How to Adjust Auto Darkening Welding Helmet With 3 Easy Methods!

Every auto-darkening welding helmet has various control settings, either on the outside of the helmet or the inside. Learning how to adjust auto-darkening welding helmets is essential so that you get them set up for your personal preferences and your welding projects.

This is the primary reason why auto-darkening helmets have essentially replaced passive helmets. They’re more flexible for the user, allowing you to control functionality manually.

Moreover, quality helmets have switches and knobs to control light sensitivity, delay, and time response.

Therefore, you can set the helmet to your preferred usability for each of your welding projects. This quick guide helps you learn how to do just that to give you the best tools for the work ahead.

Basic Welding Helmet Settings

There are three primary controls that any automatic darkening welding helmet has. They help you determine how the darkening filter will work, and you can adjust them as needed. The three controls are:

Light Sensitivity

The sensitivity control of your helmet helps determine how much light is needed to activate the ADF of your helmet. Therefore, the more powerful the light source, the darker your lens will get when the light source is detected.


The shade control helps you adjust the lens darkness or lightness once your arc is active.

Most helmets have a shade range of up to 14, though some manufacturers prefer to start the shade at level eight. Level one is closer to natural light, while 14 will be the darkest.


The delay control of your helmet indicates the speed at which the automatic darkening filter gets activated once the arc sensors detect a light source.

You can easily adjust the delay controls to slow down or speed up the arc initiation and the end of the arc to deactivate and activate the ADF smoothly.

How to Adjust Auto Darkening Welding Helmet

How to Adjust Auto Darkening Welding Helmet Settings

Since the welding helmet is an essential piece of equipment to protect your eyes and face, you need to set the auto-darkening welding helmet correctly to function effectively. It would be best if you took some time to learn how your helmet’s control settings work.

However, most helmets use similar features. The lens part of the helmet protects your vision from harmful rays produced during the process of welding.

For example, infrared and ultraviolet rays are the most common types that can harm the welder’s eyes during the process.

The auto-darkening control settings can protect your vision, but only if they are set correctly. Of course, each welding project will require different control settings, as some processes are more powerful than others.

Below, you can learn how to adjust the three primary controls of your helmet.

Adjusting Light Sensitivity

You must adjust your helmet’s settings in a clean environment. Put the helmet on a clean surface and inspect it to determine any issues.

If the lens or helmet itself is dirty, consider cleaning it before starting. Also, check that the batteries work before starting.

Once you’ve finished with the inspection, you can adjust the light sensitivity on your helmet. To achieve the best results, twist the knobs on the helmet to increase sensitivity as much as you desire. Of course, you need to know your process’s voltage and amperage levels.

Now, test the lens a few times to make sure it darkens appropriately to the arc light produced during the weld.

If the arc isn’t powerful, you can keep sensitivity controls lower. If it’s mighty (above average), you should adjust the sensitivity to higher levels.

Setting Delay Times

Once you’ve adjusted the light sensitivity appropriately, you should then set the delay time. Delay time is determined by how much time it takes the auto-darkness filter to go from a bright to a dark shade.

When you’re detecting welding arcs, you need faster times (response times). Most helmets come with fixed response times; high-quality helmets have shorter response times.

Most delay switches are put on the inside of your helmet to avoid damage during the process of welding. Just move the switch up or down to change the settings.

Adjusting the Shade

Adjusting the shade of your helmet is done by using the knob or switch on your helmet. Most helmets have shade control on the inside, usually on the left-hand side.

This control allows you to decide how dark of a shade you need based on your preferences. You get more protection depending on the welding process. It’s recommended to use the darkest shade possible for your welding project.


Learning how to adjust an auto-darkening welding helmet is essential so that you can focus on the task at hand rather than your eyes. There are only three welding helmet settings, and they are easy to adjust once you get the hang of it.

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