Hard Hat TLC

Hard hats can seem almost miraculous at times, saving countless employees every year from serious injuries or even death. It’s important to know how to take care of your hard hat so that it performs the way it should. Here are a few reminders:
  1. Inspect your hard hat regularly and replace parts as necessary.
  2. Always replace a hard hat after an impact or penetration.
  3. Never paint your hard hat. Paint can cover up a deformity or even eat away at the hat’s shell.
  4. Check for brittleness before every use. Flex the brim or squeeze the hat inward about an inch and let go. Listen for any cracking and look for deformities. The hat should be firm, but flexible.
  5. Don’t be sentimental. Many workers become attached to their hats, associating them with their tenure on the job. Hard hats aren’t meant to last a career. In most cases they are good for about five years.
MSA, a leading manufacturer of hard hats, recommends this replacement schedule:
  • Suspension | Replace after no more than 12 months.
  • Entire helmet | Replace after no more than 5 years.

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