Codes Fail to Address Welding Concerns Adequately

By Harry W. Ebert, PE

When developing Welding Procedure Specifications, most Codes mandate that a test weld meets certain minimum mechanical properties at room temperature and sometimes at cryogenic temperatures. Then the weldor must pass a performance test to demonstrate the ability to deposit welds without workmanship-related defects. Will this be good enough?

These are just a few examples of how Codes fail to spell out adequate details related to welding quality-related activities. Welds only meeting code requirements may not be good enough!

That is why many organizations which are concerned with fabrication-related activities consider it necessary to augment Code welding requirements as part of their purchase documents. They also insist upon obtaining clearly written welding and inspection procedures and prefabrication kick-off review meetings. This approach is necessary to help achieve acceptable weld quality and reliability.