Welder Qualification Test (Performance Qualification)

Welder Performance qualification (WPQ) is also known as welder qualification test (WQT) or performance qualification. It is a very basic but one of the most important step before assigning a job to the welder.

The welder qualification test (WQT) is performed to determine whether the welder or the welding operator can produce a sound weld or not. Each welder or welding operator shall be qualified for each welding process to be used during production (or fabrication) welding.

The welder is required to weld a test coupon in accordance with the qualified welding procedure specification (WPS), the test coupon is then send for Radiography test or Mechanical test (as per the requirements of the code of construction). After satisfactory test report the welder may be employed for the production welding (or fabrication welding). Following important factors shall always be considered before conducting the welder qualification test (WQT);

  • Welding Procedure Specification (WPS)
  • Welding Process
  • Size of test coupon
  • Position of the test coupon
  • Filler metal/Electrode

Welding Procedure Specification: All the welding parameters viz. welding current, voltage, base metal, filler/electrode etc. shall be in accordance with the qualified welding procedure specification.

Welding Process: For each welding process a welder has to be qualified separately. Suppose if a welder qualifies for SMAW then he shall be employed only for SMAW welding. In case if our requirement is MIG welding then the same welder will have to weld a different test coupon by MIG welding process then only he can be allowed for MIG welding.

Size of the test coupon: Size of the test coupon is very important because of two things:

  1. It determines the performance qualification thickness limits i.e. upto what thickness the welder can weld. For example, if a welder qualifies with a 10 mm thickness plate then he can weld upto a maximum of 20 mm thickness. Two very widely used welding codes are AWS D1.1 and ASME BPVC Section IX. In ASME BPVC Section IX the performance qualification thickness limit for groove weld is given in ASME BPVC 2017, Table QW452.1(b) and outside diameter range for groove weld is given in ASME BPVC 2017, Table QW452.3

  2. Length and width of the test coupon shall be sufficient enough for the final test (i.e. Radiography or Mechanical test).

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A video on practical demonstration of welder qualification test conducted in vertical (3G) Position, Please watch ;

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Thickness Range or limit for welders:

A brief summary of qualified thickness limit for groove welding (as per ASME BPVC Section IX) is given below;

Thickness limit for welder qualification test

A brief summary of qualified diameter limit for groove weld in pipe (as per ASME BPVC Section IX) is given below;Diameter limit for welder qualification test

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Please watch the below video to understand the thickness limit for welders as per ASME Section IX;

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Position of the test coupon:

For plate welding we have four different welding test positions such as 1G,2G,3G,4G OR 1F,2F,3F,4F. For pipe welding also we have multiple positions for example 1G,2G,5G,6G OR 1F,2F,4F,5F. If the welder qualifies in 2G position then he can weld in horizontal (2G) and flat (1G) position only. On the other hand if the welder qualifies in 2G, 3G and 4G positions then he qualifies for all positions (As per ASME Section IX). Please note that there is a slight difference in AWS D1.1, for qualification in all positions the welder needs to weld in 3G and 4G positions only. For Limitation of positions for welder qualification test (WQT), one can refer Table QW 461.9 of ASME Section IX. To learn more about welding positions, please click here.

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Welding positions explained in the video given below, Please watch ;

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In addition to the above factors some more points shall be taken care of during welder qualification test (WQT):

  1. Preheating and post heating shall be as per the Welding Procedure Specification. The temperature shall be checked before starting the welding. To check the temperature one can use Pyrometer or Temperature chalk (Thermal chalk).
  2. Voltage and Amperage shall be maintained strictly as per the WPS, during the welder qualification test (WQT). To check the Voltage and Amperage we can use a Clamp meter.
  3. The Root run may be checked visually (or by using Dye Penetrent Test). If the welder qualifies the root run then only he can be permitted for further welding

After satisfactory radiography (or Mechanical test) report of the test coupon, A certificate and an Identity card shall be issued to the welder and the welder shall keep the Identity card with him and he shall show his Identity card if asked by the welding Inspector.

Also read: Welding Symbols

Also read: Welding Positions

Also read: How to write a welding procedure specification (WPS)

Also read: P-number, F-number and A-number in welding

Please watch the below video for a live demonstration of Welder performance qualification in 2G Position.

 

Welder Qualification Test in 6G Position:

In 6G test position, the test coupon is made up of pipe and it is kept at an angle of 45 degrees from horizontal line. The test coupon remains fixed (at 45 degrees) and the welder moves in all directions to complete this welding. It is one of the toughest qualification test for the welders and If a welder successfully completes this test then he/she shall be qualified in all position. Hence a 6G qualified welder can be employed for all position welding.

Please watch the below video for a quick demonstration of Welder Qualification Test in 6G Position.

Sandeep Anand

I am a Mechanical Engineer with more than ten years of work experience in the field of welding and NDT.

19 thoughts on “Welder Qualification Test (Performance Qualification)

  • October 21, 2017 at 4:44 am
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    DO you have ASNT RT questions and answers 3rd edition ?
    Do you have AWS A3.0:2010 in spanish ?
    Thanks.

    Reply
    • December 8, 2017 at 10:57 am
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      Dear Mr. Sandro,
      Thank you for visiting my website. I am sorry to say that I don’t have ASNT RT questions and answers 3rd edition, but I do have some useful study materials and questions for RT. If you are interested then I will email you. All the books are in English only
      Regards
      Sandeep Anand

      Reply
  • December 28, 2017 at 5:54 pm
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    Thanks Mr sandeep to share this very important and basic information. Matter to us. People must be know that those who have been working in relevant field .

    Reply
  • January 6, 2018 at 9:25 am
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    My name- anil kumar sharma
    Study from C.I.T.S kanpur
    Sir nowadays, the question of multi choice question type in welding is being asked, so you have created a little multi-choice question that is coming in computation and exam.
    Please!

    Reply
  • January 10, 2018 at 7:28 pm
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    Dear sir please explain in brief PQR,WPS,WPQ
    Also if you know about post heatong and pre heating, post weldingand heat treatment please explain.

    Reply
    • January 28, 2018 at 1:15 pm
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      I will upload all the basic concepts and step by step procedure for WPS, PQR, WPQ, preheating & PWHT very soon.

      Reply
  • January 31, 2018 at 12:37 am
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    Good job sandeep. 👍

    Reply
  • July 9, 2018 at 4:37 pm
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    Hello sandip sir, your videos and website so is useful for us, I watched your every video and I gain to much knowledge from here, I am so grateful to you. Thanking you to provide this useful information. Sir I Want to know about pwht, please help me and i kindly request to make another video on this topic.

    Reply
  • September 9, 2018 at 10:07 am
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    Sir please send interview questions and answers.

    Reply
  • September 27, 2018 at 4:42 am
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    Sir,
    I want to know what thickness qualifications can make me unlimited qualified?
    For different materials should I need to go for individual material qualifications test?
    Please advise.
    Thank you.

    Reply
  • November 10, 2018 at 2:55 pm
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    Your website are very usefull. You did great job. Have you post any video related to destructive testing ?

    Reply
  • April 19, 2019 at 7:09 pm
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    Please send WQT asper AWS D1.1

    Reply
  • May 8, 2019 at 12:21 pm
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    I need to know whether if two welders are performing for wqt eg 14″, one welder is passed and other one rejected by RT.
    1. then we can accept the passed one?
    2. what about the rejected one?
    3. give ur comments as per code and sec vice.

    thanks in advance

    Reply
  • July 16, 2019 at 4:10 pm
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    dear sir ,

    Can you explain me how to select test coupon size for wps & wpq as per asme section 9.

    Guys if any one know please tell me with reference number.

    Reply
  • August 7, 2019 at 2:28 pm
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    Great explanation Sandeep Sir !!

    Reply
  • March 31, 2020 at 6:03 pm
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    WPQ/ PQR KA KOI FORMAT SEND KIJIYE SIR

    Reply
  • June 24, 2020 at 2:17 am
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    first of all ,what u r doing is a wonderful job, which improves knowledge as well as clarifies doubts, it will be very helpful if a content of multiple choice question and answers with explanation based on welder procedure qualification and welder performance qualification .my wattsapp num is 9948812006 .
    can u share ur contact details.

    Reply
    • August 3, 2020 at 2:50 pm
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      Thank you

      Reply

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