Finally shedding those training wheels and learning to ride a bike is one of the most meaningful moments for many people around the globe. Finally getting in your groove with your new ebike can bring many of the same feelings of satisfaction and elation. To help perfect each pedal, our technical support team has thrown together some questions (and answers) to ponder upon.
1. Is This Bike Legal in ____? Do I Need a License or Insurance?
Not only are ebikes legal for use on most roads and trails in the United States, but with anticipated federal changes, you may even get a tax credit to do so! On BLM-managed public lands, motorized trails and open OHV areas have been given the green light for ebikes. Other trails are accessible with permission from the local BLM office. Currently, a handful of states require a license or the ebike to be registered, according to NCSL:
Also, some states require helmets to be worn, and others recommend insurance. That said, it’s recommended that you double check your local laws to make sure that you have what it takes to be ride-ready.
- Hawaii (one-time registration fee required)
- New Jersey (for ebikes that reach speeds in excess of 20 mph)
- New Mexico
- North Dakota
- Wyoming (registration required in some localities)
2. Ebikes have classes? What class of Ebike is a Blix Bike?
When shopping for an ebike, classes are something you may want to consider. Each class is going to provide you with a little something different, and these small changes may or may not work for your lifestyle. Let’s break it down:
All Blix models are Class 2 Ebikes. They are a great option for those riders which may have mobility challenges, and can even be a great option for users who are focusing on health and well-being goals. The ability to switch between pedal assistance and throttle gives the rider a chance to take a breather on those longer commutes, rest the knees during a trail ride, or even something as simple as getting up to speed after stopping at a traffic light.
- Class 1: A Class 1 electric bike is a low-speed pedal-assisted electric bicycle. This means that the bike is equipped with a motor that provides assistance only while pedaling. Once the bike reaches that top speed of 20mph, the motor ceases to provide assistance.
- Class 2: All Blix models are considered a Class 2 electric bike, meaning that they are low-speed throttle-assisted ebikes. The bikes are equipped with a motor that can be powered not only with pedal assistance, but also with a throttle. Both the pedal assist and throttle will power the bike up to 20mph. Class 2 bikes are a great option for nearly any rider, including those who may have mobility challenges.
- Class 3: If you’re looking for speed, Class 3 is your bike. Class 3 electric bikes are speed pedal-assisted electric bikes. The motor will provide assistance up to 28mph when pedaling, and ceases to provide power beyond that limit. These bikes are equipped with a speedometer, but are not equipped with a throttle.
3. What About Age, Am I Old Enough to Ride?
In addition, some states have requirements about who can ride and operate an ebike. Generally speaking, state and local laws require that operators are at least 14 to 16 years of age. Some states also have specific helmet laws for certain ages. Again, it’s best to double check with local laws before your first ride.
4. How Fast Does it Go?
Blix bikes have a top speed of 20 mph, but you can use PAS to choose a pace that works for you. Umm, what? As the name suggests, PAS is the Pedal Assist System, or the level at which the electric bike will provide some assistance. If you want to maximize the battery range and just get a slight boost to maintain lower speeds, consider level 1 or 2. However, if you’re ready to reach those top speeds of 20 mph, consider setting your pedal assist at level 4 or 5 to take advantage of maximum motor output.
5. What About Maintenance?
A little bit of every TLC every now and then can help to keep your bike in peak shape. No, you don’t need to hire a mechanic or to quit your dayjob to become an ebike expert. With a few easy-to-do practices, you can ensure that your ebike goes as long as you do.
- Keep tires pumped up to help the bike ride well and prevent punctures. Do this about once a week.
- Fill your tires based on the PSI range on the tire. Lighter riders can stick towards the lower end of the range, while heavier riders or those carrying cargo should reach the maximum recommended pressure.
- To avoid annoying squeaks and excessive friction, regularly wipe the chain clean and apply chain lube (formulated for bikes). Wipe off excess lubricant so that it doesn’t collect dust.
- Once a month, take a look at your bolts. Keep a multi-tool with allen wrenches handy and tighten anything that’s become loose.
- When needed, wipe the disc brakes and braking tracks with a paper towel and some rubbing alcohol.
6. How Long Will the Battery Last?
Because we want to support you on many journeys to come, your Blix ebike will come with a battery that has an expected 25,000 mile lifetime! This means around 500 to 800 charging cycles. Each charge will give the rider about 45 miles of range. Replacement batteries are available, but you can also do a few simple things to charge up that battery lifetime:
Well, there you have it—an ebike that’s designed to go the distance and several tips to help you get it there legally and safely. If you’ve got more questions, then we’ve got the answers! Feel free to jump over to our Support Center to get to know your ebike inside and out.
- Try to maintain a charge of 20-80% and avoid leaving the battery fully uncharged, especially for long periods of time.
- Only use the battery charger that came with your Blix, and do all charging indoors in a dry, ventilated environment.
- Avoid keeping the battery in extreme temperatures (the Lithium-ion cells can’t handle it!).
- When you can’t handle an outdoor ride and are simply storing the battery, be sure to charge it for two hours every month.