Power Problems when using Wolf MIG 140

  1. Good afternoon all,

    My apologies for adding this thread when there are a lot of others, but I am having a bit of a problem and I did not want to hijack anyones thread with my lack of understanding and newbiness. I fired up my Wolf MIG 140 (35-135A) welder today and seem to be having issues with it tripping the breaker in the house. Please forgive my lack of knowledge with the terminology and stuff, this is new territory for me. In addition to this, I'm not as fully up-to-speed on the wirings and such around this house as I am back living with my parents at this moment in time.

    I noted that power level 3 on the welder (there are 6 in total) at full wire speed does not trip the (MCB?) on the consumer box in the house when welding. However, pretty much anything on power level 4 trips it almost instantly as soon as the trigger is pressed (regardless of whether at or away from workpiece).

    Now this is where I struggle to describe stuff, so bare with me...

    The welder is currently wired up with a 230v 13A fused plug. I know this won't be suitable for the higher levels on the welder but every time power is lost, the fuse in the plug is fine (which suggests to me that the problem here is not trying to run the welder too high on a 13A plug).

    I use the welder in the garage, which as far as I can see is hooked up to the consumer box inside the house, and there is no consumer unit in the garage. I believe the (MCB?) for the garage is 16A rated, covering both sockets and lights. All sockets in the garage are standard 13A sockets.

    The slightly annoying thing that is confusing me slightly is that the delightful people responsible for doing work in the past for us have put the garage sockets/lighting onto the (MCB?) named "Immersion Heater". 3 problems with that... 1) We don't have an immersion heater and havent for yeeeeeaaarrrrs, 2) I have no idea if anything else is bodged in onto this mcb along with the garage, 3) If "Immersion Heater" is the garage, then I haven't the foggiest as to what is on the "Garage Sockets+Lighting" MCB (rated at 32A). *facepalm*

    I know this will probably end up in requiring an electrician to come and assist, but I have no idea what to tell them is wrong or how much this is going to end up costing to fix up so I can use the welder.

    Do you guys know if there is anything relatively simple I could try doing myself that won't break the bank? I just spent the last of my pennies on the actual welder... *sadface*

    If any more info is needed, please feel free to ask and I will do my best to provide you with what you need to know.
  2. weldequip Forum Sponsor

    A 135 Amp MIG should run fine on 13amps, try it from another supply, eliminating any problems with the MCB.
  3. brightspark

    brightspark Member

    more than likely the old emersion heater would have been wired in 2.5mm cable to a 16 amp b type breaker . if it feeds your garage lights and sockets loading up to full capacity would trip it . the maximum breaker for 2.5 cable u could increase 2 would be a 20 amp . where in county durham r u
  4. Thanks for the repsonses guys - it looks like a short-term solution has been found! :D

    Before I read your responses, I started raking around the cupboards and teamed up with Dad to try and identify what MCB's were hooked up to what. I think we had a proper cowboy doing the work... none of the MCB's were labelled correctly, and I don't even want to say how the shower was wired in! Let's just say if you tripped the entire consumer box, the shower still worked fine and dandy...


    Anywho, we've worked through and worked out what goes to where and I geeked out by printing a bunch of labels on the ol' label maker (it was fun...) so everything can be clearly seen.

    As for trying the welder on a different MCB, I relocated into the kitchen. Turns out I can run it at full-whack for a fair while without any bother (even using a trailing socket). I'm guessing that based on this, the issue lays with the garage's MCB. In the interest of keeping my (empty) wallet happy, I am going to close my eyes and pretend the garage problem does not exist, and run the trailing socket from the kitchen to the garage if any welding is to be done. :whistle:

    @Brightspark: I'm about 20 mins outside of Durham city. Sorry I can't be more specific, I'm still getting used to everyone here. Nothing personal, I'm just a tad paranoid (especially when i'm still green around these parts).