Much Does a Motorcycle Helmet Cost? Importance, Facts & FAQs
When you’re riding a motorcycle, a helmet is one of the best ways to protect yourself from a life-threatening injury and even death. Your motorcycle helmet will probably cost between $50 and $200, however, you will need to replace it every few years, and many people worry that it can get expensive. So, keep reading while we take a look at how much the average helmet costs, how long it can last, and any additional expenses.
The Importance of Motorcycle Helmets
Motorcycle helmets are extremely important. They are responsible for saving more than 1,000 lives each year and protecting against numerous injuries. Close to 70% of riders wear a helmet, and most states have at least a few laws requiring you to wear one. Only Illinois, Iowa, and New Hampshire have no rules at all regarding helmets. Alaska, Arizona, Florida. Ohio, Pennsylvania, and a few others require you to wear a helmet up to a certain age, like 18 or 21, while Alabama, California, Georgia, Nevada, New Jersey, New York, and others require one at all times. You will likely learn your state laws for helmets when you get your license, but if you intend to ride your bike in other states, you will need to check the laws before riding without a helmet, so you don’t incur any fines.
How Much Does a Motorcycle Helmet Cost?
Motorcycle helmets can vary considerably in price depending on the type that you purchase. For example, most states with helmet laws will require you to wear a helmet approved by the Department of Transportation (DOT), and these may cost more than an unapproved model that is more for appearance than safety. High-quality materials will also lead to a higher cost, as will the overall size of the helmet, so you can expect to pay more for an adult’s helmet than a child’s. A helmet that provides a full-face covering will usually cost more than one that only protects the eyes. Another thing that can affect the price is onboard electronics. Many modern helmets have Bluetooth, headphones, and microphones so you can listen to music or take a phone call while wearing them, but these can get expensive.
With so many brands available, it’s easy to find a good price on any helmet, but it’s important to try it on before buying to make sure it fits well. A helmet that is the wrong size can wear out quickly or reduce your vision. It’s also important to ensure that an inexpensive helmet doesn’t use cheap materials that can compromise your safety.
|VCAN German Style Motorcycle Half Helmet
|ILM Open Face Motorcycle 3/4 Half Helmet
|¾ face protection
|LS2 Helmets Full Face Rapid Street Helmet
|Full face protection
|ILM Bluetooth Motorcycle Helmet
|Full face protection, Bluetooth
Additional Costs to Anticipate
While there aren’t any hidden costs when purchasing a motorcycle helmet, the addition of Bluetooth, a microphone, and speakers are features that can increase the cost. Some brands offer a base model that doesn’t include them for a lower price.
Other expenses might include additional or replacement visors. Your visor can get scraped up while you ride, reducing your vision. Many people also like to get tinted visors that they can change based on the weather. The cost of additional visors will depend on the brand, but they usually run between $10 and $40 each. In most cases, you will need to contact the manufacturer of your helmet to order one.
Another feature that can increase the cost of your helmet is specialized artwork. For example, many people like to purchase airbrushed or painted helmets with a specific design or logo, which significantly increases the helmet’s price, especially if the art is unique and personal.
One extra purchase that you might consider is a helmet lock, which is a simple device that will protect you from helmet theft when you need to be away from your bike. There are many different kinds that you can get, and they all work quite well at keeping your helmet safe.
How Often Should I Replace My Motorcycle Helmet?
A motorcycle helmet has a surprisingly short lifespan. Most manufacturers recommend that you replace them every 3 to 5 years. However, you will need to replace it even sooner if you were in an accident or dropped it hard enough for its structural integrity to be affected. In either of those cases, you will need to replace it immediately. Manufacturers also recommend replacing your helmet if you notice scratches or cracks on the outside or frayed straps inside.
Why Does My Helmet Expire?
Your motorcycle helmet has a hard outer shell with thick, dense foam on the inside that protects your head in the case of an accident. Over time, the foam begins to compress and degrade, reducing the amount of protection that it provides. Frequently riding your bike can cause the foam to break down even quicker, and high temperatures will do the same. Sweat, natural body oils, and chemicals from hair products can also affect the foam, resin, and glue that holds the helmet together.
How Can I Maintain My Motorcycle Helmet?
Your helmet can get dirty as you ride due to sweat and road dirt, especially when riding a dirt bike. Many helmets will enable you to remove some of the internal padding to clean it, but you will need to be careful that you don’t damage the helmet in the process. Always check with the manufacturer to learn how to do it properly. You can clean certain types of foam with a mild detergent, but you need to check with the manufacturer, so you don’t ruin it. A good idea is to wear a bandana or similar item over your face and head while riding to help keep the foam clean. A ski mask or something similar also works well.
If you can remove the padding, you can clean the debris from the hard shell by using any one of the available helmet-cleaning products. You can also use a gentle detergent, like Dawn dishwashing liquid, mixed with water and a microfiber cloth. Remember not to do much rubbing when there is still a significant amount of dirt, or you might scratch the helmet.
Your motorcycle helmet will probably cost between $50 and $200, depending on the type, size, and features. It can cost more than that if you seek out expensive artwork or purchase extra visors. Features like Bluetooth and other electronics can also increase the cost. You will need to replace your helmet every 3 to 5 years, which can get expensive, but you can save costs by sticking with the same model in order to continue using the visors and other accessories.
Featured Image Credit: HELMEnt, Pixabay