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Wearing a pair of welding goggles may offer a more convenient solution for welding in tight spaces.
A full-size welding helmet may cause discomfort and may bump into close objects. The inconvenience of wearing a welding helmet in cramped areas may also lead you to remove your helmet, which increases the risk of eye injuries.
Instead of wearing a helmet, consider wearing a pair of welding goggles. The goggles are less obtrusive, decreasing the risk of getting your gear caught on surrounding objects.
Here are a few of the best welding goggles for working in tight spaces.
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Best Overall – YESWELDER True Color Auto Darkening Welding Goggles
Table of Contents
Overview: Our Favorite Welding Goggles For Tight Spaces
Who Should Use Welding Goggles Instead of Helmets?
Welding goggles provide a more convenient option for working in tight spaces. You may occasionally need to weld materials in cramped areas where a large welding helmet may get in the way.
When working in tight spaces, welders are more likely to remove their helmets and not put them back on before resuming their work. This increases the risk of arc flash, which is a type of eye injury caused by exposure to bright light and UV rays.
Some people may also dislike the weight and fit of a full-size welding helmet. A welding helmet can weigh several pounds, which can cause neck strain and fatigue after prolonged use.
Most welding goggles weigh less than a pound. They are lighter, easier to carry, and less likely to cause discomfort.
Goggles also provide increased compatibility with other gear. Traditional welding helmets typically offer limited interior space. You may not be able to wear prescription safety glasses under a helmet. Goggles provide enough space for glasses and respirators and can even work with hard hats.
Tight spaces may also be confined, which increases the risk of exposure to unsafe air conditions. When working in a tank, tunnel, boiler, sewer, or other confined space, you may need to wear specific personal protective equipment (PPE), such as respirators. The PPE may not always work well with a standard welding helmet, making welding goggles a more convenient solution.
How To Choose The Best Welding Goggles
Some of the main details to pay attention to when shopping for welding goggles include:
● Passive versus variable lens
● Shade range
● Optical rating
Welding goggles include either passive or variable lenses. Passive lenses provide a fixed amount of shade. Variable lenses include auto-darkening technology, which includes LCD glass that automatically dims when you start welding.
Auto-darkening goggles are more convenient when MIG or TIG welding, as you do not need to lift your goggles between tasks. However, if you are performing tasks that do not require darker shades, you may only need a passive lens.
The next consideration is the shade range, which is measured using the DIN rating. The DIN rating is a German industrial standard for classifying light filtering levels. A high DIN rating means that the lens offers a darker shade.
Welding goggles and helmets often offer a range of shades from DIN 3 or 4 to DIN 13 or 14. You need at least a DIN 9 for MIG and TIG welding. Standard sunglasses have a DIN rating of 3. A DIN rating of 5 is suitable for welding tasks with a maximum power of one amp.
Compatibility is another concern when choosing welding goggles for tight spaces. Depending on the setting, you may need to wear a hard hat, a ventilator, or other PPE. A quality pair of goggles should fit under a hard hat and above a ventilator without getting in the way.
Best Welding Goggles for Tight Spaces
YESWELDER True Color Auto Darkening Welding Goggles
The YESWELDER welding goggles include an auto-darkening lens, which features an LCD glass that automatically dims when you start the welding arc. The goggles have sensors that detect the flicker from the arc, which triggers the LCD glass to dim.
When you stop welding, the LCD glass lightens. You can keep the goggles in place to check your work, instead of needing to lift them.
The goggles are large enough that you can wear prescription safety glasses underneath. You can also wear the goggles with a welding mask under a hard hat without any adapter or modifications.
The viewing area of the goggles measures 4.82×1.37 inches, which is comparable to a traditional welding helmet. Your view through the goggles is narrow so that you can focus on your welding.
The optical clarity of the lens is 1/1/1/2, which is the second-highest rating available. The “2” in the rating indicates that the lens may cause minor blurring or distortion around the edges at certain angles. However, the quality of the lens still surpasses many of the less expensive welding goggles and helmets.
The YESWELDER goggles include electronic components but it weighs just 7.1 ounces. It is a fraction of the weight of a traditional helmet, which should make it much more comfortable when working in tight spaces.
KWIKSAFETY Pit Viper Welding Goggles
The KWIKSAFETY Pit Viper welding goggles are an affordable option for welding tasks with low amperage. It includes a passive lens with a shade rating of DIN 5, which is a little darker compared to a typical pair of sunglasses.
The passive lens may not offer adequate protection for MIG or TIG welding. However, the lens provides enough shade for infrared welding, plasma jet cutting, soldering, brazing, sandblasting, and more.
The goggles have a snug fit with an adjustable band for increased comfort. The design also includes ventilation to keep the goggles from fogging up. The top and bottom of the goggles include pressure equalizers to improve airflow, which makes fogging almost impossible.
The KWIKSAFETY welding goggles include large lenses with a 180-degree view. Instead of a small viewing window, you get a mostly unobstructed view of your surroundings.
The goggles are adjustable and built with a durable PVC frame. The lenses also feature an anti-scratch surface, which should help extend the life of these low-cost welding goggles.
MEKERAN Auto Darkening Welding Goggles
If the YESWELDER auto-darkening goggles are out of your price range, the MEKERAN goggles may be a better fit. Both options include auto-darkening lenses with a maximum shade of DIN 13. They are suitable for MIG and TIG welding along with a wide range of other applications.
The response time of the auto-darkening LCD lens is slightly slower compared to the YESWELDER goggles. However, the lens starts dimming within 3/10,000 seconds, which is still faster than a blink of an eye. As soon as you start the welding arc, the lens should darken instantly.
The viewing area is 4.72×1.37 inches. It is about the same size as other auto-darkening goggles and helmets.
The goggles are powered by a small lithium battery that should offer several hundred hours of use. It includes a low battery indicator to reduce the risk of the goggles shutting off in the middle of a welding task.
Goggles are often the best type of eye protection for welding in tight spaces. A traditional welding helmet may get in your way while a pair of goggles can work with a hard hat and other gear.
The auto-darkening goggles from YESWELDER and MEKERAN provide suitable protection for MIG and TIG welding. The lens automatically darkens when you start welding.
The KWIKSAFETY welding goggles use passive lenses with a moderate shade rating of DIN 5. You may need a little more shade for MIG and TIG welding, but you can still use these goggles for infrared welding, brazing, flame-cutting, and other low-power tasks.