How to clean a bike helmet

Just like your bike needs a little TLC every now and then, your bike helmet could also do with a bit of cleaning. But what is the best way to clean a bike helmet?  It’s no big deal really: hand-wash, use soap and water, stay away from strong chemicals and your helmet will stay in shape.

Cleaning a helmet

A cleaning checklist

Usually, bike helmets come with cleaning tips, so a good idea is to start by consulting the manual or the manufacturer’s website for instructions. But if you’ve lost the manual or don’t have easy access to the website, there are some general rules to which to adhere.

  • Easy does it

    Go gently and clean your helmet by hand using water and soap or a mild detergent. Rinse thoroughly and let air dry. Of course, there are specific helmet cleaners, but soap and water work just fine.

  • Wash it

    A helmet can be immersed in water briefly, but don’t leave it there since it may absorb water, which could affect the adhesives used in the construction.

    With that being said, wash your helmet in a bucket of water, a basin, a bathtub, or the kitchen sink. Alternatively, take it with you in the shower and clean it there after your ride.

    Helmet straps should be scrubbed gently with water and soap.

  • Wash the pads separately

    Remove the pads and wash them gently by hand in cold water with a little soap or detergent and let them air dry.

  • Clean your bike helmet with microfiber

    One option is to use damp microfiber cloths to gently wipe away dirt and mud. If the mud has gotten in places that are hard to reach, a soft toothbrush may do the trick. After cleaning your bike helmet, use another microfiber cloth to wipe your helmet dry.

  • Chemicals and other no-nos

    Never use solvents or harsh cleaning materials on your helmet, since some of them may attack the foam or shell and weaken your helmet. Never put your helmet in a washing machine or dishwasher. Also, avoid letting your helmet dry in direct sunlight.

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