Such a dangerous activity as welding, during which you have to deal with various light sources, both red and purple. As everyone has long known, these lights can cause serious damage to our eyes. Also, flashes can significantly burn the body and face. The occupational safety and health administration informs you that anyone who works with welding tools must wear all necessary protective equipment, which includes a special helmet and gloves. Welding lens hoods are available in two versions: with a conventional built-in lens and with a special darkened lens. In this article, we will take a detailed look at the best welding helmet under $100 with auto-darkening.
What is the Best Welding Helmet Under $100
The auto-darkening welding helmet is equipped with a special lens or filter made of tinted glass. The automatic darkening filter was first invented in Sweden in 1981, when an electronic shutter was introduced to the public, which could darken the surrounding space when sensors located on it recorded any manifestations of brightness. This has opened up new horizons for the welding process, in which all welders no longer need to come up with additional ways to protect themselves from light. Now you just need to put on your helmet and start welding directly.
Most lenses have a 10-layer coating to protect them from infra-red and UV rays. Welding helmets also avoid the possibility of burning the retina, which can lead to complete or partial loss of vision. The material itself, which is usually made of the helmet body-a very resistant type of plastic, which gives the helmet an extraordinary lightness and beauty of design. Welding covers that can completely cover your head can give you maximum protection, while providing the opportunity to work comfortably in any conditions.
How to Choose the Best Welding Helmet Under $100
During welding operations, modern high-tech equipment is able to independently turn on the darkening of the LCD display, taking power from a special built-in battery. The helmet is equipped with light sensors that are located next to the lens, they respond to the detection of the welding arc and automatically darken the lens with the necessary tinting. That is why, if you decide to buy a helmet with a darkening lens, its quality should be the main factor. But this is not the only nuance, there are several other factors that you should consider when buying a welding helmet with auto-darkening. We have selected a few tips for you that will help you not make a mistake when buying and spend your money effectively.
There are several ways to supply power to your welding helmet. There are models that are equipped with non-removable, and therefore non-replaceable lithium or solar batteries, and there are helmets in which you can replace the power source in case of problems. If you often do welding work outdoors, then you should pay attention to a helmet with a built-in solar battery. But if you are going to conduct deep welding, you should think about the battery. If you chose the non-replaceable battery option, then its service life is seven years. Of course, you may think that this is enough, but at the end of this period, you will get a piece of useless dump at your disposal, which will only need to be disposed of. You may want to purchase models with replacement batteries so that you can replace the retired battery yourself. One of the disadvantages: the battery may run out during the welding process, but we think that if you bought a model with a replacement battery, then you should have another one ready for replacement nearby.
If you work with welding with different materials, you will need the ability to adjust the lenses while working. For stainless steel and aluminum, which differ in thickness, you need to use completely different types of welding rods. Different lenses give completely different welding current, so adjusting the lenses is an absolutely necessary function. Most adjustable lenses are equipped with adjustment options #9, # 12, or # 1. There is still a shade number 13, but it is only used in extreme cases, when you have to work with a high welding current or if your eyes have a special sensitivity.
ANSI Z87.1-2003 is the most modern type of safety standard for welding helmets. To ensure that all helmets are made according to the standard and do not violate it, they pass special tests to confirm the quality, which include: dimming settings, switching speed and many other options. Also, all helmets are thoroughly tested for strength, especially from the impact of objects flying off in them of different degrees of hardness, one hundred percent protection from all types of welding rays, to withstand high speeds and high temperatures when heated. Any helmet that can withstand 131 degrees Fahrenheit passes this test and goes into production.
It is very important to pay attention when buying a helmet to the speed of switching the dimming of your chosen model. Do not choose helmets if they do not guarantee a speed of less than 1-25000 fractions of a second. The higher the delay when switching the dimming, the longer you will have to wait for the desired dimming to be selected.
The sharpness of the lens
The best indicator for this parameter is one hundred percent, since only in this case you will fully see the entire welding process and will not be able to make a mistake that can lead to a bad result.
Sensitivity and delay monitoring
Sometimes your helmet turns on the blackout when there is no need for it at the moment. If the helmet is equipped with adjustable sensitivity, then this annoying misunderstanding will definitely not happen. The delay controls are a great way to protect your helmet from damage from a red-hot weld. Moreover, if something is a nuisance, setting the delay will cause the sensors to respond more slowly, and then adjust to the light again. This will allow you to effectively hold the lens on one dimming option, helping you not to suffer from a sharp flash of welding current.
The weight of a welding helmet
Remember that the entire weight of the welding helmet will fall on your head during operation. You are guaranteed to want the load on your neck to be minimal, so the weight of the helmet should be chosen based on these motives. Moreover, working with welding in some cases takes a huge amount of time, which is harmful to your neck, so a lightweight helmet will allow you to continue working without serious consequences for your health. The lightest helmets are in the 18-to 21-ounce weight range. Of course, they will not be able to guarantee absolute comfort during long-term work, but they will give less stress on the neck. Moreover, you will get tired much later than with a helmet heavier than this weight.
Best Welding Helmet Under $100
This helmet includes four of the sensor, respectively the four-level dimmable is available. Its design includes a well-made headband, a ratchet mechanism, and a comfortable lining that helps you wear it comfortably on your head while performing welding work. This helmet is equipped with the ability to adjust its size depending on the size of the user’s head. On the back there is a special handle that allows you to adjust the size of the helmet and adjust it to the needs of the user. A total of six size adjustment settings are available, which can be conveniently switched. All available options for adjusting auto-darkening are ideal for the main set of types of welding work performed. Inside the helmet are controls with fine-tuning sensitivity and the ability to adjust the delay of switching modes. We have already mentioned sensitivity in our article, but we will remind you again. This thing allows you to automatically adjust the desired auto-darkening using sensors that respond to light falling on them. In the initial operation, it is better to install this lever in the middle, if you do not want your helmet to react even to the slightest fluctuations in light and often switch modes, which will only interfere with your welding process.
We didn’t adjust the speed during the tests, leaving the lever in the position it was originally in. In principle, it works fine as it is. If you want more information about how this function works, we recommend that you ask when purchasing, in which position it is best to put it during special types of welding operations. Our tests have shown that the position in the middle is optimal for all major welding processes. We recommend paying special attention to the lens switching mode. There are two modes in this helmet: 9-13 and 5-9. The first is ideal for any type of standard welding, and the second is best used when you are working with a plasma cutter. Modes are also conveniently switched.
|Excellent compatibility with the cheater lens|
Built-in both an ultralight lithium battery and a solar panel
The grinding function allows you to work with both the main types of modern welding and with a plasma cutter
Decent price with good quality
|The plastic doesn’t look reliable and may start to scratch quickly|
The blackout doesn’t happen instantly, so you have to wait a while
This helmet suddenly exceeded all our expectations for a helmet in such a low price category. This is exactly what you should buy if your budget is limited to a hundred dollars. The helmet weighs just one pound, which maximizes your fatigue during long-term work when you put it on. There is another aspect that makes this helmet the best in its category, and even more so for such a low price. It has an incredible amount of adjustment options to subtly adjust to the head of any person who decides to wear it. When we put this helmet on during tests and looked at the lens, it seemed to us a little brighter than the lenses in other models we tested.
The helmet has the function of instant darkening, but when this happens, a small blurred line appears, which does not particularly spoil the overall picture, but when spot welding can interfere with high-precision work. The numbers in this model are from 6 to 13, but somewhere from 11 we noticed a large blurring, which greatly interferes with watching your work during the welding process. Simply put, this is a very bright helmet. In principle, it depends on your personal lens settings, you will be able to figure out for yourself how best to look through it at what is happening. However, we do not recommend that you increase the value above nine, so you will get the most out of working in this helmet. Despite this, we have found a really great helmet for you, which will suit you if your budget is very limited, and a helmet for welding is very necessary. In addition, when buying a helmet, the manufacturer provides a pair of excellent gloves for welding, which is a very good bonus for this price.
|The gift includes a pair of excellent premium Kevlar welding gloves|
The manufacturer guarantees stable operation of its products
There is a special signal indicator that notifies you of a reduced battery charge
Customer service is excellent, we really enjoyed it
|It will not last you long, despite all its advantages|
Auto-darkening may disappear, which is very unpleasant during welding operations
It’s a bit difficult to open the battery compartment, it’s tightly locked and it’s an adventure to open it
This helmet, according to the results of our test, is the best that you can find in this price range. We came to the conclusion that this will be a great option for those who are looking for a cheap and high-quality welding helmet. To begin with, the helmet is made in a cool design with a stylish eagle for those who like to stand out in everything, even in such a small thing as a welding helmet. According to our tests, the helmet proved to be safe both for basic welding operations and for arc welding with a plasma cutter. The helmet is powered by a built-in battery, which is assisted by a solar panel installed in it. Even if the battery suddenly fails, the solar panel will pick up its work and protect you from unnecessary effects of welding rays on your eyes.
Another main advantage of this welding helmet is its ease of use. With the help of a special strap, you can adjust it to your head, as you like. In addition, the helmet is equipped with improved visibility and the ability to recognize all colors. Another advantage of this welding helmet is its lightweight. It weighs only one pound, which allows you to work in this helmet for hours and still not feel severe pain in the neck. At the price offered by the manufacturer, you can hardly find something better and more advanced. Therefore, we suggest that you do not miss your chance and choose this helmet if your budget is limited to $ 100.
|A bunch of extra protective films included|
Comfortable wrap for your head
Automatic dimming is adjustable
Cheap price, with excellent quality
|The hood is too heavy|
The lens is slightly yellow and not particularly contrasting
Best Welding Helmet with Automatic Dimming up to $ 200
If you ask us to describe this helmet briefly, we can tell you the following: it is quite light, but this lightness does not harm its strength. The nice thing is that you can adjust the height of this welding helmet and it looks like you are adjusting a baseball cap on your head. Agree, it sounds very convenient. But we do not forget about the technical characteristics: the hue is adjustable from 9 to 13 plus you have a wide viewing angle, which makes the welding process very convenient. There are many adjustment options on the back of the ratchet. This allows you to quickly put on and take off your helmet without getting lost in its intricacies. When the helmet is fully closed, you can adjust the angle to raise it higher or tilt it lower to the chin. This function plays a big role if you suddenly need to wear a respiratory mask during work.
In addition, this welding helmet has passed all the necessary tests and meets the country’s safety standards. This equipment is able to adjust to any welding work, while providing you with a high level of safety from damage to the retina or skin areas. In addition, the helmet belongs to a fairly popular collection of Kimberly-Clark Profession, which has managed to prove itself by the fact that it includes only high-quality welding helmets. Without any doubt, this helmet will be an excellent choice for those who often do welding work in their garage or workshop.
Sensitive lens for automatic dimming
Complies with all the applicable safety standards
It is used in almost all types of welding
|The plastic itself looks pretty cheap|
If you wear a respirator, it may be a little uncomfortable
Outside, you have all the controls for auto-darkening shades at your disposal. You can adjust the shade for sanding operations or for the main types of welding, from 9 to 13. On the front panel of this welding helmet, there are two sensors that allow it to quickly respond to changes in welding current and switch to the desired level of automatic dimming almost instantly. The headdress of the hinged type is very well attached to the back of the head and does not fall off during the welding process. Inside there are slots for the cheater lens, which can be easily placed, because these slots are very convenient and specially adapted for this item. The device is powered by a simple CR2450 battery, which is so common that you can buy it at almost any local store. The set includes the back of the helmet and several closing external lenses, which will allow you to save on them in the future.
|The battery is easy to replace and is sold almost everywhere|
It has a decent strength, can withstand almost any type of welding
Made of polycarbonate, which reduces its weight and volume
|Don’t rate your equipment|
Made in China, so quality is not always guaranteed
Hobart is a fairly popular brand that is currently leading the market. We will not lie if we tell you that in this price category, this mask is considered one of the best. We found this device completely by accident and decided to check whether it is as good as its advertising sounds. For those who have previously had a lot of trouble putting on a helmet, let’s say this: this welding mask is equipped with a comfortable reclining back with a very soft cushion. The ratchet mechanism is surprisingly flexible. You have the ability to adjust the tilt level, and you can simply close and open the hood. We liked the ability to set a minimum delay on this welding helmet. We also recommend that you use a dimming level of 10. The high-tech built-in screen perfectly protects your eyes from external influences, while it has excellent thermal stability. This allows you to feel not only comfortable, but also completely safe.
|It is convenient to put on your head before work|
Very fast response time to changes in the environment
The hood has an amazing lightness and durability
|It looks very narrow|
It is quite difficult to get the lens out of the mask
Best Welding Helmet with Automatic Dimming up to $300
There are several good reasons why we consider this welding helmet to be the best in its price category on the market today. First of all, we were thrilled with the wide view around you when you put it on. The hood itself is made of a special material that can bend to fit the shape of the user’s head. This helmet has one of the best hats among the models that we tested as part of writing this article. It fits perfectly on your head, as if merging with it, and this is a very cool moment that will play an important role when choosing a helmet for you personally. And for this money, you also get a cool high-tech screen equipped with all the necessary functions for comfortable welding operations.
Among this variety, there is a choice of eight preset settings and the ability to fine-tune the helmet specifically to your needs. By pressing a special button, you can watch the welding process in all its beauty without fear, as if you are looking at the flash without a helmet. At the same time, you do not risk burning the retina and are completely safe from radiation coming from welding.
|Amazing visibility of your welding work|
Maximum protection against damage of any degree
Perfectly fitted to any head
The material is very flexible and durable
|The lens may get fogged up when you work in it for a long time|
Still, it costs a lot of money
A little heavy, despite the fact that there are lighter models
In addition to the obvious cool design in the style of red fashionable color with black stripes, this helmet has the widest viewing window among the ones we consider in this article. A cheater lens is built-in case you need to zoom in during spot welding operations. The helmet has the ability to switch shades from 5 to 8 for various types of welding, including gas. Shades from nine to thirteen are perfect for most modern types of welding work. One of the main features of this welding helmet is its lightweight. It is also equipped with a durable headdress with an absorbent bandage that will protect you from the presence of excess sweat during prolonged work with welding. When you lift the helmet, special teeth click on the edges of the gear. After that, to remove it, you just need to slightly tilt your head forward.
|The kit includes various useful accessories|
Equipped with the widest viewing window of the models presented by us
Working comfort will exceed your expectations
When magnified, it has increased clarity
|Despite its lightness, it is heavier than many other models|
It is quite expensive
Your coat may get scratched
We have been using this helmet for about a year, and we believe that we are ready to give it a final verdict. If you are now not just an Amateur in welding, but consider yourself an excellent professional, then you should pay close attention to this welding mask. It is exceptional in one point of its functions – the presence of three independent arc ignition sensors in the arc focus. Because of this, when the arc is completely extinguished, you can switch entirely to automatic dimming and use it. It has seven different shades, five of them are adapted for spot welding. Shades from eight to thirteen are used for a wide range of welding operations. Another unusual thing about this helmet is the presence of two strong protective plates on the sides, which significantly increase your viewing angle during the welding process. If you have a desire, you can cover them with plates.
|It has a wide ability to adjust the sensitivity|
The headdress is designed for your comfort and reduces fatigue during long hours of work
Excellent battery life
|The price is very high|
Best Welding Helmet with Automatic Dimming up to $500
The only helmet that we can recommend to you in this price category after numerous tests of other models, which we probably will not mention at all in this article. We will not focus on the quality of this model, because it is assembled perfectly and meets all accepted safety standards. With three different sensitivity levels, this device can respond to a change in the welding arc almost instantly. The lens with five automatically selected shades, along with sensitivity levels and instant response, will make your work as comfortable as possible and will not force you to adjust all the necessary functions manually. The helmet perfectly copes with all types of welding that exist today, and the owner of this helmet will always feel as comfortable as possible. This high price is due to the fact that there is a silver panel on which you can control absolutely any functions that you can access easily and without unnecessary stress.
|Provides the necessary protection during welding operations|
Fully complies with all accepted safety standards
Provides a wide viewing angle when welding
The controls are easy to use
|The solar panel function is not supported|
The helmet is very expensive
In the practice of amateur welders, chameleon masks with automatic light filters have completely replaced traditional masks with replaceable glasses. Often they are used by professionals, keeping the usual mask only for work in the cold (when the “chameleons” noticeably begin to lag with the inclusion) or with several colleagues at the same time (automation begins to respond to the light from someone else’s arc). The reason for this is simple: at a fairly affordable price, the automatic mask makes the welder’s work much more convenient, makes it easier for beginners to practice the arc ignition skill, and easily adapts to different working conditions. Disabling the light filter allows you to use the mask to protect your eyes when cleaning seams with abrasive balls and disks.
The most important parameter of the mask filter is its dimming, measured in standard DIN units. Depending on the operating conditions, different light filter densities are required: for argon arc welding or welding with a conventional electrode at the same current, a darker filter is required than for semi-automatic welding. Budget masks usually have a minimum of settings – usually you can only change the reaction time and delay of lightning located inside the controls, the degree of darkening is not regulated. More expensive models have smooth adjustment of the dimmer and the reaction time, taken out to the outside.
In fact, it was very difficult to find the best welding helmet under $100 from the variety that is the modern market for such devices. Since they all have their own advantages and disadvantages, we had to do a lot of testing to provide you with information that is based on our personal experience. In order for you to choose the best welding helmet for yourself, you will have to focus on your preferences and the available funds that you can afford to spend on such equipment. From what we tested, we liked the latest model the most, but it is too high in price, and we understand that not everyone can afford to buy such an expensive welding helmet. Some helmets made us feel as light as if we weren’t wearing them at all, which is a huge advantage for those who do frequent and long-term welding work. Many helmets also proved to be quite durable and resistant to temperatures, although some showed their fragility and quickly fell into disrepair. We have tried to indicate all this in our article. We hope that you will find the best welding helmet under $100 for yourself by reading our detailed review of the best models in different price categories.