Helmets are the singular most important piece of equipment when riding your bicycle. By taking care of your helmet, you are ensuring its continued use as well as extending its longevity. Let’s break down how to take care of your helmet.

Cleaning Helmets

Helmets are made of materials that can be damaged by many common cleaners. Petroleum-based solvents or cleaners are especially dangerous because they can soften the protective outer layer. For best results, clean the helmet using a soft cloth or sponge, warm water, and mild soap (such as dish soap).


Yes, we said Lice! Do not use a spray of any type. Place the helmet into an airtight plastic bag for 48 hours. Then, discard the pads and use a soft cloth or sponge, warm water, and mild soap to clean the surface. Safely discard the plastic bag and replace the pads.

Storing Helmets

Excessive heat can damage the helmet. Heat damaged helmets will appear to have uneven or bubbly surface. After each use, allow the helmet to air dry and then store in a cool and dry place.

Painting and Stickering Helmets

We strongly advise against painting, stickering, or otherwise modifying a helmet because all of these things can damage the helmet and reduce its protective capabilities. Solvents found in paint are capable of softening the protective outer layer. You can sand into the plastic/fiberglass and compromise the protective outer layer.

When Should I Replace a Helmet?

You should replace a helmet when it is either damaged or after a period of time due to normal wear and tear. Here is a breakdown of when you should replace a helmet.

When it Becomes Damaged

Helmets don't last forever. If the helmet is visibly damaged either through a cracked outer shell, crushed or cracked foam liner, or any other damage, don't use it. Some or all of the helmet's protective capacity is used up when impacted. Damage to a helmet is not always visible. If you have any questions about the condition of a helmet, feel free to bring it into any Sun & Ski Sports bike shop for an assessment.

After Normal Wear and Tear

The general recommendation is to replace a helmet every three to five (3-5) years. Normal wear and tear is from constant use and not from falls. If your helmet was involved in an impact, drop, or any other force, it may be damaged and require replacement. If you have any questions as to the condition of your helmet, bring your helmet in for an inspection.

If you have any questions about biking, visit us online or at your local Sun & Ski Sports.