What Shade Of Lens Is Needed For Arc Welding?

Are you interested in learning about the type of lens needed for arc welding? If yes, you are at the right place. Welding is one of the most popular and rewarding activities across the world.

A staggering 56 million people globally are involved in the welding industry; and with the right safety measures, it can prove quite enjoyable.

An essential safety measure for welding is a reliable welding helmet. This will protect you from the electric arc and bright light of arc welding.

But what shade of lens should you be using? It is recommended that you use a shade 11 lens or higher when welding. Shade 11 offers superior protection while maintaining good visibility, a necessity in arc welding.

Moreover, the World Health Organization recommends that welders doing any type of arc welding use a minimum of a shade 1 So, let us dive right in and explore in details the shade of lens needed for arc welding.

What Shade of Lens is Needed For Arc Welding?

Arc welding, which is also known as shielded metal arc welding, is a widely used technique for joining metal components.

This process uses an electric arc to generate heat in order to join two pieces of metal together. In order to protect welders from the intense light generated by the arc, safety glasses or goggles must be worn. However, it is not enough to simply wear any kind of eye protection.

A filter lens of the appropriate shade must be chosen in order to protect the welder from the ultra-violet radiation and from the bright glow of the welding arc.

Why Shade Protection is Necessary

When welding, the extreme temperature generated by the electric arc can cause damage to the eyes. Burns to the retinas, cornea and conjunctiva can occur when exposed to the extreme temperatures.

In addition, staring into the arc for a prolonged period of time can cause temporary and even permanent vision loss due to damage to the optic nerve. To protect welders from this danger, it is essential to wear eye protection at all times when arc welding.

Shade Level

The shade level of the filter lens is one of the most important factors to consider when preparing for a welding job. Different levels of filter shades are necessary depending on the type of welding process and the size of the welding arc.
  • For light duty tasks and small arc welder operations, filter lenses with a shade level of #3 are sufficient to protect the welder from the bright light generated by the arc.

  • For higher amperage arc welding operations, filter lenses with a higher shade level of #10 or #11 is recommended.
  • For operations that involve welding metals such as magnesium and titanium, a filter lens with a shade level of #14 or #15 is advisable.

It is important to note that lenses with higher shade levels are darker than lenses with lower shade levels. Therefore, it is important to consider the level of darkness when selecting the filter lens. Higher shade level lenses will reduce visibility while welding, and so it is essential that the welder be experienced and comfortable with their existing skills in order to work safely with the correct level of filter shade.


Selecting the correct shade level of filter lenses is essential to ensure the safety of welders while arc welding. For small arc welding operations, a filter lens with a shade level of #3 is sufficient, but for higher amperage arc welding, a filter lens with a higher shade level such as #10 or #11 would be advised. It is important to consider both the safety of the welder as well as the level of darkness when selecting the filter lens. Citation URL: https://www. thoughtco. com/what-shade-of-lens-is-needed-for-arc-welding-733131https://www. tig-welding. com/wear-lenses-arc-welding/

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