Best Cheap ATV Helmets to Protect on a Budget

Derrek Sigler
by Derrek Sigler

Protect your head without breaking the bank

Your head is your greatest asset and you need to protect it, but it doesn’t have to cost a fortune. There are some great cheap ATV helmets available that will keep you safe without breaking the bank.

A helmet is the single most important thing you must have to go riding an ATV, or driving a UTV. Sure, 99.9% of the time, you don’t need it. But that one time you do, it’ll save your life. Trust me – I know. I’ve said this before that I would not be here today if not for my helmet. But I also understand that helmets cost money.

While yes, there are some sweet features you’re not going to find below a certain price point, the fact remains that you can find some really great helmets that won’t but a major hurting on your wallet. Here are our favorite cheap ATV helmets.

Table of Contents

1. Editor's Choice: Fly Racing Kinetic

I’ll start off with the very helmet I trust with my kids’ lives. That should tell you a lot about how much I like these helmets. They are DOT approved and have a dual-density EPS liner. This means there are two layers of EPS, one softer, one slightly harder, that combine to provide better impact protection. There are multiple colors and designs available and sizing from youth all the way up through 4XL.

2. Best Technology: Fox Racing V1

Sometimes you have to give up some next-level safety features when your budget only allows for a cheap helmet, but the Fox Racing V1 suffers no such issues. The V1 is designed with MIPS (multi-directional impact protection system) technology, which reduces rotational forces on impact. It also has a magnetic visor release system that is designed to release if you ever happen to crash. Other features include nine intake and four exhaust vents, and removable and washable comfort liner and cheek pads. The Fox V! also meets DOT and ECE certifications.

3. HJC CL-X7

The CL-X7 helmet is not the cheapest in the HJC lineup, but it has more features packed into it than most in its price range. It is a fiberglass/Kevlar shell, full multi-density liner and is DOT and SNELL certified. It comes in a wide range of styles and colors and is a great buy.

4. Troy Lee Designs GP

While Troy Lee Designs is not exactly known for making cheap helmets, the brand's entry level GP helmet is one worth looking into. The Troy Lee Designs GP is built around a polyacrylite shell and features an expanded PolyPropylene chin bar, 16 intake ports, six exhaust vents, 3D contoured cheek pads, emergency release system for EMS responders, and plastic visor screw and brass inserts for easy impact break-away.

5. Answer Racing AR1

This is Answer’s lowest-priced helmet, yet it still meets or exceeds DOT and ECE safety standards. Features include a dual density EPS liner, injection-molded polycarbonate and ABS blend shell, removable and washable cheekpads and liner, and 14 vents to help maximize airflow to keep you cool on those hot days.

6. G-Max MX-46

G-Max has been making cheap helmets for years now and the brand has a reputation for producing products that work without hurting your wallet too much. One of the brand's most affordable offerings is the G-Max MX-46, which offers some features you wouldn't expect for a helmet in this price range - including an impressive 19 vents for excellent air flow. Other features of this DOT-approved helmet include a removable/washable interior, vented roost deflector, adjustable visor that is also vented, and a lightweight shell.

7. Fly Racing Trekker

The Trekker helmet from Fly is a great choice for those of us that wear glasses and don’t always want to deal with an OTG goggle. The flip-down shield with anti-fog coating helps keep your eyes safe and the fit and ventilation make this a comfortable and stylish helmet. This lid is also DOT and ECE certified and boasts a Qwick-Dry comfort liner and cheek pads, six adjustable intake vents, two passive intake vents, and eight exhaust vents.

8. O'Neal 3 Series

O’Neal has been in the game for a long time and its 3 SRS helmet is among the best cheap ATV helmets around. These helmets meet DOT, ECE 22-05 and AS/NZS safety standards. Features include a lightweight ABS shell, a removable/washable liner designed to wick away sweat to keep you dry as you ride, adjustable visor, clear-coated graphics, and easily available replacement parts.

9. FXR Clutch

FXR Racing is well known in the snowmobile industry, but the brand also offers a line of off-road gear worth taking a look at. The FXR Clutch is the brand's most affordable ATV helmet and it features a lightweight polymer alloy shell, 15-port ventilation system, adjustable visor with three-point breakaway screws, quick-release buckle, dual density EPS liner (optional liner and cheek pad sizes available), extended rubber roost guard, rear diffuser designed to disperse loads to compatible neck braces, and a sternum pad that offers additional protection to the chin, jaw and sternum.

Recent Updates:

March 18, 2021: Added new recommendations to the list, along with updated images for products.

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How long is a helmet good for?

One of the thing that makes these good, but cheap helmets popular is that a helmet, and yes, we mean EVERY helmet, is basically one-and-done. You get into one accident and it's done. Once that EPS liner takes a hit, it is done and you need a new helmet. That can really sting with a $600 helmet, but $150 helmet doesn't hurt as bad. As long as you're taking care of your helmet, and you don't have a bad impact to that helmet, an ATV helmet can last for a long time. If you have any question about the quality or condition of your ATV helmet, replace it. Better to replace than to ever take a chance that your helmet might fail at a critical moment.

What makes a cheap helmet good?

All helmets sold today have to meet minimum requirements for safety. But just because a helmet meets those standards and doesn't cost much, does that make it a good, but cheap helmet? No, not really. What makes a cheap helmet good is quality of construction. One of the ways manufacturers are making good, cheap helmets is to use the same, or similar EPS liners - the interior part of the helmet that actually absorbs the impact - with a polymer shell. Many of the top helmets use carbon fiber, or other composite materials which lower weight and add great strength. The poly shells are decently light, but are molded and much cheaper to produce. The result is a great helmet at a great price.

Derrek Sigler
Derrek Sigler

Derrek's love for all things ATV started when he was a mere 11 years old, growing up on his family farm. His mom gave him and his sister a choice - get a horse, or a three-wheeler. The sister wanted the horse, and Derrek wanted the ATV. Luckily he won out, and was soon burning up the trails on a Yamaha Tri-Moto 200. By the time he was 14, he had saved enough of his own money by working on the farm and in his folks restaurant to buy a new 4-wheeler. That happened the day he and his mom were driving past the dealership and saw 1987 Banshee. His mom had no idea what he was buying, and he never looked back. He's been riding ever since, and been writing professionally for many years. He has ridden all over North America and been behind the controls of just about every machine out there. And yes, he still has his 1987 Yamaha Banshee.

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