Tested! Shock Doctor Helmet Cleaning Gadget of Science

Smelly helmet? This is something that I don't normally worry about, but the folks at Shock Doctor do. With years of experience manufacturing safety and sanitizing products for football and other sports, Shock Doctor's team have turned their efforts to cleaning up your motorcycle gear.

The bacteria count inside of my helmet just hasn't been an issue for me, but now that you mention it, I suppose it can get pretty ripe inside the lining of your protective shell after a long hot sweaty ride (or ten).

The Shock Doctor Power Dry helmet disinfecting system consists of a special helmet bag ("The Power Dry Helmet Bag") that's has a special mounting cleat on the back of it. The cleat joins the bag to Shock Doctor's ozone generating fan system gadget ("The Power Dry Blower") - basically a small space heater with an ozone generator built into it.

Since we're not scientists - or bacteria specialists - for this test we needed to talk to some experts to find out if this product really works, so we grabbed the Shock Doctor equipement and one of PK's old Arai helmets and headed down to I.G. MicroMed to find our very own Microbiologist. I.G. MicroMed is a laboratory facility that tests things for all sorts of real biological hazards. The MicroMed staff were just as curious about this new sanitizing gadget as we were, quickly pointing out that Ozone is proven to kill bacteria. They wondered if the Shock Doctor would live up to its claim.

The test required the sacrifice of the Arai helmet, and involved the cutting out of parts of the lining.

The old helmet hadn't been used for riding months and months so to make sure it would be loaded with germs, PK headed out for a jog and then wore the helmet around the house for a while. The technicians at the lab confirmed that the old helmet was ripe with bacteria and had no problem generating a baseline so there was no need to introduce any additional bacteria for the test.

The test results were interesting, and a little surprising. The Power Dry Blower has 3 settings: Ozone Only, Ozone with Heat, and Heat Only. The unit comes equipped with a timer that automatically shuts off after three hours.

The first test involved a three hour cycle of Ozone only. To our dismay this actually BRED bacteria, a good 400% worth. Concerned, our Microbiologists set out to test the Shock Doctor using Ozone with Heat. In this setting, the unit worked extremely effectively killing 97.3% of the bacteria present cultured from the lining of the helmet.

To confirm the results we had the lab run the test with heat only for 30 minute and 3 hour cycles. Both of these settings netted a bacteria kill of 59 and 73% respectively, giving us conclusive data that the unit does work as advertised, however only in the Ozone + Heat setting.

Test of Helmet against Shock Doctor Unit *

Note: * = Test was performed by analyzing samples of helmet padding before and after treatment.

Though it's a little bulky and takes a little bit more of your time than just tossing your helmet into your closet after a hot summer days ride, we can see some value in the Shock Doctor helmet cleaning gadget of science, however we can only recommend it be used in the Ozone with Heat setting.

A major concern for us is the price - since the bag and blower are sold separately - consequently the units together as tested will set you back almost 200 bones when the dust settles.

The Shock Doctor Power Dry Helmet Bag retails for $99 and the Shock Doctor Power Dry Blower retails for $79.

You can find out more online at http://www.shockdoctor.com

Source: Bikeland.org

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