Electric Scooter Buying Guide
Today, travelling with a car to your place of work has become considerably troublesome. You will bustle with the traffic and sometimes you may not find a place to securely park you vehicle. Also, taking public transport doesn’t promise you a better experience. Most people agree that you will require an alternative mode of transport to commute to work or school and that’s why you need an electric scooter.
For those who don’t know what an electric scooter is, we shall briefly introduce it so that you can get an understanding of it. Basically, an electric scooter is a vehicle that resembles a bike but it is power-driven by electric energy. You don’t need oil, fuel, or use your foot to pedal as it utilizes electric power for it to function.
The best electric scooter can be used by people of different ages from youths to adults. If you plan on buying one, then you’re on the right place. Here you will find what to consider when buying an electric scooter.
What to look for when buying an electric scooter
A scooter should have a sturdy construction so that you it can beat several terrains. Electric scooters are similar to bikes in their construction and many related components. Try to buy your electric scooter from a trusted dealer to avoid buying a low quality scooter.
There are those manufacturers who use low-quality materials to make their scooters making it have a low quality look and feel. Also, battery life can be a challenge with low-cost scooters and that’s why you need to buy your scooter from reputable company. A high quality scooter will come with an original battery that is capable of giving you the much needed service. If you go for a cheap off-product electric scooter, you will need to purchase replacement parts that may not be easily available.
ii. Braking System
The braking system is another significant feature that is often overlooked while purchasing an electric scooter. If you don’t have a well designed braking structure, you can end up causing accidents and wear out the tire. The best electric scooter for kids and adults should have both rear and front disc brakes or v-brakes that have the best braking performance.
A scooter with a single brake can’t stop as fast as an electric scooter with two brakes. Therefore, we encourage that you buy an electric scooter with two breaks. Apply the front and rear brakes together in accord to stop a scooter while in a dry and clean street. If you’re cruising on a wet, sandy or dirt pavement, you can use only the rear brakes to stay away from locking up the front wheel and losing control of the scooter.
There are two types of tires; rubberized solid tires and inflated air tires.
– Rubberized solid tires
The solid rubber tires are constructed out of solid rubber that is both explosion and wear proof. The tires are solid and they don’t have the capacity to absorb shocks in bumpy and hard surfaces. There are diverse levels of hardness and softness in rubber tires and you can select one depending on your need.
– Inflated air tires
Inflated air tires are constructed out of rubber but it contains an inner tube that is usually filled with air. The tires resemble those of a bicycle or motorcycle. The inflated air tires can absorb the shocks well in any terrains. They’re made for off-roads and rough surfaces. The drawback of this type of tires is that they can explode if you ride it on thorns, glass, or nails.
It is essential that you consider the route that you will be using to ride your scooter before you make a decision. If you will be riding on a smooth surface, you can go with the solid rubber tires. However, if you want to ride on bumpy terrains or surfaces that are not level, you better select the inflated air tires with wide pneumatic tires with front and back suspension. Most of the electric scooters for adults are made of inflatable air tires that are favorable in various terrains.
The price of an electric scooter depends upon its power and features. There are various categories of electric scooters that determine its price.
a) Budget Pick (<$300)
Most scooters under 300 are only recommended for light or minimal recreational use. Mostly, the scooters at this budget price-point have low capability batteries, under-powered motors, and weak brakes. Nonetheless, there are those scooters that are excellent and functional in this class and worth taking a look at in case this is your budget range.
b) Commuter Electric Scooter
They’re divided into two price categories that include budget commuter and premium commuter.
– Budget Commuter ($300 – $600)
A scooter that cost under $600 can be categorized as budget commuters. They’re designed for travelling shorter distances, have rational range, and appropriate build quality for every day commuting. The top electric scooters are best when you’re commuting in smooth surfaces and not for steep hills. They’re light enough and can be easily folded and carried up stairs once in a while.
– Premium Commuter ($600 – $2000)
These are the premium or high quality scooters that are capable of climbing steep hills and carrying heavy adults. The scooters have bigger batteries, added suspension, and better brakes. They’re safer, comfy, and have better range as a result of the upgrades. Nonetheless, there is a tradeoff with surged size and weight that will make it harder to carry it up the stairs.
v. Weight Limits
Weight limit is a significant factor to consider when buying an electric scooter. The weight influences the general range that can cover and you need to consider that carefully. Furthermore, the heavier models will come with increased braking structure that signifies that it will take a longer time for you to stop the heavy models. However, a large or heavy sized electric scooter is stable and cannot be influenced by factors such as breezy winds that you face whilst crossing the bridge.
vi. Belt Drive or Chain Drive
Chain drive can be described as the most reliable system of the two and they last longer than the belts. Nonetheless, the chain drive is a little bit noisy whilst they’re being driven and can act to warn people that there is a person cruising on a trail or road.
Belt chain on the other hand is much quieter that chain drive. Nonetheless, the belt drive is not as dependable as the chain drive and you will need to replace it often. If you’re looking for a scooter that is strictly quiet than the belt drive is the best way to go.
vii. Fork and Frame Construction
The frame and fork construction is a significant feature when you’re selecting an electric scooter. There are those electric scooters that have fork and frame constructed using thin steel that have a history of breaking or bending under normal usage. If you’re looking for sturdy frame and fork, select one that is made of thick plate steel and tubular steel construction as they’ve been proven to be reliable and toughest.
viii. Chrome Plating Feature
All chrome isn’t equally constructed. They’re those low qualities that will commence to flake and rust off after the scooter is driven in the rain or stored in the garage for the winter. The big brand of scooters will generally have high quality chrome while the smaller brand contains inferior quality chrome. Ensure that you buy high quality scooter brands with high quality chrome.
ix. Motor Power
The motor power is the heart of the electric scooter as it drives the scooter. The different power motors have diverse power motors depending on its quality and intended use. Electric scooters for kids come with motors of up to 350 watts and they provide decent lower acceleration and speed.
An average electric scooter is about 500 watts that provide heightened speed and acceleration that can give your scooter that can help you to climb gentle slopes.
If you’re searching for a powerful electric scooter that can achieve higher speed to enable you to climb steep slopes and terrains, then you need to select an electric scooter that is within the range of 750 – 1000 watts for enhanced power.
x. Top Speed
Maximum speed is not a huge feature for most commuters as long as the electric scooter can achieve 15 mph. In fact, there are cities that have laws that prohibits going over 15mph on scooters. It is important that when you’re travelling in bike lanes or roads, 15-18 mph is quick enough. We recommend that you wear a helmet and other safety gears while travelling at those speeds.
Electric scooters should have suspension similar to an automobile. The suspension on your scooter helps to smoothes out bumps and indentations in the trail. If you’re that person who commutes in rough terrains, you should consider picking an electric scooter with suspension. They can be attached to the rear, front, or both wheels.
Just like bicycles, scooter can have a red rear light and a white front white. If you cruise in the dark, you need to have both a rear and a front rear. Also, try to add some flash red rear lights if you are going to ride at night as the rear lights are not very visible.
Before buying any electric scooter, you should think about maintenance so as to save yourself from pain in the future. There are those electric scooters that don’t have accessible replacement parts apart from sourcing from the manufacturer. We recommend that you buy an electric scooter that their maintenance or spare parts are easily accessible in the market.
The article has offered you various insights on what feature to consider when buying your electric scooter. For a good scooter, you need one that has good brakes for maximum safety while you’re cruising. Also, you should consider one with 20 mile range and weigh less than 30 lbs. It should have a pneumatic tire and motor power of 250W or more.
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