So you’re thinking of buying an electric bike, but you don’t want to take the plunge without considering all of the costs involved, right? No problem, we’ve created this handy guide to help you figure out electric bike running costs so you can decide whether or not an electric bike is right for you.
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Driving an e-bike is similar to driving a regular bike, except there are a few extra components and the need to recharge. If your e-bike is used a lot, it may need repairs and parts replacement more frequently than non-e-bikes. That’s because you’re likely to be going faster and longer than usual, which means more wear and tear on your bike.
How much does it cost to charge an electric bike?
How long it takes to charge your e-bike depends on the type of battery it has and the type of charger provided. Our Bosch powered bikes are available with 300wh, 400wh or 500wh batteries and standard 4 amp chargers or 2 amp travel chargers.
Smaller amplifier chargers take longer to charge, and larger batteries take slightly longer to charge than smaller batteries. Depending on the combination of battery and charger you’re using, it will take 4 to 6 hours to charge your battery. This equates to between 5p and 10p in electricity bills, depending on your electricity bill. By comparison, it costs 2.5p to boil a kettle and 30p for a 40-degree cycle washing machine.
How often you need to charge the battery depends on many factors, but the most important is the e-bike system you choose and how you use pedal assist. A 300wh battery can generally travel 25 to 80 kilometers on a single charge, while a 400wh battery can generally travel 40 to 100 kilometers on average. Check out Bosch’s Range Assistant, showing what affects the range your e-bike can achieve. As always, more complex systems are more efficient, so you can get farther on a single charge than cheaper alternatives; you’ll need to decide which one is right for you.
Repair and Maintenance
We recommend an annual service to keep your bike in top condition, and prices vary, so check with your friendly local bike shop.
How often you need to service your bike depends on a range of factors, such as mileage, frequency, and terrain. Since e-bikes are heavier than regular bikes and generally travel faster and over longer distances, we recommend a little extra maintenance. Electric bikes also have extra electronics, so there will be more parts to wear out or break. The mechanical, non-electric parts of an e-bike wear out slightly faster than a standard bike because an e-bike can handle more speed, weight and force than a non-e-bike — but not to the point of breaking the bank!
If you use your bike regularly, such as commuting daily, servicing it every two to three months will help keep it in top shape. However, if you only use your e-bike once or twice a week and ride it leisurely, you may only need an overhaul every 4 to 6 months.
Regular visual inspections and some basic home maintenance can reduce the number of services you need. This includes cleaning and lubricating the chain, checking that all nuts and bolts are tight, and removing mud or dust from the moving parts of the bike. For more information, read our e-bike maintenance guide.
Don’t forget there may be some accessories you want to go with your e-bike and basic safety essentials like helmets and lights are a must! You can get a decent helmet for around £20, but if you want For something more premium, this could be closer to £50. If you plan to ride on the road, you’ll also need to buy lights; it’s a legal requirement! You can get a set for £8, but we recommend spending at least £20 on something more durable. If you want extra security, you can also buy yourself a high-visibility vest or other clothing for around £15.
One of the main parts you need to consider replacing is your tires. We were using e-bike-specific tyres and replacing e-bike-specific tyres cost around £30.
At first glance, that might sound like a lot, but we really don’t recommend going for cheaper tires. Electric bikes are heavier than non-electric bikes and tend to run faster and last longer than standard bikes. This means they need more durable tires to withstand the extra wear.
Decent tires are also much safer than cheap tires, so they’re really worth the money!
How long can an electric bike last?
The lifespan of an e-bike depends on several factors; ironically, one of the most important is the type of e-bike you buy in the first place. When it comes to electric bikes, the phrase “buy cheap, buy twice” definitely applies. Inexpensive e-bikes rarely have reliable, reputable e-bike systems, which tends to cause them to fail more frequently and shorten their overall lifespan. However, other factors such as frequency and distance of riding, how often the battery is charged and how well the bike is maintained are also very important.
Most SEBIC customers can use their e-bikes for 7 to 10 years if properly maintained. This will include regular maintenance and replacement of any necessary parts. However, you may find that you want to upgrade sooner, as e-bike technology is advancing far faster than your e-bike can deteriorate.
SEBIC e-bikes are guaranteed for five years, electric components for two years, and any standard components (excluding consumables) for one year.
Electric Bike Insurance
If you are buying an electric bike, you may want to consider purchasing insurance. There are two main types of insurance you can buy for an electric bike, one that protects against theft and damage, and one that protects you against personal accidents and public liability (damage or injury to members of the public or their property). Depending on the value of the bike you insure and the type of insurance you want to insure, it can cost anywhere from £7.50 to £15 a month.
To give you an idea of the cost, insuring an e-bike retailing for £1750 (the average selling price of an e-bike) costs £8.85 per month for theft and damage, or for personal accident insurance, public liability insurance , legal fees and replacement bike rental insurance £12.26 per month. It’s worth noting that e-bike insurance is a legal requirement in some countries outside the UK.
Are Electric Bikes Worth It?
Ultimately only you can decide if an e-bike is worth it. Obviously, owning an e-bike will be more expensive than a non-e-bike, but probably not as expensive as you might initially think! This is because a lot of the cost of an e-bike is the same as a non-e-bike. One of the biggest differences is of course the price of an e-bike over a regular bike. It’s also worth considering how low the annual running cost of an e-bike is compared to a car – if you could swap your car for an e-bike you could potentially save thousands of pounds over a few years.
Post time: Sep-24-2022