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How To Check Your Hard Hat Expiry Date & Criteria For Replacement

Hard Hat Expiry Date

There is no legal requirement for hard hat expiry date as it varies based on the condition of each work site.

As a general guideline, most hard hat manufacturers recommend replacing hard hats every five years regardless of outside appearance. If you work under extreme conditions, such as exposure to high temperatures, chemicals, or sunlight, hard hats should be replaced after two years of use. In addition, some manufacturers even recommend replacing the suspension in your hard hat every 12 months.

However, it is important to review each work site to ensure that degradation of employees’ hard hats is not being accelerated due to work conditions.


How To Know The Age Of Your Hard Hat

Different manufacturers states the lifespan of their hard hat.

However, to trace the age of your hard hat, you must know its manufacturing date.

The manufacturing date for an hard hat is stamped on the hard hat – It is known as DATE STAMP

How to locate the date stamp on your hard hat

The date stamp is placed usually below the brim. Simply flip your hard hat over and take a look on the inside.


This is how the date stamp appear:



Explanation for the date stamp: The number in the middle (13) is the year of manufacture, and the arrow points to the month (5). So this hard hat was manufactured in May 2013.

From the date stamp, you can easily know the age of your hard hat.

Signs That Your Hard Hat Is Due For Replacement

  • If your hard hat exceeds the manufacturers life span
  • If your hard hat is fading, chalky or brittle
  • If your hard hat is dented, cut or deeply scuffed
  • If your hat suffered an impact


Additional reading: Hard Hats – do they last for ever?

Additional reading: Twelve Frequent Hard Hat Questions


NOTE: Always follow the manufacturer’s guidance that comes with your hard hat.

Hard hat must not be used to cover its life span.


There is a difference between manufacturing lifespan and service lifespan.

Manufacturing life span counts from the day the hard hat was manufactured while the service life span counts from the first day the hard hat was put to use.

However, if the hard hat had a 5 years life span, but spent 2 years in the store before being put to use, then the operation life span left for the hard hat is 3 years. The end of the hart hat lifespan as stated by the manufacturer forms the hard hat expiry date.

Also note that – Hard hat must be change anytime its meet the criteria for replacement; it must not cover its life span. (See replacement criteria above)

I believe this article on hard hat expiry date is well understood; for additional question, contact us.


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