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When to toss the helmet?

post #1 of 17
Thread Starter 
As a motorcycle rider the rule is to replace whenever you get into an accident. The helmet compaines (except for W) say to do it whenever you take a hit. But obviously you can't replace your helmet everytime you fall. I've taken a few hits on my helmet but they seem quite minor in the overall scheme. One a glancing blow from a tree branch (_that_ would have hurt) and two times major head plants into ice/packed snow. My intuition is that the helmet is fine -- and though I know you can't neccessarily tell from visual inspection there are no cracks/compaction in the EPS.

So, what are some good guidelines? I promise not to sue if you're wrong!
post #2 of 17
I'd pitch it when I had any doubts about the helmet. Also, I replace mine after a few years of use. You never can tell how many times you dropped it and packed out the foam next to the plastic. The problem with plastic helmets is when they drop and deform, the shell pops back out and you can't tell how much they were damaged.

I use to ride BMW's and was very careful with my helmets. I never dropped one, but if I did I'd probably ditch it.
post #3 of 17
Good question Lodro. Bicycle helmets are lightweight and designed to compress to handle the shock of a hit. They are supposed to be replaced after any hit and some of the companies even have low cost replacement deals. I always assumed that snowsport helmets (excepting the new lightweight Giros) were more heavy duty and able to take multiple light hits. (crashes on the Hannekammen excluded!) You could stop by a shop and see what it says on the packaging. Or try the website of one or more of the helmet suppliers. LewBob
post #4 of 17
IMO, after any wicked whack (like seeing stars), after any visible crack, or after 5-7 years. Whichever comes first.
post #5 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by LewBob
I always assumed that snowsport helmets (excepting the new lightweight Giros) were more heavy duty and able to take multiple light hits. (crashes on the Hannekammen excluded!) You could stop by a shop and see what it says on the packaging. Or try the website of one or more of the helmet suppliers. LewBob
Add the new Carreras to your list.

All snowsports helmets should be replaced after any significant impact. If it would have hurt without the helmet, it hurt the helmet. If you want to take chances, that is your call.

Giro will give you a replacement if you send in the warranty card and it is within three years.
-Garrett
post #6 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by LewBob
You could stop by a shop and see what it says on the packaging. Or try the website of one or more of the helmet suppliers. LewBob
Good idea, but I imagine they are going to play it way conservative both for liability and profit reasons. Its really a question of how much force you need to compress the EPS through the plastic I guess. Just dropping on the floor shouldn't do much harm, as there is very little mass to decelerate. A glancing blow also wouldn't absorb much energy. A full-on hit, but not enough to cause a concussion without a helmet..? Too much to worry about I guess. I am liking those new Giro's with the integrated SkullCandy headphones.
post #7 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lodro
I am liking those new Giro's with the integrated SkullCandy headphones.
Sounds like new technology just won!:
post #8 of 17
On a side note, has anyone tried those on hill yet? I'm wondering what kind of isolation you get from the rest of the hill. There are times when I'd like some music when I ski, but I do like to be aware of my surroundings.
post #9 of 17
"When to toss the helmet?"

I was going to respond, when it's 55 degrees and you are teaching a class of 12 level ones.

(...but then I saw you meant something different...)

Tom / PM
post #10 of 17
Thread Starter 
Quote:
Originally Posted by CanuckInstructor
On a side note, has anyone tried those on hill yet? I'm wondering what kind of isolation you get from the rest of the hill. There are times when I'd like some music when I ski, but I do like to be aware of my surroundings.
Yea, I wonder.. I would think they would be better than in ear, which is what I am using now. As long as I don't crank the in ear I can hear ambient noise fine.
post #11 of 17
Physicsman, You are much to much a literalist. I LOVE IT!!!! Great answer to the literal question.
post #12 of 17
If you have the time and don't mind a few bucks in shipping, I believe most companies will let you send in the helmet for inspection. I know Leedom used to offer the inspection then a replacement deal if it was indeed bad. When I was running a shop, I sent them around 5 for this and only one needed actual replacement. Obviously contact the helmet manufacturer to see if they offer this inspection. I ended up replacing mine, not from a fall, but from carrying it in my ski bag and having the tips cause damage to the inside. Just a thought on top of the other good advice on here.
post #13 of 17
Thread Starter 
Good idea -- I wonder what _they_ do for the inspection... x-ray it?
post #14 of 17
Quote:
Originally Posted by Lodro
Good idea -- I wonder what _they_ do for the inspection... x-ray it?
Very good question.
post #15 of 17
I just ordered myself a new one this week. Trying out Giro's audio series helmets. cool idea.

post #16 of 17
not sure about the other guys, but I believe I remember Leedom saying they actually take the helmet apart to inspect under the shell. Thinking about all this, guess I need to contact Giro myself and see if they have anything like this. No reason to wait until you need the info. Will pass along anything I hear.
post #17 of 17
I Just Can Not Get Used To A Helmet. Go For The New Protective Red-burton Hat. It Wont Help But Might Give You Some Piece Of Mind!
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