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Carbon Footprint of Electric Cars vs Gasoline Cars

Humans have been so focused on moving forward, we have forgotten to look back at all the destruction we have done. Global Warming is one of the biggest foes we have created that threatens us. The main cause, excessive Greenhouse gas emission.

The buzz around electric cars is that they have a lower carbon footprint since they are zero-emission vehicles. This means that they are environmentally better suited than traditional gasoline-driven cars. Nothing is as simple as that though since different factors affect carbon footprint.

The main question at hand is, which has a lower carbon footprint, Electric Cars or Gasoline Cars?

Electric cars have lower emissions and during their entire life cycle they leave behind a lower carbon footprint per car on the road. Though they have pretty much the same manufacturing process as gasoline cars, they use an alternate source of fuel, they use recyclable batteries which can be re-used a number of times and they don’t release harmful CO2 when in use. Stats show that driving an electric car yields more miles per gallon than gasoline cars at an estimated increase of 73 mpg for electric cars.

To understand, we need to know:  

  • What is a Carbon Footprint?  
  • How do Cars Increase their Carbon Footprint?  
Electric CarsGasoline Cars
ProductionCarbon footprint due to production is around 15-68% higher. The issue is here is in producing the batteries, which are larger and inefficient to manufacture.Due to efficiency in manufacturing process, gasoline cars require less energy to produce, reducing their carbon footprint.
Energy source/FuelThe cleaner the source of electricity the lower the carbon footprint. So, depends on the region of the world.Fuel requires energy to be extracted but generally better in this regard if electric cars use fossil fuel electricity.
Emission when drivingElectric cars have no emissions and this makes them the obvious choice in this regard. Making the environment friendly and efficient.The emission from gasoline cars is probably the single biggest reason that prompted research in electric cars. They are considered harmful for the same reason.
BatteryThe batteries in electric cars are recyclable and reusable which reduce carbon footprint in the long run.Lead-acid batteries found in gasoline cars are less efficient compared to lithium ones found in their competitors. The batteries are recycled but not reused.

Carbon Footprint of Electric Cars vs Gasoline Cars

With the technology of electric cars still in its infancy, I figured it would be useful to you if I break down the differences between Electric Cars and Gasoline cars in terms of their carbon footprint and emissions released by them. This will help you decide on whether you should go in for an Electric car or one of the Gasoline cars.

What is Carbon Footprint?  

Carbon Footprint of Electric Cars vs Gasoline Cars

Carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases released by an individual, a product, an organization or a country. Carbon footprint is expressed in Carbon dioxide equivalent (CO2eq). Carbon footprint is measured in tons of CO2 released per year. For other greenhouse gases, its supplemented in tons of CO2-equivalent gases.  

Carbon footprint is hard to measure for a single activity. For example, cooking a meal releases a certain amount of carbon footprint. But food arrives from a farm and maintaining a farm has a high carbon footprint which is not taken into account. That’s why taking carbon footprint on a large scale is a more credible way to measure CO2 emissions.  

Carbon footprint is the total amount of greenhouse gases released by an individual, a product, an organization or a country. 

Carbon Footprint of cars 

Almost everything we do is directly related to the emission of greenhouse gases. And one of the most significant sources of greenhouse gases is the use of automobiles. Conventional vehicles burn fuel to produce energy which makes the vehicle run. This process has disadvantages because of emissions from the tailpipe.   

Conventional (gasoline) car emits:  

  • Burning of the fuel lets out Nitrogen oxides. 
  • Carbon and hydrogen react to form harmful hydrocarbons. 
  • Carbon monoxide emission. 
  • And smoke because of foreign particles in the process. 

These emissions are mainly greenhouse gases and pollutants. They increase the carbon footprint, pollute the air and trap heat resulting in global warming. And this is just the emission from the engine of the car and we have to consider the production of a car.

Production of cars require energy, and we rely a lot on burning fossil fuels for energy. Extracting these fuels also require energy leading to higher carbon footprints. 

In the case of electric cars, they run on electricity, this allows them to run clean and emission-free. But manufacturing them requires energy, so this also comes under their carbon footprint. Then the electricity used to run them is not always clean and increases carbon footprint. Burning of fossil fuels is a significant source of energy.

So electric cars running on their energy are the cause of these emissions. In countries which are mostly powered by clean renewable energy, electric cars are the obvious choice.  

Comparison between Electric cars and Gasoline cars 

From their birth (production) to their death (recycling), cars cause emissions all through their lifetime. So, let us take a deeper dive: 

Production:  

Carbon Footprint of Electric Cars vs Gasoline Cars

One might think that since electric and gasoline cars look similar in size, they require the same amount of energy to be built. But it is not the case since the engines and batteries are vastly different. Different manufacturing processes and the energy required to produce, vary a lot.  

  • Surprisingly, the production of an electric car has a higher carbon footprint than conventional cars. Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) have estimated that electric cars cause 15%-68% more emissions compared to gasoline-powered ones.  
  • Some of this boils down to requiring more energy in the manufacturing process. But the most significant outlier is the batteries in electric cars. Electric cars use lithium-ion cells compared to lead-acid ones found in gasoline cars. Lithium-ion batteries are harder to produce. And in the process, a lot more energy is spent compared to lead-acid ones.  
  • Over the years, manufacturing of gasoline-powered cars has refined and become efficient. Gasoline-powered cars trump electric ones in this area. But it is not all doom and gloom in this regard for electric cars. Manufacturers are moving to cleaner ways of production. This will only reduce the carbon footprint when it comes to producing an electric over time.  

Since electric car batteries are the outliers, companies are doing their best to get them at a lower carbon footprint. Volkswagen and LG Chem (supplier of batteries for Volkswagen) have an agreement, that the latter should only produce batteries from environmentally friendly sources. Tesla intends its production unit in Nevada to run on renewable sources of energy in the future.

Tesla and BMW are active in battery recycling programs. This helps in the reduction of carbon footprint. And finally increasing energy density of these batteries could reduce emissions by 49% reported by The International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT). 

Energy source/Fuel:  

Carbon Footprint of Electric Cars vs Gasoline Cars

Electrics cars are regularly charged to run, and this requires electricity. Electricity production is a cause of emission depending on the way its obtained. This makes an electric car responsible for the carbon footprint of the source of electricity.

  • So, if the electricity used is produced from fossil fuels, then the car is responsible for the emissions. But if the electricity is from clean sources, emissions from these sources for far lower.
Carbon Footprint of Electric Cars vs Gasoline Cars
  • Therefore, on a per car basis, the carbon footprint in electric cars is lower compared to gasoline cars. This gives electric cars an advantage in almost all parts of the world.

Since countries are moving towards cleaner forms of energy production. Extracting fuel requires energy and increases the carbon footprint of gasoline cars. 

Driving: 

Carbon Footprint of Electric Cars vs Gasoline Cars

Electric cars produce zero-emission to run since they don’t burn any fuel. In this regard, there’s no competition at all.

  • In 2018, a US research found out that driving an electric car yields 80 miles per gallon(mpg) of fuel.
  • An average car running on gasoline in 2017 only yielded 24.9 mpg of fuel.

This was an increase from 2017’s estimate of 73 mpg for electric cars. The reason being the move renewable sources of energy in the US. 

Battery disposal: 

Carbon Footprint of Electric Cars vs Gasoline Cars

Batteries of cars contain harmful chemicals and need proper and safe disposal.

  • Gasoline car batteries are dismantled and recycled for use elsewhere.
  • Electric vehicle batteries are recycled or reused as backup power in many places.

This makes them better than the batteries found in their counterparts.  

Conclusion:   

Electric cars lose out on gasoline-powered cars only when it comes to the production of the vehicles. But, considering all factors, electric cars produce lower emissions over their lifetime.

Researchers have found that electric cars in countries like Sweden and France have 70% less carbon footprint than gasoline cars. This is because of their reliability in clean energy. And in the UK its 30%. In countries like Poland, coal power plants are the main source of energy and so electric cars may have a higher carbon footprint. 

In conclusion, Electric cars are more efficient and have lower carbon footprint in 95% of the world.

This paints a picture that the emissions from electric cars are directly related to the energy source itself. With countries moving to cleaner sources of energy, the carbon footprint of electric cars is only going to reduce.  

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How to Charge an Electric Scooter

I have used electric scooters for a while now and they’re my go to means of commuting short distances. They’re compact, easy to use, quite dangerous at times, fast moving and are available at various hubs in the city making them easily accessible quite like electric bikes. 

But the one thing you need to remember apart from storing the electric scooter safely is to keep the batteries charged. Having ready-to-go charged batteries for your electric scooter makes owning it all the more convenient. 

But how do you charge an electric scooter?

With the advancement in battery and charging technology, charging your electric scooter has become easier than before. Typically, anyone will plug their charger into a power source and the scooter’s batteries will get charged. Now you wouldn’t need the scooter itself to have the batteries charged, you can simply unplug the battery and charge it separately. 

Sounds easy right? Unfortunately there are a few complications and key points you will have to follow while charging your electric scooter. 

Let me take you through How to charge an Electric Scooter and the checklist to be followed while doing so.

How to Charge an Electric Scooter

Charging your electric scooter may seem like it’s going to be an impossible feat to have a charging dock occupying space in your garage. 

Electric Scooters are not that complicated, you just need to plug in the scooter to any power source in your home or office and voila, charged batteries. 

How to Charge an Electric Scooter

Depending on the model of your Electric Scooter, there are two methods by which you can recharge its batteries:

  • Plugging your Electric Scooter Directly to a Wall Outlet Power Source
  • Charging a Removable Battery

Both are pretty down to earth and as mentioned earlier, charging a removable battery can only be done if the electric scooter comes with a removable battery and is specified by the manufacturers themselves. 

Do not attempt to remove the battery as this can void the warranty and can be dangerous.

Plugging your Electric Scooter Directly to a Wall Outlet Power Source

How to Charge an Electric Scooter

The standard method to charge your electric scooter is by plugging the scooter directly to any power source. This is by far the most common used method and  has proven to be pretty effective.

  • You need to locate the charging terminal on your electric scooter. This unit is normally located underneath the floor-board with a rubber nozzle protecting the socket from water damage.
  • Remove the nozzle and plug in the charger firmly until you hear a click. 

Make sure the charger is the original charger and uses the right voltage, you DO NOT want to ruin your electric scooter or its battery by using an incorrect charger.

  • Now that the charger is connected firmly to the scooter, connect the other end of the charger to a wall plug socket. A standard one should do but if you’re looking for a bit more protection you can use a surge protector with an in-built fuse.
How to Charge an Electric Scooter
  • Once you turn on the switch for your power source the LED charging indicator will begin to blink telling you that the batteries are in the process of getting recharged.
  • Once the electric scooter has been charged, turn off the switch and remove the charger from the wall socket and the scooter. Make sure to remember to fit back the nozzle/charging socket cap so it does not get damaged.

Charging a Removable Battery

How to Charge an Electric Scooter

Most electric scooter manufacturers have made a few changes to how you can charge their products, making it easier and more convenient than before.

This is possible thanks to the use of removable batteries rather than the traditional non-removable mounted battery packs. Make sure you have the electric scooter with removable batteries before you start pulling your scooter apart. 

How to Charge an Electric Scooter

This is a generic step-by-step as some of the electric scooters will have a slightly different configuration so make sure you read the owners manual before proceeding with your electric scooter.

IMPORTANT :  MAKE SURE YOUR ELECTRIC SCOOTER IS TURNED OFF BEFORE YOU TAKE OUT THE BATTERY. TRY AND AVOID TOUCHING LIVE WIRES WITH YOUR BARE HANDS.

  • First and foremost, you need to locate the battery bay. This is normally situated under the floor-board of the electric scooter. Take out your tool kit and with a screwdriver remove the screws holding the battery bay in place.
  • Most batteries come with cables with plastic tips that lock in place, remove them carefully to slide the battery out. Other older models will have a bolt holding the wire down in place, using a wrench carefully take out the bolt to reveal the wire.
  •  Once the wire has been detached, lift the battery out of the hub and place it flat on a sturdy table. 
  • Take the two ends of the battery wire and plug them into the corresponding adapter to charge, like a power brick for the removable battery. You will hear a click when they’re connected.

Make sure that the red cable always goes into the positive terminal and the black goes in the negative terminal, changing polarity will damage the battery.

  • If you’re using an older model you can connect the exposed wires to a two-pronged charger that comes with the scooter. This has a clip located within that holds the exposed wires in place for charging. 

Here the cables have to be attached with their corresponding colors, connect the red wire of the battery with the red wire of the charger and the black cable of the battery with the black wire of the charger.

  • Now proceed to plug in the charger to the wall socket power source to charge. 
  • The red light on the charger will turn on when there’s current flow and the battery is charging successfully.

The charger should always be the one you received with the electric scooter or at least a replacement provided by the company for that particular model of scooter. Using a charger with incorrect voltage or one that’s not made for your model can damage the battery.

How long do you Need to Charge your Electric Scooter for?

To know how long your electric scooter must remain plugged in for, you first have to know what type of battery is powering your electric scooter. 

Electric scooters come with three available battery types and these can be charged anywhere between 2-4 hours and some will take 12 hours.

How to Charge an Electric Scooter

Lithium-ion Batteries

How to Charge an Electric Scooter

These batteries are lightweight and are not commonly used in electric scooters. They’re so portable that they can be charged to full capacity within 2-4 hours.

They charge faster and last quite long so you would not have to change the battery for up to 4 to 5 years from the day it’s bought. 

Lithium-ion batteries can be quite expensive but if they’re looked after right, they can last you well over 3000 charging cycles. 

Lead-Acid Batteries

How to Charge an Electric Scooter

The Lead-Acid batteries are more commonly used and seem to be the oldest kind of battery to power the electric scooter. 

Compared to Lithium-ion batteries, lead-acid will allow you to cover longer distances as the higher Ah (ampere-hour) rating of the battery allows it to do so.

Lead-Acid batteries are rather affordable and charge slowly, taking them up to 12 hours at a time to attain full charge.

NiCad Batteries

How to Charge an Electric Scooter

Nicd or Nicad batteries are those larger batteries that have a nickel anode and a cadmium cathode with a potassium hydroxide electrolyte in them.

These batteries are relatively good but are rather heavy and not a recommended power source.

Nicd batteries have to be drained completely before they can be recharged and this caused a lot of problems in the past. Though they’re much cheaper than Lithium-ion and Lead-Acid batteries they’re the least used kind of batteries to be used in an electric scooter.

So ultimately the time you need to keep your battery on charge depends on the type of battery it is. For Li-ion batteries it’s 2-4 hours, lead-acid batteries take about 12 hours to charge and NiCad batteries can only be charged once they’re completely drained and will take about 12-18 hours to completely charge.

How Long can a Battery Last on an Electric Scooter?

Batteries on electric scooters have different life times depending on their make, voltage and usage. On average, electric scooter batteries have a lifespan of anywhere between 2-4 years with about 1000 charging cycles being carried out. 

The life of the battery is difficult to assess as the numbers fluctuate if the battery is charged often or if it’s not looked after in the appropriate manner. 

How to Make your Electric Scooter Battery Last Longer?

As with every electrical gadget out there, you can prolong the life of your electric scooter battery by following a few simple techniques.

  • Make sure to always charge your batteries after each ride.
  • Charging your electric scooter battery up to 70-80% before taking a vacation can help increase its lifespan and preserve the battery..
  • Always use the recommended charger that comes with the product, using local or wrong chargers for the battery will result in you damaging your battery.
  • Exposing your battery to sun, heat, water or rain will damage it and in order for the battery to last longer it’s ideal to park your electric scooter in a dry and dark room when not in use.
  • If you’re contemplating charging your battery as soon as you complete your ride, as a suggestion, wait for 10-25 minutes for the battery to cool off completely before plugging in the charger.

Conclusion

Charging your Battery must always be carried out in a safe and protected manner. They are easy to unplug if you’re using an electric scooter with a removable battery or if not then they’re still pretty portable so the scooter can be taken physically into your home or office to be charged.

Make sure to always follow the instructions laid out by the manufacturer and never over charge your batteries.

How do I know if my Electric Scooter is charging?

If your charger is connected in the right fashion with the battery you’ll see a red light blink on the charger unit. Once the battery has been charged completely, the color of the light will turn green as an indicator your battery is ready to be unplugged.

How do I charge my Electric Scooter without a charger?

It’s not recommended to charge your electric scooter without a certified charger. Connecting the battery to jumper cables and other sources of current will only damage the battery. It’s best to buy a new charger or find your old one than spend hundreds more on procuring a new battery.

How Do I know that my electric scooter battery is low?

With electric scooters you  will be able to tell if your battery is low when the performance of the scooter drops. On some newer models that have display units, you’ll be shown the battery percentage in real-time o you’ll know when it’s ideal to charge the electric scooter’s battery.

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How do e-Scooters work

How do e-Scooters Work

by Editor

Skateboards from the Future! 

That’s what I like to call an Electric Scooter or e-Scooter for short. Yeah, they’re pretty cool looking flat board scooters with one major major technological upgrade, they run on motors and have battery packs.

Mind blowing right? Well, eScooters have been around for quite some time but have not managed to reach the popularity level of eBikes. They’re smaller and more compact than a traditional eBike and are actually a safer means of travel.

These eScooters are a form of micro-mobility, getting you from point A to B in a jiffy. There are hundreds of electric scooter brands with an even wider range to choose from, from eScooters for adults and kids to seated electric scooters. 

But have you ever wondered, how eScooters work?

Here’s how they work.
Like any mechanical device, eScooters have a number of electrical components that help propel the scooter forward. 
They use the hub motor to propel the scooter forward, the battery to power the electrical components in the scooter and the motherboard or motor controller to regulate the current flowing to the motor from the battery giving it more speed.

Let’s look at how these components drive the eScooter to get an understanding on how electric scooters work in the real world.

How do e-Scooters Work

Electric scooters run on batteries, typically rechargeable ones made of lead or Lithium. These batteries are not only coupled with the motor but also a lighting system, controller, and at times even the braking system, bringing your e-Scooter to life.

Some models of e-Scooters come equipped with a single motor while some have dual motors for greater propulsion, this results in larger batteries being used.

Ideally, how an electric scooter works can be summarized in the following way:

  • The motor that provides movement is situated in the wheels of the scooter.
  • From here, the rechargeable batteries which are located within the floorboard are activated and transmit current to the motor with the help of an intricate system of electrical wiring all through the frame of the scooter.
  • Once the throttle is twisted, signals are relayed to the motherboard or the motor controller which in turn informs the battery how much current to power the motor with. This system will power a single hub motor or in some cases dual hub motors allowing you to start moving forward.

But it’s not always so simple. So, in order to understand how an electric scooter works, you must know what components are used in an e-Scooter. 

The main components of an Electric Scooter are:

Battery

How do e-Scooters work

Though most may think that the heart of an e-Scooter is the motor, the larger the motor the faster you can go. But that’s not entirely true, in fact the most important component in any e-Scooter is the battery unit.  

The advances in battery technology have made it possible to use larger capacity batteries on electric scooters.

  • New age batteries are compact and powerful making them easier to fit on a small frame. These rechargeable batteries are an efficient source of power and actually enhances your overall riding experience.
  • Batteries are measured in Watt-hours or Wh, any budget scooter would have a capacity range of about 250Wh whereas top end electric scooters would have capacities of around 3000Wh.
  • High-Quality batteries of today can give you a riding range of about 12-15 miles on a single charge while also being seamlessly integrated into the design of the e-Scooter and not hindering your ability to ride properly.

Motor

How do e-Scooters work

Second in command, the motors on an electric scooter are built into the wheels making them hub motors. Some models of e-Scooters come with one hub motor while some have motors in both wheels.

The motors are brush-less direct current (BLDC) motors that are rated based on their power consumption by the expression ‘Watts ’. 

Think of it like this, greater wattage means it’s an extremely powerful motor that is capable of achieving higher speeds.

Motors and e-Scooters are available in three difference performance variants, 

  • You have the average or low-end electric scooters running on a 250-300 watt motor,
  • Intermediate or mid-range electric scooters will have a 500-600 watt motor
  • And the extremely high-performance scooters will use high powered dual 1200W motors.

Motherboard

How do e-Scooters work

A motherboard on an electric scooter is a unit that sends power to your motor based on your throttle input. These small and compact devices are hidden within the frame of the e-Scooter and basically help control the flow of current from the battery to your motor and other electrical components.

The motherboard aka motor controller looks like a small block of steel with numerous wires protruding from its side. The metal used acts as a heat sink so it does not overheat.

  • A speed controller will be hooked up to the battery and other components such as the brakes and throttle. 
  • Upon receiving electronic signals from either the throttle or the brakes, it controls and limits the amount of current flowing to the motor. 
  • The faster you want to travel, the more current is sent through and if you’re applying your brakes, the e-Scooter slows down and current flow is then cut off.

These small devices are rated based on the voltage and current they are capable of regulating. High powered e-Scooters will have higher voltage and current ratings while low powered e-Scooters come with speed controllers that have lower voltage and current ratings.

Brakes

How do e-Scooters work

There are two primary types of braking systems on an electric scooter, the disc system and the drum system. Both rely on friction to stop the e-Scooter and are shaped quite differently. There are other braking systems available but are not so reliable.

  • The drum braking system is such where the brake shoes remain stagnant while the drum itself rotates along with the wheel.
  • When it comes to the disc braking system, the disc plate rotates along with the wheel and can be stopped when the pads that are situated on either side of the disc plate come in contact with it.

The manual braking system can be activated on the handle bar by holding the lever inward, similar to any bike or eBike out there. 

There are some electric scooters which come with an e-braking system which rely on the motor to slow down. These brakes need not be periodically serviced or adjusted as they’re electrical.

Truth be told, manual braking is the best way to go as they offer much stronger braking capabilities than an electrical system.

Tires and Wheels

How do e-Scooters work

Tires used on electric scooters are meant to give you traction while accelerating and slowing down in any emergency. Some scooters use airless tires while others use pneumatic ones. 

Pneumatic tires are filled with air and improve the overall quality of your ride. These can be used on e-Scooters with or without suspensions,  they are made from a supple rubber material allowing them to perform quite well in adverse conditions.

The wheels on an e-Scooter are an important part of how fast you can go and how stable your ride truly is. A large 10” wheel base with rubber pneumatic tires can give you more cushioning with lesser vibration and can help you achieve greater speeds as compared to an electric scooter with a smaller wheelbase and tires.

Frame

How do e-Scooters work

The frame of your e-Scooter can determine the total weight you can carry, if it’s sturdy enough to house new components and receive upgrades.

This skeleton is normally made from different lightweight materials such as aluminum and stainless steel making them durable and easy to carry. The frame on most e-Scooters are fold-able and can be packed and transported anywhere you like in a convenient manner. 

Some models of e-Scooters come with a raised seat while there are some designed for people with reduced mobility. 

Basically they come in all shapes and sizes, each designed to target a specific group of people. 

It is the frame that houses the battery pack, motherboard, the wheels with hub motors are connected to the frame of the e-Scooter making it the most crucial piece of the whole puzzle.

Conclusion

Electric Scooters or e-Scooters are the next best thing for an easier commute. Using an electric scooter has always been fun and now that you know how they work, keeping their important components safe is going to be your number one priority.

There’s always a thrill when there’s more power involved. 

Riding your e-Scooter must always be done in a precautionary manner so as not to get involved in an accident. Make sure you have a set of tools to help tackle any issue which may arise while riding your e-Scooter.

Can you ride an e-Scooter without power?

Yes, you can but it’s not recommended. Since the new models of electric scooters run solely on electricity, you would end up damaging your e-Scooter or hurt yourself in the process if you use it without power.

How do e-Scooters charge?

Charging an e-Scooter is pretty straight-forward. Plug in the battery to any standard power outlet using the charging cable which comes with the electric scooter. If your scooter permits, you can take out the battery and charge just the battery indoors.

How long do electric scooter batteries last?

Electric Scooter batteries are made to be durable and long lasting, they can range anywhere between 2-4 years or up to 5000 miles without needing a change. There are a few factors which can influence the life of a battery pack such as; distance covered, storage mechanism, capacity of the battery and the conditions under which it was used.

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Why You Should Get An eBike

I have always been a motorcycle enthusiast who preferred the weekend cycle run. Little did I know at the time that I would be giving up my motorbike and cycle for a more economical and environment friendly mode of transport. 

All it took was one day on an eBike to show me another side of life that i had never explored. Two years down the line I’m happy with my eBike and have no regrets.

Let me tell you what changed my mind and why it is a good idea for you to get into the whole eBiking scene.

Why You Should Get An eBike

To own an eBike with a pandemic looming over our heads is a great way to feel safe and secure, creating your own little bubble everywhere you go. It beats closed off modes of transportation such as subway services, buses, trams and cars.

Owning an electric bike lets you feel younger, visit new places and take trips on a budget with ease. 

Here are some of the reasons why joining the eBike revolution is beneficial to you in the long run.

Riding an eBike is Fun

Why you Should get an eBike

Who said you have to be young to have fun? eBikes are meant for everyone and the best part is that they are so lightweight and smooth to ride that they can be fun most of the time.

Electric bikes are fun to use modes of transportation as compared to driving a car or sitting in a bus. 

With eBikes you get out more often, you’re able to feel the wind blowing through your hair, the thrill of riding fast and being able to get your heart racing with a broad grin across your face are a few of the things that make owning an eBike a great idea.

The main factor behind why riding an eBike is so much fun as compared to riding a traditional cycle is the fact that you have a feature called pedal assist that converts your regular cycling experience into a full blown biking one with the help of the hub motor. 

You Get to Workout on your eBike

Why you Should get an eBike

Not as much as you would on a normal cycle but so much more than sitting on a bus or taking a cab. Riding an eBike is the solution to all those times you regretted not going to the gym because you were stuck at work or you simply didn’t have time.

Replacing the ways you normally commute with an electric bike will give you the assurance that you’re  at least going to get ‘some’ workout done even if you’re not hitting the gym.

Riding an eBike lets you burn anywhere between 280-350 calories making it the perfect addition in enhancing your healthy lifestyle.

One great workout that you can try with an eBike is to ride uphill without any throttle assistance and then on the way back home make use of the throttle assist and ride freely.

Cuts your Expenses / Saves you some Money

Why you Should get an eBike

Buying an electric bike is not cheap, the good ones are retailed between $1000 – $2500 while there are some which are priced at a higher rate because they’re simply jaw-dropping. 

Practically speaking, owning an electric bike resolves all your financial worries if you play your cards right. 

  • Owning a car comes with hidden costs like insurance renewal, parking charges, service costs, change of parts, new tires, speeding tickets and so many more.
  • The money you end up spending on a regular basis for your electric bike would be just a few cents worth of electricity to recharge your batteries and maybe the occasional service or change of battery. 
  • You save on fuel expenses if you own a car or motorcycle so using an eBike helps save you an easy $500+ per month on these miscellaneous expenses.
  • The amount you spend to service your eBike is only a fraction of what you’d spend quarterly on your car or bike service. This is because there are less parts to work on in an eBike and takes lesser time to have one serviced.

eBikes are a Fast and Flexible Means of Transportation

Why you Should get an eBike

The technology that’s used in electric bikes is what gives you the ability to cover vast distances with little effort. The powerful high capacity battery coupled with a high performance hub motor and a throttle system can get you traveling at speeds of up to 20 miles per hour.

Owning an eBike gives you access to bike routes laid up across cities, this lets you evade the rush hour traffic and get to work earlier than you could have.

They’re flexible to use and can be switched from Manual to Throttle mode with the twist of your wrist.

With an electric bike you can fold it up and carry it with you on your trips. This unique ability to take your eBike anywhere is what makes it a great choice as compared to a regular bicycle or a bike.

Electric Bikes are Environmentally Friendly

Why you Should get an eBike

Two global issues that can blow out of proportion if we don’t play our part correctly are Global Warming and Climate change. Owning an eBike and using it in place of cars and motorcycles for your daily commute can help the earth heal itself on the long run.

eBikes consume less energy and do not rely on fossil fuels to run. However, they do emit small amounts of CO2 on a daily basis which is still a fraction of what is emitted by cars or motorcycles.

They are the most environment friendly electric vehicle in the market and this is because of the small quantities of rare earth elements used to manufacture the battery. Apart from that and the fact that batteries and tires have to be maintained, eBikes are much safer to own and use than conventional modes of transportation.

eBikes Come with a Variety of Designs

Why you Should get an eBike

With technology advancing at the rate that it is, anything is possible. As electric bike companies grow, they tend to produce a variety of designs to accommodate everyone’s needs

eBikes are available in all sizes, high and low seating arrangement, fat and thin tires, step-through or standard bike frame, range of motor sizes and battery capacities covering a wide range of personal requirements. 

However, if none of the eBike variants appeal to you, then rest assured that somewhere down the line there will be one made to suit your needs.

eBikes Come with Removable Battery Cases

Why you Should get an eBike

Charging an eBike has never been easier. Most come with removable battery packs you can unplug and carry in-doors to be recharged. 

What makes this a compelling feature is that you can charge your battery from the comfort of your office so that you’ll have a fully charged battery to use on the way back. 

Even in the case of overnight charging, simply detach the battery case at home and plug it in to charge, when you wake up you will have a fully charged battery at your disposal.

Owning an eBike with a removable battery pack can be the most convenient thing ever. You get to charge your battery anywhere and won’t have to worry about the battery getting damaged in the rain or someone robbing the battery from your eBike.

Owning an Electric Bike saves Storage Space

Why you Should get an eBike

eBikes are compact modes of transport and are not extremely heavy to carry.  For city dwellers storage is not always an option especially if you’re living in a flat. 

Unlike a motorcycle or regular cycle, eBikes can actually be folded and stored without occupying too much space. With this fold-able feature you won’t have to worry about your eBike getting stolen from the street-side and carrying it around with you is easier, be it by car or on the subway.

Fold-able eBikes have always been an adventurers favorite since they can be moved and stored easily in a bag. This makes it easier to have your eBike shipped to other places without having to pay higher amounts for the shipping.

eBikes are Great for Climbing Hills

Have you ever taken your cycle on a trip to a hilltop only to struggle while climbing to the top? With an eBike that is no longer a concern.

Usually equipped with a range of power modes to tackle any situation, eBikes can make your uphill ride a breeze. Twisting the throttle will kick the hub motor into automatic mode, giving you that extra push you need.

Most mountain bikers prefer using an eBike because it allows them to spend less time on the climb and more time navigating the descent (the fun part of mountain biking).

Cons of buying an eBike

Though buying an eBike is a great investment in the long run for a variety of reasons, they do have one or two negative sides to buying one.

  • eBikes are not cheap, as i mentioned before they range from $1000 to well over $2500. Though they don’t require you to spend money every time you use them, they still cost a lot of money.
  • Storing an eBike in a room for a long period of time like over the winter would require you to look after controlling the climate of the room so the metallic components do not rust. 
  • Buying an eBike is not for everyone as some states have laws in place to regulate the use of electric bikes, where you’d have to have a valid license, wear all the required protective gear and follow a designated set of rules.
  • eBike batteries are not always reliable, the more they’re used and recharged the faster they will have to be replaced. 

Conclusion

Getting an eBike is beneficial to users both young and old. I think that with more people getting into using eBikes on a daily basis, we’re sure to live long and healthy lives. 

They’re fun to use, great for a workout on the side and are environment friendly. While using an eBike however, make sure you always stay protected and stay in the designated bike lanes, there are many out there who ride with no care in the world. Your life is precious, make it last.

Do Electric Bikes make Cycling easier?

eBikes do make cycling easier, it’s more convenient and less effort is used. Pedal assist and Full Throttle modes can assist with your ride in case you’re tired or have issues with your knees.

Can we ride an eBike without a Battery?

Yes. At times when you need to charge your battery but also have to step out to the grocery store all you will need to do is unplug the battery from the cycle and pedal away to the grocery store.

Can we ride an eBike in the rain?

Yes. Electric bikes have been designed to have water-resistant wiring and can tolerate rain. You can ride the eBike in the rain but there’s only one thing you must remember if you do so. You must wipe the bike dry. There are metallic components that may rust if they’re left damp or wet.

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What to Look for in an Electric Bike

eBikes or Electric bikes have been around for a while now and by the looks of it they’re here to stay. Most of us have faced a tough time while searching for a good eBike and this happens to the best of us mainly because there are so many models and variants out there. The only question that keeps popping up is, what to look for in an electric bike?

Yes, that’s actually a really good question. eBikes are designed for everyone and not one one special class of people. They can be used on a daily basis to commute to work and back or to the grocery store and back or with some models they can be used on dirt tracks making them ideal for adventurers.

If only it was easy to pick one eBike. Sigh.

Let’s get into what we have to look for while buying an electric bike.

Why are eBikes so popular?

Electric bikes are essentially regular bikes that are convenient and easier to ride. As they come equipped with hub motors to help ease your ride, they have been sought after by not only avid cyclists but also those who need some assistance when commuting or traveling with any sort of baggage. 

With no CO2 emissions and a zero percent carbon footprint, eBikes are considered a blessing for the environment..

What to Look for in an Electric Bike?

If you’re in the market for an electric bike you may get with mind-boggled with the number of eBike options available in the market. As too many people find owning a car cumbersome and expensive, other modes of transport like electric bikes have become super popular.

I remember when it was just 5-10 companies to choose from but now there are hundreds of companies manufacturing electric bikes with different features, sizes, capabilities and these eBikes come with various offers, warranty plans and service options to choose from making it a task to pick the one that suits your needs.

While looking for your ideal electric bike it’s best to check the following:

Consider your Personal Needs

What to Look for in an Electric Bike

Electric bikes have been created for different purposes, so before you pick up your eBike it’s best to search for something that is designed for your needs. 

  • If you’re looking at step-through framed bikes to add comfort to your ride then companies like Aventon Electric and Linus have some good options ready. 
  • If you’re keen on something to tackle off-roads and designed for hill climbing then you can check out Raleigh motors or Haibike models. 

Things like distance you’d be covering and if you’re using the electric bike for carrying loads and other factors play a crucial role in determining the right electric bike for you.

Choosing the Right eBike Retailer

Choosing the Right eBike Retailer

Picking the right retailer or manufacturer is a very important point to always remember. Ultimately your judgement should be based on the following

  • The staff should be approachable and friendly. Have any and all questions answered by them to make sure they know their product and it’s a reliable place. 
  • Make it a point to check the quality of  the materials used. The better the quality of the product, the longer  it’ll last. Sellers have to be dedicated to the cause to be considered reliable and by cause I’m simply referring to being in it for the right reason and not to make a quick buck.

Retailers provide additional benefits such as an extended warranty or a pair of riding gloves and sometimes even overall cash discounts on their electric bikes. 

Make it a point to thoroughly review the company you’re planning on buying from.

Understand the Warranty Offered on Electric Bikes

Understand the Warranty Offered on Electric Bikes

While buying an electric bike you should keep in mind that it’s a big investment regardless of how much you paid for it. The only way this investment of yours can be deemed “worth it” is when you have a good warranty in place.

Warranties that are offered in the market range from manufacturer to manufacturer and they’re not always the same. 

A standard warranty on your everyday eBike would be for a year from the sale date and would normally cover all components including the battery.

However, a good warranty would be one that lasts for at least 2 years with no exclusion on everyday use and one that would cover everything from parts of the eBike to the hub motor and battery.

What Powers the Electric Bike

What powers the electric bike

Electric bikes are powered by hub motors at the most that come with different wattage and rpm. Choosing the power output of the electric motor is an important thing to keep in mind. We have hub motors that range from 250W to 900W, so there is a range out there. It all depends on what you’re buying the electric bike for.

To know the functioning of the electric bike you’re about to purchase is another key to getting what you actually want. Electric bikes come with 3 basic modes for everyday use:

  • You have the Pedal mode where you’re the one working your way around.
  • Then there’s the Pedal assist mode where you can pedal or throttle depending on what you’re looking for.
  • Finally there’s the Electric only or Throttle mode where you will not have to pedal and the twist of the throttle is all that’ll be required to get you moving.

Always make sure you know what kind of throttle system is on the bike and if it comes in a hybrid variation before making your final decision.

Check the Voltage and Battery Capacity of the eBike

What to Look for in an Electric Bike

The heart of the electric bike is the battery unit and it’s capabilities. A good electric bike has a more compact battery with greater power output and these are best because they reduce the overall weight of the electric bike.

  • It’s good to check the voltage of the battery as each type of battery is designed to be used differently. An electric bike running on a 24 volts battery is best suited for flat surfaces like open roads or tracks whereas a larger 48 -72 volts battery will be used for extreme climbing and off-roading or while covering longer distances.
  • While comparing the voltage make sure to keep an eye on the battery capacity as well.  The capacity of the battery is determined in Amp hours and would be represented as AH next to the reading. 

For example if you are interested in two options where one bike has the battery voltage and capacity of 480 Watt hours while the second electric bike has a capacity of 144Watt hours, go for the first one as it will last longer while the second bike with lowered battery capacity will last for a fraction of the time.

Each battery or in some cases battery packs would have unique capacities and this plays a crucial role in determining how far you can travel on that electric bike.

Total Weight the eBike can Support

What to Look for in an Electric Bike

While buying an electric bike you’re going to want to take it out either on a trip or to the grocery store to buy some veggies and it’s not going to look good if you’re unable to carry all your belongings on your electric bike.

Buying an electric bike that can support you weight and extra weight for any reason can prove beneficial in the long run.

  • Since electric bikes are built in the similar fashion as regular bicycles hence their overall max weight load would be roughly the same. Most electric bikes in the market have a maximum load capacity of 300lbs but this is generally 50-75 lbs lesser than the electric bike can actually hold. 

Not to say we’re going to carry anything that heavy on our eBikes but it’s good to know that they’re built to be sturdy and carry us around.

Reviews and Videos of the Bikes Performance 

At times when the product seems too good to be true it’s because it probably isn’t. Going through past reviews or performance videos of the products you’re keen on buying can actually help a great deal. 

Figuring out what others have experienced in the real world is a great way to understand once and for all if that electric bike is meant for you or not.

Keeping all these pointers in mind while searching for an electric bike to buy will surely help you decide on what you truly want. There are electric bikes out there for everyone to enjoy and not only are they beneficial to our overall health, they also help reduce pollution levels across cities.

Conclusion

Always buy an electric bike that has their battery capacity and details of the electric bike are listed. Never go for something that does not have its specs highlighted or are too basic. 

An electric bike is always going to be considered an investment as it helps save a lot of money on the long run. The regular maintenance and service are all you’ll need to keep your bad boy on the road. 

Make it a point to remember the major differentiators such as power, price range, battery capacity, motor type and max weight supported before jumping into something you may regret later.

On that note. Happy electric bike hunting.

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Why You Should Never Buy A New Car

Over the last few months, I have been looking to buy a sparingly used car to get me from A to B with no hassle. Being a motorcycle enthusiast, normally I would not have the desire to buy a car but with the sudden shifts in weather patterns, I decided that maybe it was high time I did.

During my search I happened to come across a few ads for some of the latest cars in the market and what caught my eye was the financing promotion on all of them from different agencies and banks. This made me realize that it’s safer and much cheaper to buy a used car for half the price sans the latest features and be happy with it.

Let me take you through the reasons why you should never buy a new car and why opting for a used car is the green way to go.

  • Buying a New Car Costs More on The Long Run
  • Value for New Cars Depreciate Faster
  • Pay More Taxes and Registration Fees for New Cars
  • Expect to Pay Higher Insurance Premiums 
  • New Cars Can Lead to Thefts
  • It is a Constant Expense Rather Than an Investment
  • Buying A New Car Can Have Adverse Effects On The Environment

Why You Should Never Buy A New Car

Buying a brand new car should not be on your agenda, neither now or anytime in the future. Though it does have it’s own advantages and disadvantages, making a wise choice can save you some money on the long run. 

Let’s go over the major reasons why investing in a new car is a bad idea.

Buying a New Car Costs More on The Long Run

why buying a new car is a bad idea

People have been talking about how buying a new car makes financial sense, but this is truly not the case. Buying a new car is not always about that initial payment you make at the dealership before picking the car up. No, it actually includes a lot more such as dealership fees and regular maintenance. 

Getting a new car depends on your ability to pay for it. Without the right financial backing and planning, a new car can lead to numerous financial problems in the long run, that’s if you’re not earning a 6 figure salary.

For Example: A brand new Toyota Highlander 4WD costs $34,810 for the 17.9 gallon model, a used Highlander that is slightly older but in pristine condition is available for $9,999, nearly 3.4 times cheaper than the latest model.

While opting for the used car, you won’t have to pay more to have it registered or buy a longer insurance premium. The only factor to consider here on out is maintenance and renewal of the insurance on a regular basis. 

Value for New Cars Depreciate Faster

disadvantages of buying a new car

A car’s value depreciates as soon as it’s driven away from the dealership, sedans and high-end electric cars lose their value at a faster rate when compared to SUVs and pick-up trucks. The value of a car depreciates over time and the older it gets, the more value is lost. 

To calculate the average depreciation of your new car, you’d have to keep the following in mind.

  • Make and Model: The primary reason why SUVs and sports cars have the lowest depreciation value is because of their usability and the desire to own one. Sedans and eCars on the other hand lose their value at a faster pace because they’re not sought after and would cost more to own one.
  • Mileage: The more distance the car has covered, the less value it carries. Once you buy a new car you’re bound to take it for a spin and cover as many miles as you can in the first week. The drawback here is that the more you travel in  your new car, the more likely it is to end up selling for an extremely cheap price. 
  • Condition: Cars in a bad condition will cost less than those being sold in pristine condition. This is a fact with any used item, even cars for that matter. A new car normally does not have even a single dent or scratch, but even a single scratch or dent to the fender can result in a significant loss to the resale value of the car.

This has proven that buying a new car is not always a wise choice in today’s world.

Pay More Taxes and Registration Fees for New Cars

Since most states in the U.S have sales taxes and registration fees that are collected on every car purchase, it has been recorded that we pay nearly twice as much on sale’s tax and registration fee for a new car as compared to an older used car. 

Since we’re talking about the Toyota Highlander let’s see what it all comes up to.

  • The Sales Tax of California for a new Toyota Highlander bought in the year 2020 comes up to $3,307 while the Registration fee is $435. 
Why You Should Never Buy A New Car

Now compare that to the Sales tax and registration fee for a used Highlander form the year 2009.

  • Sales tax on a used Toyota Highlander from 2009 comes up to $1,045 while the Registration fee is $30.
Why You Should Never Buy A New Car

These numbers are significantly different from each other simply because the overall value for the car has dropped from the time of purchase.

Expect to Pay Higher Insurance Premiums

You can expect higher insurance premiums while buying a new car as compared to an older used car. The rates will depend on the kind of insurance provider you pick along with the state the car is registered in, the age and price of the car. 

  • New cars have higher rates because their retail value is greater, used cars are overall cheaper and have lower insurance premiums.
  • For a new 2020 Toyota Highlander monthly insurance premiums would lie in around $115 to $180 depending on the insurance provider.
    • National General – $180.00
    • Infinity – $156.00
    • SafeAuto – $119.00
  • On the other hand, for a used 2009 Toyota Highlander the monthly premiums range anywhere between $50 to $100 based on the provider.
    • National General – $91.00
    • Kemper – $88.00
    • Infinity – $55.00

New Cars Can Lead to Thefts

Though not all cars get broken into, it’s safer to have an older used car as they are not what thieves normally break into. This can depend on the condition of your car as well. 

There is a list of cars models that are frequently stolen the most and the numbers are shocking. Reading this piece has made me skeptical about buying a new car.

The newer the model, the more features and updated parts are included, this is a beacon for thieves to break into or even steal the whole car.

It Is A Constant Expense Rather Than An Investment

Without realizing you would end up paying a lot more over the course of a couple of years with a new car than you would if you had to choose a used car. 

This happens in the form of a domino effect; 

  • If you bought a new car by applying for a loan then you’re liable to pay extra to the banks in the form of interest and this carries on until the whole amount borrowed is paid back, by then you’re out a couple hundred to thousand dollars only on interest being paid to the bank.
  • Then you would be renewing your insurance premium at a higher rate than a used car
  • You will have to pay for the quarterly service and maintenance
  • If you’re in an accident and the new car is damaged pretty bad you’d have to shell out a bomb to the service center to have the parts replaced. Whereas, with a used car parts are cheaper and these can be serviced at local garages rather than the brand service center itself.

Buying A New Car Can Have Adverse Effects On The Environment

Yes, you read that right. New cars do in fact have adverse effects on the environment and this is mainly because of the number of cars on the roads already. Adding another one no matter how “Green” it may be does not help much in reducing the carbon footprint we leave behind on a daily basis. 

If everybody decides to buy either only used cars or electric vehicles then we may be able to reduce some of the damage done. New cars will only increase traffic jams, crowded parking lots, and an increase in pollution levels.

There are many factors to take into consideration before purchasing a new or used car. In general, cars in the broad sense (from manufacturing plants to drivers on the road) are one of the primary causes for our current levels of air pollution and greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Fuel demand greatly increases when there are more cars on the road. 

All-in-All owning a car is not the smartest thing to do.

Pros And Cons Of Owning A New Car And A Used Car

Each has its own pros and cons making it best not to get into this topic and stick to something more ideal for our current situation, a good eBike or a new electric car.

Pros of buying a new car:

  • Warranty from the manufacturer covering damages or faulty parts over a certain period of years.
  • You’re the first owner of the car making it “Your Baby”
  • Financing rates available are reasonably low and easy to manage.

Cons of buying a new car:

  • Much more expensive than a used car 
  • Depreciation in value starts from day 1 of owning the new car
  • High state tax rates and registration fees

Pros of buying a used car:

  • Cheaper than a new car by almost 40-45%
  • Depreciation in value is not significant from the date of purchase to the date of sale
  • State taxes and Insurance premiums are much lower than a new car
  • User reviews and past owner details will be available about the specific model

Cons of buying a used car:

  • Unknown usage history, number of accidents or mechanical issues
  • Financing rates on used cars are greater than new cars
  • Used car dealers markup their prices to get a profit on every car sold

Conclusion

I’m not telling you not to go ahead and buy a new car, that is solely up to you and if you’re able to handle the commitment. It just makes more sense to either buy a used car or ultimately choose another form of transportation if you plan on saving some money. 

With the rate at which cars are being pushed off the production line our world will soon be overrun by cars. 

I hope I have been able to convince you on why you should never buy a new car because according to me it’s simply the most ridiculous thing anyone can do.

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