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Washing and soaking my helmet?

Discussion in 'General Motorcycling Discussion' started by Motobecane51, May 28, 2015.

  1. G'dday fellow riders

    My 1 year old helmet is starting to get smelly on the inside, especially after the inside got wet under heavy rains in Sydney.

    I have washed the liner several times and could not really get rid of the smell...... : (

    Would it be ok to wash and soaked the helmet in soap overnight? Would that damage the helmet?

    Please share your experience : )


  2. IMO I wouldn't leave it to soak in a detergent. That might damage the foam.
    I'd try a few drops of Eucalyptus oil or similar in the rinse water.
  3. It all depends on the type of helmet and liner. Usually the more costly the helmet the better you can look after the liner, up to those where the liner is removable and washable. The original instructions that you got with the bone dome should have care instructions, if you've lost them then you should be able to find them with a web search.

    Alternatively there are foam aerosol cleaners which will do a reasonable job of cleaning and removing the smell, but not for long. Good to carry around on a long trip and freshen up the lining, if a wash isn't possible.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  4. I doubt a soak is required I've shampooed a helmet that smelled really nasty; immersed in a sink of shampooed water, agitated it, rinsed and left to dry, great success. The foam is a plastic(of sorts), plastic isn't typically attacked by detergents or soaps. I'd say better soap than eucalyptus oil.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  5. have you tried sprinkling bicarb soda in there overnight? it should absorb the smell.
    its not mouldy is it?
  6. Mine got abit the same way, I sprayed some air freshener in to it then sat it on the central heating vent over night, its like brand new with a very slight air freshener smell
  7. As someone else has said Bi Carb is good. You could also try some of that spray you use on sports shoes to stop them smelling off.
  8. Don't curse me but vanilla essence works wonders on viscous pongs...well in fridges anyway...good for reviving post-liquid vege crispers or after finding that long forgotten yogurt that as we speak, NASA is examining for new life forms ;)
    Sounds like your helmet would like a little vanilla in its life rather than the fifty shades of grey mould growing in there..
    • Funny Funny x 1
  9. Eucalyptus oil is often used to dissolve adhesives or remove adhesive marks from other finishes. It would likely damage the adhesive used to bond the foam to the shell of the helmet, so I wouldn't use Eucalyptus oil or spray of any sort.
    • Agree Agree x 1
  10. Fellow riders,

    Thanks a lot for your fantastic suggestions. I will try one by one until my helmet is smell free: )

    I watched youtube today and saw a few videos of people washing their helmet with hair shampoo. That is currently what I have at home and will give it a go over the weekend as a start.

    I am a bit of a cleanliness freak and will probably wash and use other suggestions also.

    Will keep you guys posted,


  11. bicarb as suggested is also going to be a winner I had a car once that I drove through flood waters I didn't realize at the time water got in the cab behind the seats of the ute, I went away overseas for 3 weeks when I got back I had Mouldy stinky carpet got the water out bi carbed the carpet for a few days for and what not never smelt again!
  12. I fixed my stinky hat with bi-carb, but another thing that works is putting it in the freezer.
  13. Thanks for the bicarbonate suggestion.

    As I only have shampoo handy I did use that. I also let the helmet soak in the water and shampoo for 1 hour. It works great and the helmet smell nice : )

    Thanks all.
    • Like Like x 1
  14. If you saw the title and didn't think motorcycle helmet, the internet has ruined you.
    • Funny Funny x 2
  15. i also got one of those paper air freshener and cut it up slipped it in the lining... everytime i put the helmet on mmmmmm strawberry
    • Funny Funny x 1
  16. In the freezer?! I already have some rare stuff in the freezer but never thought of it as a place for the helmet. Lol! Seriously, does it work?
  17. A lot of the bad bacteria that cause odours will die at freezing temperatures, so yes it does work, it isn't a permanent fix, but it's a nice thing to do in summer, putting on a cold hat when it's 40°C is heavenly.
    • Like Like x 1
  18. Autoclave? 121oC for 15mins on a dry cycle...anyone you know work in CSSD ...;)
    Love to see what would come back out :shock:
  19. Well, it makes sense considering putting things in the freezer also helps killing dust-mites. Thanks for that tip Kurtz!
  20. I wonder if riding in -3c temps has the same effect?????/