Best MIG Welders for Auto Body Work of 2019
If you are looking for a MIG welder that is perfect for automotive body works, you may find it overwhelming to browse through all the many different models, each with their own specifications and features. Since some MIG welders are expensive, it may of utmost importance to you to buy a welder that you will be able to use effectively, and for many years.
We took it upon ourselves to find and compile reviews of MIG welders for auto body work. These reviews will give you an in-depth look into high-end and low-end welders to give you a clear idea of what you should consider and what you should stay away from. Afterward, we will discuss different features of welders and what you should consider before adding a welder to your cart.
5 Best Auto Body Work MIG Welders
#1 Hobart 500554001 Handler 190 – Top Pick
The Hobart 500554001 Handler 190 is an excellent welder when it comes to welding automotive sheet metal. The MIG welder comes with a wide array of features that are aimed at making your life and welding jobs much easier and faster. This model has a solid welding output amperage of 190 Amps, and 7 voltage selections, depending on where you find yourself.
The flux-cored wire feed speed is infinitely adjustable and provides you with ample control over arc performance, a critical feature during automotive metal sheet welding. This powerful welder runs on 230 Volt and is incredibly versatile. This makes it ideal if you occasionally want to use your welder for welding thicker metal plates. You also get a spool gun, that makes it possible for you to weld aluminum since a spool gun prevents a flux-cored wire from jamming in your torch.
If you are looking for a solid, high-quality welder that you can add to your arsenal of automotive equipment and accessories, this is the welder for you.
- High-quality and durable welder
- Powerful enough for most jobs
- Spool gun allows for aluminum welding
- Ample adjustability in terms of wire feed speed
- The power cord is very short
#2 Lincoln Electric K2697-1 – The Runner-up
The Lincoln Electric K2697-1, may not be as good at handling thick metals as our top pick, but it brings a lot of features to the table that makes it the ideal welder for auto body work. Firstly, you have a choice between welding with flux-cored wire and gas-shielded wire. This means that you do incredibly neat welding jobs on all types and forms of metal, including aluminum and stainless steel.
This welder runs on 120 Volt, making it powerful enough for other DIY-type jobs around the house or as part of your auto body repairs. This welder comes with a fully adjustable wire drive system and 50 to 500 IPM wire feed speed, giving you enough control over your arc performance. Another awesome feature is a brass-to-brass gun connection to eliminate any conductivity-related frustrations.
As an automotive body repairman, you’ll find tons of value in the Lincoln Electric K2697-1. It is, in all aspects, perfect for auto body works as well as other sheet metal jobs.
- High-quality and durable MIG welder
- Choice between flux-cord and shielded gas
- Easy to use
- Durable and trustworthy components
- Not powerful enough for thick metals
#3 Forney 29901 125 FC MIG Welder Start-Up Kit – Best for the Money
This starter pack is ideal auto body works. They were designed for the novice, welder, but it just so happens that their features are perfect for automotive body repairs. So, if you are looking for a welder that you can use for automotive body repairs, this start-up kit is the best value for money. It is a basic flux-core welding machine that uses 0.030 flux-core wire and that does not require shielding gas.
Depending on the welding job, you can switch the MIG welder to either sheet metal or thin plate settings. You can also adjust the flux-core wire feed speed settings. You wire feed speed will be slower for sheet metal and higher when you are welding thin plate.
This starter pack is filled to the brim value. It includes a ground clamp, welding torch, gloves, and welding helmet. If you are looking to buy a product that is a solid financial investment, this Forney start-up kit will be perfect for you.
- Excellent value for money
- Easy to set up and use
- Ideal for auto body works
- Does not use gas-shielded ire
- May be difficult to aluminum
- Does not have a lot of power
#4 Lincoln Electric Easy MIG 180
This MIG welder runs on 240 Volt on single phase and has a lot of features that you can use for auto body welding. You can set this welder up for flux-cored welding as well as gas-shielded wire welding. This means that this MIG welder is quite powerful and will successfully handle most forms of metal with varying thicknesses.
As is the case with most other MIG welders, you can adjust the wire speed feed to have control over you arc performance. This is a solid MIG welder that you can use for just about anything, including automotive body welding.
It does, however, have a few drawbacks. Firstly, it is quite expensive for what you get. It is a great welder, but chances are that you will get one the performs similarly for a much better price. Secondly, the quality of the gauges can be improved as they are easily damaged during transport.
- High-powered MIG welder
- Can weld all forms of metal
- Can handle thicker metal plates
- Not great value for money
- Some components have lacking quality
#5 Goplus MIG 130 Welder
This MIG welder is a basic flux-cord unit that runs on 110 Volts and has a welding output amperage of up to 130 Amps. It has 4 current flow setting and you get 10 specific wire speed feed settings. Use is primarily limited to thin plates or sheet metal, so you would be able to use this MIG welder for automotive body welding jobs. We do not recommend that you do, however. This model has a couple of problems that may influence your purchasing decision.
The circuit board tends to burn out due to overload. There are protective electronics built in to prevent this, but they seem to be ineffective. Another relevant problem is that this welder copes incredibly poorly with automotive sheet metal. The wire feeder is also lacking in terms of quality and may stop working for no apparent reason.
If you are looking for a simple, yet durable MIG welder for auto body works, we recommend that you check out the Forney 29901 125 FC MIG Welder Start-Up Kit.
- Complementary accessories and consumables
- Poor overall quality
- Issues with overload and thermal control
- Components may malfunction
- Not suitable for automotive body welding
Before choosing a MIG welder for auto body welding, it is important that you know exactly what you want. Let’s take a look at all the features that you need in a MIG welder to use for auto body work:
Since most auto body welding is on sheet metal, you do not need a heavy-duty welder. A MIG welder that runs on 110 Volts may work perfectly for you. If you are going to be using the MIG welder for DIY projects or heavier steel construction as well, we’d recommend that you look at a MIG welder that runs on 230 Volts.
Thermal overload protection
A MIG welder is a long-term investment, and you have to make sure that your welder has precautionary measures built into the design. Duty cycles determine how long you can weld before you have to stop and let your welder cool off. The longer the duty cycle, the longer you can weld in one sitting.
If you are going to weld aluminum, you need a spool gun. Welding aluminum can cause the flux-cored wire in your torch to jam. When you have a spool gun, you can keep the torch farther away from the aluminum, which will prevent jamming.
We have reached the end of our buying guide. In conclusion, we recommend that you buy the Hobart 500554001 Handler 190. This is an all-around solid welder with many high-value features. It is versatile, durable and it is fitted with high-quality components that will last a lifetime.
If you are dead set on finding value for your money, however, we recommend the Forney 29901 125 FC MIG Welder Start-Up Kit. Not the best welder in the world, but one that comes with many complementary consumables and products. It is also easy to use and as far as auto body works go, it will get the job done for sure.
Quality should always be your most important consideration. Without quality, all positive features and specifications of your MIG welder will be worthless. Hopefully, the buyer’s guide helped you to narrow down your search and streamlined your buying process.
- 5 Best Auto Body Work MIG Welders
- Buying Guide