The modern day welding helmets can trace its ancestor way back in 1937 when Wilson Products introduced the modern day welding helmet precursor. Welding helmets are a must for welders in order to protect their eyes, face and neck from flash burn, UV light, sparks, infrared light and heat generated by the welding process. Welding helmets are mostly used when doing arc welding. Some of the accidents that can be prevented by using welding helmets are arc eye, retina burns and sunburn-like condition on uncovered skin.
Welding helmets must pass a standard quality test so that users will be assured that it will work and protect them at the same time. Welding helmets have a window that is covered with a lens shade that acts as a filter. This window is where the welder looks through to see the weld area. The window filters are made from different kinds of materials such as tinted glass, tinted plastic, a polarized lens and the latest one, the electronic LCD shutter. The electronic LCD shutter automatically darkens when exposed to the bright light of the welding arc. The auto darken feature eliminates the need for welders to nod their heads in order to lower the helmet to their face.
The welding helmet is only one part of the protective gear that welders are required to wear every time they do their job. Wearing the helmet and all the other protective gears can be uncomfortable to the welder, especially the beginners but they are worn to protect the welder from various welding hazards. However, latest innovations have lent a hand to ease the discomfort of wearing welding helmets. The auto darken mode of the LCD screen is one. Another innovation is the flip lens which enables the welder to switch lens for better vision. Moreover, this technology can also be used and adjusted to fit whatever welding helmet a welder has. It can also be adjusted so that the welder can have a wider viewing area that gives him a better view of the welding job.
However cumbersome and uncomfortable welding helmets are, they are worn for a purpose and welders should use them or face the health consequences.