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Buying The Right Welding Helmet For Your Situation

by Jared De Hooge

Welding helmets protect your eyes from the flash when you're welding metal, but they have more uses than that. The shape and size of welding helmets extend around your head and under your chin for additional protection, and there are many different styles that you can choose from to optimize that protection. 

Standard Helmets

Welding helmets typically have a small dark glass in them to allow the welder to see the workpiece and a body made from plastic that will cover your face and head. The helmet has an adjustable headband to fit different-sized heads, and the mask portion pivots up on the headband, allowing the welder to lift it when they stop welding. 

Standard welding helmets typically extend from your forehead to just under your chin and are very easy to use. On some standard-style helmets, the dark glass piece will lift so you can look through the clear inner glass to chip slag or check your welds.

Extended Coverage Helmets

Welding helmets that offer more coverage than a standard one are often longer and wider to ensure your neck and ears are shielded when welding. Sparks from the welder and UV light are the two most common ways people get hurt when welding, so buying a helmet that covers as much of your neck and head as possible is vital. 

Any uncovered skin could get burned from a hot spark landing on you or as a result of the UV light, which appears like a sunburn after a day of welding. Covering your arms, hands, face, neck, and other areas will help reduce the burns, and if you are welding without long sleeves, use some sunscreen to stop the sunburn-like irritation on exposed skin. 

Your hair can also burn, so wearing a welders cap is a good option. The welder's cap fits under welding helmets without getting in the way when you are opening or closing the helmet, and they come in many designs that let you express your creativity while staying safe. 

Buying Welding Helmets

When you buy a welder, the machine may come with a welding helmet, but the included ones are often basic and may not stand up well to a lot of use. The welding shop in your area should sell welding helmets, and the designs and styles will vary. There are auto-darkening lenses, helmets with painted themes on them, and features that help make them more effective when using them. 

Welding helmets can be expensive if you select one with all the features and a fancy paint job, but since they protect you from injury, most welders feel they are worth the cost in the long run.

Contact a local welding helmet supplier, such as CMR Fabrications, to learn more.