10 Best Welding Helmets for Beginners + Buying Guide

As you can see from the featured photo above, there are still a lot of old-style helmets working every day, day in and day out. For some people, old habits die hard. And, to a certain degree, I understand where they are coming from.

However, the welding helmet and its lenses for filtering out the brilliant light and UV rays created by the welding arc is the most important piece of equipment a welder uses. The modern welding helmet has many advantages over the helmets used just 25 years ago.

Modern helmets have features that allow the beginner to weld with much-improved accuracy and enjoyment. Since space-age electronics and larger viewing areas have been introduced, most of us have no going back.

For those of you looking for quick information, here are my top three welding helmets for beginners.

ImageFeaturesScorePrice
Best Overall
Lincoln Electric Viking Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

Lincoln Electric Viking Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

  • Large 12.5 Square Inch Auto Darkening Lens
  • Premium Optics with a Crystal Clear View
  • Comfortable Adjustable X6 Headgear
  • 3 Year Warranty
9.3
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Best Value for Money
Antra AH6 Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

Antra AH6 Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

  • Full Face and Neck Protection
  • Highly Responsive Arc Sensors
  • Extremely Lightweight Design for Reduced Muscle Fatigue
  • Sonar Panels Extend Battery Life
8.9
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Best on a Budget
YESWELDER Solar Powered Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

YESWELDER Solar Powered Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

  • Suitable For TIG, MIG, MMA
  • 8 Square Inch Viewing Area
  • Comes with Replacement Lenses
  • Comfortable Pivot Style Headgear
7.4
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For this review, I have considered that a beginner may rapidly make several high-cost purchases to start welding. Meaning, the budget may be a little tight at the moment.

However, a good investment in a helmet now will pay huge dividends for many years. The right helmet will greatly improve your welding experience.

Read through my instructions on how to use a welding helmet if you are a beginner.

1. Antra AH6-260-0000

Antra AH6 Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
8.9/10Our Score
  • Full Face and Neck Protection
  • Highly Responsive Arc Sensors
  • Extremely Lightweight Design for Reduced Muscle Fatigue
  • Sonar Panels Extend Battery Life

The Antra AH6-260 welding helmet offers many features at a reasonable price. It’s difficult not to take a closer look at it because it has several characteristics found in much more expensive helmets.

It has a variable shade lens ranging from 4 to 13 to cover almost any welding, cutting, or grinding work without changing hoods or goggles between jobs. The ability to filter light at the optimal level for welders improves job quality and decreases eye strain. Usually, more expensive helmets have a wider shade range that can be adjusted.

While the Antra has extra inner and outer lenses, there are a few add-ons and replacement parts that may be useful, including:

  • Exterior lens covers
  • Inner lens covers
  • Head Gear
  • Hard hat adapter
  • Sweat Band
  • Auto Darkening Lens
  • Cheater Lens

Antra AH6 welding helmet features

  • Auto Darkening – Yes
  • Grinder Shade Setting – Yes
  • Adjustable Shade Range(s) – 4/5-9/9-13
  • ANSI Certified – Yes
  • Adjustable Delay – Yes
  • Adjustable Sensitivity – Yes
  • Viewing Area – 3.86” x 1.73” or 6.68 square inches
  • Extra Lenses – Yes

Pros:

Lower Cost, Lots of features, including replacement lenses

Cons:

Small viewing area

I wrote a more detailed review about Antra AH6-260 welding helmer, you might find interesting

2. DekoPRO Welding Helmet

Most Affordable
DEKOPRO Welding Helmet
7.2/10Our Score
  • Auto-darkening filter switches from light to dark in 1/25000 sec
  • Protects against UV and IR radiation
  • Sensitivity and delay settings
  • Comfortable and adjustable headgear

DekoPRO welding helmet features

  • Auto Darkening – Yes
  • Grinder Shade Setting – Yes
  • Adjustable Shade Range(s) – 4/9-13
  • ANSI Certified – Yes
  • Adjustable Delay – Yes
  • Adjustable Sensitivity – Yes
  • Viewing Area – 3.62” x 1.65” or 5.97 square inches
  • Extra Lenses – No

Pros:

Tied for the lowest cost in the group, good features

Cons:

Small viewing area, No replacement lenses included

3. Lincoln Electric VIKING 3350 Welding Helmet

Lincoln Electric Viking 3350 Welding Helmet
8.4/10Our Score
  • Most Expensive Option
  • 12.5 square inch viewing area
  • Includes replacement lenses, bandana, and helmet bag
  • Reputable manufacturer

Lincoln Electric Viking 3350 welding helmet features

  • Auto Darkening – Yes
  • Grinder Shade Setting – Yes
  • Adjustable Shade Range(s) – 3.5/5-13
  • ANSI Certified – Yes
  • Adjustable Delay – Yes
  • Adjustable Sensitivity – Yes
  • Viewing Area – 3.74” x 3.34” or 12.49 square inches
  • Extra Lenses – Yes, plus helmet bag and bandana

Pros:

Largest viewing area of the group, all the best features including replacement lenses, bandana and helmet bag, well-known manufacturer

Cons:

Most expensive in group

4. Antra AH7-360-000 Welding Helmet

Antra AH7 Welding Helmet
8.1/10Our Score
  • Upgraded Version of the Antra AH6
  • Power Off Delay
  • 4 Premium Redundant Arc Sensors
  • Suitable for Plasma Cutting, Grinding, TIG, MIG, Stick Welding

Astra AH7 welding helmet features

  • Auto Darkening – Yes
  • Grinder Shade Setting – Yes
  • Adjustable Shade Range(s) – 4/5-9/9-13
  • ANSI Certified – Yes
  • Adjustable Delay – Yes
  • Adjustable Sensitivity – Yes
  • Viewing Area – 3.86” x 2.07” or 7.99 square inches
  • Extra Lenses – Yes

Pros:

Lower price, Slightly larger viewing area than the Anthra AH6-260, and Lots of features, including replacement lenses

Cons:

Smaller viewing area, but getting there

5. Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

Miller Electric Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
7.5/10Our Score
  • Includes replacement lenses and helmet bag
  • 7 square inch viewing area
  • Unique Flame Graphic Design
  • Ratchet Headgear

Auto Darkening welding helmet features

  • Auto Darkening – Yes
  • Grinder Shade Setting – Yes
  • Adjustable Shade Range(s) – 3/5-8/8-13
  • ANSI Certified – Yes
  • Adjustable Delay – Yes
  • Adjustable Sensitivity – Yes
  • Viewing Area – 3.8” x 1.9” or 7.22 square inches
  • Extra Lenses – Yes, with Helmet Bag

Pros: 

Most of the best features include replacement lenses and helmet bag, from a well known manufacturer

Cons:

Smaller viewing area, second highest priced in group

6. iMeshbean Pro Welding helmet

iMeshbean Pro Welding helmet
7.4/10Our Score
  • Affordable Alternative
  • Can be used for Arc, Mag, Mig, Mma, Stick & Tig Welding, or Plasma Cutting
  • Includes Two Extra Lenses
  • Stunning Graphic Design

Imeshbean Pro welding helmet features

  • Auto Darkening – Yes
  • Grinder Shade Setting – Yes
  • Adjustable Shade Range(s) – 4/9-13
  • ANSI Certified – Yes
  • Adjustable Delay – Yes
  • Adjustable Sensitivity – Yes
  • Viewing Area – 3.8 x 1.9 inch
  • Extra Lenses – Yes

Pros:

Low cost, good features, two extra lenses included

Cons:

Small viewing area

7. Miller Electric Welding Helmet

Miller Electric Classic Series Welding Helmet
8.2/10Our Score
  • Leading Manufacturer Of High-Quality Products
  • Middle of the Road Cost and Features
  • Smaller Viewing Area
  • Includes Replacement Lenses

Miller Features

  • Auto Darkening – Yes
  • Grinder Shade Setting – No
  • Adjustable Shade Range(s) – 8-12
  • ANSI Certified – Yes
  • Adjustable Delay – Yes
  • Adjustable Sensitivity – Yes
  • Viewing Area – 5.15 square inches
  • Extra Lenses – Yes

Pros: 

Decent features, Middle of the road cost, Includes replacement lenses

Cons: 

Small viewing area, No grinder shade setting

8. DEKOPRO with Wide Lens

DEKOPRO Welding Helmet with Wide Lens
7.8/10Our Score
  • Up to 5000 hours Battery Life
  • 12.5 square inch viewing area
  • No replacement lenses included
  • Affordable price tag and reasonable features

DEKOPRO welding helmet features

  • Auto Darkening – Yes
  • Grinder Shade Setting – Yes
  • Adjustable Shade Range(s) – 4/9-13
  • ANSI Certified – Yes
  • Adjustable Delay – Yes
  • Adjustable Sensitivity – Yes
  • Viewing Area – 3.2” x 3.9” or 12.48 square inches
  • Extra Lenses – No

Pros: 

Virtually same sized viewing area as the largest in the group, Decent pricing, Good features

Cons: 

No Replacement lenses included

9. YESWELDER True Color Welding Helmet

Best on a Budget
YESWELDER Solar Powered Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
7.4/10Our Score
  • Suitable For TIG, MIG, MMA
  • 8 Square Inch Viewing Area
  • Comes with Replacement Lenses
  • Comfortable Pivot Style Headgear

YESWelder Features

  • Auto Darkening – Yes
  • Grinder Shade Setting – Yes
  • Adjustable Shade Range(s) – 4/9-13
  • ANSI Certified – Yes
  • Adjustable Delay – Yes
  • Adjustable Sensitivity – Yes
  • Viewing Area – 3.64″X1.67″
  • Extra Lenses – No

Pros: 

Low Cost, Great features

Cons: 

Smaller viewing area, No replacement lenses included

10. Jackson Safety Insight

Jackson Safety Auto Darkening Welding Helmet
7.5/10Our Score
  • True Color and 1/1/1/1 Optical Clarity
  • Digital Control
  • 9.3 square inch Viewing Area
  • Middle of the road cost and features

Jackson Safety Insight Features

  • Auto Darkening – Yes
  • Grinder Shade Setting – Yes
  • Adjustable Shade Range(s) – 4/9-13
  • ANSI Certified – Yes
  • Adjustable Delay – Yes
  • Adjustable Sensitivity – Yes
  • Viewing Area – 2.36” x 3.93” or 9.27 square inches
  • Extra Lenses – No

Pros: 

Middle of the road cost, Good features, Larger than average viewing area

Cons: 

No replacement lenses included

best welding helmets for beginners

Frequently Asked Questions

Why should I buy a welding helmet with a larger viewing area?

Keep in mind that with a larger viewing area coupled with a wide shading range, you may be able to use the one helmet to perform almost all grinding, cutting, and welding jobs. This reduces the need for and therefore offsets the cost of tinted goggles for cutting and face shields for grinding and buffing.

What factors contribute to the high cost of welding helmets?

In most cases, a welding helmet with the largest viewing area also costs the most, has all the top features, comes with a couple of extra goodies and is manufactured by a well-established company.

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