Hi Louis & Yanferizal,
Thanks for your query and answers.
Discussion thread, (MW-3238, Sept-2009) Shelf life of Low hydrogen electrodes provides some snapshots of intense discussion on the above topic.
It’s true that boiler or pressure vessel codes or structural welding codes do not specify the shelf-life or expiry dates of welding electrodes. For example, ASME Nuclear Codes Sec-III, Clause & NB, NC-2440 specifies that:- Suitable storage and handling of electrodes, flux, and other welding materials shall be maintained. Precautions shall be taken to minimize absorption of moisture by fluxes and cored, fabricated, and coated electrodes.
The shelf-life of welding electrodes to a great extent depends on electrode manufacturer’s methods, quality control procedure and how electrodes are handled. Depending on the coating type, packing (hermetically sealed or not), storing methods and ambient conditions, humidity etc, electrodes may last long or less. However as a good practice and based on electrode manufacturer’s guidelines it may be worth considering:-
· Solid Wires, GTAW/GMAW-No shelf Life.
· Cored Wire –FCAW- No shelf life
· SMAW – The rule should be FIFO (First in First Out). Electrodes where the coating shows sign of flaking, cracks etc certainly should be discarded without much thoughts. Electrodes not older than 2-3 years but in good condition may be used. If required the diffusible hydrogen test could be repeated. Electrodes older than 3 years generally should not be used as a good engineering rule.
· SAW Fluxes- Shelf life 2-3 years maximum subject to the flux condition and amount of fine particles/dust generated and behavior during welding
It would be definitely useful to get the inputs from other forum members, especially from consumable manufacturing industries.
Pradip Goswami, P.Eng
88,Garth Trails Crescent
From: email@example.com [mailto:firstname.lastname@example.org] On Behalf Of A D
Sent: Wednesday, February 03, 2010 12:39 AM
Subject: Re: [MW:4192] Welding Electrode Expire Date
Electrode (SMAW) expiry detail is not given by any codes. May be you can check
with your electrode manufacturer.
wire consumables (without flux) is not issue for expiry, we can use anytime if we keep
in proper storage.
In stick electrodes, flux may be loosened (unbounded) due to long storage.
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