When it comes to replacing things like tubes, CO2 cartridges, footwear or clothing, it is generally quite an easy decision to make. When your tube has a slit, your CO2 cartridges are empty, your footwear is falling apart and your clothing resembles a fit that would be similar to wearing a tent, it’s time to replace them. But what about a helmet? Helmets rarely show signs of damage and therefore people choose to believe that helmets only need to be replaced after a crash.
Contrary to popular belief, helmets are not immune to wear and tear and also have a finite lifespan. According to most manufacturers, this lifespan is between 3-5 years for a quality helmet. Whilst you may have replaced the pads a couple of times in this time period, the fact is that UV, sweat, and the occasional drop of your helmet on the floor all contribute to this finite lifespan. Some of you may scoff, but at the end of the day, I’d rest easier knowing that my helmet has served its purpose for a good period of time. Break down the cost of a helmet into each year and it is a matter of a few weeks or, for some of us, days of coffee a year to contribute to the single most important piece of cycling gear you have.
So if you have your old faithful helmet which has been serving you well by sitting on your head for the last several years, it is time to retire it and think about getting a new one. The benefits of a new helmet are ten-fold – new style, new look, better technology, lighter weight and, most importantly, the benefit of knowing that the helmet, should the time come (and I hope it doesn’t), will do its job well.
Important Tip: Never purchase a secondhand helmet from someone you would not entrust your life to. Whilst a helmet may look ok from the outside, there could be damage underneath the shell which will only become apparent in the worst possible scenario.
By Ricky Swindale – Pushys Sponsored Athlete
Categories: Riding Tips