Welders work in the automotive industry and in the construction industry, but no matter where they work, they must wear the right protective gear to stay safe. One of the most important pieces of equipment that you need on the job site is a welding helmet, which keeps your eyes safe from flashes and also keeps your skin safe too. While there are different things you can look for in a welding helmet, we encourage you to look at the best helmet that we found too.
That helmet is the Jackson Safety TrueSight II (46163) Digital Auto Darkening Welding Helmet with Balder Technology (Check Price on Amazon.com). It features a classic design of a bombshell on the side and fake rivets around the edges that make it look like a World War II era fighter plane. The helmet has a larger viewing area to help you see clearly and can work in three different modes.
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Top Welding Helmets Comparison Chart
12 Best Welding Helmets - Reviews
1. Jackson Safety TrueSight II (46163) Digital Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
We think that many welders will love the funky look of this Jackson Safety TrueSight II Digital Auto Darkening Welding Helmet with Balder Technology, which looks like an old bomber from World War II with its design, which features a gorgeous woman on one side and painted rivets along all the edges. With a high optical classification, this helmet is great for use on brighter and darker job sites, and it features a variable shade that ranges from eight to 13. The larger viewing area on the front keeps the helmet from getting in your way and allows you to see everything in front of you. Knobs on both sides of the helmet make it easy to flip it up at the end of the job, and an adjustable strap inside keeps the helmet from slipping off and prevents the edges from uncomfortably rubbing against your face. Designed for those who do different types of welding, you can use this helmet for welding, torching or grinding instead of buying multiple helmets.
2. 3M Speedglas™ 9100 FX
The auto-darkening filter found on this 3M Speedglas™ Welding Helmet 9100 FX automatically adjusts the darkness of the helmet based on the flashes produced to ensure that those flashes stay away from your skin and that your eyes stay safe. One of the best features of this helmet is that the top filter will actually lift up to reveal a larger and clear face shield that you can use to take a look at your work or to chat with other works, and that design makes it look similar to a motorcycle helmet. As soon as the helmet detects a welding arc, it adjusts in milliseconds. Windows placed on the sides of the helmet have five different filter modes that increase your peripheral vision while still protecting your eyes, and its ergonomic design ensures that this helmet fits comfortably and that it won’t irritate you or get in your way. Two crown straps adjust for a custom fit and to more evenly distribute the weight of the helmet, and padding inside further increases your comfort.
3. Jackson Safety BH3 Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
With a bright yellow frame surrounding the viewing area on this Jackson Safety BH3 Auto Darkening Welding Helmet, you’ll stand out from the crowd on the job site and let others know when you’re working because they can’t miss that bright border. An adjustable strap inside lets you adjust the length of that strap for added comfort, and that strap has a durable closure on the end that ensures it will never come open while you’re on the job. The inside of the helmet features three knobs that you can use to adjust the sensitivity, delay or shade based on the specific job at hand, and that shade ranges from nine to 13. Made from plastic, this helmet is significantly lighter than others but still offers lasting protection, and its lighter weight will reduce the temperature inside the helmet. Jackson Safety also designed this helmet to work with other types of safety gear like hard hats that you can wear over the helmet and magnification filters that snap to the front.
4. Jackson Safety TrueSight II (46159) Digital Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
Though this TrueSight II Digital Auto Darkening Welding Helmet from Jackson Safety is similar to our number one welding helmet, this one is more affordable and comes with a more basic design that your employer may prefer. That design features an all black finish and knobs on the sides for pulling the helmet up without any struggles. Like the more expensive model, this TrueSight II helmet can work in grinding, welding and torching applications and has an adjustable strap in the back for added comfort and an open back that keeps the temperature inside down. Digital controls inside let you adjust the sensitivity, delay and shade, and Jackson Safety designed those controls in a way that lets you make the adjustments you need while wearing protective gloves at work. The Balder technology used inside enhances the view that you see and helps you see clearer, and you may find that you can even see more colors when wearing the helmet. It has a larger viewing area that improves your field of vision too.
5. ArcOne 5000V-1171 Shade Master Fighting Tiger Welding Helmet
This 5000V-1171 Shade Master Fighting Tiger Welding Helmet from ArcOne has a pretty unique design that might make you feel like you stepped back in time or make you feel like you’re working on a vintage aircraft as you weld. It uses different shades of black and gray paint to create the look of an old airplane, but it also includes a bright yellow border around the large viewing area and a funky image on the bottom that features large and sharp teeth. This uses solar panels to control all its settings. This helmet has a larger shape that offers more protection for your neck, ears and head, and it uses flame-retardant nylon for added protection and to ensure that flames never reach your face. Locking ratchets let you lock this helmet in place to avoid any mistakes and to keep the helmet from slipping as you weld, and the two built-in sensors do a great job of responding quickly to flashes.
6. Miller Electric Auto Darkening
Show off your personality and let others know a little more about you in this Miller Electric Auto Darkening Welding Helmet, which features a matte black background with images of spiderwebs, skulls and other unique objects in shades of white and gray across the front, sides and top. Made from nylon, this helmet is a little lighter than those you tried out in the past, and it uses lithium batteries that are easy to replace to control all its settings. Miller Electric guarantees that this auto-darkening helmet is safe for use around hazardous materials, and the manufacturer includes seven different lenses that will work on indoor and outdoor jobs. An included helmet bag makes it easier to carry this helmet to all your job sites, and that bag also does a good job of protecting the helmet and keeping it safe from scratches and other damages. The digital screen on the front enhances any objects in front of you while also responding quickly to flashes, and large knobs on each side help you flip the helmet up when needed.
7. Vintage Roadster Welding Helmet in Blue
Another helmet that lets you show off your personality and fun side is this Vintage Roadster Helmet in Blue from Miller Electric that looks similar to the old helmets once used by race car drivers. The pale blue finish of the helmet really lets the roadster graphics, that include the number 29, stand out, and those graphics actually have a distressed look that make it look more like a real vintage helmet. With its digital screen though, this helmet combines the best of old and new. Controls inside the helmet let you adjust the speed, delay and sensitivity, and you can adjust the delay down to as low as 0.10 of a second up to a maximum of one second. The included helmet bag keeps the helmet safe between jobs, and you’ll also get multiple lens covers and a magnifying lens case that will fit inside that bag too. Electromagnetic sensors inside respond in just 1/20,000 of a second, and the helmet can operate in four different modes.
8. Lincoln Electric VIKING 3350 Jessi vs the Robot Welding Helmet
Pop culture enthusiasts and comic book lovers alike will love this Lincoln Electric VIKING 3350 Jessi vs the Robot Welding Helmet, which features pop art graphics all across the front, top and sides. Those graphics include everything from a gorgeous blond woman on one side to a riveting woman on the opposite side and even a superhero on the top. The bright colors of those graphics also add to the safety of the helmet and ensure that others workers can see you on darker job sites. A 4C lens on the front is large enough to give you a clear view, but this new form of technology also enhances your visibility and reduces the eye strain or fatigue that you might otherwise experience after a few hours on the job. Some of the other top features found on this Lincoln Electric welding helmet include a pivoting design that increases your comfort, a battery that lasts longer than competitors, features that meet all OSHA standards and a three-year warranty from the manufacturer.
9. Miller 268618 CAT Edition 1 Digital Elite Welding Helmet
If you use Caterpillar equipment on the job site, you’ll like this Miller 268618 CAT Edition 1 Digital Elite Welding Helmet, which features a CAT design that includes the same yellow and black shades that the company uses and the CAT logo on the bottom. It lets you select between four different modes that include a welding mode with a shade range of eight to 13, a cutting mode that works with shades five through eight and a grinding mode. The X-mode found on this helmet reduces the interference caused by sunlight when working outside and keeps the lens from coming open. As part of the Digital Elite line of helmets, this one has easy to see and use controls, built-in sensors that automatically identify any arcs and hidden cavities that extend the life of the helmet. Miller gives you a three-year warranty that is longer than those offered by other companies. You also get accessories with this helmet that include multiple lenses for use inside and outside and a carrying bag.
10. 3M Speedglas Blazed Welding Helmet 100 with Auto-Darkening Filter
With a unique design and an unusual shape, this 3M Speedglas Blazed Welding Helmet 100 with Auto-Darkening Filter might make you stand out and become your employer’s favorite welder. That unique shape features a longer and slightly pointed area around your chin that keeps your face from rubbing against the helmet and increases the amount of protection for your neck. You may like the “Blazed” design too that features bold yellow and orange flames that almost seem to move across the black helmet. This helmet comes fully assembled and ready to use, and it has a filter that automatically adjusts based on the amount of light available as well as any arcs in the surrounding area. As soon as it detects one of those flashes, the helmet will darken that filter in just 0.1 milliseconds to ensure that your eyes stay safe. This helmet also has a larger viewing area that increases your field of vision, three sensitivity settings that work in different welding applications and various dark shade settings.
11. Arcone IDF81-1523 Speedway Vision Shell
This Arcone IDF81-1523 Speedway Vision Shell features one of the most unique designs we spotted, and while you can pick from different finishes and designs, we think a lot of welders will like the Speedway. The Speedway features bright and bold colors of red and white with some darker black accents that might make you feel like a race car driver every time you slip it over your head, and it uses an auto-darkening feature to protect your eyes from arc flashes. Eight built-in memory modes will actually remember settings that you used in the past to reduce the adjustments you need to make. With both a light slate and a dark slate range, this helmet can work in all types of welding applications. It has five delay settings that you can adjust inside the helmet and variable settings in relation to both grind and sensitivity. Adjustable straps inside help the helmet fit more comfortably, and it has four sensors inside that can identity any arc flashes adjust the darkness level.
12. Hobart 770756 Impact Variable Auto-Dark Helmet
The 770756 Impact Variable Auto-Dark Helmet from Hobart proves that you can get a great welding helmet with auto-darkening technology without spending hundreds of dollars, and we highly recommend this helmet for recent graduates and newer welders just starting out. It features an almost oversize design that can fit a wide variety of heads and adjustable areas inside for customizing its fit. The larger viewing area gives you more than nine square inches of viewing space. With a reaction time of just 1/25,000 of a second, this helmet responds faster than almost any other helmet you might find, and the variable shade ranges from eight to 13 to give more protection while working. As part of the Hobart Impact series, this helmet comes with professional features like an automatic on and off setting, a grind mode and four arc sensors that can spot and react to any arcs produced as you weld. It uses one lithium battery that is easy to replace and comes with adjustable sensitivity and delay settings.
Our Welding Helmet Winner
The Jackson Safety TrueSight II (46163) Digital Auto Darkening Welding Helmet with Balder Technology is the best welding helmet on the market and one of the most stylish ones too. Jackson Safety took the idea of an old bomber plane like those used during World War II and built a helmet that mimics the design of those planes, including rivets around the edges and a classic image of a woman on the side. It has digital controls that real welders actually helped design and can work in different modes like torch, weld and grind. Four sensors inside catch more of the flashes produced and darken the helmet to keep you safe, and you can adjust both the sensitivity of the helmet and the length of any delays. Balder Technology increases the protection offered by the helmet and also ensures that it meets all certification standards for professional use on job sites.
How to Choose the Ultimate Welding Helmet
The type of glass or lens found on the welding helmet will increase or decrease the amount of protection provided. Most cheaper helmets use plastic for the lens, but expensive helmets often feature auto-darkening glass. An electronic filter inside adjusts to provide more protection for your eyes.
Never waste money on a welding helmet unless the manufacturer can guarantee that it meets the certification standards imposed by the American National Standards Institute. ANSI certification ensures that the helmet meets all OSHA standards and that the helmet will keep you safe when welding at home or on a job site.
Welding helmets with an ergonomic design mimic the shape and size of the human head to fit more comfortably. These helmets will also feature padding inside that keeps the helmet from rubbing against your head and neck.
Though you may not think about weight when choosing a welding helmet, you should. A helmet that weighs too much can put so much pressure on your neck and upper body that you can only work for a limited time. Helmets that weigh less will fit more comfortably and let you weld as long as you need to weld.
Number of Sensors
If you decide on an auto-darkening welding helmet, you need to check on the number of sensors. These sensors detect any welding arcs or flashes and will automatically darker to keep your eyes safe. While many helmets come with two sensors, those with four sensors offer more protection.
Solar Panels vs. Batteries
With auto-darkening helmets, you also need to look at the type of power supply that the helmet needs. Some use solar panels that absorb sunlight and transform that light into power for the helmet. Others require batteries that you’ll need to replace.
While welding helmets offer protection for your eyes, you want to consider the size of the viewing area on that helmet. If the helmet has a smaller viewing area, you may have a hard time keeping your eyes on a project. Most welders use helmets with a viewing area of at least three-inches by three-inches.
If you have the chance, take the time to try on a few different helmets and get an idea of how well each one fits. Any areas of your skin or body that remain exposed are susceptible to burns or other injuries. When you pick a helmet that leaves more skin exposed, you’ll need to wear an apron and other gear as you weld.
Lens Reaction Time
Lens reaction time refers to the amount of time it takes for the lens to react and change. The faster it reacts, the more it will protect your eyes. You want a helmet with a lens reaction time of at least 1/3,600 of a second, but you’ll find some with a reaction time of up to 1/20,000 of a second.
Even if you have an idea in mind of how much you want to spend on a welding helmet, spend as much as you can. Those that cost more come with more features designed to keep you safe at work.
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