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How to Stay Safe on an Electric Scooter

Electric scooters are a great way to travel, and when they are ridden correctly they are also a very safe method of transport. According to a recent report, it is safer to do short journeys in urban areas on an electric scooter than by car or motorcycle, and the risk of an A&E visit for an escooter rider is similar to that for cyclists.

To make sure every escooter journey is all fun and no fuss, we have put together some hints and tips on how to stay safe as you travel.

Before you hit the road

1. Read the manual

We know, it’s not as exciting as just jumping straight on your escooter and heading off on your first adventure, but it’s really important to familiarise yourself with how your new electric scooter works. Everything you need to know will be in the manufacturer’s instructions and trust us, investing a few minutes to read it will make your first experience smoother, easier and safer.

2. Wear protective equipment

Before you set foot on your new electric scooter, you need to invest in some high quality protective gear. Electric scooters move fast, which make them brilliant fun but also mean you need to take precautions to effectively protect yourself in the event of a slip or fall.

The most essential piece of protective equipment you will need is a helmet. This is obviously important if you’re going to be anywhere with traffic, but is equally important for off road adventures.

As you will be travelling at speeds of up to 15mph, we strongly recommend that you invest in the best helmet you can afford, for complete head protection you can rely on – this really isn’t the area to save money.

While the most recent research suggests that a good quality bicycle helmet offers enough protection for low-speed electric scooter journeys, riders undertaking high speed journeys and escootering in urban areas should look at motorbike or moped helmets for increased protection.

This Pank Urban Helmet is a great mid-range choice, which is comfortable, lightweight and keeps your head nicely ventilated.

The Bell Custom 500 is a popular high-end choice. Lightweight and open faced, this helmet has impressive EPS shock absorption in the event of an accident. It looks really good too.

Why not choose a convenient folding cycle helmet to complement your folding escooter? The Closca Bike & Scooter Helmet folds down flat to fit in a backpack, locker or desk drawer.

Want lights, Bluetooth and SOS capabilities built in to your helmet? Choose this Livall Helmet – use a simple handlebar control to let other road users know where you’re going!

Whichever helmet you choose, owning it isn’t enough, you need to wear it even on short journeys, so make sure you pick one that you like and look good in. Other protective equipment worth considering includes elbow and knee pads – especially important for high speed journeys – and gloves which improve handlebar grip.

3. Check your escooter

Before you leave home, have a quick look over your electric scooter to check that everything is in order.

Tyres:

Are they well inflated? Under-inflated tyres change how your electric scooter handles and can affect the mileage you can achieve in each journey. They can also leave you stranded with a flat tyre far from home. Are the tyres free from wear and tear? Is there plenty of tread?

Battery:

This sounds obvious, but does your escooter have enough charge to get you to your destination? And home again? Don’t risk running out of power and finding yourself stuck at the side of the road.

Brakes & Throttle:

It’s important to check that these are both working efficiently before you leave the house – discovering your throttle is sticking when you’re half way to work is far from ideal.

Frame:

Check that your escooter is fully unfolded and secured into the correct position to ride. It’s also worth carrying out a quick visual check to make sure there’s no damage or obvious wear and tear.

4. Get plenty of practise

Electric scooters have incredibly intuitive controls, and are easy for riders of any age to get to grips with relatively quickly.

When you first ride your new electric scooter – take it slow! Get used to the accelerator and brakes at low speeds to begin with until you get used to how the escooter handles. Once you’re comfortable with stopping and starting in an open space, practise accelerating and braking, turning and manoeuvring around obstacles. Make sure you spend time practising on a range of different surfaces too – the way your electric scooter handles will be different on smooth road surfaces compared to forest tracks. Take the opportunity to go over ridges and bumps to get to know how your escooter responds.

When you're out and about

5. Road conditions

As a beginner, it’s probably best to avoid riding your electric scooter on wet or icy roads. During and immediately after downpours, the road surface becomes slippery, no matter how good your tyres are. If you’re caught out in the rain, take it slow and steady for the rest of your journey, take any turns slowly and brake well in advance to avoid slipping.

Along with slippery roads and poor visibility, riding in torrential rain or heavy snow can cause damage to your electric scooter, so should be avoided if possible. It’s also a bad idea to use your escooter during thunder and lightning storms.

6. Night riding

If you’re riding your electric scooter in the dark, make sure your lights are clearly visible to other road users. This is also really important in low light situations and poor weather. While most electric scooters have both front and back lights, if you are doing a lot of riding after dark it may be worth adding some reflectors to your escooter so you can be seen more easily.

As well as making sure the scooter is visible, it is a good idea to wear some reflective clothing when you’re out after dark. Reflective jackets no longer have to be luminous yellow – this Reflective Silver Jacket is hard to miss! There are also some brilliant LED reflective belts that can be charged by USB.  As mentioned above, it’s also worth considering a helmet with lights to keep you well illuminated.

7. Road awareness

Riding an electric scooter is a great way to relax and unwind, but it’s really important that you remain focused on the road, and not your surroundings. Keep an eye out for pedestrians as well as cars and cyclists, and always try to expect the unexpected children and dogs that may appear in front of you when you’re off-road too. We recommend riding defensively wherever possible – that basically means expecting every other person or vehicle not to notice you, and anticipating their possible movements so you can avoid collisions. It’s not easy predicting the unpredictable, but slowing down and giving yourself plenty of space and time to brake or swerve is always a good thing. There are other hidden dangers that escooter riders should be looking out for too, including:

Grates and manhole covers:

Remember that your electric scooter has small tyres, which makes riding over grates harder, and metal covers can be slippery – try to give yourself space to go around them.

Potholes:

Uneven surfaces and holes in the road are uncomfortable enough in cars – they really should be avoided on an electric scooter, as they may cause you to lose control.

Puddles:

How deep is that puddle? Are you sure? Puddles can hide potholes – see above!

Rocks and stones:

Whether they are flying up at you or jamming your wheels, avoid rocks and stones as you ride wherever possible.

By keeping your eyes and ears open, you will soon learn to fit in with the flow of people and vehicles, keeping you safe and protected from unnecessary accidents.

8. Riding responsibly

Finally, it’s really important to ride sensibly and responsibly. Electric scooters are lots of fun and have a great safety record, but whizzing between traffic lanes, jumping red lights and generally not following the rules of the road will put you and other road users in danger.

It’s never a good idea to give a friend a ride on your scooter – they aren’t made for 2 people. Most scooters have a maximum weight limit, so you’re risking damaging your scooter as well as hurting yourself and your friend – and remember, if they fall off, it’s you that they’re hanging on to!

Try to keep both hands on the handlebars – in the event that your electric scooter hits something slippery or bumpy, it’s much harder to control with just one hand.

And it goes without saying that escootering under the influence of alcohol or drugs is also a terrible idea.

Knowing that your scooter is in perfect working order, and that you have it under full control will make every ride more enjoyable. By following these safety tips, we hope that every journey you make on your electric scooter will be a great adventure, for all the right reasons!

How to Increase the Lifespan of Your Electric Scooter Battery

Electric scooters are powered by advanced lithium-ion batteries that are small, lightweight and incredibly efficient. The health of your rechargeable battery makes a huge difference to your escootering experience, as it affects the speed and distance you can travel as well as how much charge you have left when you get there.

How you charge and store your battery directly affect its health. Here are our top tips for getting the best out of your escooter battery.

Don’t completely drain the battery

You’ve probably heard that it’s a good idea to drain rechargeable batteries fully every so often. In the case of old style phone and laptop batteries that may have been true, but the same doesn’t go for modern lithium batteries. Each electric scooter battery comes with around 500 ‘charge cycles’. Don’t panic, that doesn’t mean 500 rides. Each charge cycle is from 100%, down to 0% and then back up. It’s important not to let your battery fully deplete, and it’s best to avoid overcharging too. We recommend not letting the battery drop below 10% charge, keeping it above 50% wherever possible, and topping up to 90% for maximum battery life.

Charge after every ride

Yes, even the short ones. It’s best to wait 30 minutes to an hour after you finish your ride to give the battery a chance to cool down before recharging. Take every opportunity you have to charge up as leaving the battery partially discharged for long periods will decrease its longevity, but don’t leave it on charge overnight and avoid overcharging.

Use the right charger

All escooter batteries are not the same, and the charger supplied by the manufacturer is the only appropriate one for your electric scooter. In the case of a lost or defective charger, we understand the frustration but while other chargers may appear to work, they may be causing long term damage to your battery. Similarly, trying another charger because it appears to charge faster may be slowly damaging your battery – stick to the manufacturer’s one that’s completely compatible.

Keep it cool… and warm

Lithium batteries don’t work well in extreme temperatures, so be careful to store your escooter in an appropriate environment out of the freezing cold and hot sun. Never charge your battery if it’s below 0 degrees C, or over 50 degrees C. If the battery has got very hot or cold, leave it to return to a moderate temperature before attempting to charge it. Batteries also work best when clean and dry as moisture can cause permanent damage – wipe with a dry cloth if necessary.

Store it carefully

When your escooter is going to be out of use for a while, make sure you store the battery at between 60% and 80% charge. Lithium batteries self-discharge when they are not in use, so you will need to check it every month or so, and top up again if necessary. If the battery is left for more than 3 months without charge, its lifespan may be damaged.

Ride with care

Keeping your tyres properly inflated, riding smoothly, avoiding rough terrain and not exceeding the manufacturers recommended weight limit may also protect the life of your electric scooter’s battery.

Read our “How to safe on an electric scooter” article here: https://www.escooter.co.uk/how-to-stay-safe-on-an-electric-scooter/

Prolonging the life of your escooter’s battery is easy and ensures optimal performance for years to come. By following a few simple charging tips, you can greatly increase the battery’s lifespan which increases your future fun!

Electric Scooter Maintenance Guide

Electric scooters require very little maintenance, and their ongoing running costs are generally very low. However, investing a little of your time to regularly check and maintain a few basic areas will result in your escooter lasting longer and staying in great condition, ride after ride.

Here are a few tips on keeping your electric scooter in the best possible working order for longer.

Cleaning

Any build-up of dirt and debris from the roads or tracks you ride on can cause problems for your electric scooter further down the line. We recommend cleaning your scooter every couple of weeks, or as soon as you get home from a particularly muddy ride to prevent more serious issues developing. To clean the escooter, wipe down with a damp cloth and use a toothbrush to get into small spaces. Don’t use a pressure washer or hose, as the water could affect the electrical components and remove the lubricant that keeps the scooter moving smoothly.

Battery

It’s a good idea to visually check your battery every so often, looking for corrosion or chemical leakage, which can be a sign that it’s time to change it. Other indicators that your battery’s health is in decline is if it’s losing charge faster or not holding charge at all. To maximise the life of your escooter battery, it’s important that you don’t let it fully drain. Keep your battery level at around 90% where possible, and don’t allow it to overcharge. Try to avoid exposing your electric scooter to extremes of high or low temperature, as that also decreases battery function.

Tyres

For electric scooters with inflatable tyres, it’s important to check the tyre pressure regularly. A quick and easy way to see if they need more air is to just push down on them with your thumb. If your thumb sinks into the tyre, it’s time to check the manufacturer’s manual for the correct psi and refill. It’s worth checking tyres weekly as under-inflated tyres can cause punctures and negatively affect the escooter’s steering.

Bolts, Screws & Joints

Every month or so, check that all the bolts and screws on your electric scooter are properly tightened, keeping the frame completely secure. In particular, keep an eye on the folding joints, which may loosen with regular use. While you are checking the joints, it’s worth checking the lubrication levels, as proper lubrication prevents friction damage.

Brakes

Brakes should also be checked regularly to keep them working effectively. Disk brakes may need to be adjusted, and excessively worn brake pads may need to be replaced in order to prevent tyre damage – refer to the manual for more detail.

Those are the main areas to concentrate on when maintaining your electric scooter, though the manufacturer’s instruction manual will provide more information on preventative care and replacement parts.

Investing your time in a little regular maintenance can make a big difference to both the lifespan and ride quality you achieve from your escooter. By setting aside just a few minutes a week, you can keep your escooter looking pristine and riding like a dream.

Are Electric Scooters Worth the Cost?

Electric scooters are a fun, convenient and environmentally friendly way to get around, but how much does owning and operating an escooter actually cost, and do the benefits make it a worthwhile financial outlay?

Electric scooter costs

The escooter

The first, most obvious and biggest outlay is the electric scooter itself, which is obviously a one-off cost. Escooters range from a few hundred pounds up to around £1,500, and as the technology has evolved and the market has opened up, a larger price tag doesn’t necessarily mean a better scooter. The simpler, lower priced escooters on the market also tend to have less complicated and expensive ‘extras’ to go wrong.

Safety equipment

Part of the reason that escooters are so much fun is that they are fast, travelling at speeds of up to 15mph. However easy they are to ride and control, you need to protect yourself in the event that another road user or pedestrian causes you to wobble. Investing in a good quality helmet is absolutely essential, and it’s a good idea to add elbow and knee pads to the shopping list too.

Charging

Instead of guzzling fuel, escooters need an electric charge to re-fill their drained batteries. No adaptors or extra equipment are required – just plug in to a standard socket and recharging takes around 3-4 hours. In the UK that should cost you around 15-20p.

electric scooter charging port

Maintenance

Unlike cars and mopeds, escooters require minimal maintenance, and by keeping your eye on a few basic areas yourself, it’s easy to keep your electric scooter in tip-top condition. We recommend checking the tyres are properly inflated, checking the folding joints and screws are tight and working and trying not to completely drain the battery to keep your scooter in great working order. If you do need to replace any parts, they are inexpensive – new tyres are the most likely replacement within the first couple of years if you are racking up the miles, and cost around £15 each.

Extras

On the rare occasions you can’t fold your electric scooter up and take it with you, or store it in your car boot or under your desk, you will need to lock it up. It’s worth investing in a good quality lock and cable to keep your escooter secure when it’s parked in public.

Benefits of owning an electric scooter

OK, we may be biased, but where do we start?

  • Escooters are a fast and fun way to get from A to B, saving you time – that extra 10 minutes in bed could become a reality!
  • With an affordable one-off purchase cost and low running costs, electric scooters are a much cheaper choice than using a car or moped for short journeys, and there are no parking costs.
  • Travelling by electric scooter is much more convenient than using public transport, and no traffic jams will slow you down.
  • The lightweight and portable design makes electric scooters easy to transport and store when not in use – just fold your escooter and place it in your car boot or under your desk.
  • Electric scooters are a green, emission-free way to travel, which is great for the environment.
  • Getting you out into the fresh air, you will arrive at your destination feeling happy and relaxed – no more crowded public transport!

In our opinion, electric scooters are absolutely worth the cost. Changing the way you travel, allowing you to control your commute and offering the opportunity for exploration and adventure without damaging the planet – it could well be the best money you ever spend. Interested in buying an escooter? Check out our escooter model below.

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