Ensuring Optimal Protection: A Guide to Ski and Snowboard Helmet Care, Maintenance, and Replacement

April 05, 2024 3 min read

As avid skiers and snowboarders, our helmet isn't just a piece of equipment – it's a very important protection tool. But like any tool, its effectiveness can diminish over time. Regular inspection and maintenance of your helmet are crucial for ensuring optimal protection on the slopes. In this guide, I'll walk you through a comprehensive checklist to assess the condition of your ski or snowboard helmet.


Section 1: Inspection

Age Factor:

Your helmet’s materials naturally degrade over time. It's advisable to replace your helmet every 3-5 years, depending on usage intensity. Please be aware that manufacturer’s recommendations is usually to replace the helmet every 2-3 years, as it takes into account the worst case scenario of intense use by industry professionals and avid skiers/snowboarders logging many on snow days every season.

Storage Practices:

How and where you store your helmet can significantly impact its longevity. Helmets should be stored in a cool, dry place, away from direct sunlight, any heavy objects that might press against them, and away from sources of heat.


Section 2: Assessment

Shell Condition:

The outer shell is your first line of defense. Check for any cracks, dents, or significant scratches. These can compromise the structural integrity of the helmet.

Impact History:

If your helmet has been involved in a significant impact, it’s time for a replacement. Damage isn’t always visible, but protection can be severely compromised. Have you dropped your helmet? You may think it’s not relevant but in some cases, protection performance may also be compromised in this case.

Buckle and Straps:

Examine the buckle and straps for any signs of wear, fraying, or damage. A malfunctioning buckle or damaged strap can be a major safety risk.


Section 3: Care and Maintenance

Fit and Comfort:

A helmet that doesn’t fit properly cannot offer full protection. Ensure your helmet still fits snugly and comfortably.

Interior Padding:

The padding inside the helmet should be in good condition. Worn or degraded padding can reduce the helmet's protective ability.



Your protection on the slopes is paramount. Regularly checking and maintaining your ski or snowboard helmet ensures you’re always protected. If you find that your helmet doesn’t pass these checks, consider upgrading to the latest models. At SHRED., we’re committed to offering top-of-the-line helmets that provide maximum protection and comfort.

Explore our collection and stay protected while enjoying the thrill of the mountains.


Carlo Salmini, Co-Founder of SHRED., Materials Engineer, and MIT Graduate



How to Clean and Care for the Helmet's Interior and Exterior?

For the interior, it's recommended to gently hand wash the padding with mild soap and lukewarm water, then allow it to air dry completely before reinstalling it. Avoid using harsh chemicals or machine washing, as this can degrade the material. For the exterior, wiping down the helmet with a soft, damp cloth should suffice. Avoid exposing the helmet to extreme heat or cold during the drying process, as this can affect the structural integrity of the materials.


Can the Effectiveness of a Helmet be Tested or Measured?

Unfortunately, there's no simple way for consumers to test a helmet's effectiveness at home. Helmets are designed to absorb impact energy during a crash, and this process often involves the destruction or deformation of the helmet's materials. Therefore, any significant impact can compromise its protective capabilities. If your helmet has suffered a noticeable impact or shows signs of damage, it's safest to replace it. Regular inspection for signs of wear, such as cracks in the foam or shell, can also help assess its condition.


What are the Specifics of Helmet Technology and Materials?

Modern ski and snowboard helmets typically use a combination of a hard outer shell made from materials like ABS plastic or a thin plastic layer such as PC to protect the inner layers from abrasion, and an inner liner usually made from EPS (expanded polystyrene) foam, which absorbs impact. Advances in helmet technology include improved ventilation systems, lighter materials for enhanced comfort, and integration with rotational energy systems that help reduce the force of rotational impacts on the brain. Some helmets also feature advanced padding materials for better fit, comfort, and odor control.