Electric bikes are everywhere! Have you experienced the eBike thrill yet? If not, you should ride one! All of a sudden the possibilities are endless.
With an electric bike you can travel further, see more of the city, carry the kids, carry the dog, and the cooler to the beach. Are you tired of looking for parking or waiting for an Uber or Lyft ride? Take your electric bikes to lunch or dinner in the busy beach town and be more efficient with your time and money!
We’re here to shed some light on some of the questions you might have before making your eBike purchase.
1. What’s the whole point in buying or renting an electric bike?
The first thing you need to know is that eBikes usually have different modes. One of these modes involves pedal assist which requires you to pedal but with a lot less work and effort to reach a certain speed.
The other mode is the throttle option which doesn’t even require you to move anything other than a few hand muscles. There are plenty of reasons to buy an eBike and here are a few of them:
You have the ability to ride faster and travel further.
You can absorb more of your surroundings than you would on a regular bike.
It’s safer to have a motor that helps you accelerate at street intersections.
If you have bad knees or joint problems, this makes riding bikes effortless and pain-free.
If you get an eBike with a strong enough motor, you can load it up with blankets, food, kids, and dogs (except for Great Danes).
Do you live close enough to where you work? Then, you can commute to work on an electric bike and skip out on traffic and keep your gas money to yourself!
You can even send your kid to school on one of these bikes which would save you all the time you spend in traffic near your kid’s school.
Last but not least, they are a LOT of fun!
2. What’s the typical range on an eBike?
There are various factors that impact the range of an eBike. This depends on how powerful the motor is (anything over 500 Watts is more than enough for most users), the size of the battery, the type of terrain that you’re riding on, whether you spend most of the time covering uphills, downhills, or flat surfaces, the weight of the bike, and finally how much you weigh.
3. How much do they cost on average?
At the higher end of the spectrum, the average road or mountain eBike costs approximately $5,000 while cruiser or city eBikes which are less performance-focused fall in the $1,200-$2500 price point. We at Synaptic Cycles say the $1200-$1600 price point is where the value is.
4. How fast do they go?
The average speed on eBikes is around the 20 miles per hour mark but they can usually go as fast as 28 mph.
5. Why can’t they go faster than say 28 mph?
There are legal barriers to this matter. If an electric bike assists you past 28 mph, then it would be treated by law enforcement similar to a motorcycle that comes along with the hassle of licensing and registration paperwork. In addition to this, you would not be allowed on ANY bike paths either.
6. There are endless options, but how do I choose the electric bike that’s right for me?
There is no “one size fits all” but some key things to consider are obviously your budget, how often you plan on riding the bike, how far you want to travel each time, how fast you would like to go, and what you want to use it for (health, recreation, transportation and etc.). With these factors in mind, eBikes are split into 3 classes:
Class 1 Electric Bikes: These bikes come with an electric motor that kicks in ONLY when you pedal and it will not assist you once you reach 20 miles per hour.
Class 2 Electric Bikes: Class 2 eBikes come with both a pedal-assist mode that works up to 20 mph and a handlebar throttle.
Class 3 Electric Bikes: Such bikes are only equipped with the pedal-assist feature (similar to class 1 eBikes); however, the pedal assistance allows you to go as fast as 28 mph.
If we were to pick a class of eBikes, our choice would go to Class 2 because it gives you the option of a throttle which is especially useful when you’re stuck in sticky situations and allows you to get out of tough spots much more easily.
7. How much does each full charge cost?
It depends on what time of day you charge your electric bike. For instance, electricity is much cheaper after 9 PM while it peaks in price between 2 PM and 6 PM.
As a result of this variation in the price of electricity, each full charge will run you about 3 cents to 10 cents.
Before you make up your mind about which eBike to purchase, try renting one for a day or even a few hours. At Synaptic Cycles, we charge as low as $20 per hour and $80 dollars for the entire day. Book your eBike TODAY!
Two years ago, the company helped out with a fundraiser for the Boy’s and Girl’s Club of Santa Ana. Every year, the club has a “Christmas at the Club” event where local kids can come and choose a gift for Christmas. The company had helped in securing and building 100 bikes for the giveaway. My oldest son, Quinn, and I volunteered to help out during the event. Once everything was set up in the gym, our job was to greet the kids at the door and help them in choosing their one gift. This was important because the club doesn’t allow the parents to go in with the kids. They don’t want the parents influencing their choices.
When we arrived early that morning, we were surprised to see the line of kids waiting at the door. We were pretty certain that many of them had been there overnight, hoping to get the best pick of what was inside. As the kids waited at the door, you could see them straining to see what was inside. I was amazed at how patiently they waited their turn. Very few of the first 100 or so kids through the door looked at the other toys in the gym, instead they went straight to the bicycles.
The second kid I greeted at the door was a 12 year old boy. I can’t remember his name, but I remember his face and his demeanor. He didn’t smile much. He was very serious and a bit stoic. He came inside and, like most of the others, went straight to the bikes. Oddly, he chose a nice purple girls bike with glittery tassels coming out the handlebar grips and a princess faceplate attached to the handlebars. He sat on it, smiling and checking it over, and I wasn’t sure what to think. I told him that we have plenty of boys bikes still available, but he just shook his head. “That’s okay.” he said, “I’m getting this for my sister. She’s going to love it!” It just blew me away that a kid, with a chance to pick only one gift for himself, chose something for his sister. We had a lot of fun that day, but this is my only REAL memory of that day.
Historically, there had always been a number of bikes given away at the event, but the number of bikes donated for gifts had begun to dwindle over the years. A friend of ours, Bobby Schwartz, had been involved with the event and had decided he wanted to increase the number of bikes for the kids that year. Bobby had a target of 100 bikes and we helped to set him up with someone who could get boys and girls bikes for the event and managed to get some other donated items to go with them. Bobby even found someone to donate 100 brand new helmets to go with the bikes. Together, we also managed to put together a group of volunteers who showed up the week before the event and helped unpackage and build the bikes. Above, you can see what 100 newly built bikes looks like.
By now, you know I’m going to ask for money. This is a fundraiser that is a complete no-brainer.This is a fundraiser to help others get on bikes! Donations go directly toward the purchase of bikes for kids at the Boys and Girls Club of Santa Ana. Any extra money will be donated directly to the Boys and Girls Club of Santa Ana to support its community programs. Please, go to the fundraiser page and support this great program. Any amount you can afford to give will be gladly accepted. The fundraiser page can be found here: http://www.firstgiving.com/fundraiser/BobbySchwarz/bikes-for-bucks.