4 Different Types of Welding Rods Explained

Welding rods, or welding electrodes, are metal rods that melt and become part of the strong bond that holds metal together. They come in a wide variety of sizes and metals. The metal is surrounded by "flux," which prevents oxidation of the metal being welded. Choosing the right kind for your job is very important because the wrong kind can weaken the weld.

The first two digits of the welding rod number indicate the strength of the weld. Multiply the 60 in 6010, for instance, to get 60,000 pounds of pulling force.


This is a very common type of welding rod. It is used for farm equipment, piping, wrought iron, and many kinds of general maintenance. The rod must be run on welders that use Direct Current (DC).


This is a very versatile type of welding rod and is a little easier to use than 6010. It's a low-hydrogen rod and moisture can't be allowed to get into the flux. A "rod oven" should be used to store 7018 at 250 degrees.

308L AC/DC

This rod is used to weld stainless steel and is resistant to cracks and corrosion. It also works well in all welding positions.

24 AC/DC

This rod is used to join two different kinds of metal and works in all positions.