Published on 02-Mar-2024

Welding Procedure Specification (WPS) - An Overview

Welding Procedure Specification (WPS) - An Overview

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Embarking on a welding project requires more than just skill and work; it demands non-destructive evaluation and adherence to industry standards.

One crucial aspect is the Welding Procedure Specification (WPS), a document that serves as the guiding blueprint for welding operations.

What is a WPS?

Welding Procedure Specification or WPS is paramount for welding procedure and NDT Testing.

The Welding Procedure Specification is a detailed document that serves as a guide for carrying out welding operations.

From materials and equipment to specific parameters and quality control measures, the WPS welding procedure leaves no room for ambiguity, ensuring a methodical and precise approach to welding tasks.

Why do you need a Welding Procedure Specification?

A meticulously detailed WPS welding procedure serves as a safety net, offering a systematic approach that mitigates risks.

From specifying proper safety gear to outlining precise welding parameters, a WPS ensures that safety is not a mere aspiration but an embedded aspect of every welding operation.

Here are the reasons why we need welding procedure specification. 

Compliance with Regulatory Standards

Welding specifications operate within a framework of regulations and industry standards. Failure to adhere to these standards can result in not only compromised quality but also legal consequences.

A well-defined WPS acts as a bridge between theoretical standards and practical application. It ensures that every welding task complies with industry norms, fostering a culture of professionalism and accountability.

In a world where regulatory scrutiny is ever-increasing, a WPS is an ally in prequalified welding procedures.

Consistency in Welding Operations

Consistency is the hallmark of quality in Welding.

An NDT Welding Test procedure provides a set of standardized instructions, eliminating variability in welding practices.

This, in turn, contributes to the overall consistency and standard welding procedure. Whether the project involves intricate industrial welding or better fabrication, a WPS ensures that each weld adheres to the same specification for welding.

Quality Assurance Throughout the Welding Process

Beyond safety and compliance, a WPS is a linchpin in ensuring the quality of welds.

By detailing the materials, techniques, and parameters, a WPS creates a framework for achieving precise and high-quality welds.

Welding procedure specification with the right NDT Method will bring better standards of welding with quality control mechanism, fostering a culture of craftsmanship in welding projects.

Streamlining Training and Knowledge Transfer

In the dynamic field of welding, knowledge transfer and training are ongoing processes. A WPS not only guides experienced welders but also serves as an invaluable training tool for newcomers.

It provides a structured framework for learning, ensuring that the next generation of welders inherits not just practical skills but also a deep understanding of industry standards and best practices.

Advantages of a WPS

The focus is on how a well-defined welding procedure specification contributes to efficiency, consistency, and the overall success of welding endeavors.

Real-world examples and case studies illustrate the tangible benefits that can be derived from adhering to a robust WPS.

Welding procedure specifications play a pivotal role in the world of welding, offering a structured approach that extends beyond the act of welding itself.

Here are the advantages that arise from the implementation of a well-defined WPS.

Ensures Safety and Compliance

One of the primary advantages is its contribution to safety with NDT and NDE using NDT techniques.

By outlining specific procedures and standards, a WPS acts as a crucial safety net, ensuring that welders adhere to industry regulations.

This not only safeguards the well-being of those involved in the welding process but also helps in meeting the stringent requirements set by regulatory bodies.

Enhances Consistency and Quality

Consistency is key in welding, and a WPS serves as the cornerstone for achieving it.

By providing a standardized set of instructions, a WPS eliminates variability in welding practises.

This, in turn, enhances the overall quality of welds, making them more reliable and durable. Consistency in welding procedures also facilitates easier inspection and non-destructive testing.

Facilitates Efficiency and Time Savings

A well-crafted WPS acts as a roadmap for welders, streamlining the welding process and contributing to increased efficiency with NDT techniques.

By clearly defining the steps and parameters, it reduces the time spent on trial and error, allowing for a more systematic and time-effective approach to welding.

This efficiency not only benefits individual welding projects but also contributes to the overall productivity of welding operations.

Supports Training and Skill Development

For both new and experienced welders, a WPS serves as a valuable training tool. It provides a structured framework for learning and executing welding procedures, aiding in the development of skills for any NDT Technician.

Additionally, it acts as a reference guide, helping welders stay informed about the latest industry standards and best practises. This continual learning process contributes to the professional growth of welders and NDT Services.

Boosts Confidence and Professionalism

Knowing that each welding task follows a meticulously designed plan and welding procedure specification example.

This confidence is not only personal but extends to clients and stakeholders, showcasing a commitment to precision and professionalism.

A WPS acts as a testament to the seriousness with which welding projects are approached, bolstering the reputation of welders and welding companies alike with the classification of welding. 

How to Write a Welding Procedure Specification (WPS)

Welding procedure specification serves as a practical guide for readers, breaking down the process of crafting a WPS into actionable steps. Here are a few things to consider when writing a welding procedure specification.

What Do You Need To Complete Your Weld

Before diving into the welding process, it's imperative to gather all the necessary materials and information.

This includes the type of metal being welded, the welding method to be employed, and the specific welding equipment required.

Understanding the unique aspects of your welding project sets the foundation for a successful WPS.

Add Essential Information to the Preliminary Welding Procedure Specification

The preliminary welding procedure specification serves as the initial blueprint for your welding project.

This step involves adding crucial information, such as welding parameters, preheat requirements, and joint details.

We get into the specifics of what should be included in this preliminary document, offering guidance on creating a comprehensive and detailed outline.

This ensures that your welding team has a clear roadmap right from the project's inception.

Welding Procedure Qualification Record (PQR)

The Welding Procedure Qualification Record (PQR) is a vital aspect of the WPS, providing evidence that your welding procedure meets industry standards.

This section explains the significance of the PQR and guides you through the process of creating one.

From recording essential variables to conducting necessary tests, we demystify the PQR, ensuring that your welding procedures are not only effective but also compliant with stringent regulations.

Create One Final Weld Procedure Specification

Building on the information gathered and outlined in the preliminary stages, this step involves consolidating everything into a final welding procedure specification.

This acts as the go-to manual for your welding project, encapsulating all the details needed for successful execution.

A well-crafted final WPS is not just a set of instructions; it is a roadmap to success in welding.

Types of Welding Procedure Specifications

Diving into the nuances of WPS, this section explores the various types that exist within the welding domain.

From preliminary welding procedure specifications to prequalified WPS and standard WPS, each type is dissected, providing readers with an understanding of the diversity within welding procedure documentation.

The various types of welding procedures are listed below. 

Preliminary-Welding Procedure Specifications

The Preliminary-Welding Procedure Specification serves as the foundational document in the welding process.

This type of WPS outlines the initial plan for the welding project, including essential details such as materials, welding parameters, and joint configurations.


For certain welding projects, a Prequalified-WPS streamlines the process.

This type of WPS is preapproved, meaning that it has already undergone rigorous testing and scrutiny to ensure compliance with industry standards.

Welders can use prequalified procedures without the need for extensive individual testing, saving both time and resources while maintaining quality assurance.

Standard-WPS (SWPS)

Standard-WPS, often referred to as SWPS, adheres to established industry standards. These standards are meticulously defined and widely accepted within the welding community.

An SWPS provides a standardized procedure for a particular type of weld, ensuring uniformity across various welding projects.

This type of WPS is invaluable for maintaining consistency and meeting industry benchmarks.


The term WPS itself refers to a generic welding procedure specification.

In essence, this is a catch-all category that encompasses a broad range of welding procedures.

It is a comprehensive document that includes details on materials, equipment, welding techniques, and quality control measures.

The versatility of a WPS allows it to be tailored to specific projects, offering a flexible yet detailed approach to welding.

WPS Codes

In the intricate language of welding standards, WPS codes play a crucial role.

These codes are alphanumeric sequences that signify specific welding procedures and their compliance with industry standards.

Understanding WPS codes is akin to decoding the language of welding, enabling welders to interpret and implement procedures accurately.

This section provides insights into deciphering these codes, empowering welders to navigate the complexities of welding standards with confidence.

Key Takeaways

  • Welding Procedure Specification (WPS) is a crucial document that guides welding operations, ensuring a methodical and precise approach.
  • A WPS contributes to safety, compliance, consistency, efficiency, time savings, training, skill development, and boosts confidence and professionalism.
  • It eliminates variability in welding practices, making welds more reliable and durable.
  • A welding procedure specification is a crucial document that outlines the process of welding a specific metal, method, and equipment.
  • It includes a preliminary WPS, a Welding Procedure Qualification Record (PQR), and a final WPS.
  • There are various types of WPS, including preliminary-WPS, prequalified-WPS, and standard-WPS.
  • Prequalified WPS streamlines the process, while standard-WPS adheres to industry standards.
  • WPS codes are essential in understanding the complexities of welding standards, enabling welders to interpret and implement procedures accurately. 


1. What is the WPS test for welding?

A: The WPS test, or Welding Procedure Specification test, is a set of documented instructions that provide detailed guidelines for the welding process. It includes information on welding parameters, materials, joint designs, preheat and interpass temperature, as well as post-weld heat treatment if necessary. The purpose of the WPS test is to ensure consistency and quality in welding operations.

2. What are WPS, WPQ, and PQR?

A: 1. WPS (Welding Procedure Specification): A WPS is a written document that outlines specific welding procedures and parameters for the production of a weld. It is developed based on the results of a qualified procedure test.

2. WPQ (Welder Performance Qualification): WPQ is a test conducted to evaluate a welder's ability to produce welds meeting specified criteria. It involves welding a test piece according to the WPS and subjecting it to various tests to ensure the welder's proficiency.

3. PQR (Procedure Qualification Record): PQR is a record of the variables and test results obtained during the qualification of a welding procedure. It serves as evidence that the WPS has been successfully tested and is qualified for production.

3. What is the process of WPS?

A: The process of developing a WPS involves several steps:

  • Identification of the Welding Process: Choose the welding process suitable for the application (e.g., TIG, MIG, SMAW).
  • Material Specification: Specify the type and grade of materials to be welded.
  • Joint Design and Preparation: Define the joint configuration and preparation details.
  • Welding Parameters: Specify welding parameters such as current, voltage, travel speed, and shielding gas.
  • Preheat and Interpass Temperature: Determine preheat and interpass temperature requirements.
  • Post-Weld Heat Treatment (if needed): Specify any post-weld heat treatment requirements.
  • Testing: Perform a test using the defined parameters to qualify the WPS.

4. What is WPS material?

A: In the context of welding, "WPS material" refers to the material used in the Welding Procedure Specification. This includes details such as the type, grade, and thickness of the base metal and any filler materials used in the welding process.

5. Why is WPS needed in welding?

A: WPS is essential in welding for the following reasons:

  • Consistency: It ensures consistency in welding operations by providing standardized procedures.
  • Quality Assurance: WPS helps maintain the quality and integrity of welded joints.
  • Safety: It contributes to the safety of welding operations by specifying parameters that minimise the risk of defects.
  • Compliance: WPS ensures that welding processes comply with industry standards and codes.
  • Documentation: WPS serves as documented evidence of qualified welding procedures, providing a basis for quality control and regulatory compliance.

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