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Whether you are new to the welding field or a seasoned professional, it never hurts to have a refresher when it comes to PPE. Proper Safety & Handling is a must, and we understand some things are easy to overlook. That is why we’ve put together a handy checklist, along with some of our favorite products for you to get the job done right. Let’s dive in.

Welding Helmet

A dependable welding helmet with a quality lens is essential. Not only does the helmet protect your eyes from the harmful rays of the arc, it protects your face from flying sparks and debris. Select a helmet that is comfortable yet snug, allowing you to stay focused throughout the day. An auto darkening helmet is a good choice to eliminate the need to flip your helmet up between welds, lessening neck strain. Make sure your helmet’s lens meets the specifications required for your task. Generally, you’ll want to use at least a shade #8 on up to #13 for any welding procedure.

Recommended Product: Miller Digital Infinity Black

Gloves

We can provide a quick tip for welding with no gloves: just don’t do it. You could suffer severe burns. Considering your hands will encounter extreme heat and radiation exposure, a comfortable, quality pair of gloves is a must. Depending on the welding procedure, you have choices for the appropriate glove. Stick/MIG welding will use a heavier duty glove, whereas TIG gloves will be lighter and allow for more dexterity and movement. Just be sure they cover your hands and wrists, are insulated, and heat resistant.

Recommended Product: Tillman Welding Gloves

Jacket

A welding jacket will not only protect your skin, but also the clothing you’re wearing. Choosing the right jacket is a matter of comfort and preference. Some welders prefer a lighter flame-resistant cotton jacket for better movement and air flow. Others may use something a bit heftier such as a leather jacket for heavy duty applications. Though leather jackets are a popular choice, they can be a bit hotter than cotton. Just be sure your jacket fits well, goes arm’s length, and covers your torso area. Sparks can sneak in just about anywhere.

Recommended Product: Tillman 6230L

Safety Glasses

Don’t forget that even though you have a welding helmet on, you should still wear safety glasses.  Often times, you will be grinding in between welds, so it’s a good idea to always keep them on while working.

Recommended Product: Nemesis Safety Glasses

Ventilation Mask

While not everyone uses a respirator device to weld, it is certainly not a bad idea for the sake of your lungs. Melting metal puts off fumes, and it’s likely those fumes will make their way in through the bottom of your helmet. The good news is that a respirator will fit comfortably under your helmet and the extra filters included are easy to change out.

Recommended Product:  Miller LPR-100 Respirator Mask

Foot Protection

Last but not least, foot protection cannot be over-looked. Falling objects, sparks, and hot metal can come in contact with your feet. Wearing leather, high top, steeled toed boots is highly recommended. You should check to make sure a specific boot meets the safety standards before purchasing.

General Shop Safety Tips:

  • Know your equipment– Be sure to read all manuals and safety information on the equipment you’re using, carefully following the manufacturers guidelines. The more familiar you are with your equipment, the less likely incidents will occur.
  • Regular inspections – Check your equipment often for wear and tear. It can go a long way, to preventing costly repairs or overheating and potential fire hazards. It can be helpful to create a checklist so you can be sure all components have been accounted for.
  • Maintain proper ventilation– Even with the use of a respirator, confined areas should still be well ventilated. Toxic fumes and gases can make their way into the air you’re breathing. Be sure your shop has proper air flow from end to end. A shop fan can help increase air flow. It’s also important for everyone to be aware of fire exits, alarms, and locations of all fire extinguishers.

Please reach out to the Welders Supply & Gases team for all your PPE needs!

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