What is Oxy-Acetylene welding/cutting
Oxy-Acetylene welding/cutting is also called Oxy-fuel welding/cutting. It is a process that uses oxygen and fuel gases to weld and cut steel or metallic components. In this type of welding acetylene gas and oxygen are mixed in a torch so as to attain the high temperatures that are required for the welding process.
This process like any other process have risk which should be managed. This article will highlight Oxy-Acetylene welding/Cutting safety precautions.
Oxy-Acetylene Welding/Cutting Safety Precautions
- Oxy-Acetylene welding/cutting safety procedure should not be carried out in a crowded area; job area should be segregated.
- All the combustible materials must be removed, be it liquid solid or gaseous. As far as it is not needed for the activity at hand.
- The combustible materials which unable to be removed from their place, they must be covered with any kind of insulating materials.
- Flame-resistant sheets may be used.
- Fire extinguishers must be available and workable, and placed in a strategic position.
- Always use an approved friction striker, never use
matches or a cigarette lighter.
- All gas cylinders must be properly labelled.
- Never point the flame towards the regulators and another person.
- If the gauge doesn’t return to zero when pressure is released, have it repaired.
- Keep tight connections between the regulator and the cylinder.
- Extinguish the torch flame by closing the acetylene valve first and then the oxygen.
- When finished welding shut off the main valves , bleed the lines and loosen the regulator adjusting screws.
- Wind up the hoses when finished shutting everything off.
- Do not turn acetylene valve more than 1 ½ turns.
- Make sure the lines are purged before and after
- Only a qualified technician should repair a regulator.
- Store the cylinders in a well-ventilated area, preferably in the open air.
- Never allow hoses to become coated with oil, grease
or dirt, since such coatings could conceal damaged areas.
- The storage area for cylinders should be well away from sources of heat, sparks and fire risk.
- If cuts, burns or damaged fittings are found, replace
- Hoses should be examined before attaching to torch handle.
- Cylinders should be stored upright and well secured
- Oxygen cylinders should be stored at least 3m away from fuel gas cylinders (Acetylene gas cylinder) or separated by a 30 minute fire resisting barrier.
- Cylinder valves or valve guards should never be loosened
- Ensure that the regulator is rated for the pressure in the cylinder.
- When attaching the regulator to the cylinder the joints must be clean and sealant must not be used.
- Always make sure your equipment is rated for the size tip you
- A tip with too much capacity for the equipment can starve or
choke the tip. This causes overheating of the head and a flashback may result.
- Should a flashback occur (flame disappears and/or a hissing
sound is heard, the flame is burning inside the nozzle), immediately turn off the oxygen valve on the torch handle. Then, turn off the fuel valve, allow the nozzle to cool before using.
- When cleaning the cylinder threads, connecting the regulator and purging the hoses, protect face and eyes by wearing the appropriate head shield
- Ensure the cylinder is not heated by the flame or by stray arcs from adjacent electrical equipment.
- Joints and hoses should be checked for leaks before any welding is attempted.
- Ensure that flashback arrestors are in place. The flash back arrestor is an automatic flame trap device designed not only to quench the flame but also to prevent the flame from reaching the regulator.
- Do not attempt to interchanges oxygen and acetylene regulators.
- Always use proper PPE (shield, goggles, gloves,
Following the Oxy-Acetylene welding/cutting safety precautions is the only way to ensure the safety of the process.