FAQ - Motorcycling
- Mechanical system: How to change the cartridge and reuse your airbag? (after an inflation)
- Electronic system: How to change the cartridge and reuse your airbag?
- Electronic system: first use with the fork sensor.
- THE HELITE TECHNOLOGY
How does the Helite airbag system work?
We have two different airbag systems for motorcycling: the mechanical and the electronic systems.
The mechanical system is easy to use and ready to use. It is highly reliable, avoids unexpected airbag activation and changing batteries. The principle is simple: simply connect the garment to the motorcycle using the lanyard installed on the motorcycle to activate the system.. No special tools or technical knowledge is required to install the lanyard on the motorcycle. In the event of an accident, a CO2 cartridge deploys the airbag within 100 ms which is faster than the blink of an eye. The airbag absorbs impacts and stabilizes the whole upper body from head to tailbone. After inflation the system can be reused within 2 minutes by the rider. Simply replace the used cartridge with a new one.
+ Learn more about the mechanical system
The electronic system is also easy to use and 100% autonomous and wireless. Simply press the ON/OFF button to activate the system. The system includes 2 sensors: the CDU sensor placed inside the vest following the rider’s motion in context and the fork sensor placed on the motorcycle’s fork detecting impacts on the motorcycle. When an accident or a fall is detected, the system triggers the airbag in less than 60 ms. This advanced multi-sensor technology offers ultra-fast detection and 360° protection. Just like our mechanical system, the vest can be reused within minutes after a fall. Simply change the e-cartridge.
+ Learn more about the electronic system
Which parts are covered by the airbag?
We focus on the protection of vital parts. Our airbags offer a full protection of the spinal column, kidneys, thorax and hips. They compress the trunk for better resistance to hyper-extension and stabilize the head and neck. Our airbags also provide a rigidification of the trunk to stabilize and protect internal organs such as the lungs, pancreas, abdomen, stomach and liver.
What is the inflation time?
The inflation time is ultra-fast and depends on the size and volume of the airbags. We ensure an inflation time between 60 ms and 100 ms depending on the model and the technology used.
Are the Helite airbag systems CE certified?
Yes, all airbag systems are CE certified by by the external laboratory ALIENOR CERTIFICATION, the French specialist for objectively testing Personal Protective Equipment (PPE).
For what kind of practices is the airbag system adapted to?
Our airbags are suitable for most practices: on road, offroad, touring, track …. As long as the rider remains seated on the motorcycle.
For the track we have developed a special model: the GP Air and the e-GP Air.
We also work with different leather suit manufacturers such as: Mass Sport, Texsport, Rewin, Blitz, etc. which offer a leather suit with the Helite airbag system integrated.
What is the difference between an airbag vests (to wear over the garment) and a jacket with integrated airbag?
Only the use of the airbag system is different. The protection volume, inflation time and shape of the airbag remain the same for optimum protection.
- How does the Helite airbag system work?
- BUY YOUR HELITE AIRBAG
- Where can I find and buy Helite motorcycle airbag systems?
Are there different models? How can I choose the right model?
We have a wide range of motorcycle jackets with integrated airbag technology (leather, jacket, vest, etc.) suitable for all practices and every season. All our products keep the same airbag shape and the same protection zones (except for the GP Air track model). It’s up to you to choose the right model according to your tastes, your discipline, your budget.
How can I choose the right size?
It is important to choose the right size of your airbag system for optimal protection. For this, we advise you to follow our size chart.
Hint: measuring your back is important and a good indication to find the right size.
Please note that the models Turtle, e-Turtle, Airnest, Custom, GP Air and e-GP Air should always be worn over your motorcycle equipment. You should therefore only take your measurements with your equipment.
The Touring, Vented, Roadster, Xena and Parka City models are worn like a classic motorcycle jacket.
Is it possible to try the airbag system?
Yes, it is possible to try and even test an airbag inflation at any of our dealers. We even advise you to do so to choose the right size and to ask the dealers for instructions on how to use the airbag system.
+ Find a dealer
- How can I find a dealer nearby?
Where can I buy new cartridges?
It is important to always replace your cartridge with a Helite branded cartridge of the same capacity. You can purchase the cartridges from all of our online dealers or at their points of sale.
- MECHANICAL AIRBAG SYSTEMS
How does the mechanical system work?
The mechanical system is easy to use and ready to use. It is very reliable, avoids unexpected airbag inflation and battery problems. The principle is simple: just connect the lanyard to the motorcycle in order to activate the system. No special tools or technical knowledge is required to install the lanyard on the motorcycle. In the event of an accident, a CO2 cartridge deploys and inflates the airbag in less than 100 ms (faster than the blink of an eye). The airbag absorbs shocks and stabilizes the entire upper body from head to tailbone. After inflation, the system can be reused within 2 minutes by the rider. Simply replace the used cartridge by a new one.
What components does the airbag jacket or vest consist of?
The airbag system is sold ready-to-use with a new cartridge already installed and a lanyard that needs to be attached to the motorcycle.
What are the advantages of the mechanical airbag system?
The mechanical airbag system has proven itself over many years and has already saved thousands of motorcyclists. It is an easy to use, reliable and robust system. It protects you 24 hours a day and works every time, without battery problems and false trips.
- 24 hours protection: no need to recharge
- covers all fall situations: no non-inflation or unexpected inflation
First use: How to use my Helite airbag system?
Just install the lanyard on the motorcycle, hook the clip on the regarding airbag garment to the lanyard and you are ready to ride.
How to correctly install the lanyard on the motorcycle?
The correct installation of the lanyard on the motorcycle is of crucial importance. If not installed correctly, the airbag system may be triggered too late. The shorter the strap, the better, but make sure it does not prevent you from normal movements. You must install the strap under the motorcycle seat. Ideally, remove the saddle and find a solid point near the fuel tank. The attachment point should not be lower than the bottom of the saddle. The attachment point must be able to withstand more than 150 kg. For example, do not use plastic parts. Make sure that the fixing point is not in contact with any hot or sharp part of the motorcycle.
+ Watch the video: How to install the lanyard correctly?
How to activate the system?
That’s easy, just connect the clip of your jacket to the lanyard on your motorcycle.
Do I need to recharge the system?
The mechanical system does not have a battery so there is no need to recharge the system.
- How does the mechanical system work?
- Electronic airbag system
How does the electronic system work?
The electronic airbag system is easy to use, wireless and 100% autonomous. Simply press the ON/ OFF button to activate the system. The system includes 2 sensors: the CDU sensor and the fork sensor. The CDU sensor is situated inside the vest and follows the rider’s motion in context, the fork sensor is placed on the motorcycle’s fork and detects impacts on the motorcycle. When an accident or a fall is detected, the system triggers the airbag in less than 60 ms. This multi-sensor technology offers ultra-fast detection and 360° protection. Like our mechanical airbag system, the vest can be reused within a few minutes after a fall. You simply need to replace the e-cartridge.
+ Learn more about the motocycle electronic system
- What components does the airbag jacket or vest consist of?
What is the detection time?
The system offers 360° protection with the fastest detection time on the market. For a speed of 35km/h we ensure detection from 31 ms (with the fork sensor) and 60 ms (without the fork sensor).
What is the autonomy of the system?
The system has an autonomy of 25 hours. When the battery of the vest is low, the LED turns orange. You can recharge it on any 5 volt USB port thanks to the USB cable supplied with the airbag system.
- Which Helite models integrate the electronic airbag technology?
First use: How to install and activate the system?
Vest only: the vest is sold ready to use. The vest is 100% autonomous and wireless. Just switch on the system by pressing the ON/OFF button 3 times. A beep and a flashing green LED indicate that the system is activated.
Full protection option: you will have to pair the vest with the sensor and install the sensor on the motorcycle’s fork.
What are the advantages of the full protection option?
This option appeals to motorcyclists looking for complete protection with faster detection time
- Protection in all situations: even when stationary and at low speeds
- Detection time divided by two: from 31 ms and from the first impact
Option Full protection: How to pair the fork sensor with the vest?
It’s simple, you’ll need your vest, the sensor and the magnet.
- Switch on the vest.
- Press the ON/OFF button for 3 seconds until the LED turns blue.
- You have 30 seconds to place the magnet in front of the fork sensor.
- A long beep indicates that the vest and the sensor are paired.
How to install the fork sensor on the motorcycle?
The fork sensor is installed on the bottom of the motorcycle’s fork sleeve. It will be necessary to choose the bracelet corresponding to the diameter of the fork of your motorcycle, assemble the 2 elements and screw the sensor.
Option Full protection: Can I purchase the fork sensor separately?
The fork sensor is optional. You can buy the sensor separately if you have several motorcycles for example.
Option full protection: How many sensors can be paired to one vest?
It is possible to pair up to 5 fork sensors per vest (if you have several motorcycles for example).
Option full protection: Can the vest of the pillion rider be paired with the same sensor?
Yes it is possible to pair as many vests as you wish to the same fork sensor.
Option full protection: Do I need to recharge the fork sensor?
No, the sensor has an autonomy of about 5 years. Once installed on your motorcycle you don’t have to worry about it anymore.
However, we advise you to check monthly that the sensor is active and properly associated with your vest: place the magnet over the round symbol of the sensor: a beep + green LED indicate that the sensor is working properly.
What are the different purchase options? Is there a subscription?
There are two different purchase options:
- the electronic airbag vest only
- the electronic airbag vest + the full protection option
Both offers are available without any subscription.
- How does the electronic system work?
- RIDE WITH YOUR HELITE AIRBAG
How do I have to wear the airbag system?
There are two solutions depending on the chosen model :
- Over the vest or the suit (Turtle, e-Turtle, Custom, Airnest, GP Air, e-GP Air)
- like a normal motorcycle jacket (Roadster, Touring, Xena, Vented, Parka)
Is the airbag system ready to use after purchase?
Yes. One of the special features of Helite systems is their ease of use. Whether it is for our mechanical or electronic models, the systems are always sold ready-to-use.
Mechanical system: The regarding airbag vest or jacket consists of a cartridge and a lanyard. Simply connect the lanyard to the motorcycle and you are ready to ride.
+ Learn more: First use mechanical system
Electronic system: The pack includes the vest, the electronic system (CDU sensor) situated inside the vest and an e-cartridge. Simply press the ON/OFF button to activate the system. Make sure that the vest is completely charged.
Full protection option: If you choose the full protection option (with the sensor on the fork), you will need to install the sensor on your motorcycle fork and then pair the vest with the sensor. This operation is quick and easy.
+ Learn more: First use electronic system
How can I be sure that the system is activated?
For our mechanical systems: it’s simple, just connect the lanyard to your motorcycle.
+ See how to install the mechanical airbag systems
For our electronic systems: just press the ON/OFF button 3 times. A beep and a flashing green LED indicates that the system is on. Please check that the vest is charged.
+ See how to switch on the electronic airbag system
How to install the lanyard on the motorcycle? (mechanical airbag system)
The correct installation of the motorcycle lanyard is of crucial importance. It will affect the inflation time of the airbag. If fitted incorrectly, the system may be triggered too late. The shorter the lanyard the better, but make sure it doesn’t prevent you from normal movements. You should install the lanyard under the motorcycle seat. Ideally, remove the saddle and find a sturdy point near the fuel tank. The attachment point should not be lower than the bottom of the saddle. The fixing point must withstand over 150 kg. For example, do not use plastic parts. Make sure that the fixing point is not in contact with any hot or sharp part of the motorcycle.
How can I pair the vest with the fork sensor? (electronic airbag system)
It’s simple, you need your vest, the fork sensor and the magnet.
1. Switch on the vest
2. Press the ON button for 3 seconds: a blue LED appears.
3. You have 30 seconds to place the magnet in front of the fork sensor.
4. You hear a long beep: the vest and the fork sensor are paired.
Can I keep my rigid back protector?
Yes, it is possible to keep your protector in addition to the airbag system. However, please keep in mind that all our airbag systems for motorcycling are provided with a rigid protector integrated into the vest or jacket. For the model AIRNEST which is provided with a KNOX back protector you can keep your rigid protector. For all other models, the SAS-TEC level 2 back protector located behind the airbag is sufficient. It considerably improves the protection of the airbag and allows the so-called TURTLE effect.
Can I wear a backpack over the airbag system?
Yes, if you adjust your back straps fairly wide. A too strong resistance could slow down the airbag inflation.
Are the airbag systems water resistent?
Our airbag systems are designed for outdoor use. You can also wear them when it is raining. Under heavy rain we advise you to add a rain cape.
Can the airbag activate itself automatically? What if I forget to detach myself or switch off the system?
Mechanical system: Accidental deployments are extremely rare. The tractive force required to activate the airbag is between 20 and 30 kg. If you ever forget to detach yourself when getting off your motorcycle, you will feel a strong tension on the vest or jacket before the airbag is activated. As with the safety belt in the car, clipping and unclipping the lanyard quickly becomes a habit.
Electronic system: the system automatically switches to standby after 30 seconds of inactivity. So you don’t have to switch it off after each use. The system also needs a speed or impact on the motorcycle to activate, so it cannot be triggered when you get off the motorcycle. The algorithm has been developed to avoid accidental triggering as much as possible (even if it is not possible to ensure 100% as with the mechanical system).
- How do I have to wear the airbag system?
- TURTLE TECHNOLOGY AND AIRBAG PROTECTION
What is the TURTLE technology?
This technology, patented by Helite, consists of adding a rigid back protector in the garment to improve back protection.
This high quality back protector (SAS-TEC level 2) is placed on the airbag like a turtle shell so that the entire back is protected in the event of a fall. The shock absorption and distribution results are considerably higher. The technology also protects from intruding objects.
Why choosing the Helite airbag system?
We have the largest protection volume on the market between 17L and 28L depending on the airbag size versus 12L for competing airbags. The bigger the volume, the more the fall will be absorbed. We are the only ones to offer a wide neck protection so that we can stabilize the neck between the airbag and the helmet in case of a fall.
- What is the TURTLE technology?
- Travel with Helite AIRBAG
Can I travel with my Helite airbag system?
You can travel with your Helite airbag in the bus, car or train without any restrictions. If you travel by plane, you may encounter some difficulties with the safety services regarding the CO2 cartridges used to inflate the airbag. According to the regulation (Iata regulation), you are allowed to fly with 2 gas cartridges (volume must be less than 200cc), in the cabin or in the hold. Even if the regulation allows it, it is possible that the security service or the airline company will refuse to let you board with it. We strongly recommend that you print out the “Iata Regulations” and show this document to the security service or the airline during the check if they ask for further explanations. In any case, it is the airport security service and the airline that will make the final decision on whether or not to accept the airbag on board.
- Can I travel with my Helite airbag system?
- REUSE THE HELITE AIRBAG AFTER AN ACCIDENT
Can I reuse my airbag system after an accident?
Yes, as long as the airbag is in good condition (no holes, tears) you can reuse it. Easy to do, you can reset the system yourself in 2 minutes, without sending your airbag system back to Helite. You simply need to replace the CO2 cartridge with a new one, available at all Helite dealers worldwide.
How long will it take for my airbag to deflate?
The airbag must remain inflated to support and protect the rider long enough after the fall or accident. It will take about 5-7 minutes for the airbag to deflate completely. To deflate it quickly, simply unscrew and remove the cartridge. You can take off the airbag garment immediately after the fall if you are in a safe area.
Can I reuse the CO2 cartridge?
No. The CO2 cartridge is single-use and not reusable. A used or damaged cartridge will have to be recycled or disposed in accordance with your country’s legislation. To reactivate your airbag system, you must replace the old cartridge with a new one of the same capacity from Helite.
+ How to reactivate my electronic airbag system?
+ How to reactivate my mechanical airbag system?
What are the different sizes o the CO2 cartridges? How do I know wich size to choose?
To ensure optimum protection with a big protection volume our systems use different cartridge sizes depending on the size of your airbag.
Mechanical system: 50cc, 60cc and 100cc. The correct size is indicated on the label inside the garment.
Electronic system: GG 60cc and GG 100cc. The correct size is indicated by a picto right there where you plug the e-cartridge in.
You can also find this information in our size charts. Please note that for the proper functioning of our systems, it is imperative to use a CO2 cartridge of the Helite brand.
- Can I reuse my airbag system after an accident?
How to check if my airbag system is still in a good condition?
To quickly check whether your airbag system is still operational, you can deploy it manually and see if the airbag inflates correctly by pulling hard on the lanyard. Once inflated, it is easier to see if there are any holes, tears or malfunctions. If you have any doubts about whether your airbag is working properly, please feel free to contact us. We will explain how to proceed.
How can I maintain my airbag system?
We have different airbag models which require different maintenance procedures. Please refer to the regarding product page for details. We recommend an annual safety check to make sure that your system works is working properly.
What is the annual safety check?
We recommend checking your system once a year at the start of the season for example.
This annual safety check consists of:
1. Check the condition and weight of the cartridge
2- Clean the release pin and the components of the mechanical trigger system.
+ See the annual safety check video
1. Check the condition of the e-cartridge
2. Check the battery of the fork sensor: to do so, simply pass the magnet in front of the sensor.
3. Check the battery of the vest (CDU sensor)
How to clean my airbag system?
Depending on the model, the instructions for cleaning your airbag system may vary. Please refer to the cleaning instructions on the product page.
How to recharge the system?
Mechanical system: no battery so no need to recharge the system.
Electronic system: the system has a 25H autonomy. When the battery of the vest is low, the LED turns orange. You can recharge the system via using the USB cable supplied with the airbag system.
How to check the cartridge?
We recommend checking the condition of the cartridge every year. To do so, unscrew and weigh your CO2 cartridge on a scale. The weight is written on the cartridge label. For example, for 50 cc cartridges, the weight should be about +/- 3g and +/- 5g for 60 cc cartridges.
Warning : If rust or other corrosive marks appear on the outer surface of the cartridge, change it immediately and contact your dealer.
How to maintain your leather model?
It is essential to maintain the leather so that it retains its flexibility and color. We therefore recommend that you waterproof it and feed it regularly with suitable products. Be careful, do not wash it in the machine or with detergents which could damage the leather.
- How to check if my airbag system is still in a good condition?
- AFTER SALES SERVICES and WARRANTY
What is the warranty of the Helite airbag systems?
All our airbag systems come with a 2 year warranty. If you register your product on www.my.helite.com within 3 months of purchase, you can benefit from an additional 2-year warranty extension (excluding textiles and electronics). For registration, you will need your serial number (located on your product), the date of purchase and your invoice.
Can I extend my warranty?
Yes you can extend your warranty for 2 more years (excluding textiles and electronics) by registering your airbag system on www.my.helite.com within 3 months of purchase. For registration, you will need your serial number (located on your product), the date of purchase and your invoice.
Where can I find the serial number of my airbag system?
The location changes depending on the model. Click here to find out where to find the serial number of your product.
What is the warranty of the cartridges and e-cartridges?
Helite cartridges and e-cartridges come with a 10 year warranty.
However, we recommend checking them on an annual base. To do so, unscrew and weigh your CO2 cartridge on a scale. The weight is written on the cartridge label. For example, for 50 cc cartridges, the weight should be about +/- 3g and +/- 5g for 60 cc cartridges.
If rust or other corrosive marks appear on the outer surface of the cartridge, change it immediately and contact your dealer.
Can I use any cartridge?
No. It is of crucial importance that you only use Helite branded cartridges. Otherwise your airbag system is no longer covered under warranty and we cannot be held responsible in case of any malfunctioning of your airbag system. Please make sure to use the right cartridge size (50cc, 60cc, 100cc). To get Helite branded cartridges we have an authorised dealer network worldwide. Check our store locator to find a dealer nearby.
- What is the warranty of the Helite airbag systems?