Frequently Asked Questions about eBikes
What is an eBike?
Simply put, an eBike is a bicycle with an electric motor that assists in the motion of pedaling. They are powered by a Lithium Ion battery, which is mounted somewhere on the bike frame, or off the back on a rack. Most eBikes have several power settings to select from, which are controlled via an onboard computer, or your smart phone (select brands/models only). Some eBikes have the motor mounted midway in the frame (connected to the crankset), and some have the motor mounted in the rear wheel. The majority of ebikes we sell make use of the midway mounted system.
Who are they for?
eBikes are for a multitude of different people; they are fun, exhilarating, easy to use, and offer a unique way of going longer distances or attacking new and challenging terrain. They are great for people with mobility issues, the downtown commuter who needs to keep up with the flow of traffic, the weekend warrior who wants to pack more trail time into their weekend getaway, or simply anyone who wants to enjoy a leisure river valley ride without having to dismount to walk up a hill.
What is the point of an eBike? Why should I buy one?
Electric bikes add power to your pedals, enabling you to do more with a bicycle and have more fun! For many people, eBikes help them:
- Ride faster when compared to a conventional bike.
- Enjoy riding uphill
- Commute to work without breaking a sweat
- Take the kids to school by attaching a child trailer or seat.
- Run everyday errands like grocery shopping or picking up some bike parts at the best bike shop in Edmonton
- Save your joints from wear and tear on the hips, knees ankles, etc.
- Maintain the same pace between friends and loved ones.
- Leave the car at home!
- Have more fun! You can’t take one for a ride without getting a huge smile on your face.
How fast can they go?
Most eBikes sold in Canada are subject to North American standards and therefore are limited to roughly 32 Km/hr. If eBikes provided higher power assisted speeds, they would have to be regulated like a scooter/motorcycle which requires registration, licensure, insurance, etc. In addition, this would limit where eBikes can be ridden.
How heavy are they?
The weight of an eBike that has been designed by a reputable bike manufacturer will range from 40-55 pounds, but in the case of having a high end carbon fiber frame they can be as light as 35 pounds. The added weight on an eBike from the motor and battery pack may seem significant, but they feel light as a feather when you are riding!
What is the range of a full battery?
Not all battery backs are the same, and the range depends on rider weight, terrain, and what power setting you are riding in. If you switch between the mid and high power settings throughout your ride, you can expect to get between 30-50 km of range. On a low power setting with a 500 watt battery pack, it is not uncommon to get upwards of 100 km on a single charge.
How long will a battery last before I have to replace it?
Most manufacturers will guarantee their batteries for a minimum of 100 charge cycles. This will vary from person to person based on how often you ride and how many times you charge the battery, but keep in mind that charging from a half full battery only registers as half of a charge. With that being said, a quality battery pack made from authentic name-brand 18650-format cells should last for over 1000 charge and dis-charge cycles. If you drain your battery pack once a week, then your pack should last over3 years.
Does the battery charge while I pedal?
Not in the models that we sell. The power is derived from the battery pack, and can only be charged back via the battery’s charging cable. Some electric bikes have this feature but this requires a substantial amount of your pedal power, so be ready for one heck of a workout! Some of these same eBikes have regenerative braking that will charge the battery as you are braking, similar to the way electric cars do.
How long does it take to charge the battery?
A 500-600 watt Lithium Ion battery pack (common with most of eBikes at our shop) will take around 3 hours to charge. Two hours of charge time on a dead battery will get you to 80% if you want to shorten up your wait time and get back on the trails!
How much power do they have?
Generally electric bikes in North America will range from 250 watts to 750 watts. 750 watts is the maximum power to still be a considered a bicycle and that equates to 1 horsepower.
Do I have to pedal or can I use a throttle?
The eBikes we sell are pedal assist, so yes you have to pedal in order for the motor to engage. The motor will assist as soon as you start pedaling and people who are used to riding conventional bikes tend to prefer this system. Throttle assist bikes are available and can be ordered if need be. The advantage of a throttle assist would benefit those with major mobility issues, so please discuss your needs with our eBike experts.
Do they require special maintenance? Who specializes in servicing eBikes?
eBikes require the same attention as a conventional bicyle. Keeping it clean and properly lubed are always key. For the electrical aspect, it is best to have your work done by a professional service technician. Revolution Cycle has the best eBike service team you could ask for and we are even working on an advanced diagnostic tool that will be available in house only! For the best maintenance on your eBike, take it to the pros and Rev up your Ride!
Some people say that “eBikes are for cheaters!” Why should I ride one over my conventional bike?
You may find that adding an electric bike to your lineup of bikes expands what you can do with a bicycle. For instance, with an electric cargo bike you can take the kids to school, commute to work, pick up groceries, and enjoy a nice bike ride at the end of a long work day. Also, you may know of family and friends that currently don’t ride a bike, maybe because they feel they aren’t skilled enough or have the strength, but they may enjoy riding an electric bike. eBikes can “level the playing field” so that couples and/or friends of different riding ability levels can enjoy riding together.
Will I get any exercise while I ride an eBike?
Absolutely! You decide how much exercise you want to get by adjusting the assist level on the bike. One strategy is to commute to work with higher assist so you arrive with minimal to no sweat, and then use a lower assist when riding home to get more of a work out and unwind from a long day.
Can I add electric assist to my current bike?
Definitely! There are many electric bike kits on the market that can add electric assist to your current bike. This can be an economical way to test the “eBike waters” before you dive in and buy a whole new eBike.
How much do they cost? Can I finance an eBike?
Electric bikes range in price from $1500 to $10,000+ but the average price range for quality electric bikes is $2200 to $4500.
Financing options are available through Financeit
Where can I ride my eBike?
Your new eBike can be ridden anywhere you want to take it! Edmonton has a massive trail network, and eBikes are allowed on all of them. Some national parks frown upon riding them on the trails, but as the eBike community continues to grow, the stigma around them will pass. Do not hesitate to push the limits of the bike and your body once you get out on one of these amazing machines, and go and enjoy life on two wheels!