Whether you ride the latest greatest superbike or an everyday commuter, your motorcycle helmet is the most essential bit of kit you own! Read our top tips on buying a new motorcycle helmet.
A motorcycle helmet of course provides protection should you have an accident but also makes riding more comfortable by keeping out the wind, rain, bugs and other unwelcome elements when riding. Helmets are designed to fit all head sizes and shapes and range widely in price so what are the things you need to know when it comes to buying helmets.
1. Firstly make sure it will do the job property, by law all helmets sold in the UK should meet British and EU standards. This means complying with British Standard BS 6658:1985, UNECE Regulation 22.05 and any standard accepted by a member of the European Economic Area which offers a level of safety and protection equivalent to BS 6658:1985 (according to the government website).
2. Get the right fit; this is so much more important than the brand or design. A study of motorcycle accidents across Europe showed that 12 % of helmets were lost during the course of the impact, so its essential to make sure they fit properly. It's well worth spending time getting it fitted by a professional who has been trained by the manufacturer on how to fit helmets. Take your time when trying on and make sure its comfortable and fits securely.
3. Buying second-hand helmets is false economy and unsafe, you have no idea what has happened to them, so even if you are on a tight budget its always better to buy a less expensive new helmet rather then a second-hand one. If a helmet receives any impact you should always buy a new one, as damage won't always be visible to the naked eye.
4. SHARP (Safety Helmet Assessment and Rating Programme) perform vigorous tests on all makes and models of helmets and have a rating system to help you make a more informed choice when choosing a helmet. SHARP advise that a motorcycle helmet generally has a life of around five years or three years if used regularly.
5. Buying motorcycle helmets online is convenient and can save money, but helmet brands and even models vary in their sizing so be careful and make sure you have the right fit before and buying a lid online.
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