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Discussion Starter #1
How old is your helmet(s)?

How often do you replace your helmet?

Seems to me that I've read in the past that you should replace your helmet every X number of years due to the deterioration of the polyfoam liner. I hate to spend the money and trash my old helmet, but what's the use of wearing a helmet with no/little impact resistance?

Ride on

-Greg
 

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I met a person who buys a new helmet every year, and another who hasn't change his helmet in years.

I guess it's a mix of personal preference and common sense.
 

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Helmet Replacement

I believe the MSF recommends replacement every five years. Not only does the foam deteriorate, but technology is constantly improving in this area. Might as well have the best you can get, to protect your head.
 

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I have three helmets:
  • A six year old open face helmet used in the past, that now gets used once or twice a year by a guest riding with me.[/*:m:3aadz8pi]
  • A five year old half-helmet I use rarely for local 'round town rides at low speeds on very hot days while riding my Reflex 250.[/*:m:3aadz8pi]
  • A three year old flip-up, full-face helmet I use nearly all the time.[/*:m:3aadz8pi]
For more info on helmets, here is a link to what the Motorcycle Safety Foundations says on the subject: MSF Helmets.
 

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Great link, thanks...

But can anyone tell me what the difference is between a helmet that is "Snell Rated" and one that is "Snell Approved?"
 

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I'll answer my own question...

I visited the Snell web site and asked them the question: what is the difference between "Snell Rated" and "Snell Approved"?

The answer I got back was:

The terms in question mean the same thing. We say "Snell Certified". The most important thing to look for is which standard (M for Motorcycle) and what year (current standard for Motorcycles is 2000). The other things to check is the Snell serial number sticker under the comfort liner and if the helmet is listed on our website. Also, be sure to try on several Snell Certified helmets to make sure you get a good comfortable fit.

Now I know...I was impressed with how quickly they replied.
 

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I believe the recommended life of the helmet liner is 5 yrs. Might want to think about the level of protection afforded by your older (over 5 yrs.) helmets. It's all back to the old saw about "if you've got a $5 head then put a $5 helmet on it". Just ask yourself what kind of helmet would you choose to be wearing if you knew for certain that you would hit your head on the pavement when you were knocked off your scooter while cruising at 60 mph. Guess what, you will PROBABLY WILL have a head strike if you go down at speed. Hope it NEVER happens to you but I also hope you're wearing the best helmet money can buy if it should happen to you. Happy Scooter Riding. Capt. Ron
 

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I have an HJC full face helmet that is about 5 yrs old and an open face one that is about 2 yrs. old. As far as replacement recommendations...I'd say that there are alot of variables. How often is the helmet used? Under what conditions? Is it left baking in the sun when the bike is parked? I believe that as long as the lining and foam are not showing signs of deterioration and the helmet shell is ok (not dropped or abused), it can last longer than most people expect.

Also, an interesting aside on the DOT vs SNELL certifications. From what I've read, the SNELL helmet can withstand more severe impacts, especially when hitting sharp objects but the DOT is slightly safer in moderate to small impacts due to its softer foam which transmits less of the impact forces to the wearer's head. In any case, the studies showed that the greatest safety factor overall was wearing ANY helmet vs. not wearing one.
 
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