When to Replace a Dirt Bike Helmet – A dirt bike helmet is the top most essential gear you can have as a dirt bike rider. Because of this, there is a range of helmets to fit different riders ranging from ATV Helmets to Enduro Helmets. There are also certain helmets with additional features like a Bluetooth speaker you can buy. However, no matter how good the helmet is, there will be a point when you need to replace it.
Depending on the helmet model, there are different times that a helmet can last. There are also different factors that you need to consider and signs to check.
When to Change Dirt Bike Helmet: What Brands Say
O’Neal helmets do not specify when to replace them, but they claim to use durable materials that don’t degrade over time. However, finding replacement parts for O’Neal helmets becomes difficult after five years. It is recommended to replace your O’Neal dirt bike helmet after five years of use.
Fly helmets suggest replacing their products after five years from the time they are produced. The main reason for this recommendation is that the EPS foam inside the helmet starts to harden over time, making the helmet unsuitable for use. It is especially important to replace your dirt bike helmet immediately after a crash, according to Fly’s recommendation.
Similar to Fly, Fox also recommends replacing your helmet after five years of use. Regardless of how long these helmet brands have been in production, Fox insists on not hesitating to change your helmet after five years. Additionally, they suggest that a helmet replacement should be done after a hard crash, regardless of any visible damage on the inside or outside of the helmet.
In contrast to other manufacturers, Bell suggests replacing your dirt bike helmet after three years of use. They also advise replacing your helmet after a very hard crash, emphasizing the importance of safety.
Troy Lee Designs:
Like Bell, Troy Lee Designs recommends replacing your dirt bike helmet after three years from the date of manufacturing. Furthermore, they suggest considering a replacement after any accident or crash, even if the damage seems minimal.
While there are different signs that indicate a need for a replacement, but the most important things to prepare for are as follows:
If You Crash
When it comes to replacing a helmet after a crash, different manufacturers have varying recommendations. For example, Fox advises replacing a helmet after any serious crash, even if there are no visible signs of damage. On the other hand, some manufacturers state that helmets can be fine after a crash, as long as the polystyrene foam doesn’t have any soft spots or bends. It’s important to follow the manufacturer’s guidelines, as they have the best understanding of their product.
Dirt bike helmets are designed to provide one-time impact protection. The foam inside the helmet is designed to crush under pressure, but it doesn’t regain its shape. Therefore, once an area of the foam is crushed, it won’t provide adequate protection in subsequent crashes. However, there are rare helmets that use EPP foam, which can withstand multiple impacts.
To determine if your helmet needs replacing after a crash, follow these steps:
- Remove the inner liner and check the polystyrene foam for bulges, compressed areas, cracks, or obvious damage. Replace the helmet if any of these issues are found. Measure the foam thickness on different sides to identify compressed areas.
- Inspect the outer shell for dings or cracks, as it protects the foam and spreads the impact. If there are dings or cracks, it likely indicates damage to the underlying material.
- Look for fading on the outside of the helmet. Fading suggests that the plastic may have become brittle, potentially compromising the helmet’s integrity in a crash.
- Note the manufacture date and consider the duration of use.
- Contact the helmet manufacturer to ask about free inspections. Many manufacturers offer this service and can advise on whether the helmet needs replacement or is safe to continue using.
Did you know that motorcycle helmets have an expiration date? Most dirt bike helmet manufacturers suggest replacing your helmet within seven years from the production date or five years from the purchase date (check inside the helmet for the production date stamp). This is because the helmet materials deteriorate over time, making them weaker and compromising their ability to provide optimal protection.
It’s important to consider the advancement of motocross and dual-sport helmet technology when it comes to older helmets. If your helmet is between five to seven years old, chances are it lacks the latest safety features. The past decade has witnessed significant leaps and bounds in motocross helmet technology, with incredible advancements being made. By upgrading your helmet every few years, you ensure you have the best possible protection when riding on the track. Even if you’ve gotten four to five years of use out of a helmet, it’s a good idea to consider an upgrade for improved safety. To learn more about the latest developments in helmet technology, you can visit the page on Dirt Bike Helmet Technology.
Other Cases to Consider
What if a helmet is dropped? In most cases, it is not necessary to replace a helmet after simply dropping it. Helmets are designed to be durable and can withstand some impacts. However, repeatedly dropping or spiking a helmet on hard surfaces may eventually affect its performance. If a helmet falls to the ground at high speeds without a head inside, there is a possibility that some degradation may have occurred. The most significant damage to a helmet typically happens when it contacts an object while being worn by a person.