Size & Buying Guides

Electric Bike Guide

Carol Ching

If you’ve ever wondered if you’d enjoy riding an electric bike, this guide is for you. Read our Electric Bike Guide to find out how to choose the perfect ebike for your lifestyle. We’ll break down the key tech and showcase the most popular styles and best brands. Check it out below.
Electric Bike Guide

How to choose the best electric bike

In this in-depth guide to electric bikes we’ll be taking a look at how to choose the best electric bike for your riding style and goals. Here’s a look at what we’ll cover:

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Who are electric bikes for?

electric bike riders

Electric bikes are great for a wide variety of riders. There’s a misconception that only riders who need lots of physical assistance ride ebikes, but in reality just about anyone can enjoy all the benefits of having a boost.

Here are a few types of riders who can benefit from pedaling an electric bike:

  • Recreational riders
  • City commuters
  • Mountain bikers
  • Road cyclists

6 reasons to ride an electric bike

  1. Save time on your bike commute by giving yourself a boost
  2. Save your gas money and take your bike to work or to the store
  3. Enjoy longer rides with less fatigue
  4. Ride more trails in less time thanks to easier climbs and faster speeds
  5. Keep the pace with faster riders
  6. Pull kids and cargo with ease

What should I look for when buying an electric bike?

Here are some of the most important features to look for in an electric bike.

Electric bike classes

There are 3 electric bike classes, which specify how fast it can go when providing assistance, and whether or not you need to pedal to engage the motor. Here’s the breakdown:

  • Class 1: Class 1 electric bikes are pedal-assist only, and stop providing a boost at 32kph (20mph)
  • Class 2: Class 2 electric bikes utilize both pedal-assist engagement up to 32kph (20mph) as well as a throttle only option
  • Class 3: Class 3 electric bikes are pedal-assist only, and stop providing a boost at 45kph (28mph)
At Skiis And Biikes we only carry class 1 and 3 electric bikes, meaning every model you’ll find in our store uses a pedal-assist motor and does not feature a throttle.

Riding Style

How you ride should be the first factor to consider when shopping for an electric bike. Depending on where you typically spend your time will help you get started, and then you can fine tune your search from there.

Most electric bikes can be categorized into these:

  • Recreational and commuter ebikes: designed to get you around town quickly and comfortably
  • Electric mountain bikes: designed to tackle more trails in less time
  • Electric road bikes: designed for top speeds, long distances, and big climbs

Electric Bike Motors

electric bike motor

Ebikes use an electric motor to provide riders with assistance when pedaling. Most motors allow you to toggle between a few different levels of assistance but each one is unique, so be sure to check out the specific features of the motor on the bike you’re considering.

Here are some things to look for regarding electric bike motors:

  • Watts: motor power is often designated by watts, and while it does give you an idea of how powerful the motor is, other factors like the battery voltage influence what the motor is capable of. Most of the electric bikes we sell have motors that fall between 200 and 700 watts.

  • Torque: torque measures the rotational force that the motor can put out, and motors will higher torque will be able to assist you up steeper climbs more efficiently

  • Modes: each motor has its own set of modes that provide riders with different levels of assistance. Certain high performance electric bike motors have a mode that adjusts assistance based on how hard you pedal. Some electric mountain bikes even have a Walk Mode that helps you move the bike forward up steep climbs or rough patches when you have to get off the bike.

  • Position: where the motor lives is another factor to consider. Motors typically are either housed inside the rear wheel or in the bottom bracket. If you’re riding for performance, it’s often helpful to have a motor in the bottom bracket as it keeps the weight more centered on the bike.

Electric Bike Battery:

electric bike battery

The motor can’t engage without electricity from the battery, so that’s another area to consider when searching for your next ebike. Your battery is a major factor in determining the range of your ebike, as in how far you can ride while receiving assistance.

Here’s what to look for in an electric bike battery:

  • Watt-hours: More watt-hours in a battery generally translates to it being longer lasting, which in turn will give you a bigger range

  • Charge time: Lots of ebike batteries have similar recharge times, but it’s still worth taking a look. Sometimes half a charge is all you need for a normal ride, but most batteries will reach a full charge between 4-6 hours.

  • Removability: Having a removable battery is super helpful and allows you to take the battery with you and charge it at the office or in your home without needing to bring the bike inside.

  • Position: Some batteries are mounted on top of the downtube, and others are integrated into the frame. Besides looking great, integrated batteries also give you more space in the front triangle and help keep the weight low and more balanced.

Display/Controller

electric bike controller

While the battery provides the motor with the electricity needed to generate power, most ebikes use a display and controller to monitor and adjust everything.

This area is largely up to personal preference, and there’s no single best method. While many recreational and commuter ebikes utilize a display screen so you can easily view your battery level and assistance mode, other lots of electric road and mountain bikes go without the display screen and solely rely on a more discreet controller.

Explore electric bikes by style

Now that you know what style you’re after and what features to look for, check out the different types of electric bikes we offer here at Skiis And Biikes.

Electric Commuter Bikes

electric commuter bikes

Shop Electric Commuter Bikes

Electric Mountain Bikes

electric mountain bikes

Shop Electric Mountain Bikes

Electric Road Bikes

electric road bikes

Shop Electric Road Bikes

What are the best electric bike brands?

We carry some of the best bike brands in the industry so you know that when you shop at Skiis And Biikes you’re getting top quality products that we proudly stand behind. Here are our best selling electric bike brands:

Specialized

Shop Specialized Electric Bikes

Trek Bikes

Shop Trek Electric Bikes

Electra bikes

Shop Electra Electric Bikes

Devinci bikes

Shop Devinci Electric Bikes

Rocky Mountain Bikes

Shop Rocky Mountain Electric Bikes

Electric Bike FAQs

Are electric bikes worth the money?

The electric bikes we sell at Skiis And Biikes are high quality products made by some of the biggest names in the bike industry. For what they are capable of, ebikes are pretty affordable and will last as long as you want to ride them. Plus, most ebike owners find themselves riding a lot more than they would on a regular bike, and that kind of exercise is well worth the investment.

How long do electric bikes last?

The range of an electric bike, or how long you’re able to receive assistance, varies from model to model. Ranges can be anywhere from 30-80 kilometers (20-50 miles) or more, so take a look at the specific bike you’re considering. There are many factors that contribute to an ebike’s range, some of which are the battery’s watt-hours, how many watts the motor draws, how much assistance you use, the terrain you ride on, as well as the weight of the rider and cargo.

How fast do electric bikes go?

The range of an electric bike, or how long you’re able to receive assistance, varies from model to model. Ranges can be anywhere from 30-80 kilometers (20-50 miles) or more, so take a look at the specific bike you’re considering. There are many factors that contribute to an ebike’s range, some of which are the battery’s watt-hours, how many watts the motor draws, how much assistance you use, the terrain you ride on, as well as the weight of the rider and cargo.

How long do electric bikes last?

The electric bikes we sell at Skiis And Biikes will provide assisted speeds of up to 32 or 45 kph (20 or 28 mph) depending on the class of e-bike.
View all electric bike classes

Do you have to pedal an electric bike?

We sell pedal-assist electric bikes that do not come with a throttle, so riders engage the motor by pedaling.

Do you get exercise on an electric bike?

Of course! You can choose to give yourself a big or small boost or no boost at all, but either way you’re still pedaling and making the motor work. You’ll definitely get exercise, but you’ll be able to ride faster and farther than before.

Can electric bikes go up steep hills?

Electric bikes can definitely help you conquer the big hills in your area. Ebikes with motors that have higher levels of torque will be able to provide more assistance on the really tough climbs.

Can you ride electric bikes in the rain?

Definitely. All the electric bikes we sell are completely capable of riding in the rain, as all the components are weather sealed and protected.