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How often should you replace your helmet?

jaywbigred

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I ran a search, and although there are plenty of discussions on helmets generally, there didn't seem to be one on the topic of proactive replacement.

I have had my helmet for 8 or 9 seasons. I like it, it is comfortable, it was adaptable for Bluetooth earphones which I love, but it is definitely starting to feel old. I have had some crashes while wearing it, but nothing directly to the head really/thankfully. I did fail miserably at an attempted 360 a few years ago and wound up landing upside down, but even that was mostly on my neck and back, not my head, thank God.

I know you are supposed to replace your helmet if it takes a significant blow, but I am wondering how often you guys think they should be replaced just for standard wear and tear? I am assuming the protection factor degrades as the materials age--hell, I think baby carseats and so forth are only good for 3-5 years for that reason. And I am sure non-direct bumps and bangs probably don't help. Anyone have any thoughts or concrete guidance on this? TIA!
 

jimmywilson69

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I just replaced mine for the first time. I had my previous one for 14 seasons. It was beat to hell. New helmet is much more comfortable and the other one was comfortable.
 

cdskier

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The foam does compress over time and offer less protection. Not sure if there's an official standard though. I've heard 5 years (although I think I typically go a bit longer than that).
 

prsboogie

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I just switched after 5 seasons. There was another in particularly wrong with it except the liner kept coming out every time I removed the helmet

Sent from my SM-G975U using Tapatalk
 

redwinger

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Giro recommends 3-5 years from purchase date. i just replaced mine after 12 years.
 

ceo

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After you've collected replacements for all the ski area stickers on it. (I learned, after having to replace my helmet the hard way a few years ago, to always get extra stickers.)
 

bdfreetuna

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keep the faith
I just switched after 5 seasons. There was another in particularly wrong with it except the liner kept coming out every time I removed the helmet

Those liners are trash... they make nice under-helmet caps (like an oversized kippah/yarmulkah style) available cheap. I take the liner right out of my helmet and use one of those plus a lyrca tube as a neck/face cover.

As for helmets I'm following the "if it ain't broke, don't fix it" rule. If I had to buy a new helmet every time a branch whacks me in the head I'd have to quit skiing for financial reasons.

I'm not buying this UV breakdown either... helmets have a plastic shell covering the foam. You should be able to tell pretty easily if the foam is still in good shape. It's not like this stuff suddenly turns to dust after 10 years.

Time for ...science...

Science, fine, but again the important part of the helmet is covered by a shell which protects from UV. This isn't rocket science -- if your helmet is cracked or looking haggard, replace it. If it's not, it's good.
 
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