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Snell Helmet Certifications: What’s The Difference between SA2015 and SA2020?

Snell Helmet Certifications: What’s The Difference between SA2015 and SA2020?

SA2020 is a progressive change from the SA2015 standard. The new standard focuses more on impact testing, and more in line with the FIA 8859-2015 standard requirements.

A SA2020 certified Bell helmet from Fast Racer

Helmets are one of the most crucial safety equipment for auto drivers. As years pass by with technology advancing simultaneously, helmets are in their prime stage. While there are various certifications for these helmets to be qualified for professional use, one of the most widely recognized certification in the United States is the Snell SA certification. 

Globally known for its tough standards, Snell has is renowned for its quality, which is why it updates its helmet standards every five years. On October 1, 2020, sales for the SA2020 certification began in full swing. Here’s everything you need to know:

So, What Changes Have Been Made To SA2020?

First things first, the SA2020 is a progressive change, which means that it has stricter requirements. It focuses on impact testing and is now more in line with the FIA 8859-2015 standard requirements.

You should also note that not all helmets carry both Snell SA2020 and FIA-8859-2015 ratings. This is why it’s always a smart idea to check the rating you require before making a purchase.

Generally, US-based events require Snell homologation, whereas international events require FIA or either one rating.  

These changes aren’t that big, but even a small step towards safety can bring a significant change. 

A SA2020 certified Stilo helmet from Fast Racer

How Long does Each Snell Certification Last?

Snell releases a new helmet standard every five years. As the number suggests, SA2015 was released in 2015, and after the SA2020 standard, the next one will most probably be in 2025. Similar to 2020, the 2025 standard can be expected to be active in October of that year.

Does This Mean The SA2015 Helmets Can No Longer Be Used?  

The Snell Foundation states that “unused helmets stored in good condition do not automatically expire after five years.” This means that the SA2015 helmet model can be used until 2025 or more, provided that it’s in good condition and safe to use.

Another point to keep in mind is the specific requirements set up by racing leagues. For example, sanctioning bodies like IMCA only allow helmets that meet the two latest Snell SA standards. In this case, the SA2015 and SA2020 would be applicable. It’s always a great idea to double-check these requirements to ensure your protective gear meets their standards.

Even though the SA2020 is now active, the Snell SA 2015 can still be purchased. You can get your hands on a dream helmet like the ones used in F1 or NASCAR at great deals and prices. Here at Fast Racer, the SA2015 carbon fiber helmets can be found in the Helmet Sale session.

Where Can I Find an SA2020 Helmet?

Top Sanctioning bodies like NASCAR and SCCA have made it mandatory for participants to use Snell SA certified helmets. If you’re looking to buy driving helmets, Fast Racer is the place for you. Manufacturers like Bell and Stilo meet all Snell requirements, and their helmets can be found here. We offer a wide variety of premium-quality bell race helmets, carbon fiber helmet, and more! Visit our website to view the full range our products.


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