Electric Bicycles: Twelve Reasons for NOT Getting an Electric Bike.
Reason 5: Electric Bicycles Have a Limited Range.
Well, this one is OBVIOUSLY true – but HOW TRUE is it?
Pushbikes have a limited range –
the cyclist gets tired and needs to rest, eat and sleep.
Cars and Motorbikes have a limited range – you eventually run out of petrol.
I guess, the difference is that when your car runs out of petrol – there is a refilling station nearby and it takes you a couple of minutes (and a lot of money)
to refill – and off you go again!
The fear is that when you run out of battery
juice on your “monsterously heavy” Electric Bicycle, in the middle of a hilly nowhere – you may well die of heat exhaustion and tiredness before you manage to push it all the way home.
Let’s say – that you need 4-6 hours to recharge the battery in an Electric Bike. That usually means overnight or when you are busy at School or work.
For me, the most that I need to commute in a day on my bike – on a busy day – is 5 miles to school, 5 miles back and an extra five miles roundtrip to visit one of
my buddies. All of this in a fairly hilly district.
So, can a Pedelec Electric Bicycle cope with a worst case (for me) of 15 miles in a day between charges – let’s not forget the hills – and let’s make that
the equivalent of a 25 mile range.
What I have figured out is
that as long as:
- I use a Lithium-ion battery for superior power output
- Put in at least half of my power through pedal power
- Given that an electric bicycle consumes 10 - 20 watt/hours per mile - a battery with a power output of at least 250Wh (the Giant Twist runs for more than
20 miles on a 156Wh battery, and the faster Ezee Sprint more than 25 miles on a 324Wh battery)
Then a lot of Electric Bicycles
on the market should easily make 20 miles between charges (even in my neighbourhood). But, aiming for the 25 miles shown above – I just have to say that I need to test it and
see for myself.
Theoretically, an Electric Bicycle that has a battery with a high power output should be able to cover the 25 miles (it’s actually 15 miles – but I’m allowing for lots
of hills) between charges that I am looking for. The thing is – I’m looking forward to getting my mitts on one and trying it out!
So, yeah - Electric Bicycles DO HAVE A LIMITED RANGE - but my needs seem to work INSIDE THOSE LIMITS.
Now, what was the next reason NOT to get a Electric bicycle?
Go to Reason Number 6: There Are Always Problems With Batteries in Electric Bikes.
Go Back to Reason Number 4: Electric Bicycles are Bad on Hills.
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