (SMAW). Sometimes we call them arc or stick welders.

Unlike the non-consumable electrodes, the consumable welding rods melt during a welding process.

The MIG welding rods use a slender wire which the MIG machine automatically feeds into a welding gun.

welding rods

We consider robotic MIG welders as fully automatic while the machines that human welders operate called semi-automatic welders.

Since MIG machines use the shielding gas in protecting a weld, the MIG wire doesn’t have flux coating.

To make durable welds minus the application of shielding gas, arc welders apply consumable welding rods or sticks. Syndent classifies consumable welding rods for arc welding as either coated or bare electrodes.

Bare welding rods don’t have the flux coating that shields the weld pool. You use them to perfectly weld manganese steel.

Arc welders prefer using Syndent coated electrodes and they feature three groups, namely:

  • Light coated welding rods
  • Medium coated welding rods
  • Heavily coated welding rods or shielded arc welding rods.

Light coated welding rods

Based on its name, light-coated electrodes consists of a thin flux coating. The flux never provides reliable shielding gas.

However, it guarantees maximum protection of the weld pool against contaminations like phosphorus, oxides and sulfur.

A light coating on the electrodes also makes the electric arc more stable. It also releases very little slag, unlike the medium and heavily coated welding rods.

Syndent light coated welding rods feature a 1.25 coating factor. They don’t suit metals that have high contaminants levels which need the shielding flux.

Medium Coated Welding Rods

Most experienced and amateur welders prefer using Syndent medium coated welding rods like the low-hydrogen rods.

The most common applications of Syndent medium coated welding rods include:

  • Bridge construction
  • Offshore drilling
  • Commercial building construction
  • Pipeline welding

Featuring a 1.45 coating factor, Syndent medium coated welding rods have the following features:

  • Easy slag removal
  • Remarkable arc control
  • The ability of welding in any position
  • Stable welding arc
  • Strong and tough coating
  • Smooth weld on a metal surface and even edges

Heavy Coated Welding Rods

Heavy-coated welding rods have the highest flux content with a coating factor of between 1.6 and 2.2. When you ignite the coating in a weld pool, it forms an efficient shielding gas, shielding the weld.

The rods comprised of three materials that include:

  • Mineral
  • Cellulose
  • A mixture of minerals and cellulose

What Are Bare Electrodes?

This refers to welding rods that feature a wire composition that you can use for particular applications. Such welding rods don’t have coatings apart from the ones needed for wire drawing. Wire drawing coatings consist of a bit of stabilizing effect on an arc but without any consequence.

You can use bare electrodes to weld metals like manganese steel. Also, you can use it in applications that don’t require coated electrodes.

After you finish the welding, you can use Syndent Carbide Burr to make deburring and remove the unwanted materials.

Which Guide Can You Use to Name Welding Rods?

American Welding Society (AWS) invented an alpha-numeric system used in naming welding rods.

This main system helps in identifying different welding rods in the USA and the rest of other countries as well.

Just like the name goes, the alpha-numeric perspective consists of letters with numbers. This usually appears on the welding rod sides.

You can find terms like E6010, E7018, etc. The method of naming works as the following:

AWS A5.1 Carbon Steel Electrodes for SMAW

Electrode ______________E

Min. Tensile (ksi) ________6 0


Coating type and current__0

Key to Type of SMAW Coating and Current

DigitCoating TypeCurrent
0High Cellulose SodiumDC+
1High Cellulose PotassiumAC, DC ±
2High Titania SodiumAC, DC-
3High Titania PotassiumAC, DC
4Iron power, TitaniaAC, DC±
5Low Hydrogen SodiumDC+
6Low Hydrogen PotassiumAC, DC+
7High Iron Oxide, Iron powderAC, DC±
8Low Hydrogen Potassium, Iron PowderAC, DC±

Letter “E” occurs at the start of the name. The main letter represents the electrode. The next two digits represent the minimum tensile strength of the weld measured in pounds per square inch (psi).

The third number indicates the position number which you can use the welding rod. Note that we have a total of four basic welding positions.

They include the flat, horizontal, overhead and vertical. 0 indicates an unused classification, 1 for all positions and 2 for the flat and horizontal positions. 3 indicates the flat position alone.

The last value represents a coating type as well as the welding current used. This can include the alternating current, direct current or the two, which you can use with the welding rod.

We have given you some know-how about the naming system and how it functions. We shall now provide you with different types of welding rods.

Do Welding Rods Come in Different Types of Welding Rods?


Syndent act as a professional welding rods factory designs them in different types including the following:


welding rods

Syndent E6010 welding rods appear as the most popular electrodes. You can apply them in delivering deep penetration. This kind of welding requires extreme high power densities that can reach 1 megawatt per square centimeter.

You can mainly apply Syndent E6010 electrodes in:

  • Pipe welding
  • Shipyards
  • Water towers
  • Steel castings
  • Field construction
  • Steel storage tanks

Useful note: E6010 welding rods only runs on welding equipment that uses direct current (DC). They consist of extremely tight arc which makes them hard to handle, common with amateur welders.


welding rods

The most stand out feature of Syndent E6011 includes the ability to use it on both alternating and direct current.

This can give you a lot of convenience with ease shifting from a single type of current to the other. This helps in determining which works perfectly.

This welding rod type can withstand 60, 000 psi of force and won’t break. Like Syndent 6010 welding rod, the 6011 electrodes can provide a deep penetration too.

Therefore, it stands out as the best electrode option you can use to weld materials with greater thickness.

It also explains why Syndent 6011 welding rods best applies welding applications with surfaces like grease, dirt and paint.


The E6012 welding rod comes as a general-purpose welding electrode. Syndent designs this type of welding rod with superb bridging features. You can perfectly apply the 6012 with sub-par fit-up.

You can make a wonderful and stable arc at high currents with a little spatter. This electrode suits both the DC and AC power sources.

However, the 6012 welding rods consists of two main limitations. First, they only suit thin and shallow penetration.

Second, they produce thicker waste materials from smelting. For this case, they need extra post-welding cleaning.

You can typically apply E6012 welding rods to close open joints, non-critical welding, welding repair works and more.

Also, a suitable welding electrode you can perfectly use in welding carbon steel sheets affected by rust.


welding rods

Syndent manufactures E6013 welding rods for several industrial needs. Industries frequently use Syndent E6013 electrodes because they generate a soft arc and produce little spatter.

The E6013 electrodes provide superb function in moderate penetration welding. It produces an easily removable slag.

The 6013 welding rod also suits both direct and alternating currents.

Considering such attributes, Syndent E6013 rods provide perfect solutions in situations that have irregular or short welding tasks.

Because of the creation of a stable and smoother arc, the 6013 electrode perfectly suits applications that need position change.

Such applications include:

  • Ship repair and building
  • Sheet metals
  • Welding overworked/worn-out mild steel material surfaces

You can use Syndent 6013 electrodes in both light and general fabrications.


welding rods

The E7018 electrode has high versatility with its primary use applied in moderately welding carbon steel.

Syndent designs this type of welding rod to generate a much powerful weld that can comprehend even 70,000 psi.

Syndent coats the 7018 welding rods with a low-hydrogen element made of iron. This compound helps in vaporizing.

In due course, it shields a weld bead against contamination caused by air and moisture.

You can comfortably use Syndent 7018 welding rods with either DC or AC power sources. Also, it suits all four positions.

As a result of such features, you may efficiently use the 7018 electrodes for structural welding.

Here, we imply the welding type you need in powerhouses, factories, bridges and energy power plants.


This type of welding rod has a lot of iron powder content. This crucial factor helps in a significant increase of deposition rate, hence, makes your welding task quite easier.

You can positively apply Syndent 7024 welding rods in horizontal welds and high-speed flat. They work perfectly with applications that need smooth finishing and fine ripples.

The chart below fully describes the five standard electrodes that Syndent produces for mild steel welding:

ElectrodeCoatingPositionCurrentPenetrationTensile Strength
E-6010High Cellulose SodiumAll PositionsDCEPDeep60, 000 PSI
E-6011High Cellulose PotassiumAll PositionsDCEP ACDeep60, 000 PSI
E-6012High Titania SodiumAll PositionsDCEP ACMedium60, 000 PSI
E-6013High Titania Potassium All PositionsDCEP



Shallow60, 000 PSI

Beginners can comfortably use our 6011 or 6013 welding rods. When you use Syndent 6011 electrode, it hardly leaves a slag. It easily strikes but requires a perfect bonding balance of the pieces as well as burning through.

Syndent like to find more welding rod wholesale suppliers to distribute the above high quality welding materials. Powerful support is available at any time.

What do Number Prints That Appear on Welding Rods Represent?

Electrodes usually have a numerical classification system. This numerical classification system sometimes looks confusing in the beginning. Once you know what each number represent, you can make your shopping such a breeze.

The AWS came up with this system and it shows the amount of pressure the welding rod can withstand. It also indicates a perfect position to weld, the flux composition and the correct current you can use.

The most commonly used welding rods in many industries include the 7018 rods, 7014 rods, 6013, 6011, and 6010.

With 7018 welding rod, for example, can help you establish the rod tensile strength. This is based on the first two digits.

The digits of a given welding rod indicate the pounds per square inch abbreviated as psi. This shows what the resulting weld has to withstand.

If you multiply 70 with 1000 for example, you get 70,000 psi. The specific welding rod can withstand this certain pressure in a welding process.

A third number of the welding rod denotes the optimal position of welding. We only use 1, 2 and 4 in any case.

Number 1 shows that you can use the electrode in all the positions. Number 2 indicates fat or horizontal position. Digit 4 on the other hand shows an overhead position or either vertical or downward positions.

For the case of the 7018 welding rod, it implies that you can operate this ideal electrode in all positions. This makes it a highly versatile and flexible welding rod than the rest. The last number of this particular welding rod represents the flux material. Also, it indicates the required current you should operate within.

Digit 8 indicates the welding rod consists of low hydrogen potassium and iron powder. It also indicates that the perfect current of the 7018 electrode lies within AC and DC±.

The number classification of an electrode has a lot of meaning and information. Always take a look at the packaging to determine the type of electrode.

Syndent and other welding rods manufacturers indicate clearly on the package, detailed specifications that answer all your queries.

Before you begin welding your project, ensure you go through the specifications. This helps you in setting up the welding machine appropriately.

The instructions can also guide you on metals which you can use the ideal welding rod. Furthermore, it shows how you can set the machine amperage.

How Do You Handle And Store Welding Rods?

If you take a keen look at the welding rods, you realize that they appear quite delicate. Therefore, you need to take a lot of caution when handling them unless they break.

Although welding rods consist of metal cores, they can easily break or bend based on the type of metal content.

Welding rods that lack structural intactness cannot provide viable welds when you apply them to the welding process. The flux shields the weld pool and essentially provides a sturdy performance on each weld.

Best welding rods suppliers like Syndent makes airtight packaging of welding rods in attractive containers. Once you remove them from the airtight packaging, the ideal welding rods begin to degrade. This happens if you leave them uncovered for quite some hours.

welding rods

For this reason, we strongly suggest that, after choosing a welding rod for welding, keep the remaining rods tightly sealed. Moisture easily destroys the quality features of your welding rod coating. This might result in excessive splattering. As a result, cause cracks and porosity in the formation of an area you have welded.

If you expose the welding rods to air for two or more hours, dry them up through heating.

Depending on the composition of the welding rod, the flux easily loses its original efficiency when placed in humid conditions. The flux begins by turning into a soggy mess once it absorbs a lot of oxygen or hydrogen.

When you do your project outside, you can hardly take rid of humidity by any means. You can reduce the welding rod’s subjection to the atmosphere in an easy way. Open the container of the electrodes correctly before you start welding.

How Do You Correctly Choose a Welding Rod For Your Industrial Use?

Sometimes you might find it difficult to choose the right welding rod for a given application. The following factors can guide you in selecting quality electrodes for industrial project needs.

Base Metal

The first thing to consider before you buy quality welding rods includes the base metal composition. Primarily, you need to look for an electrode that has a close match with a base metal.

In such a way, you increase the possibilities of producing a very stable and strong weld. If you lack the certainty of the base metal configuration, use the following aspects:

Metal Appearance: If you work on part of broken metal, check out its texture. Coarse or grainy material surface indicates the metal material as cast.

Magnetic vs non-magnetic: You can also identify a base metal easily by establishing whether it is magnetic or not. Magnetic base metal indicates either carbon steel or alloy steel.

Non-magnetic base metal means something like manganese and austenitic stainless steel. Also, it can represent non-ferrous alloys such as aluminum, brass, copper or titanium.

Spark Type: Make sure you probe the type of spark produced by the base metal. You can reveal this when you run it against a grinder. If it produces a lot of flare in the spark, it has lots of carbon content in the base metal.

Chisel Reaction: When you strike a chisel on soft metals like aluminum, it leaves bite marks. When struck on hard metals such as high carbon steel, it bounces back.

Tensile Strength

Also, try matching the welding rod tensile strength with that of base metal. If you don’t do this, it can result in cracking. Probe the first two digits to know the welding rod’s tensile strength.

For example, the 6011 welding rod indicates it can produce a weld bead of 60,000 psi minimum tensile strength. You can comfortably apply it on steel with matching tensile strength.

Welding Current

Some electrodes have high compatibilities with direct and alternating currents. Other welding rods simply supports a single of the two power sources.

Always look at the fourth digit on the electrode. This can help you establish the type of current you can suitably use with the electrode. The value doesn’t only show the coating type, but also the welding current suitable for the rod applications.

How Many Amps Does 7018 Welding Rod Have?

Syndent 7018 arc electrodes can use currents of up to 225 amps. Note that 7018 welding rods amp recommendations may vary from one manufacturer to another. We highly recommend that you follow the recommendations of the manufacturer. This can help you greatly in setting the right welding current for use.

Syndent 7018 rod refers to a mild steel rod that has a low-hydrogen coating. The low-hydrogen means an iron-based flux compound, which vaporizes to protect a molten weld bead against moisture and air contamination.

Which Welding Rod Suits Vertical Welding?

You can choose Syndent 7018 welding rods as your best choice for vertical welding. This is because Syndent designs them to have a low content of the iron powder. The molten metal creates a puddle that quickly freezes. It also has a low inclination of dropping off tasks in its liquid state. It also allows a faster-waving pattern.

You need to correctly choose the correct welding rods that perfectly suits your welding needs, especially vertical welding.

You can choose 7024, 7018 or 6010 as your best welding rods choice for vertical welding applications. But Syndent 7018 welding rods remains the best choice for general-purpose steel plate welding.

You need a lot of skills to use 6010 welding rods compared to 7018 when doing vertical welding. 7024 welding rods lack the same weld puddle fill features as the 7018 rods. 7018 welding rods, therefore, suits perfectly vertical welding.

Which Types of Coating Can Welding Rods Have?

The coatings on welding rods used to weld mild and low alloy steel may range from 6-12 ingredients. This may include the following:

Cellulose: This offers gaseous protection with a minimizing agent. In this way, the cellulose integration releases gas protection that covers the arc.

Metal Carbonates: This helps in adjusting the slag basicity. It also gives the reducing atmosphere.

Titanium dioxide Helps in forming a highly fluid with quick-freezing slag. It also offers an arc ionization.

Ferromanganese and ferrosilicon: Helps in the deoxidization of the molten weld metal. It supplements both the silicon and manganese contents of weld metal deposits.

Clays and Gums: Helps in providing elasticity to extrude plastic coating material. Also provides maximum strength to the coating.

Calcium fluoride: protects the gas, shielding the arc. Furthermore, it adjusts the slag basicity and offers solubility and fluidity of metal oxides.

Mineral silicates: Gives strength to the covering of the electrode and provides slag.

Alloying metals like molybdenum, chromium and nickel: Offers alloy content to deposited weld metal.

Iron/manganese oxide Helps in adjusting the fluidity and properties of the slag and help in stabilizing the arc.

Iron powder: Increases productivity through offering an extra metal deposited in a weld.

Can a Welding Rod Expire?

Most definitely.

It doesn’t matter the time you unpack the welding rods out of their packaging, they normally expire. The age of the electrode doesn’t matter at all but how long you expose the welding rod to the atmosphere.

This implies you have to at all times, take good care of the electrodes. This doesn’t mean only observing the shelf life. You need to avoid weld defects against using damaged welding rods. Welding rods can easily go bad depending on how you store them.

Most electrodes have high sensitivity towards moisture but not all of them. The moisture content your welding rod can manage highly depends on the rod type.

Should You Heat the 7018 Welding Rod?

You don’t need to heat the 7018 electrodes. The 7018 welding rod poses as a low-hydrogen rod. This means that it doesn’t permit moisture in the flux. If you work in an area that has extremely high humidity, you can then keep the 7018 welding rod heated.

Syndent bakes and packs the 7018 welding rods in a hermetically sealed environment. This helps in expelling the moisture in its entirety. However, upon unsealing the pack, the environment promotes moisture absorption to extremely high hygroscopic flux.

The heating of the electrode helps in keeping moisture away from the rod and not melting them. Heating a specific welding rod needs between 500 and 700 degrees of heat for between 30 minutes and four hours.

welding rods

Before you tackle any welding job on given materials, first determine the correct type of electrode to use. Each of the electrodes we have covered has different sets of attributes.

In welding, different metals react differently towards an electric arc. We have different electrode variations and Syndent provides a guide to its welding rods.

For the next order of Syndent welding rods, simply contact us.


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