Home » Air-Cooled Vs. Water-Cooled Tweco Mig Guns: Which Is The Right Option For You?

Air-Cooled Vs. Water-Cooled Tweco Mig Guns: Which Is The Right Option For You?

by Nathan Zachary
Air-Cooled Vs. Water-Cooled Tweco Mig Guns

Tweco is an ESAB brand that is greatly trusted by the global community of welders. The brand is an industry leader in the manufacture and design of high quality MIG welding guns. If you have always wanted to own welding tools from this ESAB brand, you can now buy a Tweco MIG gun online, directly from the comfort of your home.

Before you do, however, you need to choose the right kind of MIG gun. More specifically, you must make a choice between air-cooled and water-cooled Tweco MIG guns. To help you make a more informed decision about this, let’s take a closer look at Tweco MIG guns in general, and at these two kinds of welding guns in particular.

A Closer Look at MIG Guns from Tweco

MIG guns from Tweco have many things going for them. To begin with, they are all ergonomically designed, making it easier to operate them handheld for prolonged periods. In addition to impact-resistant handles, many Tweco MIG guns also offer a comfortable pistol grip. They are also designed to meet the needs of heavy duty fabrication, so you can carry out industrial grade welding work conveniently and efficiently.

The duty cycle on most such heavy duty Tweco MIG guns ranges from 60% to 100%. This means that you can operate them continuously for prolonged periods ranging from 6 minutes to 10 minutes without risking thermal overload.

Air-Cooled vs Water-Cooled MIG Guns

Using a MIG welding gun for prolonged periods generates heat. When left uncontrolled, this heat could damage sensitive components in the MIG gun. This is why it is essential to cool the equipment down adequately. Tweco MIG guns come with one of two types of cooling mechanisms, as outlined below.

Air-Cooled Tweco MIG Guns

Air-cooled guns, as the name suggests, rely on the ambient air to cool down the welding circuit. The air along with the shielding gas help dissipate any heat built up during the welding operation. In order to minimize the heat generated, air-cooled guns generally use thick copper cables. Since copper conducts electricity significantly well, the electrical resistance is greatly reduced. This, in turn, stops excessive heat from building up within the gun.

Air-cooled Tweco MIG guns offer the following advantages:

  • Simple and efficient design
  • Easy to plug and play
  • More cost-effective
  • Fewer ancillary equipment to handle

On the downside, air-cooled MIG guns may need to be cooled for longer periods between welds. This could lead to longer wait times.

Water-Cooled Tweco MIG Guns

A water-cooled MIG gun, on the other hand, relies on a cooling solution to dissipate the excess heat built up during the welding process. The coolant absorbs the heat from the welding circuit and is routed to a radiator, which releases the heat. This process is further made effective by the shielding gas present in the gun.

The radiator is typically integrated into the MIG gun itself. Cooling hoses integrated into the design of the gun connect the coolant to the radiator. Once the heat has been dissipated, the coolant is circulated back into the gun.

Water-cooled MIG guns have made advantages to offer, such as the following:

  • More effective cooling
  • Rapid dissipation of heat in a matter of just a few seconds
  • Less wait time between welds
  • Lightweight design

That said, water-cooled MIG guns may be more expensive than their air-cooled counterparts. They may also be more prone to damage if they are not maintained well.

Which Tweco MIG Gun is Right for You?

Now that you know how air-cooled and water-cooled Tweco MIG guns work and what they have to offer, you will have to decide which variant to buy. Since the amperage ratings of a MIG gun are directly linked to the kind of cooling system used, you will also have to factor this in. Air-cooled Tweco MIG guns typically have low amperages ranging from 150 amps to 600 amps. Water-cooled guns may have higher amperage ratings of 300 amps to 600 amps. So, the kind of Tweco MIG gun you choose will depend on your budget, your welding requirements and the range of amperage ratings you wish to operate in.


Both air-cooled and water-cooled Tweco MIG guns have their own advantages. However, there is no one-size-fits-all formula to identify which type of MIG gun is right for you. You need to assess and check what your welding requirements are, and choose a Tweco welding gun accordingly.

In general, if you are on a tight budget and if you’re looking for simple tools, air-cooled Tweco MIG guns may be the better choice. On the other hand, if you can afford more expensive equipment, and if you want to handle high-amperage applications, water-cooled Tweco MIG guns are more suitable.

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