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Common Mistakes When Riding an Electric Two-Wheeler and How to Avoid Them

May 20, 2024 | 6 minutes

Electric two-wheelers are becoming increasingly popular due to their eco-friendliness, cost-efficiency, and convenience. However, as with any mode of transportation, there are common mistakes riders make that can affect their safety and the performance of their vehicle. Whether you are a seasoned rider or new to electric scooters and bikes, being aware of these mistakes and knowing how to avoid them can ensure a smoother, safer, and more enjoyable riding experience.

1. Ignoring Regular Maintenance

Mistake: Many riders neglect regular maintenance, assuming that electric scooters require little to no upkeep compared to their gasoline counterparts.

Solution: Regular maintenance is crucial for the longevity and efficiency of your electric vehicle. Make it a habit to check the battery health, brake system, tire pressure, and lighting. Clean your vehicle regularly to prevent dirt buildup, which can interfere with the moving parts. Schedule professional check-ups at least once a year to ensure everything is functioning optimally. Keeping a maintenance log can also help track any recurring issues and ensure timely interventions.

2. Overloading the Vehicle

Mistake: Riders often overload their electric two-wheelers, exceeding the recommended weight capacity, which can lead to reduced performance and increased wear and tear.

Solution: Always adhere to the manufacturer’s weight capacity guidelines. This includes the combined weight of the rider, passenger, and any cargo. Overloading can strain the motor and battery, reduce range, and compromise safety. Use appropriate storage solutions like panniers or top boxes to distribute weight evenly if you need to carry extra items. Moreover, consider lightweight alternatives for carrying essential items to prevent unnecessary load.

3. Improper Charging Habits

Mistake: Improper charging habits, such as overcharging or not fully charging the battery, can significantly reduce battery life and performance.

Solution: Follow the manufacturer’s instructions for charging your electric two-wheeler. Use the charger provided with your vehicle and avoid overcharging by unplugging once the battery is full. If your model has a smart charging feature, use it to prevent overcharging. Additionally, avoid running the battery down to 0% regularly; try to keep it between 20% and 80% for optimal health. Invest in a timer or smart plug to automate charging cycles and avoid unnecessary strain on the battery.

4. Neglecting Safety Gear

Mistake: Some riders skip wearing safety gear, believing that electric scooters are slower and thus safer than traditional motorcycles.

Solution: Safety gear is essential regardless of the vehicle’s speed. Always wear a helmet, gloves, and appropriate clothing to protect yourself in case of an accident. Reflective gear and bright colors can also enhance your visibility to other road users, especially at night or in low-light conditions. Investing in high-quality, certified safety gear can make a significant difference in your protection level during an accident.

5. Riding at Inappropriate Speeds

Mistake: Electric two-wheeler riders sometimes ride too fast or too slow, not adapting their speed to the traffic and road conditions.

Solution: Adjust your speed according to the environment. In heavy traffic, maintain a moderate speed to stay safe and visible. On empty roads, avoid going too fast, especially if the surface is uneven or wet. Familiarize yourself with your vehicle’s acceleration and braking capabilities to handle different situations effectively. Practice riding at different speeds in a controlled environment to build confidence and control.

6. Ignoring Traffic Rules

Mistake: Some riders disregard traffic rules, thinking they do not apply as strictly to electric two-wheelers.

Solution: Traffic rules are there for everyone’s safety. Always obey traffic signals, road signs, and lane markings. Use bike lanes where available and signal your intentions to other road users. Riding responsibly not only keeps you safe but also helps in creating a positive image for electric two-wheeler riders. Consider taking a road safety course to brush up on traffic laws and best practices for riding.

7. Poor Handling of Road Hazards

Mistake: Inadequate response to road hazards such as potholes, wet surfaces, and debris can lead to accidents.

Solution: Keep a vigilant eye on the road ahead and anticipate hazards. Slow down when approaching potential obstacles and navigate around them carefully. In wet conditions, reduce your speed and avoid sudden turns or braking, as electric two-wheelers can be more prone to slipping. Regularly check your tires for adequate tread and pressure, which can improve grip and handling. Enhance your awareness by practicing defensive riding techniques.

8. Not Using Regenerative Braking Properly

Mistake: Some electric two-wheelers come with regenerative braking, but riders often do not use it effectively.

Solution: Learn how to use regenerative braking to maximize its benefits. It can extend your range by converting kinetic energy back into battery power and reduce wear on the mechanical brakes. Practice smooth braking to engage the regenerative system efficiently. This not only saves energy but also provides a smoother and safer ride. Reading your vehicle’s manual and understanding how to maximize regenerative braking can help improve overall performance.

9. Inadequate Battery Management

Mistake: Riders often fail to manage their battery usage, leading to unexpected breakdowns or reduced performance.

Solution: Plan your trips according to your vehicle’s range and battery status. Use the eco-mode if available to extend battery life during longer trips. Familiarize yourself with the locations of charging stations if you plan on traveling beyond your usual routes. Carry a portable charger if feasible, and always have a backup plan in case of a low battery. Keeping an eye on battery consumption and adjusting riding habits can significantly improve your range.

10. Skipping the Learning Curve

Mistake: Assuming that riding an electric two-wheeler is just like riding a bicycle or a traditional scooter can lead to mishaps.

Solution: Take time to learn the specifics of your electric two-wheeler. Read the manual thoroughly and understand the controls, especially if your vehicle has features like regenerative braking, different riding modes, or smart connectivity options. Practice in a safe, open area before venturing into traffic to get comfortable with the acceleration, braking, and handling of your electric vehicle. Consider taking a training course specific to electric two-wheelers to build confidence and skill.

11. Underestimating Weather Impact

Mistake: Riders sometimes underestimate the impact of weather conditions on their riding experience, particularly in rainy or extremely hot conditions.

Solution: Be mindful of weather forecasts and prepare accordingly. In rainy conditions, ensure your electric two-wheeler is equipped with good-quality, water-resistant tires. Wear waterproof gear to stay dry and maintain visibility. In hot weather, avoid parking your vehicle in direct sunlight for extended periods to prevent battery overheating. Also, adjust your riding style to account for slippery or hot road surfaces that can affect traction and control.

12. Poor Route Planning

Mistake: Failing to plan routes can lead to getting stuck in traffic, encountering unexpected road conditions, or running out of battery power.

Solution: Plan your routes ahead of time, especially for longer journeys. Use navigation apps that provide information on traffic, road conditions, and charging station locations. Consider alternative routes to avoid congested areas and ensure you have a contingency plan in case your primary route becomes impassable. A well-planned route can save time, reduce stress, and ensure a more efficient use of your vehicle’s battery.

Conclusion

Riding an electric two-wheeler can be a fantastic way to reduce your carbon footprint and enjoy convenient transportation. However, avoiding common mistakes is key to ensuring a safe and enjoyable experience. By paying attention to regular maintenance, adhering to safety practices, and understanding your vehicle’s unique features, you can make the most out of your electric two-wheeler. Remember, responsible riding not only benefits you but also contributes to a safer and more sustainable environment for everyone. Embrace the learning curve, invest in proper gear, and always stay vigilant on the road to enjoy a smooth and trouble-free ride.