The invention of electric transportation started a revolution in the ways how people transport and it has been going on for over a decade. It is low-cost and eco-friendly, especially with the skyrocketed fuel price and the rising awareness of protecting the environment. The choice of electric revolution has been more popular than ever. Ebike, especially, is the star of this revolution. More and more people are joining the revolution and transforming their transportation into ebikes.
Naturally, a lot of people begin to wonder: can an ebike replace the need for a car? Some may think this question is ridiculous, but some may be thinking if it’s really possible so that we can lead a more cost-effective and environmentally friendly life. Of course, this is not a simple yes-or-no question. There are many factors that one needs to consider. In this article, we will discover this possibility.
The first factor that we should consider is commute distance. Normally, ebikes have a maximum range of 60-80 miles. But the range will be shorter if the rider is only using pure electric power in throttle-only mode, like riding a moped. Even if you pedal more to save electricity, it will consume a lot of physical energy. Therefore, replacing your car with an ebike is ideal when you are generally doing short-range travels.
Safety is essential. Riding an ebike poses more threats than driving a car because your body is fully exposed, so it’s important to check if your route has great biking infrastructure to minimize the risk of any damage. It would be ideal if the route has a dedicated bike lane that is separated from the vehicle lanes. Of course, wearing a helmet is a must whenever you are riding an ebike.
There are other biking infrastructure that can make your biking journeys more convenient. See if there are any places that can charge your ebike in case your ebike runs out of battery halfway and you are left with heavy machinery. Also, see if there are bike racks at your destination so that you can safely secure your ebike while you are minding other business.
Cargo and Passenger Needs:
If you frequently need to transport large items or multiple passengers, a conventional vehicle with more storage capacity might be necessary. E-bikes often have limitations in terms of cargo space.
Although, a new type of utility ebike has appeared in the market to solve the problem. Cargo ebike, as its name suggests, is made for hauling. Usually, a cargo ebike can be equipped with a front a rear basket to haul a considerable amount of stuff, or a seat at the back to haul two kids or one adult passenger. If you do not haul a lot of stuff for your travels, a cargo ebike is an ideal choice. (Learn more about Hovsco HovCart cargo ebike)
Most ebikes are waterproof, so they can be used in various weather conditions. But extreme weather might still pose challenges to riding. When it’s raining too heavily, raindrops might get into the inner parts of the ebike and potentially damage the electrical components. If it’s snowing, the traction between the ground and the tire would be reduced, increasing the possibility of falling. When the temperature is too high or too low, the battery performance will be severely influenced, resulting in less range. (Read more about the best temperatures to operate ebikes or store ebike batteries here)
Laws and Regulations
If you plan to replace your car with an ebike, be aware of the local laws regarding ebike operation. For example, check if the road or destination you plan to travel to allows ebikes. Some roads and parks do not allow ebikes or only permit certain classes of ebikes from going in. This brings us to another question, which is the speed limit. You should pay attention to the limit of top speed, which is normally 20 or 28 mph according to the permitted ebike class. Last but not least, certain areas mandatory require a driver’s license or wearing a helmet to operate an ebike.
We can easily assume that replacing the car with an ebike is a cost-effective way, but in fact, getting an ebike could cost more than you think. For starters, you need to charge the ebike battery, so don’t be surprised when you see your electric bill after you get an ebike! Also, ebike require maintenance just like cars. You should regularly inspect and get it maintained. Nevertheless, compared to a car, an ebike would cost significantly less! Especially because the fuel price has increased a lot over the years.
Fitness and Health
Riding an ebike still requires a certain level of physical activity, which is good for people who want their commute to serve a fitness purpose as well. No matter how little exercise you can do on an ebike, it is still more than sitting in a car! However, for people who lack physical strength or suffer from illnesses, riding an ebike might not be a great choice as it can potentially harm your body.
(Do you think ebike is cheating? Read more here)
Ebikes are perfectly capable of flat or moderately hilly terrains with that extra power boost. However, if there are many inclines or the inclines are too steep on your regular routes, it might not be a good idea to ride an ebike as it will severely cost your stamina because they are very demanding.
Ebikes may not fully replace the need for a conventional car, but in the right places, you can totally do so and put in effort for less cost and a greener future. You can consider replacing your car with an ebike if:
- You normally do short-range travels preferably within 60 miles;
- The biking infrastructure of your route is well-developed;
- You don’t need to haul a huge load of cargo or more than 1 adult passenger;
- You don’t plan to commute under extreme weather;
- The local laws and regulations permit;
- You want to save some bucks from driving a car;
- You want to exercise a little;
- There aren’t many crazy inclines on the route;
- You want to lead a more eco-friendly lifestyle.