Electric bikes host a number of advantages over traditional bikes. Modern electric bikes are easily charged, lightweight, and relatively affordable. They also excel at providing riders with assistance during long rides, but do not negate the exercise benefits of pedaling. Because of their extreme efficiency, electric-powered bikes are ideal for older riders or for those who rely on their bike for work or transportation. If you are thinking about buying one for the first time, you may be wondering how to ride an electric bike. Here are a few things you should understand before making a purchase:
Local Laws Concerning Electric Bikes
Depending on which state you live in, laws regarding electric bicycles can vary widely. Some jurisdictions can even limit where you can ride your electric-powered bike. You should familiarize yourself with your area’s laws regarding the use of electric motors. Many areas feature limits on motor power, so you may wish to shop for models within a certain power range because they legal to ride in your home town. Remember, not knowing the law is rarely an acceptable excuse for unlawful behavior in the eyes of law enforcement.
Pedal Assist vs. Full Throttle
Electric bikes can generally be powered with either assisted pedaling or full electric power. Assisted pedaling is less power-intensive than full-throttle electric power, so it is best used to ease mildly fatigued legs. Full throttle power can take you where you need to go with no pedaling whatsoever, but this feature uses significant battery life, especially on hills. When shopping for a bike, look for one that has enough power and battery life to fulfill your personal requirements.
Your Bike’s Limitations
Your weight, the distance you plan to ride, and the slope of hills you plan to regularly ascend are all important considerations when riding an electric bike. If you intend to save as much pedaling energy as possible, choose a motor that is well suited to the terrain in your area. For most residential areas, a 250 or 500 watt motor is sufficiently powerful to overcome regular inclines through pedal assist or throttle power. For especially steep or mountainous regions, you may wish to purchase a more powerful motor.
Lifespan and Charging
If you wish to preserve your bike’s battery, you should avoid running it down until it has no power left. This means that you should take care not to overdo it. If you encounter a particularly steep hill after a long ride, try to use your own power rather than relying on your motor. Charging your battery after every significant use helps to ensure that your battery lasts for its full natural life. How long do electric bikes last? You can expect your battery to last for around 1,000 charges, or for three to five years. Since motors often last for well over 10,000 miles, your motor will likely outlast numerous other components of your bike.
Electric bikes are fun to ride and can make your life significantly easier. Because the ideal model for you depends on a number of factors, it is important that you read up on laws, battery life, motor power, and specific options before shopping online or in a store.