Electric bikes are effective means of eco-friendly transportation. However, before stepping into the world of e-bikes, you must be well informed about what to expect and what factors to consider. In this article, we will look at the 10 things to know before buying an e bike. Understanding these will help you to make a smart choice.
10 Things to Know Before Buying an E Bike
Numerous factors influence your decision when buying an e-bike. Here are the key 10 things to know before buying an e bike.
Speed is something that tells about the performance of your electric bike. It’s one of the primary 10 things to know before buying an e bike. It is very crucial, and you must avoid purchasing an electric bike that is under powered. Before making any decision, check the top speed and performance figures so that you don’t get confused afterward. E-bikes typically have a maximum power of 250 watts, enabling them to reach a top speed of 25 km/h. However, regulations in the U.S. allow a maximum power of 500 watts, assisting speeds of up to 32 km/h. Additionally, there are e-bikes known as pedelecs that can support speeds of up to 45 km/h.
2. Riding Range
This is a significant concern when purchasing an electric two-wheeler. Since it is designed for short commutes, you cannot expect an extensive range on a single charge. It’s recommended to conduct thorough research on the riding ranges of available electric bikes before making a purchase decision. The average distance an e-bike can cover with standard 400-500W batteries is 100-120 km on a single recharge. However, this riding range can vary according to the specific category of bikes you are considering. The maximum range achievable on a single charge is around 350-400 km. Meanwhile, basic city bikes usually have a range of 50-60 km before they require charging.
3. Battery Life
Among the 10 things to know before buying an e bike, this one is very important. The e bike battery is one of the most expensive components in an e-bike that deserve special attention in this list. Replacing the battery pack can be a costly affair. Its lifespan relies on factors like battery type and usage patterns, with lithium-ion batteries offering longer durability than lead or nickel ones. The lifespan of batteries in new electric bikes typically ranges from two to five years. Moreover, note that a single e-bike battery can survive thousands of charging cycles before requiring replacement. On a standard electric bike, each charge can provide riders with a range of approximately 100 to 120 km.
4. Motor Power
The electric motor is responsible for powering the wheels and moving the electric two-wheeler. There are various electric motors with different power outputs to choose from. It’s essential to select an electric bike with the appropriate power for your intended use. Additionally, 250 watts, 350 watts, 500 watts, and 750 watts are the common wattage option in e-bikes.
5. Charging Infrastructure
The e-bike manufacturer generally provides a home-charging station for convenience. However, there is a good network of public charging stations in urban areas. So, before making a purchase, you must ensure that the electric vehicle brand has a wide public charging infrastructure, allowing you to charge your bike while on the go.
6. Maximum Load
Electric bikes are generally lightweight and that affects their load-carrying capacity. It is important to check the maximum load capacity of the electric bike to meet your requirements. Electric bike weight limits typically range from 220 to 300 pounds, but some models designed for cargo purposes can handle even higher weights, up to 550 pounds.
Electric bikes produce minimal noise, unlike motorcycles or mopeds. This is due to the absence of a gasoline engine in the battery motor, which eliminates loud engine noises. The quiet operation of electric bikes enhances the overall riding experience and reduces noise pollution. However, motor noise and chain noise should be checked properly before you buy the e-bike. So, if someone asks, what to know before buying an e bike, it is advisable to suggest having the motor noise and chain noise checked as part of the evaluation process.
Electric bike brakes last between 2 and 5 years, and that depends on their usage and manufacturing quality. Rim brakes typically last around 3000 miles, while disc brakes can endure up to 6000 miles before requiring replacement.
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9. Cost Factors
a. Initial Cost
When buying an electric bike, it’s important that you establish your budget and accordingly start looking for a bike. The initial cost is a crucial consideration that can significantly influence your decision to buy. However, in the current US market, you can get an e-bike that costs around $150 to $6 500.
b. Maintenance Cost
Maintaining an electric bike is cost-effective. This is because of the hardware of the e-bike since it has fewer moving parts and requires less frequent servicing. It does not come with an internal combustion engine that simplifies maintenance tasks. Therefore, if you are thinking of buying an e-bike, you can rest assured that the maintenance cost will be less than the conventional vehicles.
c. Running Cost
E-bikes are generally designed for short distances and offer greater efficiency compared to those with internal combustion engines. In the long run, these e-bikes will have a low running cost, which will also reduce your commuting expenses. Additionally, the battery pack and electric motor specifications affect the running cost of the bike.
d. Insurance Cost
The common belief that electric bike insurance is very costly is actually incorrect. In fact, the insurance is affordable in comparison to regular two-wheeler insurance. So, while considering buying an e-bike, you must go through a comprehensive insurance plan that offers extensive coverage benefits.
It is important to carefully review the warranty coverage for both the battery and the motor. Typically, the warranty period for electric bike batteries is usually 1-2 years months. Therefore, before you buy, check out the terms and conditions of the warranty policy.
These are the important things that will help you gather information about the e-bike’s features, reliability, and performance and enables you to make a well-informed decision based on your specific needs and preferences. So, what questions should I ask when buying an ebike? Check out the next segment to find out.
What Questions Should I Ask When Buying an E-Bike?
What to know before buying an e bike? When buying an e-bike, it’s important to ask several questions to ensure you choose the best product. Here are some key questions to consider.
1. What are the Bike Components?
Remember to thoroughly review all the bike components, especially the shifting system and braking systems. You can also inquire about the specific model or version of the component being used. Make sure you obtain detailed information about the specific components included, apart from just knowing the manufacturer.
2. What is the Battery Capacity?
Ask about the battery capacity. Find a product with a rating of around 36 volts and 10Ah. With this rating, you can expect a range of 20 to 40 miles on a single charge.
3. What is the Wattage of the Motor?
While buying an e-bike, always ask about the wattage of the motor to understand the bike’s loading capacity. Specifically, the continuous wattage rating and peak wattage rating are crucial considerations. Look for 500W motor power where the motor can sustain continuously throughout the charge. Additionally, keep in mind that the peak wattage rating indicates the motor’s ability to make the bike climb hilly terrains.
4. Who is the Manufacturer?
Ask the vendor about the manufacturer of the battery. Look for well-known brand names and check if they are affiliated with a larger company.
5. How is Customer Service Support?
Customer service is an important aspect that needs to be mentioned in this list. You can ask about the warranty period and the response time of their customer service. A prompt response within 24 hours is ideal and indicates good support. So, before buying a bike, you must do a little research on this as well.
Thus, there are several key factors to consider before purchasing an electric bike. It is important to thoroughly research and gather information about its components. Understanding the specifications will help you determine the range and performance of the e-bike. Thus, you can decide accordingly, and ensure a fulfilling experience with your e-bike.