A Duty Cycle is referred to as the proportion of time a device or system is in use. A backup generator’s duty cycle is 0.55% if it runs for 48 hours each year. Welders frequently refer to the percentage of time in a 10-minute period that a machine may run safely at a specific amperage, this is known as the duty cycle.
What Does Duty Cycle Actually Mean?
The majority of electrical machines have a set amount of time they can run before overheating. Welders (and other industrial workers) refer to the duty cycle as a means of preventing machinery from overheating.
The duty cycle aids in assessing the production and capacity of a machine and, consequently, rates its productivity. So, the duty cycle can assist you in choosing the equipment that best suits your unique requirements.
How is Duty Cycle Calculated?
A machine can operate at the specified amperage for 2.5 minutes and then must cool down for 7.5 minutes if its duty cycle is 25%. Also, if the machine operates at 80% of its capacity, it can run for 8 minutes before cooling down for 2 minutes.
Nonetheless, it’s crucial to remember that a machine’s duty cycle varies at various amperages. A machine may have an 80% duty cycle at 200 amps, but if the amperage is increased, the duty cycle will decrease since the machine will heat up more quickly
The European Standard EN60974-1, which is a commonly used standard for testing and determining the duty cycle, is typically used to determine the duty cycle. The need that the machine to be warmed up before the test is one of the requirements in this standard. Because not all duty cycle tests are completed in this manner, the results frequently show a greater or better duty cycle, which can be deceiving.
Why is the Duty Cycle Important?
In order to manufacture high-quality goods and prioritize your welding schedule so that you know when to stop welding, you must fully comprehend your machine’s duty cycle.
Knowing and being aware of your machine’s duty cycle will help you keep it from overheating, which could lead to burning or other serious long-term damage. When the machine’s duty cycle’s maximum temperature is achieved, the thermal overload protection will kick in.
Why Not Choose a Machine With a 100% Duty Cycle at High Amperage?
You might believe that the ideal option for any job is to use a machine with a 100% duty cycle. Yet, this computer could also be the most expensive or powerful, which is not important for many jobs.
A machine with a 100% duty cycle is ideal for heavy-duty and large welding operations, but a lesser-duty cycle is OK for smaller jobs since you won’t be using full power constantly.
Recommended: What is an Ampere Hour (Ah or Amp hour)?