6011 vs 6013 Welding Rod: Which One To Pick?

Welding cannot be done without an electrode or welding rod. The latter acts as the channel through which the electric current passes through. So which electrode should you use for stick welding?

You can use several electrode types, with the most common being the 6011 and the 6013 welding rods. This article will look at the 6011 vs 6013 welding rod and see how they compare.

Differences between 6011 and 6013 welding Rods

PositionAll PositionsAll Positions
Electric CurrentAC/DCAC/DC
Tensile Strength (Min)60,000 psi60,000 psi
Tensile Strength (Max)82,000 psi74,000 psi
Yield Strength69,000 psi67,000 psi
Elongation2″ is 24%2″ is 25%
Flux compositionCellulose potassiumHigh potassium
SlagThin, flaky, not prone to peeling offDense and prone to peeling off
Arc CharacteristicsViolent Soft arc
UsesWelding pipes, mild steel, painted, dirty, or rusted surfacesWelding thin sheets of metals

The e6011

The e6011 or 6011 welding rod is a fast freezer rod that was designed especially for AC. However, this rod can also be run on DC. It is known for having a smaller welding pool, which translates to less slag to clean up.

How Does The AWS Classify The e6011?

The numbers that make up the figure 6011 all refer to different characteristics of the welding rod. The number 60 refers to the rod’s minimum tensile strength, which stands at 60,000 psi. Tensile strength is the ability of a rod to resist being pulled apart.

The first “1” that comes after the number 60 means that the rod can be used in any position, flat, horizontal, vertical, or overhead. The last “1” refers to the welding rod’s composition in terms of flux, slag, and power.


The best 6011 welding rod amperage will depend mainly on the thickness of the rod. The thicker the rod, the higher the amperage. Thus a 3/16 inch rod will require an amperage of between 140 to 210 amps.

On the other hand, a 3/32 inch rod will require an amperage between 40 and 85 amps.

Pros of e6011 Over e 6013

  • This rod can be used in all positions.
  • The rod cools quickly.
  • Can be used with both AC and DC welding machines
  • Is excellent at penetrating rust, paint, and other kinds of surface contaminants

Cons Of e6011

  • This rod tends to leave a rougher bead than other rods.
  • Due to its deep penetration, this rod is not ideal for sheet metal.

Uses Of The 6011 Electrodes

Due to its deep penetration and fast freeze characteristics, this welding rod is used for welding pipes. It is also used for welding painted, dirty, or rusted surfaces where aesthetics are not necessary.

The e6013

The e6013 welding rod is similar to the 6011 in some aspects but also different in others. This electrode has an iron-pound slag that requires more power. This rod has a mild to medium penetration with a larger pool.

As such, the welding pool created by this rod is not that great at penetrating rust and other types of surface contaminants.

How Does The AWS Classify The e6013?

Like the 6011, the number” 60″ in 6013 refers to the minimum tensile strength of 60,000 psi. Furthermore, the number” 1″ that follows refers to the rod’s ability to be used in all positions.

The last number is where the two rods differ. The final number “3” refers to the rod’s composition, which is high in potassium and has a dense slag.


The best amperage for the 6013 rods also depends on its thickness. A rod with a diameter of 1/16 will require an amperage of between 20-45 amps. On the other hand, one with a diameter of ⅛ inch will require an amperage of 80 to 130 amps.

Pros Of E6013 Over E6011

  • Can be used in all positions
  • Due to its light penetration, it can be used on thin sheets of metal.
  • The finished weld looks better than when you use the 6011
  • Creates a stable arc with a little splash

Cons Of E6013

  • Penetration is not high and is thus not great for welding rusted or painted metals.
  • Is not as good at welding thicker sheets of metal as the 6011

Uses Of The 6013 Electrodes

This welding rod is used mainly in instances where an irregular or short weld is required. It is also used in scenarios where a change in position is needed due to its stable arc.

Head To Head 6011 vs 6013 Welding Rod Comparison

Now let’s look at some of the main similarities and differences between these wot welding rods.


The two rods differ in regards to the materials used to make them. The 6011 rod has a cellulose potassium flux composition. On the other hand, the 6013 has a high potassium flux composition. As for the slag, in the 6011, you get a thin flaky slag that is not prone to peeling off.

The 6013 has a dense slag that is prone to peeling off.

Welding current

When it comes to the current, the two rods can use both DC and AC electric currents.

Tensile Strength

As already seen, the minimum tensile strength of both rods is 60,000 psi. However, the maximum tensile strength differs. That of the e6011 stands at 82,000 psi while that of the e6013 stands at 74,000 psi.

Yield Strength

Yield strength refers to the point beyond which a material’s deformation becomes permanent when subjected to stress. The 6011 welding rod’s yield strength stands at 69,000 psi, while that of the 6013 stands at 67,000 psi.


Elongation refers to the degree to which a material can be bent or stretched before rupturing. It is usually somewhere between tensile strength and yield strength. It is measured as a percentage of the original length of the material.

The elongation of the 6011 in 2 inches is 24%, while that of the 6013 welding rod in 2 inches is 25%.


The 6011 is used mainly for welding mild steel and rusted, painted, or dirty surfaces. On the other hand, the 6013 is primarily used for welding thin sheets of metals. The 6013 is used in applications that require low amperage, while the 6011 is used where high penetration is needed.


As already seen in the 6013 welding rod meaning and 6011 meaning, the 6013 has a high potassium composition while the latter has a cellulose potassium composition. As such, the 6011 has a higher penetration than the 6013.


On average, the 6011 welding rod amperage tends to be higher than that of the 6013.

Which Rod Is Best For What Purpose

If aesthetics are important to you, then the 6013 will be the rod for you. This is especially if you are welding thin sheets of metal.

On the other hand, if you want to weld thicker sheets of metal and require more power and higher penetration, the 6011 will be the rod for you.

Final Verdict

In all honesty, there is no clear winner between the two as they are used in different settings. Also, both have their pros and cons, and your choice will come down to what you are welding.In all honesty, there is no clear winner between the two as they are used in different settings. Also, both have their pros and cons, and your choice will come down to what you are welding.

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