GME Supply is North America's Premier Outfitter of fall protection, safety equipment, and gear for at-height workers, industry, and construction.

1391 E Boone Industrial Blvd
Columbia, MO 65202
(718) 210-3913

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Full Brim Hard Hats

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Hard Hats

Protecting your skull is an important part of job safety. It’s no secret that working in at-height, industry, and construction involves a wide variety of hazards on a job site at any given moment. That’s why being proactive about head protection should be a priority for everyone.

Hard hats share a lot in common with helmets. In fact, many people say hard hat when the really mean helmet and vice versa. While the end goal of both is the same, to protect your noggin from a fall or falling objects, there is one main thing that separates the two. Helmets have a four-point chin strap, while most hard hats do not. When choosing your helmet for your gear setup you should consider a range of factors like electrical insulation, adjustable inserts, sweatbands, and ear muff slots.

Types of Hard Hats:

There are two types of hard hats (type 1 and type 2) classified by ANSI Z89.1-2014 for different levels of protection. Type 1 hard hats are designed to only take a blow directly to the top of the head. Type 2 hard hats have been designed to reduce forces from lateral impact such as an off-center and/or side impact, in addition to top impacts. These hard hats have visible padding on the sides.

Hard Hat Classes:

There are 3 classes (C, E, & G) that specify electrical protection. Class C hard hats are considered conductive and do not provide any electrical protection, these are typically vented and only protect workers from impact. Class E hard hats offer protection from high voltage conductors up to 20,000 volts, and cannot have any vents in the design. Lastly, Class G offers protection from low voltage conductors up to 2,200 volts, they must also be free of holes for ventilation.

Service Life:

Hard hats are not designed to last forever. Service life begins from the time it is put into service and that date should be properly labeled and documented. The suspension should be replaced annually (after 12 months) and the hard hat should be replaced after no more than 5 years. If the had hat sustains an impact, it must be retired immediately even if there is no visible damage.


Proper inspection should be taken each time the hard hat is worn. Suspension should be installed and worn as the manufacturer intended. Exposure to paint and chemicals may damage the structure of the hard hat, therefore steps must be taken to remove paint or chemicals after every use. Pressure sensitive, non-metallic stickers and self-adhesive tape are typically accepted however we strongly recommend you refer to the manufacturer's specifications before applying anything on the surface of the helmet.

Need help finding the perfect hard hat? Check in with one of our Gear Experts® here.