Welding helmets are used to help protect eyes and face during welding. They prevent eyes from being exposed to extremely bright light and also rapid changes in brightness. Both can be very harmful to eyes. Whether you are a hobbyist or a professional who do welding daily, you may have wondered what can the best welding helmet in the market. At weldinghelmetguide.com, we reviewed a few very popular welding helmets to help you find your ideal one.
Top 3 Welding Helmet Quick Comparison
Here are a few things you need to look for when shop for your welding helmet:
With technology advancement, people become more inclined to use auto-darkening filters (ADF) welding helmets over over the old school welding helmet with passive lens (usually with a fixed shade of 10). Why? With ADF welding helmets, you do not have to flip the helmet up and down between torch placements. Also, you do not need to do the helmet nodding a lot since the filter turns dark only when welding arc is detected. It reduces neck stain and helps to boost productivity. It is a big time saver. It makes welding a lot more efficient.
2. Viewing Size
It is one of the major factors when buy a welding helmet. Even though it depends on personal preference, the larger viewing size usually is better. But, the helmet with larger viewing size is usually pricier.
3. Number of Sensors
Two are usually enough. But, sometimes two sensors could be blocked when you work in a very tight space. That is no fun experience. In order to prevent that from happening, a few high end welding helmets are equipped with four independent senors to make sure at least one sensor works during welding.
You may want to choose light weighted helmets. If you spend substantial amount of time welding daily, it could be very tiring to wear heavy helmets.
5. Shade Selection, Sensitivity and Delay
These three settings are critical in different welding application. Usually, users should be given enough flexibility to adjust those independently. For example, with low amp TIG welding, users might want to use high sensitivity to ensure filter darken when needed. Delay setting could be used to lengthen/shorten how long it takes for the filter to go back to the light state after it darkens. This setting is very useful in high amp welding.
6. A few more questions to ask:
Does the helmet meet the ANSI Z87.1 standard (American National Standard for Occupational and Educational Eye and Face Protection Devices)?
What kind of battery does the helmet come with, common lithium button cells or non-replaceable internal battery? Either way works well. Usually, it comes down to personal preference.
Does helmet have solar cells to charge its battery? Helmets with solar cells usually last long for one charge.
How many years warranty does the helmet have? Most of helmets come with 2-3 year warranty. But, some helmets come with 5 year warranty.
Top-Rated Welding Helmet Reviews:
3M Speedglas 9100 series Welding Helmet
The 3M Speedglas 9100 series welding helmets are in all likelihood one of the most discussed welding helmets among various welding forums. Its filter glass is especially coated to stop harmful UV and IR light radiation at all time with or without the device on. It works for most stick, Metal Inert Gas(MIG) and Tungsten Inert Gas(TIG) welding uses. The filter could be adjusted for many different shades according to the welding amperage. If it detects an arc, the lens immediately switch from light to dark shade in approximately 0.1 milliseconds to protect your eyes from getting flashed. It then goes back to the light state following a small time delay allowing immediate inspection of your weld pool and preparation for the next step. The Speedglas series feature three different ADF sizes, standard size(9100V), large size (9100X), and extra large (9100XX). The 9100XX model almost double the viewing size compared to the Speedglas 9100V. The Speedglas 9100 series has 3 independent sensors to detect welding arcs. The novel side windows with shade 5 filters are loved by many. This is one of our favorite ADF welding helmets. We highly recommend it.
Miller Electric Digital Elite Welding Helmet
The Miller digital elite welding helmet is Miller’s top of line welding helmet series. It offers a viewing area of 3.85 x 2.38 sq. in and four arc sensors. For ADF welding helmets, usually the more sensors, the better. When one or two of the sensors get blocked, you still have some working to prevent from being flashed. Its lens speed is fast too, about 0.05ms. It’s got 4 different operation modes. Welding Mode is designed for most welding application. Cut mode and grinding mode are apparently for cutting and grinding correspondingly. Additionally there is X-mode in which the lens turns dark if it detects the weld current. So it doesn’t get falsely triggered during outdoor use. It weighs around 18 ounces. It is pretty light. When wearing the helmet whole day, you obviously want to get the light helmet to save your neck.
Jackson Safety W70 Welding Helmet
Kimberly-Clark Professional has collaborated with Balder to create a brand new line of Jackson Safety welding helmets with greatly enhanced visibility. It’s very clear to see through the helmet, probably one of the clearest ADF helmets you could ever find in the market. Its color is greenish that has a bit blue, very pleasing for your eyes. It offers a viewing dimention of 3.8 by 2.7 inch approximately and is built with 2 sensors. When placed on highest sensitivity, it usually doesn’t have problem to detect low amp tig welding. When put on lowest sensitivity, it can be treated as the grind mode. The ADF of Jackson Safety W70 welding helmet has a variable shade starting from 9 to 13 to guard your eyes.
Lincoln Electric Viking 3350
Lincoln Electric began in 1895. The Viking 3350 welding helmet features a very large viewing dimensions of a 3.74 x 3.34 inch. Also, it is loaded with 4 Arc Sensors. Whether in dark or light states, ADFs of Lincoln helmets always offer UV and IR ray protection. We have an internal control to set 6-13 shade. The device may also be put on grind mode which has a shade of three. It weighs around 20 ounces. With such a large screen size, the weight is farily reasonable. Its lens response time is approximately 0.04ms, quite fast actually.
As welding and grinding mask, this is a very unique line of Extreme Face Protector(EFP) that Save Phase came up with. The mask is very compact and fits close to your face. In that regard, it could be suitable for welding applications under tight spaces. It features an automatic darkening filter integrated with 180 degree viewing lens. The side lens are a fixed shade 10 while ADF provides from shade 9 to shade 13. This line of welding helmets always come with some great graphics. As mentioned, the Save Phace welding helmet gets into the tight places better than almost any other helmets. The side views facilitate you to look out on the side. You can see people around you. Potential downside, this helmet comes with only 2 sensors. If both of them get blocked, you could get flashed. Just watch out for that.
Maybe, you will be also interested in this Optrel E680 welding helmet. It is quite expensive but may be worth a look.
Still, do not find the welding helmet you are looking for?
If you weld only occasionally and look for budget welding helmets, we list a few models in the table you might want to look into . Click the links below to see more details.
|Picture||Product Link||View Size||Company Link|
|Hobart 770753 Welding Helmet||3.82 x 2.36 inches||Company|
|Forney 55678 Fire Welding Helmet||3.86 x 2.17 inches||Company|
|Rhino Large View Welding Helmet||4 X 2.6 inches||N/A|
|ArcPro 20704 Welding Helmet||3.78 x 2.07 inches||Company|
What is the best welding helmet for you?
Apparently, it depends on your specific situation. In general, the 3M speedglas welding helmet could be the best welding helmet in the market. The Speedglas 9100 series have been widely used and tested by many people in the welding communities. But, it is a bit more expensive than other brands. If you believe the welding helmets with 4 arc sensors perform better than the ones with only two sensors and look for slightly less expensive models, Miller digital elite welding helmets and the Lincoln 3350 welding helmets are perfect for you. If you can not resist the clear view and the 5 year warranty that the Jackson Safety W70 welding helmet offers. You should go with that. Last but not least, if you find yourself work in the very tight spaces a lot, you might want to look into the Save Phase Gen Y welding helmets. Having reviewed all these popular welding helmets, we hope that we help you find your welding helmet for the next project. If you have any questions, please let us know. At weldinghelmetguide, we wish we could help you find your next welding helmet.