Keeping your feet safe while working in a welding environment should be every welder’s top priority. Accidents can happen at any time while you are at work. And what better way to avoid foot injury than wearing welding approved protective boots? This article explains what qualities and critical features you need in work boots for welders.
Updated January 2021 by Maya
In a Hurry? The Top Pick:
Dr Martens Ironbridge, Read on to find out why.
|Dr Martens Ironbridge||Resistant||Steel||Steel met guard|
Slip-, oil-, & alkali resistant
|Timberland Pro 4000 Boot||No||Steel||Goodyear welt construction|
Slip-, heat- & oil resistant
|Iron Age Ground Breaker||No||Steel||Goodyear welt construction|
|Timberland Pro 53530 Boots||Yes||Steel||EH protection|
Heat-, slip- & oil- resistant
|Caterpillar Second Shift Boot||No||Steel||Steel Shank|
Goodyear Welt Construction
Key Features for Welding Boots
Because of the harsh environment that is the welding environment, you require to have protective equipment. Protect your feet from:
- Heavy objects falling on them
Due to this, you will need a work boot that is up to the task. A boot that will keep you safe and at the same time comfortable for a long work shift.
What is the best type of footwear for this, you ask?
The best welding boot is made with durable leather. A material that will not wear out quickly. But will serve the user for an extended amount of time.
This material should also be waterproof to make sure your feet do not get soaked when you work in wet locations. The material should also be oil, heat, chemical and abrasion-resistant.
The boot is fitted with a steel toe cap and a metatarsal guard. This will protect you from the impact of a heavy object rolling or falling on your feet.
The inner sole of the boots should be made from a comfortable material that is breathable. This will keep your feet from overheating if you have to wear the boots for long work hours. You can also choose insulated mesh lined boots for winter.
The outer sole should be made of slip resistant rubber. This makes the boot non slip and provides good traction.
The boot should also have laces. While this is not a must, a lace up welding boot offers more support. Welding boots can also be either slip on or pull on boots.
Steel toe welding boots
A welding environment is full of heavy equipment that can either fall or roll to your feet. The damage that can be caused will be devastating if you do not protect yourself against injury.
Typically each welder should get mens or womens welding boots fitted with a steel toe cap. Steel toe safety shoes are scientifically proven to protect your feet. From the tip of your toe to the bending joint.
Boots that have steel-toe caps have them fitted on the upper front part. This provides maximum protection and avoids bruising.
The steel-toe is not too heavy and will not make the work boot uncomfortable to move around with, but don’t expect it to be a lightweight running shoe either.
As a welder, you can never go wrong with steel-toe boots. You need all the protection you can get. And these types of boots will have your back when something heavy comes rolling your way.
Welding Boots Metatarsal Guard
A metatarsal guard is extra protection on top of the work boot. Its main objective is to protect the wearer from heavy falling objects.
It covers the whole dorsal and metatarsal foot bone. In welding environments, ensure the met guard meets ASTM standards. This means that the met welding guard will be able to withstand the impact from a 50-pound object falling from an 18” height.
They are made to be asymmetrical. This makes them flexible enough to take the shape of the foot. This makes it comfortable and avoids any extra pressure on your foot.
It protects the boot laces from being damaged by flying sparks. Without this protective shoe cover, welders laces would constantly be breaking.
The 7 Best Work Boots for Welders
Dr Martens Iron Bridge Steel-Toe Met-Guard Men’s Boot
I love this fashionable Dr Martens quality welding boot. These boots are available in black and brown colors. They are comfortable and durable shoes that offer great protection to feet.
The boot has a steel-toe cap as well as a padded steel metatarsal guard. This offers maximum foot protection. Your feet will also be protected from open circuits when you wear this shoe as it has an anti-slip rubber sole which is non-conductive.
The soles of the boots are oil resistant. They have non-skid treads to make sure you stay steady on your feet.
The upper part and the sole are stitched and heat-sealed together. This eliminates all chances of the shoe tearing apart. The additional cushioned ankle and a removable insole offers extra comfort and stability to the feet.
Your feet will stay cool and dry all day, thanks to the moisture wickening fabric liner.
- Electrical hazard protection
- Water resistant
- Moisture-wicking lining
- Double-Stitched leather for durability
- Steel toe and a metatarsal guard
- Each boot weighs around 3 pounds, on the heavy side for work boots
- Its sole is too soft and can melt if exposed to really high temperatures
Timberland Pro 40000 Met-Guard 6” Steel Toe Boot
This boot is suitable for both men and women. The material used to construct this shoe is Ever-GuardTM Leather. Making it waterproof and heatproof.
It is abrasion-resistant. Making it ideal for rugged working conditions. Because it can withstand the harsh conditions and resist wear and tear.
The foot is protected by both a steel toe cap and a metatarsal guard. It’s ridged, rubber outsole is abrasion, oil, slip and heat resistant.
The contoured insole and integrated steel shank offer more comfort. They offer great foot support, making the boot increasingly comfortable.
- Ever-GuardTM Leather making it durable
- Available in women sizes
- Steel toe cap & Met-guard
- Contains an insole that absorbs impact & protects from foot fatigue
- A 6” steel shaft for extra support
- Completely slip-resistant
- Many users have reported that the stitching comes off
- The lace support comes off if pulled with a lot of force
Iron Age Ground Breaker Welding Work Boots
These boots are relatively more budget friendly compared to other welding boots. However they are not recommended for people who are frequent welders or weld for long hours at a time due to lacking comfort.
It is made from full-grain leather. This is a strong type of leather that will ensure the boot is durable, however makes it slightly more uncomfortable compared to other welding work boots.
The boot contains a steel-toe cap and metatarsal guard.
It has a 1.5” heel and rubber outsole made with Goodyear Welt Construction. Making the shoe stable and durable. This outsole also makes the boot slip, oil and chemical resistant.
The boot has a Kelver stitching making spark resistant and last longer.
It contains a removable insole and sponge rubber heel wedge that provides comfort to the feet.
- Constructed with full-grain leather making it durable
- Budget-friendly for occasional welders
- Contains a steel-toe cap and a met-guard for feet protection
- Has a removable insole and padded heel wedge sole for comfort
- The boot is not as comfortable as other welding boots because of the materials used to construct it
Timberland Pro 53530 8” Met-Guard Steel-Toe Boots
This is a one of a kind comfortable boot that offers great ankle protection by having a high cut at the rear.
The boot has an 8-inch met guard. This protects the feet from sparks when welding. The met guards are also asymmetrical to enable them to take the shape of the feet. Offering maximum comfort even when bending. That is a well designed and extremely user friendly detail!
It’s constructed with Ever-GuardTM Leather. This makes it waterproof and durable. This material makes it equally resistant to abrasion and heat.
It has a rubber sole making it slip and oil resistant.
The steel caps used are comfortable and spacious. They meet the ASTM standards on heat and impact.
- Ever-GuardTM Leather for durability
- Fire-resistant stitching and heavy-duty laces
- Anti-slip rubber soles
- Comfortable suspension technology, effective even if you work long hours
- 8” met-guards that take the shape of the feet to offer maximum protection
- Waterproof, heat and abrasion-resistant
- Extra ankle padding for comfort
- The boot is heavier than comparable boots
- Some users have complained of leg and ankle fatigue making it an unsuitable choice if you require more stability and support
- The back stitching might loosen according to some customers
Caterpillar Men’s Second Shift Steel Toe Work Boot
These are another amazing creation by CAT. They are 100% leather boots that are ideal for welders and have a steel toe. Bonus: their price is lower than the previous pair, although you wouldn’t describe them as cheap by any means.
It has hex-shaped laces at the front to make you feel secure. The outsole consists of oil resistant material. And has good traction.
The Nubuck leather lining used in the insides makes it possible to comfortably wear them all day long.
The shoe includes a steel shank for extra support.
- Budget-friendly boots with steel toe
- Steel shank to provide extra support
- Laces for stability and security
- They are not as long-lasting as other boots
There are several work boots for welders out there to keep you both safe and comfortable. All you need to do is find out which one is most suitable for you depending on if you work long hour shifts or if you have feet that get hot in boots.
The winner: Dr Martens Ironbridge Steel-Toe Met Guard Men’s Boot. This is the boot for you if you are a regular welder that works for extremely long hours in a day. And the more budget friendly Iron Age Men’s Ground Breaker 1A5016 Welding Work Boots are the best option for occasional welders.
Other good safety boots that didn’t make the top 7 are from Red Wing, Wolverine, Danner, Thorogood and Merrell.