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When welding, the head is a part of the body that needs protection. This is because almost every part of it is in danger if not protected. Most people assume that we use helmets for the eyes only. This is not true as welding glasses can do the job of protecting the eyes. You must wear a welding helmet to protect your eyes when engaging in welding applications. Welding helmets protect the rest of the face from sparks and spatters as well as the eyes from the light of the welding arc which is dangerous for it. They are similar to great welding shirts that cover up the whole upper body. You should wear welding shirts during welding applications.
When engaging in welding applications, it is important to use the best pieces of equipment and gear available to protect yourself. This is for both beginners and amateurs Your hands, for example, should be covered using one of the best welding gloves available when engaging in welding applications. However, note that just like the gloves, the helmet you should pick should depend on your welding model. In this post, we have compiled eight of the most quality and best welding helmets available.
All the helmets on this list are designed for comfort and safety. They are of different sizes and prices to provide you various options to choose from. However, they all share the same great quality design. The best of them are light when it comes to weight despite their design. Some of them are solar cell powered which makes them very cheap to use and maintain as solar cell is cost efficient.
In this post, we will be looking at some of the best welding helmets, some of which are auto-darkening welding helmets. These materials have been deemed safe and have great features and specs. The welding process can be dangerous and so before you start any process, you must equip yourself. This post also includes a buying guide.
Best Welding Helmet – Quick Answer
|Top||Antra AH6-260-6218 Solar Power Auto Darkening Welding Helmet with AntFi X60-2 Wide Shade Range 4/5-9/9-13 with Grinding Feature Extra Lens Covers Good for Arc Tig Mig Plasma CSA/ANSI||Prime||5/5||Click Here To Check Price|
|Welding Helmet, Black, 3350 Series||Prime||5/5||Click Here To Check Price|
|DEKOPRO Solar Powered Welding Helmet Auto Darkening Hood with Adjustable Wide Shade Range 4/9-13 for Mig Tig Arc Welder Mask||Prime||4.9/5||Click Here To Check Price|
|Hobart 770286 Flip Front Welding Helmet||Prime||4.9/5||Click Here To Check Price|
|DEKOPRO Welding Helmet Solar Powered Auto Darkening Hood with Adjustable Shade Range 4/9-13 for Mig Tig Arc Welder Mask Shield Flaming Skull Design||Prime||4.8/5||Click Here To Check Price|
|Esab SENTINEL A50 Auto Darkening Welding Helmet||Prime||4.8/5||Click Here To Check Price|
|YESWELDER True Color Solar Powered Auto Darkening Welding Helmet, Wide Shade 4/9-13 for TIG MIG ARC Weld Hood Welder Mask||Prime||4.8/5||Click Here To Check Price|
|3M Speedglas Welding Helmet 9100, 06-0100-30iSW, with Auto-Darkening Filter 9100XXi||Prime||4.8/5||Click Here To Check Price|
8 Best Auto Darkening Welding Helmets in 2020
Antra Welding Helmet for TIG MIG MMA Plasma
Antra welding helmet is one of the best, and most highly rated and favored auto-darkening welding helmets in the market and even on Amazon. Its durability makes it a good pick any day. This helmet also has our perfect rating. It has a passive filter which has a permanent shade 13 to UV/IR. This is combined with a double-layered auto-dimming LCD shutter and a large screen. Combined, these two offer an accurate shade range within 4/5-9/9-13 to visible lights and an awesome reaction time.
This product model series is designed in such a way that it covers not only the head but also the neck. This protects from spatters, sparks, and any harmful radiant. The helmet is quite light and weighs 455 grams. The helmet meets ANSI Z87. 1 standards and rating for headgear. The helmet is solar cell powered which is a plus if you get lots of sun and a minus if you don’t.
To save its solar power, it has a solar power cell as well as two replaceable CR2032 lithium batteries. It is a replaceable lithium battery. There is a built-in passive filter. This will provide a permanent UV/IR protection. Antra welding helmets have buttons on the side. Each external button represents a control. The button design is to make it easier to use and control. It comes in black color.
This helmet is also very affordable and it is the choice of most welders. Its delay time can be adjusted to suit you. It has six bonus exterior lens cover plates and 1 interior lens cover plate. This helmet is also compatible with a cheater lens. It also has a grinding mode. The lithium batteries offer suitable power.
This product model has four premium redundant arc sensors. They are highly sensitive and auto-darken in minimum time. This means that your eyes are protected in good time thereby making it one of the best on the market.
In addition, it has interference suppression technology which massively reduce false alarms to avoid your helmet auto darkening when it should not. The optical lens viewing area measures 4-1/4 x 2 x 5/32″ which is very good for optical clarity. Antra welding helmets can be used for TIG, MIG, MAG, Flux Core, MMA, plasma cutting welding processes. This class/brand of welding helmets is one of the most used by welders.
- 1-1-1-2 optical or (vision) clarity
- Very affordable considering the specs
- Light weight (weight of 455 grams)
- Very durable and easy to adjust
Lincoln Electric Welding Helmet, Black, 3350 Series
Lincoln Electric are well-known producers of the best welding helmets in the world. This particular helmet series showcases its superior power and high quality technology. It is an auto-darkening welding helmet. The optical lens shade ranges from level 5-13. The optical lens area measures 3.74 In. x 3.34 inches. It offers the grind mode feature and has four arc sensors. The number of arc sensors or partly responsible for fast reactions.
The great thing about the Lincoln 3350 series helmet that makes it the choice of everyone is how little time it takes to switch to darkening mode. It switches swiftly and its switching time is 1/25,000 sec. This helmet is solar powered and has external ADF control knobs/ button controls. It features 4C(TM) Lens Technology unlike most of the other products on the market.
This helmet promises optical clarity and a wide view. This helmet series for welders and is made of polycarbonate material and comes in various colors. It is a bit expensive but this is because it is designed for professional use. The replaceable batteries of this helmet have suitable power.
This product model weighs only 3.2 pounds which means it does not get uncomfortable after a long time of use. It has a touchscreen operation for easy operation. Users who have purchased this item agree that for professional use, it is one of the best you can get. Lastly, it has a three-year warranty which is great for any class or brand.
- Optical clarity
- Easy to adjust headgear for added comfort
- 3-year warranty
- External ADF control button and Natural lens color
- Bonus bag
- Weight of just 3.2 pounds [very light weight]
Dekopro Solar Powered Welding Helmet Auto Darkening Welder Mask
Dekopro is another household name for welders. This helmet is an auto darkening lens and a very good choice. The filter switches in quickly. It has a switching time of 1/25000 seconds. It has other variable shades that are rated 16. 1/1/1/2 and offer protection from UV and IR radiation.
The rating helmet meets ANSI Z87.1-2010 and EN379 4/9-13 standards and safety product regulations. You can make many adjustments to the auto darkening settings to fit your needs. The optical lens area measures 3.85’’ x 3.15’’ which offers you a clear sight at various angles. Clarity is necessary and important.
The power source for this durable helmet is solar power and it has a battery life that offers up to 5000 hours of working. The battery it requires is a Lithium Metal. The single lithium battery is included and is adjustable. You can make adjustments to the sensitivity and delay as well. It is very lightweight and measures just 2.05 pounds. As it has grind mode, is suitable for grinding as well as welding. The helmet is also light.
It is also suitable for MMA, MIG, MAG/CO2, TIG, Plasma Welding, Arc Gouging and Plasma Cutting processes. This helmet has ADF Self-Check which indicates the level of safety it offers. The helmet has different settings that can be adjusted and tweaked in order to give you exactly what you want and need. This makes it very comfortable and light,
Hobart 770286 Flip Front Welding Helmet
This mask is not an auto darkening one. It is a simple basic one that is very cheap and is great for someone who is not looking for something that offers more than basics. It a basic helmet for welding applications. The weight is 15.2 ounces making it light. It has a flip front that makes the mask easy to remove.
It has a very large viewing area measuring 4.5 x 2 inches in size. As it is very basic, it can be adjusted manually to fit your face shape. It a variable shade range of 10 but does not have auto darkening which is one of its cons. However, it is ANSI approved and has adjustable sensitivity and delay. The power of the replaceable batteries makes them okay for continuous use. For a helmet of this class, it is nicely priced. It also comes in black color.
- Parts are easily available in the market
- Wide optical clarity
- ADF self check
- 10 range variable shade
DEKOPRO Welding Helmet
This Dekopro welding helmet is an auto darkening model and a very good choice for most welders due to its high number of positive reviews. Generally, Dekopro models can be trusted. The filter on this model switches in quickly. Its switching time is 1/25000 seconds. The lens area measures 3.62’’x 1.65’’. Even if there is an electric failure, the welder remains protected from UV and IR radiation according to shade 16.1/2/1/2. The helmet is light in weight and is not uncomfortable for long term usage.
This helmet can be manually adjusted to fit your head shape to ensure it is comfortable for long term use. The clear wide lens allows you to have a clear view at wide angles and provides great clarity. It is balanced with a fatigue-free headgear that can be adjusted. With this helmet you can adjust and delay the sensitivity to fit in whatever environment you are welding in this helmet offers color recognition. The light level filter is DIN4. And it switches from dark to bright within 0.1s to 1.0s.
The battery of this helmet is solar powered. It gives a battery life of up to 5000 hours of work thereby making it one of the best in the market. It is suitable for various types of welding which include MMA, MIG, MAG/CO2, TIG, Plasma Welding, Arc Gouging, and Plasma Cutting with a weight of 1.21 pounds; quite light. The welding hood is rated 1/2/1/2 and meets up with the EN379 and ANSI Z87.1.
The helmet itself meets up with CE, ANSI Z87.1, ROHS,ISO9001, CSA Z94.3 safety regulations. The packaging contains 1 Welding Helmet, 1 adjustable headgear, and 1 user manual. Its adjustability makes it very comfortable and light. The power of the replaceable batteries as well as other features makes it a great pick.
- Comfortable headgear of your choice
- Color recognition
Esab SENTINEL A50 Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
The ESAB brand is another class known for its high power and quality welding accessories and machines. Check here for a review of the top 3 best ESAB welding machines you can get. This welding helmet has an amber reflective color reflective optical lens. This means that even when using this wide lens, you can see colors. It has ADF which ranges from shade 5-13. It has 9 variable shades. This helmet has a grind mode. The helmet can easily be switched from grind mode to weld mode.
This machine is auto darkening which switches in minimum time. In addition, this brand features a variable shade. The lens area measures 3.93 x 2.36 inches / 100 x 60 mm in size. Its control panel is not only touchscreen but also has a backlit display. This means that you can see clearly and operate easily in places with low lights. It also has eight separate memory settings where you can save different settings.
It also has a shade 4 grind mode range and external button controls. The combination of the large memory and the power of the batteries makes this helmet brand a top choice and high class one. It also has a three-year warranty.
- It has a wide view screen
- It has a 3-year warranty.
YESWELDER True Color Solar Powered Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
As the name implies, YESWELDER is a solar call helmet that has a true color feature which means that you can see color even through its lens. The lens area measures 3.93″X1.67″ and has two premium arc sensors. The arc sensors are quick to detect. It weighs a compact and light 1.95 pounds which means it does not get heavy after being used for a long period.
This helmet is solar-powered and has a Lithium-ion battery which is included. The lithium battery has an average of 3000 hours of life. This helmet is great for TIG welding, MIG welding, MMA welding, and plasma arc cutting.
The design standard/rating is compatible with a cheater and magnifying lens. As it is auto darkening, you can expect prompt protection against bright arc in less time than a second. This helmet is designed in an updated form to ensure comfort and a wide range of visibility. The design makes it very easy to adjust to fit you as best as it can. It has two different auto darkening arc sensors. The two separate auto darkening arc sensors have a fast response time of just ~3/10000 sec.
- Wide visibility range
- True color features
- Grind mode/ grinding mode for grinding
3M Speedglas Welding Helmet
Auto darkening helmets were actually discovered by a Swedish Manufacturer Hornell International in 1984. In 2004, 3M Speed glass acquired all the assets of Hornell and they gave gone on build on that knowledge. 3M Company is known for all types of welding accessories which are always of an excellent standard and rating.
This 3M Speeglas helmet is an auto darkening model that responds in approximately .1 milliseconds after welding arc is detected. This gives protection from ultraviolet (UV) and infrared (IR) radiation. The headgear is ergonomically designed for a firm and comfortable fit. It has side windows which allow for increased view. These models and products are sought after for their durability.
These windows on the 3M Speedglas have dark shade 5 filters that increase the peripheral field of view. It has a 5 variable shade range from level 8-13. The viewing area is 12.11 square inches.
With the 3m Speedglas helmet, a lot of features can be customized such as the auto-darkening delay. It has 3 arc sensors for accurate detection. The arc sensors react swiftly. It has a grind mode for grinding which can be activated manually.
The lens viewing area of the 3M Speeglas measures 2.8 inches high x 4.2 inches wide / 72 mm x 107 mm in size. When the weld is complete, the filter switches back to shade level 3 in about 40-250 milliseconds. You can lock any shade settings in for a particular job, for example, you can lock in a particular shade for grinding. Whenever you start grinding, that shade will come up. The 3M Speedglas is a highly customizable and standard headgear.
One great feature this helmet has is exhaust vents which allow for ventilation for the user. This directs exhaled air out and reduces, fog, heat, humidity, and generally improves working experience. When it comes to battery, this model is not bad. The battery life of the included lithium batteries included in these models is rated averagely at 2000 hours. It is quite lower than others and some consider its battery as one of its cons.
The helmet uses two Cr2030 3V lithium batteries that are replaceable and power the Auto-Darkening filter. They are easily accessible and can be easily replaced which extends the helmet life. This helmet is designed for Stick (arc welding), MIG (Metal Inert Gas) and TIG (Tungsten Inert Gas). These models can be used for some other welding processes. As you do not need to flip the helmet up or down, you save energy and time and are more productive.
This durable helmet model has two adjustable crown straps made of soft material. They help the user customize and adjust the helmet. The added headband made of soft material also makes customization easy. It is padded as well.
It is designed so that it totally avoids the pressure points on the human head as it can cause light-headedness. You can make various adjustments to make it suit you comfortably. This way, your neck won’t suffer. The helmet has large knobs for adjusting the prep and parking pivot positions.
- Air vent window
- 2000 hours of battery life
- Lock-down mode
- Wide view
- Side windows
Frequently Asked Questions
What Is A Good Cheap Welding Helmet?
Finding welding helmets that is both “good and cheap” is a chore. People always wonder how to make an excellent pick. The helmet must not only fall under a certain price range but must also have all the necessary features and then some. A good cheap welding helmet is one that falls into the affordable price range and is durable, strong enough to put up with the harshness of welding.
Welding helmets differ in price. You can have 1 from as low as $30 and some as expensive as $200. In our list, we have compiled helmets with different price ranges to enable you to pick something that matches your wallet. Although it goes without saying that a good helmet of $200 will definitely better an excellent 1 at $30. However, remember that price is not always an indication of power and quality. An expensive welding helmet is not necessarily the best; it may have more cons than pros. Our compiled list offers great helmets at various prices that are worth it and gives the best optical view to welders.
So, what is a good cheap welding helmet? Ultimately, it depends on you. If you are out for a helmet for professional or long term use, you should set your sights or vision as high as a hundred dollars, give or take. However, if you do not need such a heavy-duty item, you can aim for something much less costly.
So basically, a good cheap welding helmet is one that is affordable and feature-loaded. Every helmet in our list is sure to offer you the features you need and as the prices vary, you are certain to find something that would fit your pocket.
How Much Is A Good Welding Helmet?
As explained before, welding helmets come in grades. There are different grades that are powerful enough for you to wear while doing different welding jobs. This simply means that the amount you pay depends on the sort of welding you do and how strong and feature-loaded you want your welding helmet to be. It also depends on how much power you are looking for. People pick based on what they need and how much they have.
You can get a really good and cheap welding helmet for around $50, give or take. In our list, we have compiled some that are as cheap as $25 and still offer great features. However, if you engage in various types of welding and on frequent bases, if you also need features such as advanced sensors and viewing area
lenses, you may need to set your price sights higher. Our list of best welding helmets offers you a wide selection to choose from. You can switch to any you prefer. Your arc sensors should be very quick to detect flashes and respond. Sensors with high sensitivity are the best.
Are Auto Darkening Welding Helmets Any Good?
Auto darkening welding helmets are helmets equipped with arc sensors. The arc sensors are fitted to automatically detect bright welding arc flashes and then provide suitable coverage. Good auto darkening lens helmets have sensors high sensitivity.
When no brightness of light is detected, the shade stays at level 3 or 4. Through this, the welder can see clearly with no darkening. However, when the arc is struck and the sensors detect light brightness. The detection from the sensors ensure that the viewing lens is activated and the shade changes to level 8 to 13. This happens in a little space of time.
With this, the advantages are numerous. The welder has the option of keeping the helmet on permanently without neck pain. This allows it to stay in one position and so the welder does not need to continuously snap it on or off. Auto-darkening helmets allow for better control as the welder can focus solely on the welding.
If your practice Stick or TIG welding, these helmets are the perfect partners as they allow the welder to have free hands. If you want a type of welding helmet that requires little or no hand usage, go for auto darkening welding helmets. However, note that an auto darkening welding helmet will come with fixed shade ADF. This limits the viewing area lens adjustments.
One of the major cons an auto-darkening welding helmet can have is a slow reaction time. A slow reaction time affects welding safety. It doesn’t always have to do with the power source or optical class but rather with the make.
How Do I Choose A Good Welding Helmet?
If you are out for a good welding helmet, in addition to the price, there are some features to look out for. If your helmet does not have a good number of them, you probably should forget about it. You won’t be able to do a good job without them.
Depending on the grade, there is a price range that becomes outrageous for a particular model of helmet. If a helmet is too expensive, you should forget about buying it. This is why going through reviews is important. Your budget should be flexible within reason. It is likely to have a good choice of helmet close to your budget range.
Lens View/ Lens Technology
There are different types of helmets. Some act as masks while others act as normal helmets that envelope the whole head while some merely cover just the face leaving the back of the head exposed. Despite the model, it is immensely important that your eyes can see extremely clearly through the viewing lenses. Not being able to see clearly through the viewing lenses is a disaster waiting to happen as you will strain your eyes. You need to see well to do a good job. When going to reviews or features, pay close attention to size of the lenses.
This feature is non-negotiable as it helps you to protect your eyes. Having a mask that does not have this feature is a sure recipe for disaster. Your mask must have a very good optical clarity rating. The UCV protection which is the standard for guarding eyes should not in any way hamper your sight or vision.
Consider the sizes of the viewing area lens. This will give you a hint. Usually, they are measured in inches. If your helmet’s viewing lenses are given to be a x b inches, you should know that ‘a’ is the width of the viewing lenses and refers to how wide the viewing area will be around your face.
The length of the viewing lenses is denoted by ‘b’ which refers to how tall the viewing lenses are. A viewing lens that is wide will let you see more from left to right and one that is tall will let you see more from top to bottom.
Lens Shading and Welding Type
The shading of refers to how darkened your viewing lenses are. The darkening is measures and rated from 5-13 with five being the brightest and 13 being the darkest. There are different types of welding helmets and some have the option to work on different shading levels.
Some, however, are fitted with a particular shading level that cannot be changed. Those that have the option of changing to different shading levels allow you to use them for different welding processes. Realize that the level of shading you will require has to do with the type of welding. If your arc is bright, you will need a darker lens. The brighter your arc, the darker your viewing lens.
If you are getting an auto-darkening helmet, you should pick one that has a short delay range. You can tell from features and reviews. Auto-darkening helmets have a delay time which is the time it takes for your lens to darken once your arc is lit. It goes without saying that you are better off with a helmet with the littlest delay. The littler the delay, the faster your eyes get covered.
Your helmet must be comfortable in order to allow you to work for as long as possible. The worst thing that can happen is for you to buy a helmet that has no features put in place or is not designed to fit comfortably. A good helmet must envelop your head comfortably.
The lock must not be uncomfortable or unnecessarily tight. It must be fitted so that it can never fall off no matter what angle your head is titled in. The hood of the helmet should flip up and down with minimal fuss. The helmet weight should also be suitable.
The comfort of your helmet is also crucial, especially if you weld for any length of time more than the occasional hour here or there. The way a hood feels is critical and differs from helmet to helmet based on the weight, the headgear design, and how well balanced it is. Some hoods have a headband for added comfort.
As mentioned before, there are numerous features a welding helmet can have. Except you are going for the high-end helmets, you may find that your helmets have little or none of these features. This does not indicate its quality. If you are on the lookout for any of these features, increase your sights or vision. Some of these features include touchscreen operation, anti-fog, ventilation ports, vent window, memory devices, multiple sensors and, various darkening levels.
When picking out helmets, ensure you consider the size and weight given in reviews. Make sure that your chosen helmet is neither too big nor too small for your head. Check the hood size as well. Of you intend to use one of the best welding respirators with your helmet, you will need a helmet with a large hood.
Also, consider the warranty attached to your helmet. The warranty allows you to return or exchange in case of some faults. Instead of a warranty, some also have the money-back guarantee feature within a specific number of days. Having a warranty is necessary but a money-back guarantee is also a great plus.
You should also ensure that you actually take good care of your tools and gear to enjoy the warranty.
The helmet’s look is also another point. However, as it is for welding and not a runway, the design should matter less to you. Although some look rather nice and have a nice design, it is what it can do that matters and not how it looks. Most come in different color options, and so you may likely get one in the color you best prefer.
Safety should not be toyed with. To ensure that you are safe during welding, you must be properly protected. However, even if you are clothed properly, ensure you have the best welding machines to work with. Check out the best MIG welding machines and even the best Stick welding machines. If you perform all these processes, check out the best multi-process welding machine. We have also made a review of the best plasma cutters available.