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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hopefully, this will help our members make sound decisions when they go to purchase a new helmet. I recently purchased two new Arai helmets and noted that the manufacturing date was in 2005 and when I went to Arai's site to register them, I was informed the warranty on both will expire around Aug 2012. The following is my communication with Arai's personnel. Read from the bottom up and beware of their policy. If I receive any additional info, I'll post it.
Hope everyone finds this helpful.





Raymond 2/13/2012
Can I expect an answer to the information I requested or is this a subject that you would rather avoid?

Raymond 2/10/2012
So then for our members benefit, what is Arai`s recommendation as to what period of time from the date of manufacturing should they avoid buying Arai or other brand helmets to ensure the safety factor is maintained? In other words, what should my expectations be as to the safety factor of the helmets I just purchased considering the fact that they were manufactured in 2005 and sat on the dealers shelf until 2/2/2012. Also, has there been any testing performed by any organization, i.e., DOT, etc. that has established what a wearer should be concerned with as to the aging process? I`ve never seen anything that addressed this issue with motorcycle helmet manufacturers and feel it is something that would benefit all riders in making purchases of safety gear. Having some sort of guideline would be of beneficial value to your customers.
Arai 2/10/2012

Raymond, If a helmet is brand new, it will not have as much break-down as a helmet that has been used but it will sustain some break-down due to age even if it has not been used. So, depending on how old the new helmet is, you may not get seven years of use before it becomes unsafe to use. Thanks, Kathy

Raymond 2/10/2012
Thanks for the reply Kathy. I didn`t get an answer to my question as to the possible degradation of a helmet that is stocked by a dealer beyond its manufactured date. Is there some sort of breakdown of the material or is there some other influence that would alter the life of the helmet. I could see Arai would not be able to determine the time of ownership if the helmet was not registered and proof of purchase could not be substantiated but I`m at a loss to see a difference if both variables are met. Please explain the Companies thinking on this. I want to pass this information on to other members of our forum so they can make an informed decision on the purchase of Arai or other helmets. Thank you for your attention to this matter.
Arai 2/10/2012

Raymond, The Arai warranty is 5 years from date of manufacture or date of purchase, never to go beyond 7 years from date of manufacture so if you purchase a new helmet that is 2 years from date of manufacture you would still have 5 years of warranty. If you purchase a new helmet that is 3 years from date of manufacture you would have 4 years of warranty, and so on. We do not own the dealerships so we have no say in what they have in inventory but stress that they should inform the consumer of the date of manufacture of the helmet so that you can decide to purchase or not but, again, we cannot inforce this. Many dealers will offer a discount on older stock. If you were not advised of the manufacture date and this matters to you, you should contact the dealership to see if they are willing to work with you on an exchange or discount. Please let me know how you make out if you contact them. Thanks, Kathy

Raymond 2/9/2012
I just purchased two helmets new that were manufactured in Aug. 2005 and the registration came back showing a limited warranty. Do the helmets degrade sitting on the dealers shelf or is there some other reason the 5 year warranty is not honored on a new helmet?
 

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Good information to know. I can understand from the mfgrs legal standpoint that they don't want to warrant a product more than 7 years, but I agree with your question about just what would degrade the product just sitting on a shelf. Most riders probably would never think to look at the mfg date. But now we know there is a time limit..

Can you return the helmets back where you purchased them??
 
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HJC has in their info packet that comes with the helmet, a statement that the helmet should be replaced after 7 years from the "Born On Date" which is a sticker on the inside and top of the helmet. Whether it is a big deal if you go past 7 years, I cannot answer. I think its sad that a dealer or whoever you bought the Ari's from didn't tell you this or discount the price due to the age. Especially since Ari is not the cheapest brand on the market. If you don't mind disclosing the info, who did you buy the helmets from? I am hearing that "online" sales are bad at doing this. Hope you get some relief.
 

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Helmets, like practically everything, have a useful life. UV exposure, chemical exposure, oxidation, material breakdown, natural aging, etc will take their toll. It cannot last forever and will degrade over time. Since your helmets were manufactured in 2005, I would mostly be worried about the liner material and liner foam degrading slightly. Arai has no control over what type of environment the helmets are in after the leave the factory (humidity, heat, handling, chemical/gas exposure, etc). I have an older Shoei helmet and the foam in the liner is drying out and flaking off. Its still one of my favorite helmets. However, Arai helmets are at the top of my list of well built, purpose designed, safety is first helmets. If you think they are still a great deal, keep them. If not, I'm sure the seller will take them back. Arai's stance on their warranty makes perfect sense. I own over 20 helmets from since I was a kid. Every one of them is still usable and I've never had a warrantee issue from a reputable helmet manufacturer.
 

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Thanks for the info Raymond.
 

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my oldest helmet has 2 more years, the bad part is its my best fitting helmet
 

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Maybe a helmet needs a sell by date:rolleyes:
 

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Sounds to me like a Conspiracy to get folks to buy helmets more often....Sorry if I sound cynical:)
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 · (Edited)
Probably could return them to find something more current but just wanted other members to be aware of this. More so, if they are buying on line rather than in a store.
 

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Probably could return them to find something more current but just wanted other members to be aware of this.
Thanks for the info...Buckwheat:)
 

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I'm pretty lax in when I retire my lids. Kind of strange when I subscribe to the "if you have a $10 mellon, then buy a $10 lid" adage. I still cling to my HJC half shell that I should have retired years ago, and I know it. All my other current ones (including an Arai) have a couple years left at least as long as they don't sustain any 'incidents'. I'm not really sure what kind of compensation you'd recieve under a warranty claim through Arai, Shoei or any other manufacturer since once a helmet sustains a crash impact of any kind, it's done. Makes one wonder. Other than a chin strap or some form of delamination (which is rare) most helmet damage is caused by the wearer, either by misfortune or abuse so. But yes, there is a manufacture date on certified brain buckets, so it's wise to inspect them before buying. Personally, I'd never buy a helmet online or mail order, as I insist on test fitting them before they go home with me.
 

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Helmet and Tire Use By Dates

Caveat Emptor, Let the Buyer Beware: Helmets and Tires have expiration dates. Tire Sale!! How old are the tires? The mfg date is on the tire sidewall. Thanks to Buckwheat, I now know that Helmets have expiration dates!!

So new Dunlop E3 tires for cheap...Red Flag:D
Arai Helmets for less than $300.00...Red Flag:D

Being a helmet whore myself, I normally update my helmet annually, the retired helmets go to relatives and friends who ride. In August 2010 on a trip to Sturgis, SD I was wearing a Shark Helmet, after a couple of weeks on the road I purchased a newer helmet because the Shark was so heavy my neck was aching. My 16 year old nephew is now the proud owner of the Shark Evoline. At 6'2" and 190 lbs he has a very strong neck. :)

If a deal looks too good, watch out. There's no such thing as a free lunch.:D
 

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My helmet is thirty years old and has hit the ground twice, it's as good as.................... what was I saying? :confused:


Seriously, I never knew there was an expiration date on helmets. It's very interesting to know.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
Helmet purchase's

I received an update from Arai's personnel to my previous post on helmet purchase's and wanted to include it for the members.



Arai 2/14/2012
Raymond, This venue is addressed only every other business day so the last time I saw your ticket was 5 PM on thursday the 10th and, since your ticker response came in after 5 PM EST I did not see it until today. I can tell you that Arai has tested their helmets for all possibilities (crash, drop, age, etc.) and have found that after seven years from date of manufacture the plastics can begin to break down and become unsafe so that is the limit on the warranty. As I stated earlier, there are many factors that can affect the damage due to aging, but since we cannot possibly inspect every helmet out there, this is the standard that we have adopted. I realize that you are not only questioning the warranty but also the safety of the helmet so due to the testing that Arai has done on their helmets they have concluded that the safety period is seven years. If you would like to find out more about the testing that Arai does in their testing facilities in Japan and Europe, you can contact Brian in the Pa. office to see if he has any information that he can get to you at [email protected]americas.com Kathy
 

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So ! what you are saying is the retailer should be rotating the stock as a food market rotates their stock ! I don't see that it would be cost effective for a company to keep their prices down to a level that the consumer would enjoy a price they can afford . I wonder how many consumers actually have cause to use the warranty on their helmet in the first place ! I have had a number of helmets and never once found reason to return any of them to the dealer for warranty . I think if i were this worried about the safety of my helmet , i would question why i even own a motorcycle , given the level of danger involved in riding one !!
 

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I have to agree that it is good to know there is a time where the plastics and foam injected elements begin to deteriorate, just like tires go hard over time. I wouldn't buy/put on a 10 year old tire, nor would I purchase an outdated helmet any more than a stale dated package of bologna. I can see where it could cause a bit of a problem for a fairly high volume helmet retailer with dating and price point issues, but there's two words for that: inventory control!
 
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