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10 Best Welding Helmets in the UK in 2022: Reviews & Top Picks

Last Updated on

person wearing Jackson Safety Ultra-Lightweight Insight HSL-100 Welding Helmet

It is a widely known fact that welding can be a dangerous endeavor. Over the years, so many technologies and safety measures have been developed to protect welders when fusing metals. One essential safety measure is the use of a welding helmet.

Today, welding helmets are a must-have for welders. They are part of the protective gear that is recommended by OSHA (Occupational Safety and Health Administration). They guarantee safety by shielding your eyes from arc flash, your mouth from dangerous particles, and your ears from the loud noise while welding.

Additionally, these helmets also protect welders from exposure to high temperatures, electric shocks, toxic fumes, sharp fragments, breeze, and any other injury risks that may occur while welding. 

However, due to the wide variety of welding helmets, it may not be easy to choose one that fits your needs. But since you mustn’t compromise your safety and protection, we have compiled a list of the ten best welding helmets in the UK to help you with your purchasing decision.

A Quick Comparison of Our Favorites (2022)

Image Product Details
Best Overall
Winner
Hobart Impact Variable Auto-Dark Helmet Hobart Impact Variable Auto-Dark Helmet
  • Great shade variability for different light conditions
  • Auto-darkening in 1/25,000 second
  • Very comfortable with sufficient ventilation
  • Best Value
    Second place
    Jackson Safety Ultra-Lightweight Insight Welding Helmet Jackson Safety Ultra-Lightweight Insight Welding Helmet
  • Comfortable
  • High-quality standard
  • Great value for money
  • Premium Choice
    Third place
    ESAB Sentinel A50 Air Welding Helmet ESAB Sentinel A50 Air Welding Helmet
  • Many power options
  • True color and clarity
  • Durable build
  • Antra Welding Helmet Antra Welding Helmet
  • Multiple applications
  • Different shade range
  • Extra lenses
  • Expert Weld Auto Darkening Welding Helmet Expert Weld Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
  • Sturdy built
  • Easy light and dark transitions
  • Welding, cutting, and grinding applications
  • The 10 Best Welding Helmets in the UK

    1. Hobart Impact Variable Auto-Dark Helmet – Best Overall

    Hobart 770756 Impact Variable Auto-Dark Helmet

    Viewing Area: 05″
    Shade Range: 8–13, light state No. 3
    Weight: 13 kg
    Arc Sensors: 3

    The Hobart 77056 is dependable with some amazing features such as three arc sensors, which control the auto-darkening feature. It is also impeccably designed with cutting-edge LCD technology to protect your eyes whenever an arc begins to flash.

    With a variable shade range of eight to thirteen, the Hobart welder offers you great low-light capability for different types of welding. It gets dark in the helmet when exposed to bright lights. The variable shades coupled with a fast reaction time of 1/25000 of a second, you can see why we chose this helmet as our best overall welding helmet.

    With the comfortable headgear combined with an extremely lightweight design, this helmet is comfortable to wear, even when the metal is heating up. You can still be able to breathe easily while working, and even sweat generated from the exercise doesn’t reach your viewing lens. The only noticeable downside of this helmet is the complications of adjusting the headgear to fit your head. But overall, it is a super comfortable and functional welding headgear.

    Pros
    • Great shade variability for different light conditions
    • Very comfortable with sufficient ventilation
    • Auto-darkening in 1/25,000 second
    Cons
    • Headgear is complicated to set up

    2. Jackson Safety Ultra-Lightweight Insight Welding Helmet – Best Value

    Jackson Safety Ultra-Lightweight Insight HSL-100 Welding Helmet

    Viewing Area: 94″ x 2.36″
    Shade Range: 9-13
    Weight: 970 grams
    Arc Sensors: 4

    The Jackson Safety Ultra-Lightweight welding helmet is one of the most respected brands for PPE (personal protective equipment). This helmet which functions on the mechanism of solar cell power is also our top pick for welding helmets that offer the greatest value for the money. 

    It is ideal for experienced welders because it is specifically designed for professional use. The design is sturdy enough to protect you from long working hours, and even phones.

    The Jackson Safety welding helmet comes with an auto-darkening feature which you can adjust from the settings panel. You can even set this feature to function automatically to protect your eyes while welding. No matter the settings, you can still clearly see the metal and can do a clean and precise weld.

    In terms of aesthetics, the Jackson Safety welding machine has the unique and patriotic design of stars and stripes inspired by the marvel blockbuster, Captain America.

    Additionally, the manufacturers made sure that the helmet is comfortable for its users. It features a lightweight design and offers a variety of shades ranging from 9 to 13. You can easily adjust the light sensitivity from digital controls located on the helmet as well.

    It retails at a reasonable price, ensuring that you get the best value for its price.

    Pros
    • Comfortable
    • High-quality standard
    • Great value for money
    • Lightweight design
    Cons
    • Slightly Expensive

    3. ESAB Sentinel A50 Air Welding Helmet – Premium Choice

    ESAB Sentinel A50 Air Welding Helmet

    Viewing Area: 3″
    Shade Range: 5-13
    Weight: 635 grams
    Arc Sensors: 4

    The ESAB SENTINEL A50 Air Welding helmet is a powerful welding accessory that is powered by two sources: lithium-ion batteries and a built-in solar cell for more power options. At 1.4 pounds, this MIG welding helmet is relatively lightweight.

    It features a 9.3 square inch viewing area, which may be small compared to other helmets on the list but still offers a great field of view because of the curvature of the outer lens. It also offers an optical clarity of 1/1/1.2.

    The ESAB SENTINEL comes with 4 sensors with a reaction time of 0.00004 seconds. The shades of the helmet range between 5 and 13 plus shade 4 for the grinding mode. You can switch from welding to grinding mode by pressing an external button located in the front of the helmet.

    This helmet is also ideal for people suffering from poor eyesight because it comes with a slot that allows users to add a magnifier, a hyper-visible LCD control panel as well as presets for different parameters.

    On matters of design, the helmet is made from high-impact-resistant nylon, which is sturdy enough for durability. It also features a blue tint color, which makes the helmet very appealing. The futuristic front cover lens also gives the helmet a cool and modern look which adds to its aesthetics. The only downside to this welding helmet is the fisheye effect from the lens and an adapter option that only works with ESAB hard hats.  

    All things considered, this helmet is our premium choice, because it is capable of TIG and MIG welding at a reasonable price despite its high performance. You can also expect to find accessories such as a welding do-rag, five lenses, and a padded bag with this premium model.

    Pros
    • Many power options
    • True color and clarity
    • Durable build
    • Comfortable 
    • Magnifier slot
    • Fast reaction
    • Attractive design
    • Multiple presets
    Cons
    • Fish Eye Effect
    • Expensive

    4. Antra Welding Helmet 

    Antra AH6-260-0000 Solar Power Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

    Viewing Area: 86″ x 1.73″
    Shade Range: 4/5-9, 9-13
    Optical Clarity: 1/1/1.2
    Arc Sensors: 4

    The Antra AH260 is one of the cheapest welding helmet brands that features a design ideal for entry-level welders. Its design came into being after the manufacturers considered various factors that trainee welders face as they commence a career path in welding.

    One of these factors is the bulkiness of the helmet. The Antra AH260 is one of the lightest helmets on the market because its material is fabricated with thin plastic. Therefore, it is unsuitable for overhead welding endeavors because you risk melting the helmet’s skull with a hot slag. Ironically, the lightweight design also helps release shoulder and neck stress when working for longer hours.

    Another impressive feature is the presence of filters that provide double protection. The helmet comes with automatic darkening filters as well as Passive IR and UV filters. The auto-darkening filters make welding a whole lot easier because you don’t need to flip the viewing screen up and down during work. It also offers a wide margin of shades from 413.

    This helmet also features 4 arc sensors that detect light, enabling auto-darkening mode at an impressive response rate of 0.00004 seconds. It may have a small viewing area, but the welding hood offers a colored view. You can weld MIG and TIG as well as grinding at a reasonably budget-friendly price.

    Pros
    • Compatible with a hard hat and cheater lens
    • Multiple applications
    • Different shade range
    • Extra lenses
    • Solar and replaceable batteries
    • Cheap
    Cons
    • Random Flashes
    • Small viewing area

    5. Expert Weld XWH14 Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

    Expert Weld XWH14 9-13 ShadesPyro Blue Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

    Viewing Area: 52 by 100 mm
    Shade Range: 9–13
    Weight: 540 grams
    Arc Sensors: 2

    The Expert Weld Auto-darkening welding helmet is ideal for newbies and inexperienced welders because it is easy to read and understand the features as well as use them accordingly.

    The helmet features a light state that lies in 4 and a dark stage which is adjustable from 4–13. It also comes with an adjustable sensitivity knob that you can use to adjust from grinding mode to welding mode. You can also change the shade range, allowing you to work without any hassle.

    It also comes with a light delay function, which allows the user to start and swiftly carry on the work without any lag. In addition, this welding helmet is equipped with a solar-powered replaceable lithium battery. You can check the amount of charge left on your battery from the low battery indicator on the helmet.

    The Expert Weld helmet also has a comfortable ratchet headband that allows the welder to work on longer projects. It guarantees protection of your eyes from arc blindness and is suitable for MMA, TIG, and MAG/MIG welding. You can also use it for the more complicated plasma cutting.

    The helmet is made from sturdy materials for durability and comes with a blue Blane pattern that makes it attractive and appealing to welders.

    Pros
    • Sturdy built
    • Welding, cutting, and grinding applications
    • Easy light and dark transitions
    • Replaceable lithium battery
    • Adjustable ratchet headband
    • Has 2 sensors
    Cons
    • Ratchet headband may not be popular for people who have used rubber ones
    • Only compatible with ESAB hard hat

    6. Instapark GX990T Solar Powered Auto-Darkening Welding Helmet

    Instapark ADF Series GX990T Solar Powered Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

    Viewing Area: 2″
    Shade Range: 5-13
    Weight: 39 grams
    Arc Sensors: 4

    The Instapark ADF GX990T is among the budget-friendly welding helmets ideal for MIG, TIG, and arc welding. This is due to its large viewing area, four arc sensors, and auto-darkening filter. It also offers a shade range between 5 and 13, optical clarity of 1/1/1.2, and a resting shade of 4.

    It is a popular brand among the welding community because you can easily adjust the delay, sensitivity, and dark state without necessarily removing the helmet while welding. You can select the preferred settings from the numbers on the side dial. Users can also switch between torching, welding, and grinding modes with the last set numbers.

    The Instapark ADF GX990T also comes with two power options. They include a solar-powered built-in cell and a replaceable CR2450 lithium battery. Moreover, the interior of the helmet is padded, and the headband can be adjusted into multiple geared positions for a good fit.

    Unfortunately, the helmet can malfunction due to the high switching speed of the auto-darkening feature at 1/30000 seconds. The other major drawback is the fact that this helmet cannot be attached to a hard hat.

    Pros
    • Wide shade range
    • Large viewing area
    • High reaction speed
    • External controls
    • Dual batteries
    Cons
    • Incompatible with hard hat
    • Some customers report auto-darkening failure

    7. Lincoln Electric Welding Helmet VIKING 3350

    Lincoln Electric Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

    Viewing Area: 5″
    Shade Range: 5–13
    Weight: 36 kg
    Arc Sensors: 4

    This auto-darkening welding helmet from Lincoln Electric is one of the 3350 helmet series which has been tweaked with 4C lens technology. This upgrade provides a true color crystal clear display of the arc and puddle. The same technology has also been used with the Lincoln Electric 2450 and 1840 Series.

    This welding helmet is also a popular brand option for many users because it features an extra-large auto-darkening lens that measures 12.5″. The lens helps to maximize eye vision and the safety of the user while welding. It also comes with a low-profile button located on the surface of the helmet for users to switch between cut, weld, and grind modes.

    The Viking 3350 has 5–13 shade ranges, a tig rating of 2amps, and four arc sensors with a switching speed of 1/25000 seconds. It is also available in more than 15 different styles to accommodate the needs of many users.

    This helmet is versatile as it comes with a lithium battery and solar cells, three shade controls, delay, sensitivity, and hard hat compatibility. Other accessories you can expect to find include a welding bandana, five outside cover lenses, a sticker sheet, a helmet bag, and two inside cover lenses.

    Pros
    • High clarity
    • Extra-large lens
    • Multiple accessories
    • Auto-darkening filter
    • True color view
    • Dual power source
    Cons
    • Poor fit

    8. DEKOPRO Solar Powered Welding Helmet

    DEKOPRO Solar Powered Welding Helmet

    Viewing Area: 1″
    Shade Range: 9–13
    Weight: 840 grams
    Arc Sensors: 4

    This welding helmet from DEKOPRO is solar-powered and is recommended for beginners, especially in construction work, automotive and military MRO (maintenance repair and operations).

    The helmet features an optical clarity of 1/1/1.2, a shade range of 9–13, and an auto-darkening feature that adjusts the shade at a speed of 1/25000 seconds. It also has a large viewing screen of 12.1″ as well as an adjustable and comfortable headgear.

    In addition, the DEKOPRO solar-powered helmet is powered by a lithium battery and a solar cell that can easily convert sunlight to power, with up to 5,000 hours of battery life. These impressive features make this product among the best welding helmets under $100, ideal for hobbyists and newbie welders.

    Despite the small weight of only one pound and the minimalistic design used on this helmet, it is more than capable of supporting different welding applications. They include MAG/CO2, ARC, MMA, MIG, TIG as well as plasma cutting and welding.

    Setting up the helmet can prove problematic because you need to line up different components for the helmet to work. All in all, it is a great welding helmet that can guarantee safety.

    Pros
    • Auto-darkening feature
    • Lightweight
    • Comfortable Fit
    • Large viewing window
    • Long battery life
    • High switching speed
    Cons
    • Few shades
    • Can take time to set up

    9. Spargo Auto-Darkening Welding Helmet

    Spargos Welding Mask

    Viewing Area: 92 by 42mm
    Shade Range: 9–13
    Weight: 720 grams
    Arc Sensors: IR and UV wavelength

    If you are in the market for a reasonably priced auto-darkening welding helmet that retails with an extra set of lenses, consider going for the SPARGO brand. The SPARGO auto-darkening helmet is capable of ARC, TIG, and MIG welding as well as grinding applications.

    It features a viewing area of 92 X 42 mm, which is a large enough area to work with. It also has adjustable shades in the range of 9–13, which help protect a user’s eye from harmful UV and IR rays. Moreover, it has a ratchet headband that is easily adjustable and very durable.

    This auto-darkening helmet has sensitivity control features that allow for the quick switching of shades. It is also appealing in appearance, retailing in a red, white, and gray flame.

    Unlike traditional welding helmets, the Spargo allows welders to work hands-free, which adds to its effectiveness as a welding helmet.

    Pros
    • Easy to use
    • Good viewing area
    • Quality lenses
    • Protects from IR and UV lights
    Cons
    • It may be unappealing to traditional welding helmet enthusiasts

    10.  Fibre-Metal Pipeliner Fiberglass Welding Helmet

    Fibre-Metal Pipeliner Fiberglass Welding Helmet

    Viewing Area: 8″
    Style: Adjustable Ratchet Headgear
    Weight: 567 grams
    Material: Fiberglass

    If you are in the market for a budget-friendly welding helmet that is small and compact enough for you to weld in narrow and tight spaces, look no further than the Fibre-Metal welding helmet from Honeywell. It is specially designed to work in enclosed and tight spaces that standard models wouldn’t allow you to access.

    This metal welding helmet comes with ratcheting headgear with an overhead band that supports several adjustments for a safe and comfortable fit. It also features free-floating arms that help to stabilize and balance out the helmet.

    Despite not being an auto-darkening helmet, this product can filter out both infrared and ultraviolet wavelengths. It is made from a smooth SuperGlas plus material that self-extinguishes to deflect any sparks and spatter. The material is also resistant to chipping, cracks, impact, and moisture.

    At 1.25 pounds, the helmet is lightweight. The viewing area may be smaller compared to other helmets on the list, but you can replace the original shade 10 lens with other options to improve the view and clarity. The other drawback is the lack of a flip front, but you can remedy this by cutting out the front lens. Other than that, this budget-friendly metal welding helmet provides adequate protection against glare as you work in tight spaces.

    Pros
    • Ideal for tight and enclosed spaces
    • Self-extinguishing material
    • Filters UV and IR wavelengths
    • Resistant to moisture and impact
    • Lightweight
    Cons
    • Lacks auto darkening function
    • No flip front
    • Small viewing area

    Buyers Guide: Selecting the Best Welding Helmet

    Protection is one of the most important considerations when it comes to welding. However, there are other factors that you need to consider to maximize your safety and comfort no matter your budget. So, before you spend your hard-earned cash on a faulty or compromised welding helmet, read through our buying guide as we expound on the main features and factors to consider.

    Passive or Casual Systems

    Passive helmets better known as traditional welding helmets are the most basic helmets on the market. They tend to have fixed glass visors and shades to protect a user from the common dangers associated with welding. However, these helmets are always darkened, meaning that welders must constantly remove or lift their helmets to properly inspect their work. They may be a great option if you are strapped for cash, however, they are not ideal for people who use them regularly. So, you might need to look for a more practical option if you are looking for a welding helmet for long time usage.

    Automatic Helmets

    Also known as auto-darkening masks or helmets, these welding helmets are different from the causal systems because they have built-in shades that can adjust in brightness. They can go dark when you are using an arc.

    Automatic helmets not only protect your eyes against harmful rays, but they also allow you to inspect your work without needing to remove the helmet as you weld. This will save you a lot of time and reduce the risk of injury. However, these are pricey, but they are worth it if your safety, productivity, and health are at stake.

    Viewing Window

    When dealing with an auto-darkening helmet, it is important to consider the size of your viewing window. After all, since the helmet stays on your head for a longer time, you will need as wide a lens or window to view your progress. This, however, may differ from one user to the other because of the level of comfort that one may require.

    close up welder wearing welding helmet

    Image Credit: Atharva Tulsi, Unsplash

    Size and Weight

    It is wise to consider the size and weight of a welding helmet because you are going to have it on your head a lot when taking on different welding endeavors. The heavier a helmet is, the more likely it will put more strain on your neck and head. So, always consider a lightweight welding helmet whenever you can.

    But be careful when selecting a helmet based on size because you might miss out on the functionality and durability of slightly heavier welding helmets. So, it all depends on what you are willing to compromise. The best way to do this is to consult friends, experts, and reviews replete on the internet.

    Adjustable Controls

    Many auto-darkening helmets come with a variety of control knobs that you can use to improve your welding experience. You can use these controls to adjust the darkness or brightness of the viewing window. Since welding varies from one job to another, you need flexibility. So, if you are going for an automatic darkening helmet, consider the flexibility option of the controls.

    Sensors

    Sensors are also important if not crucial considerations when it comes to auto-darkening helmets. They help your helmet determine when to go dark or lighten up while you are welding.

    Modern welding helmets come with more sensors than previous versions due to advancements in technology. These helmets may cost more money, but they improve the accuracy of their readings. So, if you are a professional welder, it may be wise to go for a helmet with at least 4 sensors or more for the most accurate readings. 

    a welding helmet

    Image Credit: Khamidulin Sergey, Shutterstock

    Power Source

    Many modern auto-darkening welding helmets require some type of power source to run. Some utilize lithium batteries, some use solar power, while others utilize both. With the solar-powered helmets, you can still carry on with the welding process even after the battery dies. On the other hand, battery-powered helmets are ideal for both interior and exterior welding. Only a few advanced models are powered by arcs.


    Conclusion

    If you are in the market for the best welding helmets in the UK, do not compromise on quality. You need to ensure that the helmets are comfortable and offer peak levels of protection and safety for your eyes, ears, nose, and mouth. Always prioritize your quality and comfort level.

    The Hobart 77056 Welder offers several features that make it very dependable and comfortable, capable of protecting your face even in extreme temperatures. On the other hand, the Jackson Safety Auto-Darkening helmet is highly respected as a PPE, ideal for professionals who work for long hours. For a more powerful welding helmet, consider the ESAB SENTINEL A50, which offers more welding options at a faster reaction time, and is perfect for people with poor eyesight.

    Whether you intend to engage in MIG, MAG, TIG, or arc welding, better cross check your requirements along with the reviews to get a welding helmet that can satisfy your needs without compromising your safety and comfort. We hope that the above reviews of the 10 best welding helmets and buyer’s guide will assist you in making a purchasing decision that gives you value worth the price.

    Cameron Dekker
     

    Cameron grew up in Allentown, Pennsylvania, a once-proud steel town on the Lehigh River, where he got a taste of TIG welding in his high school shop class. He holds certificates for Certified WeldingEducator (CWE) and Certified Resistance Welding Technician (CRWT) from the American Welding Institute. His interests include scuba diving, sculpture, and kayaking.