How to Power a Stick Welder With a Generator


Stick welders, electric welders that use a stick-shaped rod as an electrode, come in a variety of sizes with different power requirements. Electrical generators are also available in a variety of power outputs. The proper operation of a stick welder powered by an electrical generator involves confirming that the power input requirements of the welder are met by output of the generator.

  • Check the power requirements of the welder. This is commonly listed on the case of the welder. The input requirements include the voltage, phase, hertz and amperage. Most, but not all, stick welders require 230 volt single phase service running at 60 hertz. The input amperage translates to rated output amperage.

  • Check the power output of the generator. While output capacities vary, many generators over 5,000 watts offer 220 volt outputs. Check the amperage output and compare it to the requirements for the welder.

  • Plug the welder into the outlet on the generator. Use an adapter if the cord plug for the welder is not compatible with the receptacle on the generator. Run the generator a few minutes before starting the welder to establish stable electrical current.

  • Monitor the efficiency of the generator. A poorly running generator produces less electricity, which may cause problems with the welder. Limit the other tools or appliances plugged into the generator if the power output is marginal for the input requirements of the welder.

Tips & Warnings

  • If you are buying a new welder, look for one with the lowest input power requirements that will accomplish the desired tasks.

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  • Photo Credit welder image by Allyson Ricketts from
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