Posted by E-bike Lovers on April 6, 2023 - Latest revision December 18, 2023  Reading time: minutes remaining

E-Bike Lovers Independent E-bike Buying Checklist

When buying an electric bicycle, consider the following checklist and flow chart to ensure you purchase a high-quality, safe, and suitable e-bike. Follow these steps to avoid buying a product that doesn’t meet your needs.

Tip: Download the decision tree and bring the list to the bike shop as a handy reference guide.

© www.ebikelovers.com

List of Questions Before Buying an E-bike

step 1

Can I test-ride the e-bike?

Always test-ride a new e-bike. If you buy online, ensure you can test-ride the e-bike and return it free of charge. We recommend only buying online if a network of e-bike shops services the e-bike.


YES, I can test ride the e-bike. Please continue to the next question.

NO - STOP, go to another vendor and start the checklist again.

step 2

Can I service the e-bike?

Familiarize yourself with the recommended service intervals for your e-bike. Some manufacturers suggest a basic tune-up every six months or 750-1,250 miles.

Regular maintenance tasks may include adjusting brakes, tuning gears, lubricating chains and cables, and inspecting bearings and battery connections.

 
Don’t buy an e-bike that cannot or will not be serviced by a bike shop.


YES
, I can service the e-bike. Please continue to the next question.

NO - STOP, go to another vendor and start the checklist again.

step 3

Is the e-bike UL 2849 certified?

UL safety standards: Look only for e-bikes that meet UL 2849 safety standards, which focus on electrical systems in e-bikes.

 UL 2849 is a safety standard issued by Underwriters Laboratories, an independent organization that tests and certifies products for safety.


YES
, the e-bike is UL 2849 certified. Please continue to the next question.

NO - STOP, go to another vendor and start the checklist again.

step 4

Is the e-bike battery UL 2271 certified?

UL safety standards: Look only for e-bikes that meet UL 2271 safety standards, which focus on e-bike batteries.

 UL 2271 is a safety standard issued by Underwriters Laboratories, an independent organization that tests and certifies products for safety.


YES
, the e-bike is UL 2271 certified. Please continue to the next question.

NO - STOP, go to another vendor and start the checklist again.

step 5

Is the brand of the brakes disclosed?

Be suspicious of the manufacturers’ decision not to disclose the brand of the brakes.

Brakes: Choose an e-bike with reliable brakes to ensure safe stopping.

Look for bikes with hydraulic disc brakes, which provide better performance and control, especially when riding at higher speeds.


YES
, the brand of the brakes is disclosed, and they are manufactured by a reputable manufacturer. Please continue to the next question.

NO - STOP, go to another vendor and start the checklist again.

step 6

Is the brand of the batteries disclosed?

Be suspicious of the manufacturers’ decision not to disclose the brand of the batteries.

Recognizable brand names often indicate higher quality and better performance.


YES
, the brand of the batteries is disclosed, they are UL certified and manufactured by a reputable manufacturer. Please continue to the next question.

NO - WAIT, ask the seller why the brand is not disclosed. Go to another vendor and start the checklist again if you don't get a satisfactory answer on why the UL certified battery has no brand name.

step 7

Is the brand of the e-bike motor disclosed?

Be suspicious of the manufacturers’ decision not to disclose the brand of the motor.

Recognizable brand names often indicate higher quality and better performance.


YES
, the brand of the motor is disclosed and manufactured by a reputable manufacturer. Please continue to the next question.

NO - WAIT, ask the seller why the brand of the motor is not disclosed. Go to another vendor and start the checklist again if you don't get a satisfactory answer on why the motor has no brand name.

step 8

Is the brand of the e-bike suspension front fork, if any, disclosed?

Be suspicious of the manufacturers’ decision not to disclose the brand of the suspension fork.

Recognizable brand names often indicate higher quality and better performance.


YES
, the brand of the front fork is disclosed and is manufactured by a reputable manufacturer. Please continue to the next question.

NO - WAIT, ask the seller why the brand of the suspension fork is not disclosed. Go to another vendor and start the checklist again if you don't get a satisfactory answer on why the front fork has no brand name.

step 9

Is the class of e-bike disclosed?

E-bike class: Determine the e-bike class you need. There are three main classes of e-bikes:


Class 1: Pedal-assist with no throttle, max assisted speed of 20 mph.

Class 2: Throttle-assisted with a max speed of 20 mph.

Class 3: Pedal-assist with no throttle, max assisted speed of 28 mph.


YES
, the e-bike class is disclosed. Please continue to the next question.

NO - WAIT, ask the seller why the class is not disclosed. Go to another vendor and start the checklist again if you don't get a satisfactory answer on why the e-bike's class is not disclosed.

step 10

Has the e-bike a user manual?

Ensure the e-bike has a user/operation manual that provides essential information about the product and its features.

YES, the e-bike comes with a manual. Please continue to the next question.

NO - WAIT, ask the seller for the manual. Go to another vendor and start the checklist again if you don't get a manual.

step 11

Does the e-bike have quality tires?

Ensure the e-bike is equipped with high-quality tires that are suitable for your intended use and riding conditions. Recognizable brand names often indicate higher quality and better performance.

YES, the e-bike has quality tires. Please continue to the next question.

NO - WAIT, ask the seller for quality tires. Go to another vendor and start the checklist again if you don't get quality tires.

step 12

Does the e-bike have a warranty?

Review the warranty offered by the manufacturer and ensure there is adequate customer support for any issues or maintenance needs.

YES, the e-bike has a warranty. Please continue to the next question.

NO - WAIT, ask the seller for the warranty. Go to another vendor and start the checklist again if you don't get a warranty on your e-bike.

step 13

Does the e-bike have a registered serial number?

Has the retailer registered the e-bike with a national bicycle registry such as https://bikeindex.org

YES, please continue to the next question.

NO - WAIT, ask the seller for the registration or register the e-bike yourself.

step 14

Does the seller have a return policy?

Avoid unfavorable return policies such as restocking fees.

YES, the seller has a return policy. Please continue to the next question.

NO - WAIT, ask the seller for the return policy. Go to another vendor and start the checklist again if you cannot return the e-bike under a reasonable return policy.

step 15

Does the seller participate in a battery recycling program?

Avoid unfavorable battery return policies.

YES, the seller has a battery recycling program. Please continue to the next question.

NO - WAIT, ask the seller for the battery recycling program.

Hooray, you made it through the checklist!

Enjoy your new e-bike!

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