Published on August 8th, 2019 | by Sunit Nandi0
Things you should know before owning an Electric Bike
Electric bicycles are getting more popular in the bike industry and this can be credited to the general ease and comfort that they bring to the biking experience. There are numerous benefits to having an e-bike; from the pedal assistance function to the fact that it is environmentally friendly.
Whether you are looking to revel in the ease of cruising at a constant speed or just curious about your first e-bike experience, you’ll find out that there are perks to owning an electric bike for heavy adults.
But before you go out shopping for a model, there are things you should know before deciding to buy. The following factors will prove crucial to choosing an e-bike that works for you.
Type of Riding Terrain
E-bikes are designed for different purposes and different people. You’ll have to decide which model suits you best depending on the kind of surface you’re going to be riding on most of the time.
Electric bikes are generally geared towards a number of activities. While some are built for relaxed cruising and trail riding, others have been designed to handle off-road terrain and mountain biking.
As a result, the question you should ask yourself before entering an e-bike store is what your most preferred playground is likely going to be.
Kind of Ride
There are primarily two riding modes that e-bikes operate in. The pedal-assist and twist-n-go systems. The pedal-assist is closer to riding an actual bike, only that you get some assistance from the motor.
For instance, if want to ride at a speed of say 15mph and you’re pedaling at 8mph, the bike’s motor will make up for the remaining 7mph. This is a mode that many people prefer because you get the exercise that a normal bike offers while still allowing you to move at an accelerated speed.
The other option is the twist-n-go mode, which involves the speed of the bike being controlled by a single switch on the handlebar. You simply set the speed and enjoy your cruise without having to struggle with the pedaling.
This refers to the distance an electric bike will go before running out of a full charge. It’s arguably the most crucial feature on the bike, especially if your commute involves steep inclines and hilly terrain.
You do not want to run out of power in the middle of the ascent so take care and watch your bike computer on the time. Without power from the motor and battery, an e-bike would simply be a burden. Generally, the range of an e-bike is determined by the battery capacity, weight of the rider, speed, level of pedal-assistance, as well as the type of commuting terrain.
If your ride will involve ten kilometers a day, you won’t necessarily need a bike with a 70km range. The age of the user also matters, if it is meant to be used by senior citizens, you should look out for the best electric bike for seniors. However, consider getting an e-bike with a range that is beyond what you need given that it tends to drop as the battery ages and deteriorates in capacity.
There are different kinds of batteries you’ll find on electric bikes, with the majority being lithium-ion batteries. The more expensive bikes come with higher-tech batteries that are not only lighter but also charge faster and last longer.
Generally, batteries will degrade over time and lose their ability to hold charge as they age. This is greatly determined by the quality of battery you choose, so be sure to opt for a reputable brand that will allow you to enjoy years of high battery capacity.
Lithium-ion batteries are often said to last eight hundred full charge cycles, which is an equivalent of 3 years of weekday commuting. This will survive longer, especially with careful use and maintenance.
Type of Motor
There are two types of electric bike motors that are uniquely suited for different kinds of environments. You can buy a crank motor or a hub motor. The hub motor is best suited for cruising on light terrains and is usually mounted on the bike’s frame. It is a relatively smooth and easy engine.
On the other hand, the crank motor is a louder but more versatile engine. If you are going to be tackling hilly terrain and steep inclines, you might want to go for a crank motor.
Electric bikes are generally considered an expensive buy compared to regular bikes and will require a large initial capital investment. That’s why it is important to consider the budget you’ve set aside to acquire a new bike.
You can expect to spend anything from $2,000 to $5,000 for an e-bike. Fortunately, the cost of operating the bike gets cheaper once you have acquired one.