I went to Cycle Gear as well as several shops and found very little clothing or helmets. Maybe it is a result of Amazon being in my backyard? I couldn't find the helmet I was after, or the gear I wanted, and almost everything in the shops was black. I don't know who decided that black is the official color of motorcycle gear but the last thing I want is to be wearing black gear on a black bike on a hot summer day.--
The advantage to buying in a shop is being able to try on the helmet. Important since most brands fit a little different. If they don't have the exact color you want, but have the brand, they can order one. We need to remember that if we don't use the local shops for as much as we can, they will fold and there will be none.
I have always figured that 5 year rule was meant to drive business and relieve companies of liability. If a guy wrecks and dies and the insurance company for the guy in the car figures out his helmet is 6 years old, are they off the hook?It's only 5 years old. If it hasn't been wrecked, and it still fits and feels good, keep using it and save your coins for something else.
Just like oil preferences, "Honda vs. Harley", and 9mm vs. .45, everyone has varying opinions on the 5 year "best by" date for helmets. After reading many, many opinions, I think the 5 year rule is really just offered as a best practice or guideline. As an example, let's say you ride frequently in all kinds of weather and you subject your helmet to heat, cold, sweat, lots of UV rays, and maybe the occasional "soft drop". In this instance, I'd be inclined to go ahead and replace that helmet after 5. On the other hand, if you only ride when it is nice out, keep the interior relatively clean, and put it away for 2-5 months for winter, then I have no doubt that helmet would be perfectly safe for much longer.
It is true, but it will take a lot longer than 5 years to have any measurable effect on the EPS. The helmet companies err well on the side of caution, and of course they don't mind selling you a new helmet too. Now, I'm speaking about a well made helmet for street use, not a racing type helmet.
I've heard that, too. I'm pretty sure that refers to five years of exposure to UV rays and not just five years of time.
The point about better materials being developed is the best argument I've heard yet for 5 year replacement. That said, a helmet I'd been using for 4 years started giving me headaches (forehead pressure) last year. This year it was worse and I could only stand it for about an hour. I checked the chart on Lidpicker.com this time and discovered that helmet is listed as quite round. Assuming my head didn't change, I'm wondering whether the lining just wore too much or as was mentioned above perhaps the foam can actually deform? I dunno but I decided to go whole hog and buy a Neotec II which is more oval according to Lidpicker and it's been great so far. I have another Shoei, an open face which I've always found very comfortable which was another reason to get another Shoei.From the Snell Foundation:
The five-year replacement recommendation is based on a consensus by both helmet manufacturers and the Snell Foundation. Glues, resins and other materials used in helmet production can affect liner materials. Hair oils, body fluids and cosmetics, as well as normal "wear and tear" all contribute to helmet degradation. Petroleum based products present in cleaners, paints, fuels and other commonly encountered materials may also degrade materials used in many helmets possibly degrading performance. Additionally, experience indicates there will be a noticeable improvement in the protective characteristic of helmets over a five-year period due to advances in materials, designs, production methods and the standards. Thus, the recommendation for five-year helmet replacement is a judgment call stemming from a prudent safety philosophy.