If you are of a particular age, you probably enjoyed strolling the neighborhood with either an easily carried skateboard, bicycle, or your two-wheeled scooter. These human-powered alternatives to transportation solely propelled and steered wholly by the feet of a rider. Though lightweight and pleasurable activity., It often requires the use of core muscles and can easily wear out its user. The concept of a portable, mobile transport vehicle that can quickly take a person a few miles has taken form in dockless electric bikes and scooters. These battery-powered, eco-friendly personal transporters have features better than your regular bicycle and will be the transportation of the future.
As urban populations continuously rise, cities seek to ease transport-related problems of congestion, air pollution, noise, and traffic injuries. Urban transport planners welcomed electric scooters as an affordable solution for traffic reduction and ease of access in busy streets.
The demand for these electric scooters increased over the years. Several companies, such as Bird, LimeBike, and Spin, are offering rentable services for electric scooters. It’s an immensely popular business with people taking advantage of this portable alternative as a means of easy navigation through congested city streets.
Let’s take a peek at where e-scooters are today, from how they offered portable functionality to city-dwellers and how it promoted a sustainable and environment-friendly form of urban transportation that reduces traffic congestion.
2018: The Year of Electric Bikes and Scooters
The world is a fast-paced place where people are always on-the-go and busy with their everyday lives. With issues like climate change, people are more environmentally-conscious and are looking for alternative means of replacing conventional engines with emission-free vehicles.
Experience demonstrates that people are likely to purchase a product tailored and relevant to them. Electric scooters will help riders save money and arrive at the office avoiding endless traffic. Also, it will satisfy environmentalists with its optimization of swappable batteries, and a promising feature of 100% eco-friendly charging.
It’s the best option for college students on campus, young professionals, tourists who want to enjoy their holiday, and even people who just want to satisfy their curiosity towards this savvy technological innovation.
The Anatomy of an Electric Scooter
Electric bikes and scooters have a handful of parts but in their simplest form, it consists of a narrow platform, handlebars, hand brakes, two wheels, and front and rear suspensions. Newer generation models will have flexible features such as foldable handlebars, others will have on-board computer displays, and some models also include a seat.
The first step begins with learning and getting an understanding of the basics regarding battery-powered electric scooters, then determining what you need, and what you can afford. Electric Scooters are available in varying sizes and features designed to fit the owner. Choosing the correct electric scooter will offer more comfort, ease of use, and improve ride quality.
Choosing the Best Batteries suited for your Electric Scooter
Your electric scooter will contain 1 of the 3 main battery types. It could either be Nickel Metal Hydride, Lead-Acid, or Lithium-ion batteries. Each type has its own advantages and disadvantages. It’s important to choose a quality battery as it contributes to a longer life expectancy for your electric scooter.
Nickel Metal Hydride Batteries (NiMH)
NiMH batteries lie in the middle ground between the conventional lead-acid and the newer Lithium-ion. This type of battery is lighter than lead-acid but not as comparable to the incredibly lightweight Lithium-ion. They are specifically made for each type of scooter and you may experience difficulties in finding a battery replacement. NiMH batteries hold a longer charge and are cost-conscience alternatives to the pricey Lithium-ion.
Electric scooters usually have Lead-Acid as the default battery type. Lead-Acid Batteries are a reasonably-priced alternative as opposed to expensive NiMH and Lithium-ion Batteries. They have been around for more than a century and are the preferred type for automobiles and golf carts. Its affordability is attributed to its heavier weight and often require regular maintenance. They last only for shorter periods, especially when treated harshly.
Newer models of electric scooters often come with lithium-ion batteries. In contrast to lead-acid or NiMH, Lithium-ion Batteries can last up to 1000-3000 charging cycles with a longer lifespan of 3-5 years. Also, it delivers a strong and impressive mileage between 20 to 50 miles per hour. The only disadvantage is the very high cost of Lithium-ion Batteries. Though expensive, it offers better quality and does not require regular maintenance.
The Capacities of an Electric Scooter
Manufacturers intend to produce portable electric scooters without compromising its overall performance. With its miniature build, the size of the onboard battery is closely similar to a cable box. Depending on your battery type, it naturally affects the capacity, range, and speed of your electric scooter.
The ideal set of circumstances is a prerequisite to fully experience the capacities of an electric scooter. The definition is a 165 lb rider traversing through a smooth flat surface. Though most e-scooters can max out at 20mph, rideshare scooters can only travel as much as 15mph. An electric scooter easily navigates you to your desired destination comfortably, but at a slower pace. This may be a strategic feature as anything faster is more likely to result in accidents and injuries.
There is a multitude of factors that can contribute to an electric scooter’s overall performance. Depending on its user, the internal parts are modifiable to fit the rider’s comfort and preference.
Safety for Riders and Pedestrians
The public received e-scooters with both enthusiasm and skepticism, as cities struggled with issues of irresponsible riding, cluttering, and vandalism. The primary safety issue with scooters is when they are left strewn across sidewalks and pavements causing crowding issues with pedestrians.
Another primary safety concern revolves around the use of protective gear. Though slow-paced, road accidents are still inevitable. A set of safety gears consisting of a helmet, gloves, rider’s jacket, knee pads, elbow pads, anti-slippery shoes will protect the scooter rider. Even when just traveling around your local vicinity, it is important to gear up safely.
With people in constant search for something both trendy and comfortable, electric bikes and scooters are an attractive addition to the transportation matrix. It offers both allurement as a toy that relieves stress and as a potential vehicle for commuting in un-walkable cities.
Regardless of circumstances, following road regulations is key to safety. Wearing a helmet whether traversing across public roads or in your local neighborhood, serves as a preventive measure to protect an individual from injuries.