Touring on a motorcycle can be an exciting and enjoyable experience, but safety should always be your top priority. When selecting a motorcycle helmet for touring, consider the following safety tips in detail:
- Choose the right type of helmet: There are several types of helmets available, including full-face, modular (flip-up), open-face, and half-helmets. Full-face helmets provide the best protection as they cover your entire head and face. Modular helmets offer similar protection, but with the convenience of a flip-up chin bar. Open-face and half-helmets don’t offer as much protection, so they’re not recommended for long-distance touring.
- Look for certification: Make sure the helmet meets safety standards such as the DOT (Department of Transportation) in the United States, ECE 22.05 (Economic Commission for Europe) in Europe, or other relevant standards depending on your location. Certified helmets undergo rigorous testing to ensure they provide a high level of protection.
- Correct fit: A properly fitting helmet is crucial for your safety. It should be snug but not uncomfortably tight, and it shouldn’t move around on your head. Keep in mind that different helmet brands may have slightly different fits, so try on several models to find the best fit.
- Comfort: For long rides, comfort is crucial. Look for a helmet with good ventilation, a removable and washable liner, and adjustable padding. Some helmets have features such as integrated sun visors and Pinlock-ready visors to prevent fogging, which can be helpful for touring.
- Visibility: Make sure your helmet has a clear and distortion-free visor that provides a wide field of view. Some helmets have anti-fog treatments or come with a Pinlock system to reduce fogging. For added safety, consider a helmet with reflective material or decals to increase your visibility to other motorists.
- Communication: For touring, you may want to invest in a helmet that is compatible with Bluetooth communication systems or has built-in speakers and microphone. This allows you to communicate with your riding partners, listen to music, or get GPS directions without compromising safety.
- Durability and quality: Invest in a helmet made from high-quality materials that are designed to withstand impacts and protect your head. Common materials include polycarbonate, fiberglass, and carbon fiber. Each material has its pros and cons, so research and choose one that suits your needs and budget.
- Replace your helmet: Helmets have a limited lifespan and should be replaced every 3-5 years or after a crash. The materials can degrade over time, reducing the helmet’s effectiveness in protecting your head.
By following these safety tips and choosing the right helmet, you can ensure a safe and enjoyable motorcycle touring experience.