Welding Underwater – The Shocking Truth!

Did you know Commercial & Specialised Diving can arc weld underwater?

Welding underwater needs specialist skills and equipment, all of which Commercial & Specialised Diving can provide.

Arc welding underwater (also called stick welding) can be difficult and dangerous to do.

Water and electricity do not mix well, so keeping the diver safe is of paramount importance. This is why the welding equipment used for underwater work uses a DC current and is double insulated. The welding cables also have a knife switch to turn the power on and off to reduce the chance of the diver being electrocuted.

A bubble of gas is formed by the flux surrounding the welding rod when an arc is struck. This gas is typically made up of 70% Hydrogen, 25% Carbon Dioxide and 5% Carbon Monoxide. This gas mixture displaces the water and allows for the welding to take place.

The metal becomes molten as temperatures up to 5000 degrees celcius are created.

A diver must use great skill and have a steady hand in order to keep this bubble of gas intact in order to achieve a consistently good weld.

However, if the gas builds up by becoming trapped it can explode, with potentially fatal consequences to the diver.

Of course the task is made even more difficult by being submerged in water, often with low visibility.  The process of the welding underwater produces gas bubbles which will rise up from the area being worked. These bubbles will further reduce visibility to the diver.

A lot of skill and practice is required to achieve good welds underwater.

Commercial & Specialised Diving are proficient underwater welders with years of experience.  Why not give us a chance to show you how good we are on your next underwater welding project.

Commercial& Specialised Diving are professional divers for inshore, marine and civil engineering projects.  With over 20 years in the diving industry, Commercial & Specialised Diving are on hand to help you with any diving project. Contact our friendly team to find out more on 01202 580007.

A typical dive helmet with welding visor attached.
Diver welding underwater.
Diver welding underwater.