In the world of ballistic helmets and armor in general for that case, warranties of these items can be confusing and very misleading. In this article, we are going to cover combat helmet warranties and what you should be aware of with them!
General & Limited Warranty
You are going to see this type of warranty for ballistic helmets by just about every company. Most of them will state that they warrant the FAST helmet type or MICH helmet to be free of any defects in materials or workmanship. If any defects are found the helmet would be replaced or repaired. There may also be text that states that the company will have the discretion to determine if the item warrants a repair or replacement, or if they think the customer has damaged the ballistic helmet due to improper storage, misuse, and abuses.
In layman's terms, this means that if you receive a ballistic helmet, and notice that the fibers have delamination the company should be replacing the lid for you free of cost. Though if that were to happen really, we might suggest asking for a refund and running. More commonly for us here at Hard Head Veterans is the exterior coating (paint) might have been scraped during shipment or perhaps the hole jig for the shroud was slightly off, and it's not entirely centered.
It also means that if the company thinks you haven't taken care of your ballistic helmet, they may not cover it as well. This is where the companies reputation and customer service is something you should check out. Facebook and Google reviews are a perfect place for this.
Ballistic Helmet Shell Performance Warranty
Here is where things can get a little more confusing. While companies may offer warranties coving their ballistic helmets for anywhere from 5 years to a lifetime, this doesn't necessarily mean that their helmet will meet the same performance specs as it did the day it came off the production line. Ballistic helmets and armor, in general, will degrade over time due to many different variables. The big ones being use, how they are taken care of, and of course materials and manufacturing processes. A company can offer a general or limited lifetime warranty on their helmets but this typically only applies to that "free from any defects" statement. Not actual performance over time! What makes it even more difficult is that new ballistic fibers and materials are being created and when used there is no long-term data on them to warranty for. Here at Hard Head Veterans, we use fibers that do have some of the longest data trails and is why we can warranty our shell performance up to 10 years.
The Deciding Factor In Ballistic Helmet Warranties
Now that you know there is a difference between a simple general warranty and one that actually covers performance. Our final note is the most important on this topic. Is that warranty actually covered by insurance? Unfortunately, if you were to ask the majority of companies in the ballistic armor realm, the answer would be no. The reason for this is due to the high cost of insuring ballistic helmet products and other armor. To us, it's worth every penny as it allows us to give our customers the peace of mind that we stand solidly behind our warranties.
Needless to say, you will want to read the companies warranty carefully and understand what it provides before you purchase. Don't be afraid to ask questions, and if you get vague or, unsatisfactory answers go somewhere else.