To reduce carbon footprint, a considerably imperative solution introduced by environmentalists are electric scooters. But do you know what is an electric scooter? Electric scooters have been extremely famous with today’s generation with millions spotted on the roads and billions into production. The electric scooters leave little congestion on roads, require minimum parking spaces and run on an electric charge instead of fuel –the three things anyone who has to drive long distances would love.
In this article, we shall take a closer look at their working, construction, benefits, and types. But first, let’s find out what is an electric scooter to have our bases covered.
What is an Electric Scooter –The Definition
An electric scooter is a motorized stand-up scooter powered by electrical power. It uses a small internal combustion motor or engine. An Electric scooter is designed with a large frame in the center with small wheels attached to it and a handlebar with throttles and controllers for support and navigation.
A Brief History of Electric Scooters
Despite popular opinion, electric scooters aren’t really a new thing. They have been around for many years now. They just happen to be more popular today across the globe. Their history dates back to approximately a century. The initial idea for electrically-powered scooters was first considered in 1895. During that time, electricity was used as a prime means to power motors.
In 1915, Autoped introduced its first stand-up scooter. Its production continued till 1921 but was later stopped.
Then, in 1986, Go-Ped introduced their stand-up scooters called the Sport and Roadster. They were quite a hit among the masses and encouraged more investors to invest in the technology.
In 2001, hoverboards finally came into existence and became popular overnight. The trend continued from them with more companies manufacturing their own unique designs, colors, and shapes with added features. After electric scooters came many different variations of the same such as the go-kart, mobility scooter and kick scooters.
Today, the acceptance for it has reached a stage where many companies offer rental dockless scooters where a person may book them by the hour and via apps.
Electric Scooter Parts
An electric scooter consists of these important parts:
- Belt and Chain
- Throttle and Controller
Check out our article about parts of an electric scooter.
Electric Scooter Working
In order to answer the question of what is an electric scooter, it is pivotal that one understands its working mechanism as well. Reading the above list, you must have an idea of the key parts that make up and electric scooter. But how do they all come together to get it functioning is another science.
Since they run on a rechargeable battery, in order to keep it working, the battery needs to be recharged after every 40-80 minutes of riding. The battery in an electric scooter is either made of lithium ion or lead acid. They hold enough charge to cover a decent distance of 10 to 40 miles. (Different for different models and brands)
The frame secures the motor of the electric scooter. When the start button is pressed, electricity travels from the rechargeable battery to the motor via a series of connectors and wires. The motor’s function is to spin the front/back or both wheels, making the scooter move forward.
This combination of the battery and motor working together allows the scooter to come to life. The other parts such as the navigation system, braking system and throttles simply connect the dots and works alongside.
Why Are They So Famous These Days?
Wondering what earns them the public’s praise? Below are some of the many reasons they stand out when compared to traditional modes of transportation.
They Are Lightweight
They are deliberately made to be practical and lightweight. On average, an electric scooter doesn’t weigh more than 22 to 25 pounds. This is great because it allows the rider to carry it anywhere he/she wants without feeling any burden. Another feature that adds more to its practicality is its fold-ability. It is designed to be folded and unfolded in less than 3 seconds. Add to that the amount of space they require when parked –not much. In fact, you can even place it under your work desk without any hassle.
They Are Low Maintenance Rides
That’s right! They require very little to no maintenance expect the regular cleaning, tightening bolts and lubing of the wheels. If well-kept, even the parts won’t need changing for years. Even if any part does break or loosen up, the cost of a new one will be significantly lower than that of a car.
Moreover, cars require regular oiling, tuning, tires, fueling, changing filters, fixing parts, etc. You don’t need to do any of that or invest in it with an electric scooter. So even if the starting price of an electric scooter is higher than that of a car, you will end up paying more over the years in repairs and maintenance with cars.
So what seems like a smart choice here?
They Are Fast
Although not as fast as a car, but they can be pretty speedy. When compared to traditional bikes, some models even promise similar meters per hour speed minus the excessive pedaling required. Who wouldn’t want that now?
They Are Convenient
Convenience is an important factor when buying a car. Will it require frequent trips to the mechanic? require regular repairing? need cleaning? Do I have enough space to park it?
We already elaborated on the practical aspects of electric scooters early on such as being lightweight, foldable, running on power, etc. But one of the biggest perks they offer is that they don’t leave you all sweaty and wet when you reach your destination. You also won’t have to waste hours stuck in traffic jams and have your boss yell at you for coming in late.
They are Eco-friendly
With automobiles of all sizes pumping out bad air into the environment, electric scooters are nothing but a godsend to counteract the situation. The reason they are so popular in countries like China is that they are already battling against thick clouds of pollution that lurks in their clouds and causes viruses, infections and even fatalities. Since electric scooters don’t run on fuel, they don’t pollute the air and keeps the air quality high.
They are an eco-friendly substitute for cars and bikes and allows you to play a key role in keeping your city’s air fresh and clean.
They are Hella’ Fun
Who doesn’t like a scooter ride? They are convenient, makes commuting less time consuming, and are ideal for people of all ages and simply fun. I mean, who doesn’t like to enjoy the feel of fresh air on their face and the sense of freedom and independence that comes tagged along. We Do!
What Are The Many Types Available?
There are a number of brands offering multiple variations of electric scooters. Depending upon your budget and requirements, you may choose from any of the following:
Electric Kick Scooters
Kick scooters are two-wheeled scooters, ideal for people of all ages. They are quite famous with the kids who love to ride them in their driveways and parks. They feature a compact structure, specially designed to ensure maximum safety. Electric kick scooters can reach a speed limit of 20mph and electric kick scooters come with a powerful motor ergonomic controls and sturdy construction.
Electric bikes are popular among cycling and mountain biking enthusiasts. They offer a speed limit of up to 25 mph. electric bikes can also be substituted for electric scooters and used for any commute across the town.
Electric motorcycles are mostly for professional motor racers as it has a speed limit of up to a 100 mph. The motor of an electric motorcycle is air-cooled ensuring it doesn’t burn when speeding up.
Go-karts are everyone’s favorite. They can reach a speed limit of 12 mph and comes with durable frames, high torque, molded aluminum tires, chain-driven motor and handbrakes.
Electric Mobility Scooters
Electric mobility scooters are designed for people with a physical disability. They are also ideal for obese individuals. Their construction is very stable and comfortable. They have a speed limit of up to 5 mph and come equipped with four wheels. You can mostly spot them in grocery shops, supermarkets, and airports. These mostly come with several attachments such as carry baskets, anti-trippers, flat tires, etc.
These are very similar to electric bikes. The only exception is the addition of another wheel. They are ideal for toddlers and seniors with a disability like bone problems. These aren’t quite fast and can reach a speed limit of 15 to 20 mph.
Safety Precautions to Take While Riding an Electric Scooter
Now that you have decided on the kind of electric scooter you want or have already made a purchase, be sure to follow the safety procedures to make certain you are well-equipped both mentally and physically to take it out for a ride. Here are some safety tips you must take care of.
Read the Manual
The first and most important thing to do before riding an electric scooter is reading the manual thoroughly. Operating it may seem easy at first, but there are many intricacies that need attention as well, such as the braking system, navigation tools, the app, etc.
Abide By the Traffic Rules
You must have an in-depth knowledge of the traffic rules. Like any other driver on the road, you must abide by them to ensure yours and everyone’s safety. Additionally, be sure to ride your electric scooter only in areas where riding one is allowed. Different states may have different laws.
Always Wear Safety Gear
Safety gear is essential when taking the scooter out for a ride on the road. You must purchase a helmet, knee pads, elbow pads, etc. to ensure your safety and prevent accidents.
Know How to Operate It
Practice is a must when it comes to familiarizing yourself with the operating manual. Of course, it will all be written, but to implement them, in reality, may seem difficult to some. If you aren’t confident about all the tools and navigation systems, it is best not to take the electric scooter in crowded areas.
Don’t Ride If Not Functioning Properly
Before hopping on, be sure to check if it is in working condition. If you feel there is something wrong or an issue that needs addressing, it is best to check it first. The scooter may break down or crash if any of its parts are not working properly.
As sad as it may sound, electric scooters have a limitation when it comes to weight. Even if you are below the suggested weight scale, the electric scooter is designed for one person alone. Even a toddler’ weight can misbalance the scooter and cause an accident.
Firstly, you are no stuntman/stuntwoman. Trying to be one can lead to unwanted injuries and accidents that could have been prevented. It could also add pressure to its tires, frame, bearing or joints which may damage your vehicle and endanger your life.
Don’t Treat It like A Toy
It’s not a toy –period! Little kids shouldn’t be allowed near them and especially not to poke their fingers into any of its wiring or connectors.
So we guess, we have answered all your questions related to electric scooters from what is an electric scooter to how they function, what benefits it has to offer and the many types it has. Just a reminder, try to abide by all the traffic rules and wear safety gear to maximize your safety.
Aside from that, let’s get scooting!