Electric Scooter Buying Guide

By Chris Wilson

April 29, 2020


Have you considered purchasing an electric scooter? Away from costs, scooters offer a great way to reduce the carbon footprint massively. Unfortunately, not all scooters are created equal. There're a few things you should know before purchasing your first scooter.

How to Choose an Electric Scooter

Choosing a scooter might feel like buying a car or even other larger purchases.

Fortunately, we created this scooter buying guide to help you with your next scooter purchase.

At the very least, the guide covers all the critical elements such as quality, safety, and quality build that you should consider.

Quality of the Electric Scooter Ride

Quality is a bit subjective, but several factors normally affect the ride quality of a scooter.

These factors are:

Wheel size: Generally, we recommend that you avoid purchasing scooters with wheel sizes of less than 8 inches in diameter. Smaller wheels normally give a rougher ride and are susceptible to getting stuck.

Type of Wheels: The two common types of scooter wheels are solid and air-filled tires.

The solid tires, like their name suggest, are solid and provide the perfect solution in harsh environments, especially those with objects such as glass, thorn, and nail.

The air-filled tires, on the other hand, are built for comfort, and they normally deliver a comfortable ride.

Suspension: The final element that determines ride quality is the suspension. However, the suspension is only handy in leveling the jarring bumps. If anything, a scooter with large tires gives a better smoother ride than a scooter with suspension, but with solid and small wheels.

Speed

Next from the ride quality is the speed.

Normally speed is determined by several elements, including motor power, rider weight, and the riding surface

My advice, however, is that you should refrain from chasing high speeds. While it's worth having a speedy scooter for long distances, a speed of about 15mph should suffice for the normal use.

Brake

Speed is essential to getting you to your destination quickly, but brakes are necessary to bring you to a grinding halt.

The three common types of brakes used in scooters are:

Electric brakes: They offer low maintenance, but have less effective stopping power.

Disc brakes:  Also known as drum brakes, they’re effective at bringing you to a halt, but they might wear over time.

Foot brakes: These brakes are hard to master.

Another under-rated safety element in the presence of build-in light: having lights alongside reflector will make you more visible to vehicular traffic, especially during the night or in misty conditions.

Range

Range refers to the distance that a scooter can travel without needing recharging.

So, yes, the range is determined by how long the battery on the scooter can hold a charge.

To determine the ideal range, you need to determine the exact reason .i.e. the purpose for which you'll be using your scooter.

Build Quality

The build quality refers to how a scooter standups to usage.

In most cases, it's determined by material construction.

I would advise that you choose the metal-based scooters as opposed to the plastic-based scooters as the latter don't tend to last.

Reliability

Sure, the scooter industry is still at its infancy, and we’ve witnessed plenty of scooters come with manufacturing defects.

Our advice here is that you should stick with the established brands that have already made their name for their quality and reliability.

Weight Capacity

When choosing a scooter, you need to determine the rated weight capacity, or rather the weight it can effectively hold.

For instance, if you’re 200 pounds, we would recommend that you choose a 250-pound rated scooter.

While it’s still possible to use a scooter that you’ve maxed on its weight limit, what you’ll realize is that it won’t perform optimally, and it’s going to break down in no time.

Weight

Consider how far you might need to carry your scooter at the beginning or the end of your journey.

Generally, most of the scooters weigh 30 pounds, but if you’re not strong, you can consider something a bit lighter.

Away from the weight, another feature that determines the portability of a scooter is foldability. Ideally, a scooter should be foldable to reduce it to a compact size, easy for transport.

Noise

Some scooters make a loud whistling noise, but with electric scooters, or rather the e-scooters this shouldn’t be an issue because they deliver a noiseless and quiet performance.

Warranty


Though this isn’t part of the scooter, you should choose a scooter with a great warranty.

How long is the warranty period, and what does it cover?

More importantly, will the manufacturer honor the warranty?

Again, it circles back to the choice of manufacturer we had mentioned earlier in the guide.

Chris Wilson

About the author

Chris Wilson, long time fan of personal electric transportation. Chris is not easily impressed when it comes to the latest technologies, however, when he is, nothing can stop him from wanting to share his knowledge with our readers here at ElectricRideLab.com

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