How We Chose Our Top 11 Electric Scooters
When we looked at the electric scooters on the market today, we wanted to be sure that we were recommending great products. We considered many factors when reviewing these.
- Rider weight: While a couple of the scooters listed above were for children, we focused on scooters that would allow almost anyone to ride comfortably.
- Speed: Many electric scooters are still stuck in the single digits for speed. We only chose scooters that could feasibly get you to work faster than walking. The part of the scooter that determines speed is the engine. There are three main types of engines that electric scooters are made with. The first is a chain drive engine. This is the most common, and works a lot like a bicycle. These are long-lasting and durable, but they are also heavy so they don’t let you go very fast. The second type is called a chainless DC Hub motor. This is a very compact type of motor that has one big benefit: you can recharge it by pushing manually. This isn’t as popular yet, but it is growing in popularity. Finally, there are neo-dymium motors, which use magnetic energy. This is a very efficient type of motor which allows for top speeds, but it is more expensive.
- Range: Having a long battery range is important for commuters, and it’s an area where electric scooters are still improving. We looked for scooters that would give you more than 10 miles of range at the minimum – so that you would actually need to use them, versus simply choosing a long walk. The range of a scooter is all about the battery, but there is a balance to strike. A bigger battery, which emits more than 750W, is best for an adult scooter. You can get batteries that emit all the way up to 2,000W, but they are heavier, and therefore they can slow the scooter down. Additionally, higher wattage means higher prices. You’ll also want to consider the type of battery. A lead acid battery is less expensive, but takes a lot longer to charge. Lithium ion batteries are more expensive, but are safer and can charge in just a few hours.
- Overall design and craftsmanship: Finally, we looked for scooters that are rated highly for their durability and design. Having a scooter that falls apart in a few months doesn’t do anyone any good. These are all well-known brands with a reputation for quality.
Other factors you may want to consider include the terrain you have to get around on, how lightweight the scooter is, how fast the scooter charges, and what your budget is. Those on our list don’t always have top ratings in these area, but we made sure to mention where we were impressed by these factors as well.
Making Your Battery Last Longer
If you are shopping for an electric scooter, you’ve probably heard that they tend to stop working after a while. This isn’t true about the scooter itself, but about the battery. All batteries deteriorate over time, but there are some ways that you can make your battery last a little longer. This allows you to get the most life out of your scooter after investing.
First, remove the battery when you aren’t using your scooter or charging it. If a battery is connected to something, if if that something is off, it sends out a charge, and this drains the battery over time.
Don’t use your scooter until the battery is fully charged the first time. This may mean that you don’t use your new scooter until a full 24 hours after you get it. But this ensures that you get the maximum charge that the battery can ever have the first time around, and helps it last longer.
Don’t recharge the battery again until it runs all the way down. Every time you charge a battery, it adds to the decay. It’s best to keep recharge sessions to as few as possible. Here’s an example: Lithium ion batteries have a lifespan of 400 charges. If you charge it every single day, regardless of if it needs it or not, the battery won’t last much beyond a year. Instead, let the battery die before you recharge it.
Another thing regarding the charging of your battery: never over charge it. Batteries get hot when they are overcharged, and this adds to the decay. Keep the battery below 50 degrees if you can, and remove it after it has charged fully.
A Few Things to Consider Before You Buy an Electric Scooter
So now that you’ve seen how we evaluated the top electric scooters on the market, and how to keep the weakest element in good shape for longer, you’re probably ready to go out and shop, right? Before you do that, here are just a few things to consider about riding an electric scooter.
Where will you charge your scooter between commutes?
There are not that many electric charging stations across the United States. Overall, in the entire country, there are about 48,000 stations – and most of those are located in just a handful of big cities. If you aren’t able to charge your scooter at work, or at the location where you are headed, will you be able to power back up if your scooter starts to lose charge?
Does it really make a big difference on energy consumption?
If you are interested in riding an electric scooter is order to eliminate gas emissions from a car, consider the fact that you are still using energy. Depending on the area where you live, the electricity you need for your scooter may be produced in a way that isn’t much better than a car’s emissions, and you are still adding to the overuse of energy sources. Eventually, there may be solar-powered batteries for electric scooters – but until then, consider that this still isn’t an “eco-friendly” vehicle.
Can a scooter work on every surface that you need it to?
Most of the scooters we reviewed were made for urban use on smooth pavement. Some are able to tackle things like uphill climbs and slightly rough areas like sidewalks. But for the most part, they aren’t made for rough terrain. If you have to commute over unpaved areas, you may not have the best time on an electric scooter.
You, and your scooter, will be exposed to the elements.
Be sure you consider whether or not your scooter is weather proof. If the electrical elements are exposed to rain, will they malfunction? Do you frequently spend a lot of your commute in very hot temperatures that could make the battery decay faster? Are you comfortable with the fact that you don’t have any protection for yourself?
Check Out Our Top Electric Scooters
Overall, any of these top 11 electric scooters would be a convenient and easy way to get through your commute, run down to the store, get around campus, or simply to enjoy a drive in the open air. Choose the one that suits your lifestyle the best and have fun going anywhere!