Are Black Motorcycle Helmets Hotter?

S hort answer: No. In theory, it may seem it is true, but in the real world – it is not. I get the idea of why so many motorbike riders think that the color of the helmet has a role in heat absorbing. 

The confusion is real among new riders. Everybody hates riding their motorcycles during the summer because of the excessive heat. So, new riders keep asking themselves whether a light color helmet would be more comfortable than a black one. And they have pretty good reasons for this confusion.

When you look at other black objects like clothes, even the painting of your home – all of them absorb more heat than other colors. So, yeah! The confusion is real and we should clear this misconception once and for all.

The Debate: Black Vs. Light Color Motorcycle Helmet

mips helmet

Before we go any deeper, let’s focus on the venting of the helmet first. Because that’s what counts and this single feature will determine whether you should focus on the color of your helmet at all. Lots of venting is important to keep your head cool during the summer.

Lots of motorcyclists have confirmed the fact that the color of your helmet has no role in determining the heat level you experience. Recent, I switched from black to yellow just for greater visibility. I experience no difference in changing the heat level.

I am pretty sure you will experience no difference as well switching from any color to your desired color even if you ride in hot Florida! Why? No matter what the outside color, the same foam that works as the insulator remains the same. So, no reason to experience any difference at all.

You ride during the summer under the scorching heat for a while and touch the exterior of your helmet, it will feel like extremely hot! But, if the foam that works as the insulator is really good, your head won’t feel noticeable heat. That’s why you should be worried about the quality of the foam and better venting only – not the colors.

I know some people like me got some huge fascination with the black color. It looks gorgeous almost all the time. If the black color of your helmet lets you feel good, just go for it.

While it’s true any dark color will draw more light hence more heat; this is not true for a dark or black motorcycle helmet. Most prominent helmet brands know this and they know it pretty well about the fascination of people regarding the black color. So, they designed the helmets (venting/foam) in such a way so that you can’t tell a difference. 

There are at least 2 inches thick insulating Styrofoam between your head and the shell. So in reality, there will no transfer of heat from your black helmet. 

If you compare the transfer of heat generating from black and light color helmets using a thermometer – maybe you can pick up something. But literally, you can’t. Whether you should feel hotter or otherwise that largely depends on how well the ventilation system of your helmet works. 

An Experiment!

Since this controversial topic is still storming out some bike forums, some bikers did some experiments. It’s true, inside the helmet – there will be little to nothing head differences but you will find a noticeable difference in heat level on the top of the helmet.

On a sunny day during the summer, a black helmet and a white helmet were deliberately kept on the seat outside. After 40 minutes, they read the temperature level of both of the helmets. The black one was almost 30F hotter than the black one!

Does it change anything?

No! Still, you won’t feel the difference because of the insulated Styrofoam. And after wearing both of the helmets, they had the same level of heat.

Conclusion

Look, I could talk a lot about this highly controversial topic. If you are new to have a helmet, you have nothing to be concerned about the black helmets. They are just fine. But you have to make sure the helmet has a great ventilation system with lots of vents. 

Get your helmets from the reputed brands only. Don’t go for the cheap one. Only a quality helmet will ensure your utmost comfort and will be the thin line between death and life upon any accident. 

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