The best safety glasses for welders is a necessity from a health and occupational risk. You need to wear appropriate welding goggles or a welding helmet for adequate eye protection to prevent blindness. OSHA requires employers to provide suitable eye safety to all employees who work in dangerous environments. According to Liberty Mutual Research Institute for Safety, eye injuries are one fourth of all welding injuries.
Welders should also wear safety goggles under their helmets. You should especially wear welding goggles with side shields when gas welding oxygen cutting. They will protect your eye from dust, radiation hazards, and impact.
Importance of PPE – 4 Types of PPE
PPE is equipment to protect the user against safety and health risks in the workplace. PPE is also referred to as personal protective equipment. The four types of PPE include:
- Hand Protection – gloves and creams
- Hearing Protection – headphone, plugs, and ear muffs
- Eye Protection – helmets, shields, safety glasses, and goggles
- Respiratory Protection – air line or ventilator
4 Common Welding Risks to Health
- Flash burn to your eyes from exposure to bright ultraviolet light (UV). It’s commonly referred to as ‘arc eye’ or ‘welders flash’. The bright arc welding light will cause permanent damage without a welding helmet, glasses, or goggles.
- Splatter and sparks flying off the welding arc.
- Fumes – Welding goggles prevent harmful fumes and gases from getting in your eyes. UV radiation and fumes can increase your risk of developing melanoma in your eye, according to the Cancer Council Australia.
- Extreme heat can cause blisters on your skin or singe eyebrows.
Different Types of Welding Glasses
Whether you are a professional or home use welder, you need to find suitable glasses for a proper value and price. Here are 7 features to consider when buying welding glasses and goggles.
Fit – is important since you will be wearing them all day. You want to find a pair that fits comfortable with the proper size, shape, and padding.
Shade – The welding shade number indicates the level of lens darkness. Each welding process gives off varying degrees of bright light from the arc. The welding safety glasses shade ranges from 3 to 13. The higher the shade the more light it can withstand. Shade 3 is recommended for soldering and torch brazing.
Shade 8 to shade 12 is for stock welding. MIG and TIG should be between shade 8 to shade 10. When working with carbon, you need arc welding goggles shade 14 or greater.
Here is the OSHA Fact Sheet with its welding shade recommendations for each type of welding process. They recommend you start with a darker shade then go lighter for sufficient viewing. Safety glasses protect from welding flash as long as they have a high shade number.
IR and UV Protection – the best eye glasses to protect you from both infrared wavelengths and UV light produced by the arc.
Impact Resistance – What are welding glasses made of? The American National Standards Institute requires impact resistant clear polycarbonate lenses for safety. Impact resistance will protect your glasses when they accidentally fall.
Dust Protection – welding goggles provide better protection vs glasses. Both protect from debris in front of you. The goggles also protect from fragments coming from the side.
Fogging – some glasses come with an anti-fog coating. Even with a protective coating, goggles are more likely to fog up. The best way to stop fogging glasses is to try Dove Soap anti-fog wipes, or Fog-X by Rain-X at an auto parts store.
Prescription Glasses – Most welding eye glasses will be too snug to wear prescription eyewear. It’s recommended you buy prescription welding glasses, like the Pyramex OTS we review below.
Welding Glasses vs Welding Helmet
The welding eye glasses are intended to only protect your eyes from debris. Unlike a welding helmet, goggles will not protect your face from the heat, debris, sparks, and splatter. Welding glasses protect you from dangerous debris that comes flying in from the side. A welding hood will be needed for arc welding. Unfortunately, using a welding helmet is like staring at your smartphone on a tiny screen vs a wider view from goggles. If you are working on different types of welding projects, we would recommend buying the best auto darkening welding helmet so don’t need a specific shade number.
5 Best Welding Goggles Reviews in 2018
The best welding goggles offer better viewing capabilities vs a welding helmet. The type of welding doesn’t matter because the design and lenses are much closer to your eyes. Good glasses will allow you to see colors distinctively because the distance of the lens to your face. Depending on the type of welding, you may need additional protection on your face and neck.
We will guide you on proper use and selection for the best safety glasses for welders.
#1. Best Miller Welding Goggles Review – Miller Electric Welding Goggles 267370
The best Miller welding goggles review likes them because they are comfortable, versatile, and its viewing capabilities. The Miller auto-darkening welding glasses run on replaceable batteries. The manufacturer says they have a 1,000 hour battery life. The goggles are lightweight and very comfortable. It’s good to wear in tight places, and flat and vertical welding positions. They are recommended when doing light duty TIG, MIG, oxy/fuel cutting, or plasma cutting safety goggles.[aawp box=”B00U9PPYH0″]
The 267370 are shade 13 welding goggles that range all the way down to 5. Its shade selection includes 5, 7, 9, 11, and 13. The lens goes as low as light state shade 3. You can manually lock the shade so it doesn’t auto-darken when you click the hold button. The Miller 267370 are green welding goggles in the lens. Miller Electric offers its True Blue 2-year warranty.The face shield and blue flame retardant detachable hood keeps you protected from sparks, splatter, and UV rays. Foggy goggles have been reported by users. To prevent fogging of the lens, it’s recommended getting a Miller low profile respirator.
- Shade 13, 11, 9, 7, 5, 3
- Auto darkening welding goggles
- Overhead welding capabilities
- Goggles for without respirator
Manufacturer: Miller Electric
Weight: 7.8 ounce mask
Shade: Shade range includes 3, 5, 7, 9, 11, 13
Accessories: Storage bag w/carry strap
Warranty: Miller True Blue 2-year warranty
Customer Reviews: 28+ user reviews
#2. Miller Welding Glasses Shade 5 – Miller Electric Shade 5.0 Welding Safety Glasses, Scratch-Resistant
The Miller welding glasses shade 5 is a great pair of protective eyewear. They are made with polycarbonate lenses and lightweight frame. The rubber pads at the ears make the Miller welding glasses very comfortable. They’re ANSI Z87.1 compliant and a unisex gender and universal size.[aawp box=”B003H1J5E6″]
The polarize reflective and scratch resistant coating make these wraparounds the best looking safety glasses on the market. The green lenses offer 99.9% protection against UV rays. Unlike welding goggles, the Miller glasses don’t get foggy.
Unfortunately, these are only shade 5 welding glasses. It is not recommended you use the Miller shade 5 welding glasses for TIG or MIG because of the bright arcs. These are meant for torch work or as Plasma cutting safety glasses. Do not view a solar eclipse with only these shade 5 glasses.
- Comfortable with rubber pads
- Wraparound snug fit
- UV protection, stylish, and scratch resistant lenses
- No warranty
- Cannot MIG or TIG due to bright arc
Manufacturer: Miller Electric
Weight: 14.4 ounces
Shade: Shade 5
Accessories: Storage bag w/carry strap
Warranty: No warranty
Customer Reviews: 115+ user reviews
#3. Prescription Welding Glasses – Pyramex OTS Over the Counter Prescription Welding Glasses
The Pyramex OTS are over the counter prescription welding glasses for welding that come in a variety of four welding filter lens colors. They are great for oxy welding and plasma cutting because the glass isn’t as dark as a welding helmet.[aawp box=”B00YA26742″]
The OTS offers low profile eyewear so you don’t have to wear large prescription safety glasses. The lenses are designed with polycarbonate to resist impact and help prevent scratches. They are lightweight 1.6 ounces nylon temples and small option for prescription protective eyewear. They’re designed with a molded nose bridge, none slipping, easy to clean, 99.9% UV protection, and ANSI Z87+ compliance. Pyramex built-in adjustable length and angle arms.
It’s commonly asked if these would be ideal or adequate to watch an eclipse. The Pyramex OTS prescription welding glasses are not solar eclipse glasses. We recommend welding safety glasses shade 14 lens or greater look at the sun.
- Small and lightweight glasses
- Adjustable arms and nose bridge
- Not MIG welding glasses
- Do not fit over RX prescription glasses
Manufacturer: Pyramex Safety
Weight: 1.6 ounces
Shade: Shade 3 and 5
Color: Black, clear, green/amber, gray
Warranty: Lifetime warranty against manufacturer defects
Customer Reviews: 223+ user reviews
#4. Best Shade 10 Glasses for Welding – Novel Protective Safety Glasses Shade 10
The ATHERMAL shade 10 glasses offer eye protection for soldering and light welding. Its grey-green shaded lenses reduces fatigue when viewing for several hours. You can only see bright light because the lenses are so dark when wearing.[aawp box=”B00ZGLXOZQ”]
The Novel welding goggles offer great eye protection from airborne particles on the side. The green lens offers a high optical quality. They’re designed to resist scratches and radiation. The frames are designed with lightweight black plastic.
The shade 10 protective ppe safety glasses are very comfortable with adjustable earpieces. You cannot wear them over prescription eyewear because they’re snug on the face.
- Replaceable scratch resistant polycarbonate lenses
- Comfortable with adjustable earpieces
- Lenses of stability resistance to radiation
- Cannot wear prescription glasses under
Weight: 3.2 ounces
Shade: Shade 10
Made In: Germany
Customer Reviews: 3+ user reviews
#5. Blue Welding Goggles – Uvex S3153 Ambient OTG Safety Glasses
The Uvex S3153 Ambient OTG safety blue welding goggles are made of polycarbonate and meet the ANSI Z87.1 compliance. The green lens comes in shade 3.0 and provides 99.9% UV protection. The Ambient comes with replacement tints and lenses. The replaceable lenses extend the life which makes them the best OTG safety glasses.[aawp box=”B003OBYZGC”]
These are an alternative to the prescription welding glasses. They offer workers the option to wear prescription eyewear under the goggles with full protection. The frame is designed with flexible and soft nasal padding that conforms and reduces slippage.
- Alternative prescription welding glasses
- Polycarbonate lens that’s scratch resistant
- Only minimal shade 3.0 lens
Weight: 2.4 ounces
Shade: Shade 3.0
Color: Blue and green
Customer Reviews: 3+ user reviews
Best Safety Glasses for Welders Comparison
|Name||Manufacturer||Weight||Color||View on Amazon|
|Miller Electric Welding Goggles 267370||Miller Electric||7.8 ounce||Black||Check Latest Price|
|Miller Electric Shade 5.0 Welding Safety Glasses||Miller Electric||14.4 ounces||Black||Check Latest Price|
|Pyramex OTS Over the Counter Prescription Welding Glasses||Pyramex Safety||1.6 ounces||Black, clear, green/amber, gray||Check Latest Price|
|Novel Protective Safety Glasses Shade 10||Novel/ATHERMAL||3.2 ounces||Black||Check Latest Price|
|Uvex S3153 Ambient OTG Safety Glasses||Uvex||2.4 ounces||Blue and green||Check Latest Price|
Best Safety Glasses for Welders Conclusion
Beginner welders do not realize the damage the bright arc and the debris can cause to your eyes by not wearing the best welding glasses. You need eye glasses to protect you from the UV light and infrared wavelengths produced by the arc. The brighter the arc, the higher the shade welding glasses recommended. The Best safety glasses for welders will provide a snug fit to prevent particles and fumes from coming in from the side.
Finally, you must protect your whole body when doing any type of welding. We have the best welding reviews for helmets, jackets, and gloves to protect yourself.
Please comment below if you have any questions.