Ebike Road Safety – Reduce The Risks

While an ebike is a great mode of transportation, one must remain cautious and ride the bike defensively.  In this article we’ll cover the basics of ebike road safety so that you can reduce the risks of mishaps.

With an electric bike, a commuter can fly around the city without getting tired or worrying about large hills. Since such bikes are not large, one can also take it on trains and get around the city without sitting in traffic all day.

At the same time, a rider should understand the rules of the road. Not only that, one should know what to wear while on a bike. With this in mind, here is a short guide for a person who wants to ride and electric bike safely all the time.

Ebike Road Safety Maintenance

Maintenance – No Interrupted Journeys

Just like with a car, a bike owner should maintain his or her electric bike. To do so, a cyclist should maintain proper PSI levels on his or her tyres. By doing so a rider will experience fewer problems when navigating the busy streets. At the same time, with proper tyre pressure, when hitting large bumps, a commuter will not feel his or her bike shake.

Of course, this is just the beginning, and an owner must inspect his or her brakes, tyres, chain and any other parts. In fact, if a bike owner does not know how to do this, he or she should take classes.

Other times, when busy, the owner can bring his or her bicycle into a shop where a professional can inspect it and fix any issues. Either way, with solid maintenance, a bike owner will not see his or her electric bike fail in the middle of traffic.

Lights – Be Seen and Be Safe

While people hate reflectors and bike lights, they are necessary. Without this, a pedestrian or driver will have a hard time seeing the cyclist. This is a recipe for disaster as many bikers are run over by motorists who do not see the rider until it is too late.

Ideally, the electric bike owner should have a front and back light. With this inexpensive item, one can see the road well and not worry about a driver suddenly running into their path. If riding at night often, one should also buy bright clothing that motorists will see with ease.

Hand Signals – Communicate Your Intentions

With the proper hand signals, a rider can show motorists and pedestrians his or her intent when making a turn. This is important in busy areas where one will ride around a lot of traffic. Sadly, when ignoring this vital advice, some riders will end up getting hit.

Other times, a rider will anger motorists who have no idea what the cyclist is planning on doing. Either way, when understanding hand signals, a rider will go a long way in avoiding issues while on the road.

Pavements are for Pedestrians

While riding, some foolish cyclists think it is safer to take their electric bike on the pavement. This is not wise as an electric bike rider should use city streets. Unfortunately, when on the pavement, one is at a greater risk for causing an accident and hitting a pedestrian. A bike rider must understand that it is easier to ride with the flow of traffic on the street.

Helmet and other safety gear: An electric bike can go fast and a rider who falls can break a bone or suffer a concussion. For this reason, when riding an electric bike, a rider should use a helmet and any other padding he or she deems necessary. With this inexpensive investment, a bike owner will stand a better chance at avoiding a serious injury when falling.

Don’t Drink and Ride

Believe it or not, some electric bike riders think they can ride their bike drunk. While it is not as dangerous as driving a car while under the influence, it is still not wise. In fact, while riding while drunk, a cyclist is at an increased risk for causing a serious and potentially deadly accident.

Remember, an electric bike can glide along quickly, and it is not wise to ride while under the influence as one false move can cause a serious injury.

Anticipate the Actions of Others

Watch for car doors!  Often, a new rider will worry about random drivers running them over and leaving them incapacitated. This is often not the case as many electric bike owners will get in a smaller accident. One such way to crash is to run into an open door.

This happens when a passenger or driver gets out of his or her car and does not look for cyclists. To prevent this, a rider should look in cars and make sure that nobody is opening a door.

Enjoy Your Riding

With an electric bike, one can enjoy a fun ride without breaking a sweat. While this is true, it is wise to understand the risks and take a proactive approach to ebike road safety.  You can easily avoid problems, both minor and serious, with a little care and attention, leaving you free to enjoy your ebike riding.

Should you buy an electric bicycle?

In a world where transportation is central to every day life, getting around in a cost effective, convenient manner that is not detrimental to the environment can be quite the challenge. One new alternative that is gaining popularity is the electric bicycle.

Equipped with a small electric motor to help you up those pesky hills, it is perfect for any commuter who has thought about taking up commuting to work on their bike but is worried their fitness level might not be what is used to.

The electric bicycle is the perfect combination of motorized vehicle and self propulsion. Because is is technically classified as a bicycle, laws surrounding operation are much more lenient than a motorcycle or moped. The small electric motor contains a rechargeable battery so soaring gas prices no longer mean plummeting wallet.

They reach speeds of anywhere from 25 to 45 km/h(15 to 20 mph) depending on the power of the motor with little to no effort on the part of the user. The electric bicycle is gaining popularity and replacing conventional bicycles, mopeds and motorcycles in countries like Germany and China.

There are several classes of electric bikes that are divided based primarily on how much power is delivered by the engine and whether the bike is pedal-assist or power-on-demand. The motor on a pedal-assist bike is regulated by pedaling.

Also called pedelecs, they have a sensor that detects the speed and force of the operator. It also senses braking which is disables the motor. Power-on-demand motors are activated by an actual throttle that is usually found on the handlebars.

Which Electric Bicycle is Right for You?

Pedelecs are divided into two classes: pedelecs proper and S-Pedelecs. Pedelecs proper have a pedal-assist drive system. The motor is low powered with a maximum continuous rated power that will not exceed 250 watts. It will cut out if the bike reaches a speed of 25 km/h (15 mph).

The purpose of the motor is primarily to provide assistance to the rider, in particularly up hills and when riding into a strong headwind. It is the ideal electric bike for someone who wants still wants to get some physical activity out of their daily commute but would rather not show up to work soaked in sweat from the effort if the wind is blowing.

S-Pedelecs are power pedelecs that are not necessarily classified as bicycles depending on the jurisdiction. The motor is over 250 watts and the motor does not stop if the rider exceeds 25 km/h (15 mph). In some places, it is classified as a motorcycle or moped so the rider may need a license and insurance.

Some electric bikes combine the physical exertion of pedal-assist with the speed of power-on-demand and have both pedal sensors and a throttle.

Electric bikes that operate with power-on-demand only usually have a larger motor. A throttle, which is usually on the handgrip operates and controls the motor. This allows the rider a variety of options. They can ride using only pedal power or rely manually on the electric motor with the use of the throttle. Riders also have the option to use both at the same time.

Why Make the Switch to an Electric Bicycle?

There are several advantages to choosing an electric bicycle over other means of transportation. Any type of cardiovascular exercise is highly beneficial for people with heart disease and other medical problems. The electric bicycle is an easier transition than a traditional bicycle because of the added boost of the motor.

Electric bikes are zero-emission vehicles. They do not emit any combustion bi-products into the air. While generating electricity and power distribution along with the manufacturing and disposing of the high storage density batteries does have some environmental impact, it is minimal compared to traditional automobiles.

The electric bicycle is 18 times more efficient than an SUV and 6 times more efficient than rail transit. The battery is so small it can be charged using solar power. In fact, in some places, solar parking lots have been set up where riders can leave their bikes under photvoltaic panels while they are at work or doing errands.

Convinced Yet?

As urban areas around the globe continue to grow, more people are looking for an alternative to crowded public transportation and rising gasoline prices. Electric bicycles are a great alternative that not only saves you money, but also combine your morning workout with your commute. With the option between pedal-assist and power-on-demand only, you can decide exactly what electric bicycle is right for you. Next time your car breaks down or you miss the bus, consider looking for an electric bicycle and changing your morning routine for the better.

Five of the Best ebike Brands

Electric bikes or ebikes come in a verity of different styles. Their motors can provide different ranges of power, so you can find one for mountain biking or one for commuting through the city. Either way, one thing is for certain: there are many benefits to owning an ebike. If you’re searching for a ebike, here are five of the best ebike brands to consider.

Riding an ebike is a good source of exercise and you won’t have to worry about polluting the earth or your lungs since they don’t run on fossil fuels. With an electric bike you’ll find that the daily struggle to find parking becomes a thing of the past.

Best eBike Brands

VOLT – “the best electric bikes”

VOLT is an amazing UK based electric bike manufacturer. All their bikes are designed and engineered at the best possible level. Each bike is light weight and sturdy so you’ll be able to ride your e-bike for miles with no problem. VOLT has made amazing advances in the e-bike field.

In collaboration with Bafang Motors, VOLT created the V-WAVE, which is the only intuitive riding module available for electric bikes. V-WAVE allows you to adjust the power being used to suit your riding needs.

You can choose how fast or slow you want to travel and it monitors your pedaling efforts, so it can adjust the power on its own when needed.

They make everything from mountain bike to bikes that can be used in a more urban environment, so VOLT will have a bike for you. Their electrical components are easy to detach, should it ever need replacing. And if something were to go really wrong, don’t fret – each bike comes with a two year “full peace of mind” warranty.

A2B Electric Bikes

For those who don’t want to compromise beauty and style, consider the A2B’s line of beautifully designed electric bikes.

Beauty isn’t the only thing A2B strives for. The bikes are capable of incredible speeds and with some of their bike models, pedaling is optional, so it’s like owning a bike and a moped in one. You can be confident your bike won’t give out while riding.

Ben Hopkin’s broke the record for longest journey traveled by electric bike on A2B’s Alva+ model. He logged an impressive 6,300 km over a verity of tough terrain, including the Nevada desert. So if your looking to go on a rode trip or need to commute long distances on the daily basis, A2B’s ebikes might be a perfect fit.

Viking Cycles – folding electric bikes

This company was established in 1908, at first making traditional bikes and then branching into e-bikes. They’ve been in the bike making business for over a hundred years, so you know you can trust them to make a reliable and quality bike. Viking Cycles specialize in folding electric bikes, which are perfect for storing in cars, apartments, or other small spaces.

Each ebike is guaranteed to be light weight and fast charging. Their best model, the Viking E-Go, can travel 25 miles on one charge. It has 3 setting, so you’ll find a mode that suits any travel. These bikes a perfect for up hill journeys.

Infineum – High-end Electric Bikes

Infineum electric bikes are known for being high-end. They are best known for their patented stackable battery system. Multiple batteries can be placed on the rear rack at one time and are secured into place with their own locking system, which ensures that the battery will stay put as you ride.

Each battery’s charge lasts 25-33 miles. With the stackble battery system, as soon as one battery dies the next one will kick in, so your journey could be limitless. Infusion also provides bike with a cycle computer which shows riders the remaining battery power, as well as distance traveled and traveling speed.

The Infineum e-bikes also have an amazing motor. The motor delivers 200 watts of power, while still remaining small and discreet on your bike. The motor is also much quieter than those of competing brands. So if you need a smart long distance bike, this might be the one.

Green Edge – Leisure Cycling and Commuting

Green Edge is a London based company that specializes in making affordable and eco-friendly bikes. Their low prices and quality material keep them in high demand all over the world. Like Viking Cycles, Green Edge’s bikes are foldable while still remaining sturdy.

Their bikes are often used for urban commutes but they can be used on a wide range of terrain. The saddles are super soft which provides for a comfortable ride. Forget traffic jams. With the little beauty you’ll be zipping through the city effortlessly.

The above are just five of the best ebike brands.  Many more exist and perhaps you have a favorite of  your own.  Let us know which brands you like in the comments below.

Ebikes – What are Electric Bikes? How do they work?

If you enjoy the fitness benefits of cycling but dread all those hills that torment every trip to the park, you might be interested in an ebike, or electric bike. These miracles of science come with propulsion systems that aid the pedaling process for easier, smoother and faster rides, but what are electric bikes and how do they work?

In addition, what kinds of ebikes are currently on the market? What accounts for their variations in price and speed? Here’s a quick guide to understanding your new favorite ride.

What are Electric Bikes?

The Mechanics of An Electric Bike

There are two basic types of ebike, and each one comes with its own pros and cons.

The pedelec offers pedaling assistance via a motorized system hidden in the bike’s hardware. It can help you speed up over flat terrain, slow down during a hill descent etc. It calculates things like pedaling force and overall bike speed to determine when you need an extra boost.

Unfortunately, the system isn’t foolproof, and there have been Matrix-like reports of pedelec bikes misinterpreting the data and acting with their own will. They won’t buck you off the seat or anything as drastic, but if you’re, say, peacefully cruising down the road when your bike suddenly decides to stop helping, you may wind up expending more effort than if you’d been riding a non-motorized model in the first place.

The twist-n-go bike is one where you deliberately trigger pedaling assistance via twist grips or on/off switch. It saves you the trouble of your bike deciding to act out I, Robot in the middle of a ride, but as a non-automated system, it also requires much more work on your part.

On the plus side, you’ll never waste power or battery life, so twist-n-gos will last longer than just about every other ebike model. They’re also the kind touted by environmental activists for their eco-friendliness.

Understanding The Controls

Depending on the size, price and overall construction of your e-bike, your model may come with either a “hub motor assist” or a “crank motor assist” .  These are located on the front wheels and pedal areas, respectively, and they’re responsible for giving the bike its juice.

Once upon a time, hub and crank motors had their own advocates claiming their models were the best, citing things like noise levels and basic maneuverability.

Technology has progressed to the point where these arguments are mostly moot, because assistance-wise, they’re pretty much indistinguishable . The only reason you might prefer one over the other is for aesthetics.

To Battery or Not To Battery

All electric bikes run on batteries, so if you want to make wise consumer decisions, you’re going to need to understand how they work and what your options are.

The two biggest types of batteries are nickel-based or lithium-based, the former offering cheaper prices but the latter promising a longer life and more energy per kilogram. Their power can be measured in both Ah (amp hours) and Wh (watt hours).

When it comes to batteries, you should think about terrain first and foremost. Do you pass a lot of hills on your way to uni? Do you expect to consume a lot of processing power going over rough granite and uneven sidewalks?

If you expect to put the hurt on your e-bike on a regular basis, lithium batteries are a safer bet for a long-lasting motor. On the other hand, if you anticipate a lot of maintenance anyway, replacing cheap nickel batteries won’t be that much of a problem and will cost you less upfront.

Buying An Electric Bike

Ready to take the plunge and ride in style? Here are a few considerations before dropping your hard-earned money on an ebike.

  • Price. Sophisticated models can easily set you back thousands of dollars, but if you don’t need LCD navigation systems and Bluetooth capabilities, simpler ebikes can be found for anywhere from $1500 to $4000.
  • Hardware. As mentioned above, there are several choices you can make between battery types, motor types, pedaling systems etc. There are also gears to consider; if you amp up your gears too much, you won’t leave much room for your pedaling motor.
  • Versatility. It’s a common joke that even a broken ebike is still a bike, much like how broken escalators are still stairs. But that isn’t quite true: If you’re riding a new, technologically heavy model, losing the electronics can mean losing all pedaling power over the ebike. If you’re cycling to work one morning and your battery suddenly dies, can you still finish the ride? Or will your bike become a useless lump of metal?

The Sum Of All Things

E-bikes come with pedelec or twist-n-go motors. These may be located on either the wheels or the crank. Batteries are important, so choose wisely between nickel and lithium depending on your budget, required shelf life and personal pedaling needs, and don’t make any foolish decisions when buying your first ebike.

Does that cover it? Are you ready to hit the road?