Electric bikes are the fastest growing sector in cycling, with bikes available to suit everything from recreational rides, to road cycling or hardcore mountain biking.
Here are some of the things you might not know about electric bikes.
1. Do I need a license to ride an e-bike?
E-bikes are the same as regular bicycles when it comes to speed and power, so you will not need a license except in the rare case that your bike exceeds the specifications of your country’s laws.
2. They still count as exercise
A new study says that regular e-bike usage has health benefits. Though they’re pedal assist, a e-bike can still give you a workout, improving your cardiovascular health, fitness, and aerobic capacity. The results were most prevalent in previously sedentary riders.
3. Electric bikes have different modes
Most electric bikes give you a choice of four (or more) power modes when you ride them, which can be selected using a button on the handlebar, or from the onboard computer.
4. Battery life
Lithium-ion batteries are everywhere, so it’s no surprise to find them powering e-bikes. More expensive e-bikes have higher-tech batteries that are lighter, charge quickly, and last longer.
Lithium-ion batteries are typically said to last 800 full charge cycles. That’s about three years of weekday commuting. They survive longer with careful use, so you should get at least 2,000 half-charge cycles. Those are pessimistic estimates though, in practice, a battery life of several years is quite easily achievable. A full charge typically takes between two and a half to six hours, depending on the manufacturer, battery capacity, and battery chemistry.
5. It’s easy to plug in
If you can find an outlet, you can charge your bike. Unlike electric cars, which require dedicated charging stations, most e-bikes plug in anywhere. Some even have removable batteries, which make it even more convenient to charge.
6. Can I get shocked if I use an electric bicycle?
This is one of the most common concerns for many people considering to opt for an e-bike. But the answer is, not really. You probably have more chances of getting shocked by a blender than you have by using an electric bike.