Very popular, the electric skateboard is a very trendy means of transport, ecological, and pleasant to use. Admittedly, the concept is not new, but the first electric skateboards were bulky and weighed more than 25 kg! Thanks to the new generation of electric motors and Li-ion batteries, e-skates have become lighter and more efficient.
So, what are the points to consider when choosing an electric skateboard? Answer in this article!
The weight of the electric skateboard
You should always consider the weight of the electric skateboard before making a purchase. Long and heavy electric skateboards are bulky and difficult to transport. On the other hand, lighter boards are often less comfortable and less equipped. Their load capacity is also limited.
If you use your electric skateboard for short distances and you have to take public transport or climb stairs, opt for a light and compact skateboard (under 5 kg). For sports use, weight and size are less of a priority than other criteria such as power, range, and wheels.
electric skateboard wheels
Virtually all electric skateboards use longboard wheels made of urethane or polyurethane . These have diameters that can go up to 7 inches, see more for longboards and all-terrain skateboards. They allow you to ride on paved roads as well as on rough terrain. That said, they certainly don't provide the same level of comfort as a scooter or electric bike.
To choose the right wheels for your electric skateboard , you must pay particular attention to two important criteria: the diameter and the hardness.
Small wheels offer several advantages. They are light, compact, and very handy. However, they can block easily in the presence of small obstacles (stones, small ditches, irregularities in the road, etc.). In addition, their top speed is often limited compared to larger wheels. Small wheels are particularly suitable for 100% urban use.
Large wheels are designed to roll at high speeds. They are more stable and more dynamic. In addition, they are more secure, especially if you are driving on a rough road. They are suitable for both urban and off-road use.
The hardness of the wheels
The hardness of the wheels is expressed in “Shore” . It usually appears on the wheel as an index consisting of a number followed by the letter A or “DU” . The closer the index is to 0, the softer the wheels. The closer it is to 100, the harder the wheels.
Generally, the softest wheels have a 75A rating. The hardest wheels have a rating of 100A. Some skate wheel manufacturers like Spitfire, Bones, Ricta or even OJ use an additional scale from 101A to 104A to describe wheel hardness.
Electric skate wheels with a rating of 75A to 85A (the softest) provide better grip. They are more comfortable and quieter. In addition, they better absorb shocks and irregularities in the ground. However, they wear out faster. Especially since they are not suitable for driving at high speed.
Wheels with a rating of 95A to 104A (the hardest) are designed to roll faster. They are distinguished by their high resistance and long service life . However, they are less comfortable than soft wheels.
Wheels with an index of 86A to 95A offer a good compromise between the characteristics of soft wheels and those of hard wheels. If you mainly use your electric skateboard to get around town, you should preferably opt for wheels in this category.
The autonomy of skateboarding
As a general rule, the larger and more efficient the battery, the better the battery life. It will therefore be necessary to make a compromise between performance and weight. A Li-ion battery with integrated controller supplied by a renowned manufacturer such as Samsung, LG, Panasonic , etc. should be preferred.
Of course, the level of autonomy depends on your use and the distance you plan to travel. In principle, an electric skateboard battery should offer a range of more than 20 km. Also remember to check the charging time. Skateboards that load quickly are preferred.
The power of electric skateboard motors varies between 100 and 2000 Watts. A 250 watt motor will be perfect for urban use on a flat surface. On the other hand, it is less efficient on off-road terrain or on a slope.
A 2000 Watt motor (like the Evolve skates ) is torquey enough to tackle hills and deliver fast acceleration and high speeds. Skateboards equipped with a dual motor drive system provide better traction. However, they are noisier and have a limited battery life.
The maximum speed of an electric skateboard
If you are a beginner, speed should not be the most important criterion for choosing an electric skateboard . On the other hand, if you are a thrill addict, you can choose a high performance electric skateboard!
Generally, most electric skateboards easily reach a speed of 25 km/h. Sophisticated models offer multiple riding modes to match power and charging settings to riding conditions.
On a skateboard, the pilot is less protected than on a bicycle or an electric scooter. Any accidents can have dramatic consequences. Hence the importance of checking the safety devices offered by the manufacturer before buying an e-skate online or in store.
First, make sure that the advertised braking distance is sufficient to quickly stop the skate if necessary. Also check whether the manufacturer offers an engine braking system with energy recovery. This system is very practical, as it optimizes not only the quality of braking, but also the autonomy of the battery. A lighting system on the skate is also an undeniable plus.
Most electric skateboards come with a portable wireless controller (remote control) . This controller displays the battery charge level, accelerates, decelerates, and activates the braking system.
Choose a model with a remote control equipped with a progressive accelerator allowing you to accelerate gently in order to maintain the stability of the skate. Some electric skateboards are equipped with a smartphone application offering many functionalities. Granted, most of these features aren't absolutely necessary, but they do give you the ability to further customize your ride settings.
Driving comfort is conditioned by several factors:
- The width of the deck.
- The size of the wheels.
- The hardness of the wheels.
- Engine positioning.
- Truck design, etc.
It is therefore advisable to choose a skate whose characteristics are adapted to your needs. In most cases, some features will have to be sacrificed for others.
Before ordering an electric skateboard, it is worth checking the quality of workmanship and materials. These two criteria largely determine the comfort and durability of the skate . Premium skateboard models are made of ultralight materials and have a better quality finish.
When buying an electric skateboard, pay particular attention to the customization options offered by the manufacturer. At a minimum, your electric skateboard should be compatible with other models of decks, trucks, and wheels. A manufacturer offering accessories to customize an electric skateboard looks more professional.
If you are considering ordering an electric skateboard, make sure the manufacturer offers good after-sales service.
Indeed, like all vehicles and electrical devices, your skateboard could eventually require maintenance and repair work. Hence the importance of choosing a brand reputed for the quality of its services.
Also remember to check the warranty conditions and the availability of spare parts and accessories.
Choosing an electric skateboard: what to remember!
To conclude this little electric skateboard buying guide, it is obvious that the technical characteristics determine the performance, comfort and safety of the skateboard.
In addition, be aware that people who are new to skateboarding are the most exposed to accidents. It is therefore necessary to take all the necessary precautions to ensure driving safety.