Welding Clothing

Designed for tough working environments, our range of welder's workwear offers high-quality protection in hazardous environments.

We stock a great selection of garments made specifically for welding applications, including balaclavas and welding hoods, welding aprons and welding coveralls from well-known brands like Portwest®, Pionér® and our own brand, Kennedy®.

What is welding clothing?

Welding clothing is specially designed to withstand molten metal splatter, sparks and extreme levels of heat associated with welding applications. Made using fire-retardant materials, like leather and cotton, this type of personal protection clothing can sometimes feature added surface treatments to enhance flame or heat resistance.

Welding clothing types

With the different types of welding applications (MIG, TIG, stick), the protection requirements for welding clothing can vary a great deal. It's important that the right clothing is chosen for the job, and while cost plays a big part in these decisions, cheap, poor quality clothing can result in poor protection and injury, which will cost you more in the long-term. All items of welding clothing should feature a CE mark and comply with EN ISO 11611 standards.

• Welding jacket   -   The first line of resistance, welder's jackets are made from flame-resistant cotton or high-quality cow's hide. Stud buttons are frequently used for quick removal should it be needed.

• Welding trousers   -   Commonly made with leather for its flame-retardant properties, a number of professional welders also use flame-retardant trousers.

• Welding coveralls   -   Specially designed for welding work, these coveralls usually feature an elasticated waist for freedom of movement, while the thick cotton material is treated for flame resistance.

• Welding aprons   -   Mostly made from leather, welding aprons feature adjustable straps for a secure and comfortable fit, with quick release buckles for fast removal.

• Welding accessories   -   Accessories for welding include flame-retardant balaclavas, hoods, and caps, as well as welder's gaiters for added protection to the ankle and shoe area.

Considerations when choosing welding clothing

• Welding type - the amount of splash, sparks and heat from different welding applications can require thicker clothing or more layers of protection.

• Material - treated cotton clothing can be machine washed for hygiene (but could lose some of its protection with each wash), and in some cases protect against multiple hazards, while leather is widely used by professionals, but cannot be laundered.

• Fit - this shouldn't be too loose or too tight. Elasticated waists, wrists and cuffs allow for flexibility while working and protect against the ingress of splatter and sparks.

• Other PPE - its important to consider the build-up of layers should other PPE be worn in conjunction with protective welder's clothing. Comfort and flexibility are an important aspect of productivity in hot working conditions.

Welding clothing jargon buster

To keep you informed and up to date on welding garment technology, we've broken down and explained a key safety standard to help you choose the best welder's workwear for the job.

What does the protective clothing standard EN ISO 11611:2015 mean?

EN ISO 11611:2015 outlines the basic safety characteristics and testing methods for protective clothing used in welding and other similar processes. Welders' workwear includes garments that will be subjected to molten metal splash, extreme heat conditions, limited flame contact and electric shock up to 100Vd.c.

Let's break it down...

• EN - This is a current European standard

• ISO - The International Organisation of Standardisation creates and publishes safety and quality standards

• 11611 - This is the assigned legislation number

• 2015 - This is the year the safety standard was updated and supersedes the 2007 version


What kind of shirts do welder's wear?

In heavy-duty welding applications, base layers such as shirts and t-shirts are as important to a welder's safety as welding jackets or welder's trousers. They deliver enhanced protection against thermal injuries should molten metal manage to burn through the outer layers. For this reason, it's important to wear a flame-retardant t-shirt or shirt, as synthetic materials will ignite quickly, spreading the flame and melting onto the skin.

What's the best fabric for welding clothes?

Welders benefit from protective clothing made from leather hide, tightly woven wool and 100% cotton. Cotton and wool garments usually receive added surface treatments to enhance heat and flame resistance and can be laundered according to the manufacturer's instructions. In some cases, laundering can reduce the efficacy of the garment, however, these lightweight materials are an ideal choice for summer working.

Leather welding clothes are considered by some professionals to be the best choice for protection. Leather is naturally resistant to heat and flame and is notoriously difficult to set alight. Leather welding gear is often supplied in single pieces, including welding jackets, trousers, and aprons, with coveralls almost exclusively made using cotton.

For more information on welding clothing see our Flame Retardant Workwear Guide... https://www.cromwell.co.uk/info/safety-technical-flame-retardant-workwear