All about bicycles, electric-assisted bikes, technology and safety in the press

The most common safety risks that we come across in our daily work around bicycle safety, technology and operating instructions are also published by us in articles in the leading German special-interest magazines TOUR (Europe's road bike magazine no. 1), BIKE (Europe's mountain bike magazine no. 1), MYBIKE and EMTB in order to make this information, which is important for the industry, available to a wider public.

For many years now, the Eurobike Show Daily, trade fair magazine of the annual Eurobike Show, has also given us the opportunity to publish our view of major developments in the cycle industry in full-page articles.

We also speak regularly in independent expert presentations about all areas of bicycle technology and the bicycle market. In addition, we are quoted by further special-interest magazines of the industry and the trade as well as increasingly by radio and television in their media reports, which shows us that we are spot on with our advice. The section "News" informs you about the latest news from our specialist areas. The reports and publications of this section are listed chronologically or according to areas of interest.

TOUR 07/2016
Reading time 1:20 minutes

What is the perfect moment to replace a helmet?

Reader’s question

I treat my bicycle helmet (wide-spread brand of a German manufacturer) like a raw egg. It has never fallen down a cabinet, a table or the bicycle handlebars, not even in daily use it has been exposed to an impact. It is cleaned with nothing but a slightly moist cloth without the use of chemical agents. In recent times I’ve read in cycle magazines and articles of the daily press that a helmet should be replaced every five years, as the material were subject to “fatigue”: I bought my helmet in summer 2008. What is your opinion? Do you think I should actually replace my helmet?

Reply by Dirk Zedler, TOUR technology expert and bicycle expert

Helmet safety is in fact an issue that generates contradictory statements. In most cases manufacturers and specialists express a rather cautious opinion, for different reasons: On the one hand the helmet material ages and becomes brittle. Due to the evaporation of plasticizers, UV radiation and the change of heat and cold elasticity and shock absorption capability may decrease. Furthermore, with the duration of the use there is an increasing risk of crack formation in the supporting substance. What has also happened is the breakage of the buckle with very low temperatures, i.e. a clear sign of aging. All these are relevant points substantiating that a helmet ages and should be replaced sometime for the cyclist’s safety. However, as everyone treats his helmet in a different way you cannot conclude a general statement when it should be replaced. A positive point after all is that helmets are offered at more and more reduced prices with clearly improved technical characteristics at the same time. A top model offered ten years ago at about 200 Euro can be purchased at less than half of the amount in these days. In my opinion there are therefore few reasons speaking against replacing an often used helmet every couple of years.

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