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At A Glance: Our Top Picks for Welding Glasses
Welding is a dangerous occupation. A welder uses high-powered welding torches to cut through various thicknesses of metals and to melt the metal edges into weld seams and weld joints.
As such, a welder is exposed to the risks of electric shock, injuries related to the inhalation of toxic fumes, eye injury, and skin burns.
That is why it is essential that a welder wear protective clothing and equipment during all welding operations including helmets, shields, safety glasses, gloves, aprons and the right type of shoes.
According to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, approximately 2,00 U.S. workers receive medical treatment every day after suffering an eye-related injury on the job.
During welding and cutting operations, one of the most important pieces of safety gear a welder can own is a good pair of welding safety glasses which serves as a decent alternate to lenses.
Welding operators must use welding safety glasses to protect their eyes from heat, glare, and flying hot metal fragments. Even if a welder wears a welding helmet or face shield, welding safety glasses should be worn underneath because welders frequently lift their shields.
So what are the best welding glasses?
The best welding glasses are easily the Miller Electric Shade 5.0. A little more heavy duty than the others, they offer a full range of protection. They may be a little pricier, but when it comes to your eye health and vision you don't want to skimp on costs. Get the highest quality option you can get for now so you don't have to pay thousands to alleviate future eye issues.
By Gregory Sanders: This article has been updated to reflect the most accurate information regarding welding safety glasses available for those who are interested in welding protection. The top 6 have changed, and information has been added to assist individuals in finding them the perfect welding glasses. The FAQ has also been updated.
Best Welding Glasses 2020
While there are many brands and types of welding safety glasses on the market, not all welding glasses will offer the features you need. Here are the top 6 on the market.
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These Miller Electric Shade 5 glasses are perfect for light work where you don't need a full on auto darkening welding helmet. They are dark enough for grinding metals or using a torch, but the eye protection won't work well for arc welding.
These Shade 10 welding googles are dark enough to provide protection against most UV rays. If you're doing heavy some welding and don't want to be bothered by a helmet then these are a great welding safety goggles.
Weight: 0.8 ounces
Sizes: 2.6 x 5.5 x 1,7 inches
Colors: Welding shade 5.0 green lens
These Jackson Safety Glasses have green lenses and welding shade 5.0. It's not a welding helmet, so like all glasses it's best to keep your work light with these. They'll still protect your eyes though and you're able to see fine despite the slight green coloration.
Weight: 12.8 ounces
Sizes: 7.5 x 3.5 x 3 inches
Colors: Black/silver plastic frame
Features to Look for in Welding Glasses
How do you know what to look for when shopping for a good pair of welding safety glasses? OSHA requires employers to provide proper eye protection to all workers who might encounter hazards in the workplace.
Even if you are just a hobby or home use welder, you need a good pair of welding safety glasses. Among the most important factors when choosing a suitable pair of welding glasses are fit, Impact resistance and UV protection.
Sizing and Fit
An essential element to look for is the side protection provided by safety glasses. Remember that dangerous particles do not always fly directly from the front. Side shields or wrap-around frames are important elements of protection.
Of course, how your welding glasses feel on you is also important, so check out their weight and comfort. Since you will be using them often for long stretches, it is important that they not make you uncomfortable or become a burden during your work.
Proper padding where they rest on your nose and ears, as well as any other points they touch your face and head, are among the features that can help keep you comfortable.
The best way to find the right pair is by trying several different types to determine the size, shape and comfort level that best suits you.
Is the second important aspect of choosing welding safety glasses. The American National Standards Institute (ANSI) Z87.1-1989 standard for industrial impact resistance calls for clear polycarbonate lenses. These usually are best when working indoors, to protect from sparks, splashes, and flying particles.
Whether you use safety glasses or goggles can depend on the type of job you are doing. Goggles provide a seal around their eyes, but glasses with side shields can also provide a lot of protection from flying particles.
Shade is a third important aspect of choosing safety glasses and is a number from 2-14. The higher the number, the more powerful safety eye protection there will be.
Most welding processes give off an extreme amount of the light – literally as bright as the sun so that severe eye damage can occur without proper protection. Of course, it is also necessary to look at the job at hand to be able to create a solid weld.
A special dark filter allows you to look directly at the welding arc while also being adequately protected. Auto-darkening welding lenses or glasses are a particularly good choice for those involved in arc welding where the electric light produced can give off significant amounts of radiation.
For outdoor work, such as on the construction site, welding sunglasses can keep eyes safe from debris and other job site hazards while incorporating a mirrored lens that protects eyes against the brightness of the sun. Other features that are available in welding safety glasses include:
Welding Goggles or welding safety glasses with a 360-degree foam liner often are recommended for cutting and grinding environments, as well as on construction sites, to completely cover the eye because these operations tend to create a great deal of dust.
If you’re working in areas where condensation occurs, consider purchasing a pair of welding safety glasses with an anti-fog coating.
Bifocal Safety Glasses
If you need extra help reading or viewing close work, bi-focal safety glasses are available.
What are welding glasses made of?
Welding glasses are made of a polycarbonate lens shade over a plastic lens, and the frame is usually made out of metal or polycarbonate. These materials are able to withstand heat, prevent damage from your eyes, and can auto-adjust.
How do welding glasses work?
Welding glasses work by using shades to filter out visible light wavelengths that may damage your eyes. Similar to how sunglasses protect your eyes from the sun, welding glasses use more specific technology to protect a welder's eyes from flames and sparks that can cause damage.
What is the best shade for welding?
The best shade for welding is 7-10 (OHSA) and 11-14 (ANSI & AWS) shade numbers. The lower the arc current the lower the shade grade can be.
What type of glasses are used in welding?
The type of glasses that are used in welding are welding glasses, which are typically made of polycarbonate with shades on the lenses to reduce glare.
What do welding shade numbers mean?
Welding shade numbers represent how effective they are in reducing the light that goes through the shade filters to your eyes. The higher the number, the more protection it offers. While there are minimum guidelines, the higher the number is the better.
Do safety glasses protect from welding flash?
Safety glasses protect from welding flash by filtering out up to 99% of the harmful light particles and radiation.
Is it bad to wear safety glasses all day?
It is not bad to wear safety glasses all day. There are no long term impacts on your vision, wearing them all day will just take longer for your eyes to adjust to different brightness. It's an age old myth that it will negatively affect vision, but there is no research or studies to suggest that wearing them all day will have long term effects on an individual's vision.
The whole body must be protected when welding due to the potentially dangerous nature of the craft, and the eyes have special safety needs due to the seriousness of the injuries that can result from impact, UV rays, and improper fit.