Hebei Machinery Import & Export Co., Ltd.

How Do You Choose A Tungsten Electrode?

Tungsten Electrode

 Tungsten Electrode

Once you’ve invested in a top of the line TIG welding machine for aluminum welds or detailed projects, get the most out of your welds by picking the right TIG welding tungsten. Whether you’re using AC or DC processes for TIG welding, here are some tips to keep in mind when it’s time to stock up on TIG rods, including a new rod you may not know about.


Choosing the Right Color Tungsten for TIG Welding

Each TIG welding electrode has a specific color classification that makes them easy to identify. Based on the composition of the electrode, welders will find specific applications and benefits that may work best for each electrode. Here is a brief roundup:

Pure Tungsten Electrodes

 Pure Tungsten Electrode

Green TIG Welding electrodes are pure Tungsten and are used for AC welding, often for aluminum and magnesium. They tend to be commonly used because they are inexpensive. However, they also burn up much faster than the other alloy electrodes, so prepare to stock up if you go this route.


Why use green, pure tungsten electrodes? They work well on AC sine wave welding and form a solid balled tip that results in a stable arc. Besides the high consumption rate, it doesn’t start as well as thoriated or ceriated electrodes, which remain the favorites among many welders.


Red Thoriated TIG Welding Electrodes are among the most commonly used electrodes because the 2% thorium mixed with the tungsten is durable and versatile. Welders can grind the tip of these electrodes to a sharp point and enjoy and stable arc that last a long time. The final weld puddle is cleaner since the electrode leaves fewer deposits, and thorium allows for easier arc starts and higher current-carrying capacity.

Thoriated Tungsten Electrode

 Thoriated Tungsten Electrode

Switch between AC or DC welding with Thoriated electrodes. Welders can work on projects that include thin aluminum, titanium, carbon steel, stainless steel, and nickel. Since thorium is radioactive, welders remain cautious about using these electrodes.


Orange Ceriated TIG Welding Electrodes contain about 2% percent ceriated and are ideal for DC welding and lower current processes. Since it can weld carbon steel, stainless steel, nickel alloys, and titanium, some welders have found that it works well as a replacement for thoriated electrodes.


Ceriated is not recommended for welding at higher amps since the heat can change the composition of the electrode. Welders prefer to work with Ceriated electrodes at lower temperatures for small, precise parts, pipe fabricating, and welding thin metal.

Lanthanated Tungsten Electrode

 Lanthanated Tungsten Electrode

Gold Lanthanated Electrodes for TIG Welding work in both AC and DC (electrode negative) settings since they can be sharpened or balled respectively depending on the project. It can weld steel from a square wave power source and it offers reliable arc starts and arc stability.


Due to its durability and versatility, some welders use Lanthanated in place of thoriated since there are no radioactive elements in the metal.


Brown Zirconiated TIG Welding Electrodes have a minimal amount of Zirconium and are best used only for AC welding jobs. Since the zirconium is a strong metal that resists cracking, it produces a stable arc and resists contamination. It can also carry an amperage current that is comparable to thoriated electrodes.


Gray Rare Earth Electrodes typically note which rare-earth oxides are present in the rod. These electrodes can be used for AC and DC welding jobs, but welders should take care to read the details of each metal listed on the package. At their best, rare earth electrodes can be counted on for a stable arc, longer life, and a current that rivals other electrodes even though they are usually smaller.


If you want to learn more about tungsten electrodes, you can reach us through our website or send us an email. Our hotlines are also available. Our customer support agents will contact you as soon as we get a query from you. We are dedicated to providing the best tungsten electrodes for our clients.