If you live in the UK, as we approach that time of year again where the days are getting darker earlier, colder, with wet, foggy and/or rainy weather becoming more prevalent. These conditions, aside from being irritating for the majority of us, can prove to be an extra nuisance for motorcycle riders, especially as it can often leave us with a misted up helmet glass which hinders your vision and therefore can make riding more hazardous.
Motorcycle helmet visor fogging is a major safety issue that doesn’t only occur in cold conditions in Winter, but also when raining in the Summer as well as winter. The problem is magnified even further if the rider is short or long sighted because fog blurs your glasses too.
Thankfully many modern helmets have features that prevent fogging. However, if your helmet doesn’t have these features, here are some things you can do to ensure your visor view is always clear.
Why does it steam up?
Lets first look into the scientific reasons behind this phenomenon before offering up some possible solutions. Rain, wind and fog lower the temperature of your visor glass, so when you breathe, the moisture from your breath will condense on the glass and transform to mist, blurring the glass.
What can you do to prevent it?
Probably the cheapest way to clear a visor is through ventilation. Open any vents that are available. You can also prop open your visor slightly. By opening the visor glass wider you will be able to get the air you exhale out from your helmet. There are a few ventilation holes at the top of the motorcycle helmet that are designed to help riders in dealing with this issue.
You can easily prop open the visor too, by using a piece of blu-tack (or even bubblegum) on the bottom front aperture. Opening the visor, even partially, helps release all the air you breathe in and out so the mist cannot condense on the visor.
However if you wear glasses they can still get splashed on and blurred from the wind and rain. So in this case open the visor just enough to get all air away but still safe from the effects of the wind and rain.
If your helmet comes equipped with a nose guard, you can also use that to direct the air exhaled down and out of the visor. Alternatively if it has a chin spoiler try taking it out (if it is removable) to allow for more air flow.
Anti-fog visor inserts work by sealing an bubble of air to keep the visor clear. These inserts are normally included with some motorcycle helmets when you buy them. For those motorbike helmets that don’t come included with them, you can either fit a Pinlock insert or buy inserts that stick on.
Always keep them clean and follow the cleaning instructions. Never use visor cleaners on them however. Also keep the visor closed as they can be ruined by dust. These inserts can cost as much as a replacement visor, but are worth their weight in gold.
Anti Fogging Masks
You can use anti fogging face masks to prevent your visor misting up. However some aren’t that great and can actually be counter-productive, so it is especially important to choose ones that have a “breather” that points down and that fit closely to your nose and cheeks. Test in store before purchasing.
Maintaining a clean visor will help prevent fog, especially if you use anti-fogging treatments and cleaners. There are many wax or silicon based products available to do this. You can also get them for your glasses too. Regular application of such products will help ensure maximum visor cleanliness.
Always keep the outside of your visor regularly cleaned too. Fogging normally occurs when it rains so it’s pointless keeping the inside free of mist if the outside is covered in rain and greasy road dirt.