If you work in a warehouse, you know how hazardous your place of employment can be. When driving a forklift, unloading boxes or performing other tasks, you must take steps to protect your head. Wearing the right hard hat is critical. After all, a traumatic brain injury can lead to lifelong complications. 

Hard hats come in a variety of styles. Unfortunately, not every hat is right for every workplace. As such, you must work diligently to find appropriate gear. Once you choose the perfect hat for your job, though, you want to keep it in tip-top shape. Here are four ways to do so. 

1. Skip the stickers

You may want to show off your passion for a favorite sports team, clothing brand, politician or band. Still, it is never appropriate to affix stickers to the outside of a hard hat. If you do, you may inadvertently alter the hat’s protective properties. 

2. Be careful with chemicals

Regularly cleaning your hard hat is a good way to extend its useful life. You do not, though, want to use harsh chemicals. Certain solvents can destroy both the interior and exterior of the hat. 

3. Do not vent

Your workplace may be hot. While your hard hat may trap heat near your head, you should not attempt to modify the hat. That is, you should not drill holes into its outer shell. Doing so may weaken its integrity, putting you in danger of a warehouse injury. 

4. Store properly

If you leave your hard hat in direct sunlight, it may warp or weaken. Fortunately, hard hat manufacturers provide detailed instructions for storing their products properly. While you should read these instructions thoroughly, it is usually sufficient to store your hat in a cool and dry place. 

Finding the best hard hat to protect your head is only part of the battle. To increase your chances of staying safe at work, you also must take good care of your head gear. With a bit of effort, though, you can ensure your hard hat stays in tip-top shape.