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How far can e-bikes go? All about e-bike ranges

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How far can
e-bikes go?
All about e-bike ranges

The distance an e-bike goes on one charge defines its range, which is one of the topics on e-bikes which arouses the most interest. The truth is there are various aspects affecting an e-bike’s range. The lesser known fact is that most of these factors are related to how you ride your e-bike, rather than the qualifications of your e-bike. So, how far can e-bikes go?

The e-bikes with the highest range in the market usually make use of 3kW batteries and can go 220-250 miles on one charge, while standard e-bikes making use of 400-500W batteries can reach 60-75 miles per charge. When it comes to simple, city e-bikes, they can reach a lower range of 30-37 miles.

The range of an e-bike is affected by its battery since it determines the number of hours you can ride. The range is also affected a lot by environmental factors. You’ll learn more about it as you continue reading.

Not all e-bikes are designed the same

Different types of e-bikes have their own specific purposes. Fat tire e-bikes are made to conquer terrains covered with mud, sand or snow, city e-bikes with thin tires are used for providing balance and speed in crowded, congested city traffic. City e-bikes weigh less than the other models, therefore they are the ones with the highest range. A city e-bike can go as far as 30 miles on a crowded day and 50 miles on an open road with less stops and starts. The same e-bike would do only 15 miles on the harsh terrains of a mountain.

And not surprisingly, the speed of drainage of the battery increases with the speed of the e-bike and the hardness level of the terrain.

Here’s what determines how far your e-bike can go

Generally, the distance each e-bike can go on a single charge is shown on the box of the e-bike. But keep in mind not to take it as a certain number since there are a lot of factors affecting the range of an e-bike.

Here we listed the factors that determine an e-bike’s range:

  • The speed of your e-bike;
  • The assistance level you are making use of (if any);
  • The hardness level of your pedaling;
  • You weight and any extra weights you are carrying;
  • The count and frequency of stops and starts;
  • The geographical factors: whether you are riding uphill or on a flat terrain;
  • The weather conditions;
  • The tire’s pressure of your e-bike;
  • The weight of your e-bike motor;
  • The weight and type of the battery of your e-bike.

As you see, most of these factors have very little to do with your e-bike. But of course to make the most out of your e-bike’s range as much as you can, you should also take the features of your e-bike as well.

Battery capacity

Although the capacity of the battery is indicated in amp-hrs, to understand the range of e-bikes you should turn eyes on watt-hrs, which is voltage multiplied by capacity. The capacity (amperage) of the battery tells how far your e-bike can go, while the voltage indicates its power. Watts, voltage multiplied by capacity, gives the number of kilometers your e-bike can ride in one hour per single charge.

Let’s put it into an example. An e-bike with 6Ah and 24V (144 watts-hs) would not be able to go as far as an e-bike with 20Ah and 24V (480 watts-hs) on difficult terrains.

How to make the most out of your electric bike’s range?

There are some tips to follow to take the full advantage of your e-bikes range. First, be as light as you can be, if you won’t have enough time to recharge between stops. Remember, the heavier weight your e-bike will be carrying, the more energy your battery will spend. Secondly, don’t use the maximum assistance level all day long since it will drain the battery, especially in case there are uphills on your route. Use the maximum assistance level when it’s really required.

Since you can’t (and shouldn’t!) avoid stops and starts as you ride in a city traffic, there is not much that you can do about it. Just know that everytime you start again, it will take energy to regain the speed which drops to zero as you stop.

Learn from external conditions

As much as we write the tips to help you make the most of your e-bike’s range, you will get to learn as you ride in different conditions. Just experience it. Notice the difference between the days the battery of your e-bike drops to half faster or slower. Notice the environmental conditions and the level of assistance you used on those days.

In case your e-bike is built for long adventures on harsh surfaces and you use it for your daily commuting needs in the city, its range will be high. On the opposite side, you can’t use a simple city e-bike all day on a single charge, if you have hills to climb or difficult terrains on your route.

What is the average range of an
e-bike?

There is no such thing as an exact range of all e-bikes. Each type of e-bike has an average range and each e-bike has its approximate range written on its box. For example, a good, mid-range e-bike of high performance would show that it has a range of 56 miles. But when evaluating this number shown on the box always take the difficulty of the terrain you’re riding on, your stopping frequency, if you are using the assistance continuously and any other extra weight your e-bike might be carrying into consideration.

And don’t force yourself to get the e-bike with the highest range. Instead of spending extra money on a feature you won’t use that often, go for a feature you can really use.

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