Let’s talk about your helmet, actually go and grab it while you read this it will most likely be the most amount of time you have actually looked at and inspected your helmet.
As we know your helmet protects your best asset you brain. Helmets on bikes date back to 1880’s and the first real bike helmet was invented in 1975 by Bell Auto Parts in the USA and helmets became compulsory in Australia in 1989.
Unlike the Stackhat which we all wore back in the 1980’s the helmet has evolved in technology. The Stackhat had a hard shell with a EPS foam inner had poor ventilation and a basic strap system.
Today’s helmets are much lighter and majority of the helmets we sell have a in mould construction which means the outer shell moulded into the EPS foam, they also have a retention system which is adjustable with a dial and good ventilation. They just don’t compare to the old helmets.
It’s often recommended that a helmet worn frequently should be replaced every 3 years or so. The reason is that the foam degrades due to sun, heat, salty sweat and other environmental factors, added to the usual knocks of regular cycling activity.
These things make the foam unable to provide the full protection it’s designed for in the event of a head impact. A helmet should certainly be replaced after it’s damaged in a crash or even dropped hard, even if no damage is visible. The reason is that helmet liners are made to absorb energy from impacts, and they do this through their own degradation or destruction – like an airbag in a car. If the liner is compromised from an impact or other factors, it may not offer the full protective capability it was designed to provide
So, get your helmet and inspect it now, this what you should be looking for. Visible cracks to the EPS foam, bumps on the polycarbonate outer shell, wear and tears marks, are the chin straps worn, is the buckle in good condition, does the dial lock system work. If your helmet has any of these issues you need to replace it.
There’s no arguing, though, that buying a new helmet every 3 years will keep you current with comfort and safety features as well as style. It’s remarkable the improvements we’ve seen in helmet lightness, ventilation and fit. Better quality helmets now have MIPS which is concussion-mitigation helmet technology.
Lastly remember you have one brain so what is the worth to you!