If welding is your profession, you spend almost 8 to 9 hours a day wearing the helmet. Even if you take welding as a hobby to weld your automobiles, make small tools, or just have fun joining metals, you have to wear the helmet, right,
Besides, any auto-darkening welding helmet is an expensive one, so you have got receive the right one to serve its purposes. For every new purchase of this equipment, you will usually receive a replacement warranty of 1 months.
So, it’s better to find any trouble within this time. You can learn more about such helmet at ProSafety101
What To Check Immediately?
After the unboxing, don’t just wear it immediately. There are some pre-check issues that should be done beforehand. Without wearing the helmet at all, we can test the helmet regarding a lot of safety issues like the following:
- To check whether it is auto-darkening, make sure it meets AS/NZS 1338.1 standards.
- Is it resistant enough against high impact? Check the AS/NZS 1337.1 B standards.
- How good is it for the respiratory protection? Only one way to know if it meets AS/NZS 1715:2009 standards.
Methods To Test Your Auto-darkening Helmet
There are several methods to test your welding helmet. All of these methods are very easy to follow. Some methods may require utilizing extra equipment. But don’t worry, this equipmentis easy to get and most of them are already in your home.
Now, before you start applying any of the following methods, check whether your helmet has the grind mode or not. If there is a grind-mode, make sure it is turned off. The ADF filter won’t work if the grinding mode is on.
Now, follow any of the following Methods:
- Look At The Sun: Sounds weird, right? But guess what, you can really use the sun to test your ADF helmet. On a sunny day go outside. Wear the auto-darkening helmet and look directly at the sun. As soon as you look at the sun, your helmet will switch to dark mode. If that happens, your helmet is working just fine. But even if looking at the bright sun does not make the ADF filter to switch, you got a faulty helmet.
- Using Remote Control (IR Signal Supporting): The auto-darkening welding helmet not only block the UV rays, it can block the IR rays as well. So, we can use the TV remote control which works with the IR signal to test the helmet. So, let’s test it! Put on your welding helmet and point the remote towards your face. As long as you look at the light diode, keep pressing any keys of your remote control. Keep pressing and unpressing it, the helmet will keep go to the dark and light state correspondently. If nothing happens during pressing the buttons, the ADF filter is not working.
- Striking The Arc Directly: This method should be applied only when you are 100% confident that your auto-darkening helmet is working perfectly. If your helmet ADF filter is not working properly, you may get welder’s flash testing this. Alright, what you need to do is to strike the arc directly wearing helmet. There will be the spark of bright light and your helmet should switch to the dark mode. You can still look at the welding pool.
- Testing with Cigarette Lighter: Yes, cigarette lighter can be used to test your welding hood. In fact, if you are a smoker you should apply this method first. After you wear your helmet, ignite the lighter in front of the helmet. Immediately your helmet should go in dark mode.
- Weight of The Helmet: Sounds silly, but do you know what makes the auto-darkening helmet so different than the passive welding helmet? One of the big difference is the weight. The weight is light in case of auto-darkening helmet. So, if your helmet weights too high, maybe you got the wrong helmet?
Frequency of Helmet Testing
After you have done the testing, you are good to weld with your helmet. It will continue to keep you safe. But how long it will perform continuously? Like every equipment, they do stop working every now and then.
So, you need to test your helmet every now and then too. Each time you start welding, check the helmet first. Suddenly you may notice it is not working. There could be several reasons behind it.
- Check The Battery: The battery of your helmet maybe dead. If it is a solar-powered helmet, maybe the charge is depleted and it needs recharging. If it is powered by a fixed battery, the battery maybe dead after six months to 1 year. So, you need to buy a new battery.
- Check the Sensor& Shade: Over the period of time, the sensor of the helmet maybe damaged or sometime it could be covered with so much dirt that it can no longer detect the arc. Since, it can’t detect the arc anymore, the ADF filter also won’t work. So, periodically check the sensor too.
Like the sensor, the shade could stop working after a while. In that case, you must replace the shade or the entire helmet.
The welding helmet is the first line of defense against all the hazards of welding. So, it has to be good, it has to be really good. Only one way to be sure about the quality of the helmet: test it!
I believe I mentioned all the common methods to test a helmet. If you like it, please share it with your friends and family.