12 Best Auto Darkening Welding Helmet Reviews 2019
Whether you’re a professional welder, or you just like welding for fun, owning the best auto darkening welding helmet is a necessity. After all, a welding helmet is ultimately the only thing protecting your face from whatever you’re welding. Wearing a poorly constructed welding helmet is almost as bad as not wearing a helmet at all because your face will still be susceptible to things such as, infrared and ultraviolet light, intense heat, and sparks.
If any part of your body comes into contact with these things, you could potentially suffer from eyesight problems, burning, and other serious injuries. So, instead of taking a risk, purchase a reliable welding helmet! We’re going to explore the top auto darkening welding helmets on the market, so you can decide which helmet is right for you!
Best Auto Darkening Welding Helmets for MIG, TIG, Stick & Arc Welders
#1 Lincoln 3350 Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
- Weight: 3.22 lbs
- Dimensions: 13″ x 10.5″ x 10″
- Superior suspension promotes a generous amount of comfort that enables long wear.
- Auto-darkening lenses, so you won’t have to worry about taking off your helmet to examine your work.
- Wider lens for maximum viewing.
- Includes extra lenses with a bag.
- Perfect for outside use.
- On the heavier side.
- Adjusting the knobs can be difficult.
- Head band is tighter than other standard helmets.
Who should purchase this welding helmet?
This welding helmet is perfect for welders who have at least a little bit of experience because it has the perfect mix of minimal and advanced technology. While beginner welders might find this helmet to be too advanced, welders with a little bit of experience will find the Lincoln 3350 Welding Helmet’s superior suspension technology, auto-darkening feature, and wider lenses to be extremely beneficial.
What’s the best feature of this welding helmet?
The superior suspension technology is argumentatively the best feature of the Lincoln 3350 Welding Helmet. With this advanced world-renowned technology, the Lincoln 3350 Welding Helmet will comfortably sit on your head and neck without causing strain or distress. In other words, you don’t have to worry about taking breaks between welding or welding for too long. Instead, you can weld at ease for as long as you want.
Do I have to work inside?
No! That’s another great feature of the Lincoln 3350 Welding Helmet. Since this welding helmet has auto-darkening lenses, the helmet will automatically adjust to the light in your environment. In other words, whether you’re exposed to a lot of light from your torch or from natural sunlight, this welding helmet will make sure it automatically darkens the lenses and protects your eyes. On the other hand, once your environment darkens, your lenses will automatically lighten. So, you won’t have to go through the hassle of taking off your helmet.
#2 Jackson Safety BH3 Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
- Weight: 2 lbs
- Dimensions: 12.5″ x 10.1″ x 10.1″
- Fume detector.
- Auto darkening lenses, which promotes an immersive and efficient optical experience.
- Three adjustment settings, so the helmet can fit perfectly and comfortably on your head.
- Grinding mode is lackluster compared to other helmets on the market.
- Hard to use with a hard hat.
- Doesn’t come with extra lenses.
How do solar-powered welding helmets work?
Solar-powered welding helmets, such as the Jackson Safety BH3, are pretty self-explanatory. Basically, a solar-powered helmet is powered by light. High-quality solar-powered welding helmets like the Jackson Safety BH3 will provide the same experience in artificial light that it does in natural sunlight.
What is the lightest welding helmet?
Your welding helmet’s weight plays a key factor in how efficient you work. For example, if you have a bulky welding helmet, you probably don’t like working for a long time because you experience fatigue and neck strain. But, with a lightweight helmet, you won’t even notice that you’re wearing a helmet!
Luckily, the Jackson Safety BH3 is one of the lightest welding helmets on the market! Standing at 2 pounds, the Jackson Safety BH3’s plush technology promotes a comfortable and efficient welding experience. So, say goodbye to your days of headaches and muscle pains and hello to a plush experience.
How does a welding helmet detect fume?
A welding helmet’s outer shell plays a key role in detecting fume. This makes sense because an outer shell is the outermost later of a helmet, so it comes into contact with the environment you’re in before any other helmet element.
One of the most efficient ways to detect fume is through an aerodynamic shell, which the Jackson Safety BH3 has. With this technology, the outer shell is able to detect higher levels of fumes that go above and beyond the industry standard.
#3 3M Speedglas Welding Helmet 9100 with Extra-Large Size Auto-Darkening Filter
- Weight: 1.37 – 2.09 lbs
- Dimensions: Available in 4 different sizes
- Extra durable.
- Auto-darkening lenses, so you don’t have to worry about taking your helmet off just to check out your work.
- Easy to use.
- Helmet bag included.
- Side windows promote clear visibility.
- Magnifying lens not included.
- Adjustment knobs are hard to adjust.
- Uses lithium batteries.
Are auto-darkening lenses useful?
Yes! Auto-darkening lenses are one of the most useful aspects of the 3M Speedglas 9100 Welding Helmet. Auto-darkening lenses are pretty self-explanatory in the sense that they lighten or darken depending on your surroundings. So, if you’re working outside or in extreme light, the 3M Speedglas 9100 will automatically darken its lenses to protect your eyes. But, once your torch is off and you’re in natural levels of light, your lenses will lighten.
This helmet is battery powered. Is it still powerful?
Although the 3M Speedglas 9100 Welding Helmet is battery powered, it uses lithium batteries that are resilient and durable.When you purchase the helmet, a few batteries are included. But, expect to purchase batteries for the remainder of the time you own the 3M Speedglas 9100 Welding Helmet.
Although the 3M Speedglas 9100 Welding Helmet is not equipped with the new and improved solar-powered technology that most new welding helmets have, this helmet’s auto-darkening feature is designed to function approximately 2,000 hours until you will have to replace the batteries, which isn’t too shabby.
How should I store my welding helmet?
It’s important to store your welding helmet in a safe and secure place. When you’re not using your welding helmet, a specialized bag is a great place to store it! Luckily, the 3M Speedglas Welding Helmet comes with a complimentary helmet bag. So, you won’t have to worry about finding a bag that your helmet fits in.
#4 Hobart 770753 Pro Variable Auto-Dark Helmet
- Weight: 3.55 lbs
- Dimensions: 9″ x 9″ x 13″
- Innovative grind mode.
- High performance.
- Auto-darkening lenses to make your welding experience more efficient and pleasurable.
- New and improved LCD technology.
- The natural lightweight aspect of this helmet makes it feel cheap and not as durable as other welding helmets.
- While the multi-adjustable aspect is great, it can be limiting and even detrimental to people who aren’t aware how a helmet should be adjusted.
- If you’re an overhead welder, this isn’t the best option for you.
What makes this helmet different than other battery powered welding helmets?
The Hobart 770753 is powered by CR2450 lithium batteries. While most welders prefer solar-powered helmets, the Hobart 770753 doesn’t make it inconvenient to use batteries. Let’s face it: there’s nothing worse than being in the middle of a weld when your welding helmet dies. It’s very rare for welders to have extra batteries. And even if you do happen to have extra batteries, you still have to go through the trouble of finding the batteries and replacing them.
That’s why this welding helmet is equipped with battery sensors. Basically, battery sensors will go off when your welding helmet has a low battery. Therefore, you will have enough time to purchase batteries and replace them. So, you don’t have to worry about replacing batteries in the middle of welding.
Is this a good welding helmet for maximum eye protection?
Yes! Since the Hobart 770753 has auto-darkening lenses, you don’t have to worry about eye protection. Auto-darkening lenses are great because you don’t have to worry about taking your helmet on and off just to view your weld, or to be more comfortable in different environments. Instead, your welding helmet will cater to you and automatically darken or lighten the lenses dependent on your surrounding environment.
#5 Miller Electric Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
- Weight: 2.8 lbs
- Dimensions: 12″ x 10.2″ x 9.8″
- Although this helmet is battery powered, it is equipped with solar technology. So, your helmet will still have a little bit of life if the batteries die.
- Optical clarity due to wide lenses.
- Auto darkening lenses.
- Comes with an easy-to-understand manual. So, even if you get lost using the helmet, you can easily refer to the manual.
- Up to 3,000 battery hours.
- Although the helmet is user-friendly, it’s hard to press buttons or adjust anything with gloves.
- If you tend to sweat a lot while you’re welding, you should wear a sweatband with the Miller Electric Auto Darkening Helmet.
- Hard to secure tightly and comfortably on your head.
How is the Miller Electric Auto Darkening Welding Helmet Multi-Powered?
While the primary source of power is from batteries, the Miller Electric Auto Darkening Welding Helmet incorporates solar power into its technology. This is to amplify the battery power, and act as a safety net in case your batteries die during mid-weld. In other words, with the use of solar power, the Miller Electric Auto Darkening Welding Helmet will continue working even if your batteries die.
It’s also important to note that even though the Miller Electric Auto Darkening Welding Helmet uses batteries, this is one of the longest lasting battery powered welding helmets.
With up to 3,000 hours of potential use per battery set, the Miller Electric Auto Darkening Welding Helmet uses approximately 1,000 more battery hours than the industry standard. Therefore, this is argumentatively one of the best battery powered welding helmets on the market.
Moreover, the Miller Electric Auto Darkening Welding Helmet is equipped with a ton of advanced technology, the helmet displays these functions in a user-friendly way. So, you won’t have to worry about messing with a bunch of buttons.
#6 Jackson Safety 46131 Insight Variable Auto Darkening Welding Hemet
- Weight: 2 lbs
- Dimensions: 13.6″ x 9.6″ x 8.1″
- With variable shades and wide lenses, this helmet offers some of the widest and clearest visibility on the market.
- Two modes, so you can have secure and durable protection no matter what kind of project you’re working on.
- Auto darkening lenses, so you don’t have to experience the hassle of taking off and putting on your helmet a ton of times while you’re welding.
- Easy to use with a hard hat.
- Battery powered.
- Auto darkening feature tends to wear out throughout time.
- Feels cheap.
Is the weight important?
Yes, the weight of a welding helmet is extremely important! Luckily, the Jackson Safety 46131 Insight Variable Auto Darkening Welding Helmet is highly ranked among the lightest welding helmets on the market. At two pounds, it’s hard to find a helmet that’s lighter than this one.
Is this welding helmet easy to operate?
Yes! One of the best features of the Jackson Safety 46131 is its overall design that is user-friendly, even for new welders. There are minimal buttons and knobs, which are big and accessible enough that you can easily adjust your helmet even when you’re wearing gloves.
In the event that you have a little bit of trouble operating this helmet, and you just need a little of guidance, flip through the descriptive manual! The manual is set up in way that it provides a ton of information in an easy to read way. It even comes in three languages!
What is the best feature of the Jackson Safety 46131?
The best feature of this welding helmet is definitely its level of optical clarity. Between the quality of the lenses, arc, and auto darkening feature, you will experience an optimal viewing area that is extremely clear and precise.
#7 ArcPro 20704 Auto-Darkening Solar Powered Welding Helmet
- Weight: 1.15 lbs
- Dimensions: 12.1″ x 8.6″ x 8.1″
- The alien design is something new, fun, attractive, and intriguing. You definitely don’t see that on average welding helmets.
- Auto darkening feature is perfect for fast and efficient welding. But, if you prefer to work without it, you can simply turn it off.
- External knobs, so you can easily adjust any feature when you’re welding.
- Maximum sensitivity for optimal security and protection.
- Solar powered.
- Abnormal lens size. So, it might be difficult to find a replacement lens.
- Overall abnormal silhouette that takes a while to adjust to, especially if you’re a seasoned welder.
- Does not offer scratch resistance, so it’s not the most durable helmet on the market.
Can I use this welding helmet for any type of welding?
Yes! The ArcPro 20704 Auto-Darkening Solar Powered Welding Helmet is equipped with the industry standard welding mode, as well as a special grind mode. So, this helmet will protect you regardless of what type of welding you’re doing, as well as what you’re welding.
Are the knobs easy to access?
That’s actually one of the best features of the ArcPro 20704 Welding Helmet! There’s nothing more disappointing than finding what you think is the perfect welding helmet for you, only to discover the adjustment knobs are hidden or easy to turn.
Luckily, the ArcPro 20704 Welding Helmet has easily accessible knobs that can even be turned easily even if you’re wearing gloves! These knobs include a turn-style mode knob and a simple on and off switch.
How comfortable is this welding helmet!
It’s safe to say you definitely don’t have to worry about comfort with the ArcPro 20704 Welding Helmet! This welding helmet is equipped with plush padding that makes sure you are comfortable throughout the entire time you weld, even if you weld for an extended amount of time.
In addition to the plush padding, this welding helmet has an adjustable headband that’s easy to use. So, you don’t have to worry about fondling with a ton of adjustment pieces just to ensure that your helmet fits perfectly and is secure on your head.
#8 Instapark ADF Series GX990T Solar Powered Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
- Weight: 1.5 lbs
- Dimensions: 13″ x 9″ x 9.5″
- Lightweight, so you can easily use this helmet for an extended amount of time.
- Solar powered.
- Auto darkening feature, which makes it easy to examine your weld in any environment.
- External knobs, which makes it easy to adjust anything at any time.
- Maximal level of visibility.
- Not compatible with hard hats.
- Unable to use cheater lenses with this helmet because it is not equipped with a retainer.
- Feels flimsy over time.
Is this helmet easy to adjust?
The Instapark ADF Series GX990T Solar Powered Auto Darkening Welding Helmet is one of the easiest welding helmets to adjust because of its user-friendly design. This welding helmet is equipped with external knobs. So, say goodbye to the days of having to take off your entire welding helmet to adjust one feature, and hello to easily accessible adjustment knobs.
Not only are the adjustment knobs featured on the external part of this welding helmet, they are also designed in an easy to grasp way. So, you can easily wear gloves without having to worry about taking them off just to adjust something.
How good is this helmet’s visibility?
The Instapark ADF Series GX990T Solar Powered Auto Darkening Welding Helmet offers one of the best quality viewing experiences you can find! Like previously stated, this welding helmet is completely modernized. So, it’s equipped with state of the art visibility technology that includes an auto darkening feature, sensitive sensors, and an extremely large viewing area.
Is this helmet comfortable to use for a long time?
Since the Instapark ADF Series GX990T Solar Powered Auto Darkening Welding Helmet only weighs 1.5 pounds, it is extremely easy to wear for an extended amount of time. Not only is this welding helmet one of the lightest welding helmets on the market, but it offers a plush interior that makes it extremely comfortable to wear.
Between its lightweight nature and the plush interior, you’ll barely be able to feel that you’re even wearing a welding helmet!
#9 Tacklife PAH03D Solar Power Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
- Weight: 14.1 ounces
- Dimensions: 11.8″ x 7.9″ x 9.4″
- Optimal visibility means you will be able to see a clear, precise, and quality image of your weld without having to strain your eyes.
- Easy to adjust.
- Modern and chic design.
- Works with cheater lenses.
- Auto dimming feature isn’t the quickest or most receptive.
- Features are inconsistent in the sense that the helmet might work great one day, and not so great the next.
- Since it uses solar power and batteries, you will eventually have to replace the batteries, which could be a hassle or generally inconvenient.
What would you rate this helmet’s visibility?
On a scale of one to ten, I would rate the Tacklife PAH03D Solar Power Auto Darkening Welding Helmet’s visibility a ten without second guessing myself. This welding helmet offers one of the best visibility experiences that I’ve ever seen!
When you look at the specifics of the Tacklife PAH03D Solar Power Auto Darkening Welding Helmet, it’s easy to see why this welding helmet has fantastic visibility. After all, it has an extremely large viewing area, 3.94” x 2.87” to be exact. It also has sensors on every corner of the lenses, so you don’t have to worry about this helmet’s sensitivity.
In addition to the quality and size of the viewing area, the Tacklife PAH03D Solar Power Auto Darkening Welding Helmet is equipped with auto darkening lenses that automatically change with your environment.
Overall, it’s safe to say that this welding helmet creates a quality and precise viewing experience.
Is this welding helmet durable?
Yes! The Tacklife PAH03D Solar Power Auto Darkening Welding Helmet looks extremely durable with its sleek black design, and certainly lives up to its appearance. While most welding helmets are made with Polypropylene, this Tacklife welding helmet is designed with Polyamide nylon. So, it’s resistant to high impacts and corrosion. It’s also flame retardant. In other words, you won’t have to worry about replacing this welding helmet for a long time.
#10 Antra AH6-660-0000 Solar Power Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
What kind of applications can I do with this welding helmet?
Let’s face it: it’s hard to find a quality welding helmet that offers multiple modes so you can practice an array of welding applications. Luckily, the Antra AH6-660-0000 Solar Power Auto Darkening Welding Helmet is equipped with a standard welding application feature, as well as a grind mode. So, you can practice virtually any welding application for any sized weld with this welding helmet.
How is this welding helmet’s sensitivity?
The Antra AH6-660-0000 Solar Power Auto Darkening Welding Helmet is extremely sensitive, which is great! Since this welding helmet has maximum sensitivity, it will automatically darken or lighten your lenses depending on how light your environment is. The sensitivity sensors will also tailor your overall viewing experience depending on your environment. So, you won’t have to worry about playing with your adjustment knobs for a ton of time before you start welding or even in the middle of a weld.
- Compatible with cheater lenses, so you have the option of having a truly magnified viewing experience.
- External knobs make it extremely easy to adjust any feature of this welding helmet at any time. So, you don’t have to worry about taking off your helmet during a middle of a weld just to adjust a minor feature.
- Lightweight, so you can wear this welding helmet for an extended amount of time without having to worry about neck strain or head pain.
- Multiple modes to cater to virtually any kind of welding application.
- Manual is extremely descriptive and overall user-friendly. So, if you have any trouble using the helmet, you can easily refer to the manual for a little bit of guidance.
- Although this welding helmet is compatible with hard hats, you have to purchase an adapter for an additional price.
- The adjustments are flimsy if you adjust them too much. In other words, the adjustments easily fall off if you keep them loose.
- Although the visibility is clear and precise, it doesn’t work perfect all of the time. If you use this helmet a lot for an extended amount of time, the visibility declines.
What to Look For in a Welding Helmet?
Since welding helmets come in an array of designs and silhouettes with different features and technology, deciding which welding helmet is right for you is ultimately a personal decision. But, hopefully this guide will made it easier for you to decide what features you want in a welding helmet, and possibly even which welding helmet is right for you!
People are often surprised to discover there are a lot of elements to welding helmets. Welding helmets come in a variety of sizes with different features that cater to an array of welders. That’s why it’s important to understand the basics of choosing a welding helmet! Whether you’re a new or expert welder, it never hurts to know a few tips for buying a welding helmet.
Best Welding Helmet Brand Reviews
Let’s face it: there are a ton of welding helmet brands. In fact, there are so many brands it can be difficult to determine which brands you should trust, and which brands you should dust off your shoulder. That being said, here is a short list of the best welding helmet brands and why they are critically acclaimed!
Welding Helmet FAQs
#1 What are the benefits of using an auto darkening welding helmet?
Let’s face it: welding isn’t necessarily the safest thing you can do. After all, welding requires the use of extreme light and heat. And if your eyes or skin come into direct contact with that level of light and heat, you could potentially suffer from critical conditions. So, a welding helmet protects your head and neck from a variety of potentially harmful things, such as ultraviolet and infrared light, and extreme heat.
#2 What welding helmet is the best for long-term health?
This is a very personal question. Ultimately, it’s up to you to determine what type of welding helmet you need for your health. But, generally you should aim to purchase a welding helmet with a lens grade of eight to ten. Also, be prepared to use your welding helmet with an oversized hard hat and to replace the clears frequently.
#3 Are auto-darkening welding helmets safe?
Yes! If anything, they’re safer than welding helmets that don’t have an auto-darkening feature because they automatically adjust the quality and darkness of your lenses depending on your environment. So, you won’t have to worry about messing with your helmet in between welds because of a change in your environment or needs.
#4 How do I customize a welding helmet?
There are a few ways you can customize a welding helmet! If you want to add more protection and a little bit of style, add a hood or a mask to your welding helmet. If you’re feeling super crafty, paint your welding helmet!
#5 How does auto darkening welding helmet work?
Auto-darkening glasses primarily use solar technology to determine when to get lighter and darker. Basically, the auto-darkening glass is surrounded by an arc equipped with sensors that detect changes in your environment, specifically in terms of light. So, when the arc detects a change of light, it signals the sensors, which adequately adjust the auto-darkening glass.
#6 What’s the difference in welding helmet filters?
Welding helmet filters are ultimately dependent upon light. So, there are lighter and darker welding helmet filters that carry to a variety of light environments.
#7 What is grind mode on a welding helmet?
Grind mode is usually mode for grinding, which is the process of cutting and smoothing material. Grinding mode is useful, especially in auto darkening helmets, because it will prevent your lenses from getting too dark.
#8 How do I hand paint a welding helmet?
If you are feeling crafty and want to customize your welding helmet you can hand paint it! Here’s some rules and tips to abide by if you plan on hand painting your welding helmet:
- Prior to painting, take the lenses out.
- Use a primer.
- Use a wire brush to prep your helmet.This will help make the paint smoothly adhere.
- Use fire resistant primer and paint.
#9 Can I use a welding helmet to view an eclipse?
You can only use a welding helmet to view an eclipse if it has a level 12 or higher shade.
#10 Where can I buy an auto darkening welding helmet?
You can purchase a welding helmet from a variety of places, such as specialty stores and general home improvement stores. Purchasing welding helmets in person is a great option for new welders because you have the opportunity to talk to professional welders first hand. Also, you will have the opportunity to try on welding helmets before committing to one.
The internet is also a great place to buy a welding helmet. Simply search the phrase “welding helmets” and you will automatically come across thousands of websites that sell welding helmets. If you want to browse through an array of welding helmets, check out Amazon!