Certified Pre-Owned E-bike: how to make the right choice?
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Choosing your Certified Pre-Owned e-bike is not so simple. Battery capacity, location of the motor... There are many technical criteria to consider when buying a second-hand e-bike. Your intended use is also very important. You may want to cycle to work without getting too tired. Or you may want to push yourself on steep slopes and winding roads with a little help...
How to choose the right electric bike for your needs? Why is second-hand a good idea when it comes to buying an electric gravel bike or an electric mountain bike? Follow us, we'll give you all the keys you need to make the right choice. ⚡
How to choose the right motor and battery for your Certified Pre-Owned e-bike?
This is obviously one of the most important parts in the smooth running of an electric bike. Today, heavy and harmful lead or nickel batteries are a thing of the past: all manufacturers have adopted lithium-ion batteries.
Not only are they considerably lighter and more compact, they also have a much higher capacity.
Since the choice of material is not in question, the comparison must be based on autonomy. For this, nothing could be simpler. Just look at the number of watt-hours (Wh): this is the unit used to measure a battery's capacity. To put it briefly, it's the maximum power that can be developed by a battery for one hour.
Unsurprisingly, the higher the price of an electric bike, the higher the power output of the battery it carries. To give you an idea, the best batteries exceed 700 Wh, while those of entry-level bikes are barely above 300 Wh.
This is the other essential component of an ebike. Having a battery full of energy is useless without a motor to transform it into movement...
Two types of motor are used by most manufacturers: the central motor and the rear-wheel motor.
The central motor or crankset motor
A central motor triggers its assistance as soon as you start pedaling. Thanks to a power sensor, it delivers its energy in a linear fashion. Placed directly at the bottom bracket, the central motor adds to the rider's natural power. All this is transmitted to the rear wheel in the conventional way, i.e. via the chain. This system is quite silent.
The advantage is essentially a more natural, almost quiet pedaling feel.
A pedal motor is also more powerful, making it possible to tackle more difficult paths. Consequence: it puts more strain on the braking system.
It could be argued that central motors are heavier than rear-wheel motors, but this difference is largely offset by their greater power.
The rear motor or hub motor
Here, power is delivered directly to the rear wheel, with no chain transmission. Assistance is provided in stages according to bike speed and wheel rotation speed. This is far less linear and natural, but has the advantage of accelerating quickly. Handy in town when you have to restart several times after a stop or a red light...
A rear-wheel motor is also easier to maintain because it's a less complex system, with no power sensor, for example.
A few positive points that shouldn't overshadow its many disadvantages: a less balanced bike with more weight on the rear, jerky power delivery and, above all, virtually no help on steep roads.
It's also worth noting that repair work on the rear wheel is a little more complicated when a motor is located in the hub.
Which certified pre-own -bbike is right for you?
When it comes to choosing an electric bike, you obviously need to consider your riding habits and how you intend to use it. Let's take a look at which e-bike best suits your needs.
For daily use
Most electric bikes sold today are used for commuting or short rides. In these cases, a low-power bike with a rear motor is more than sufficient.
Low-maintenance, low-risk speed and not a drop of sweat when you get to work... that's all you need from these entry-level bikes. Just remember to plug in the Battery in the evening.
☝ A word of warning, however: electric bikes can become quite addictive. Many people have increased the number of kilometers they've cycled since they've been fitted with a pedaling aid.
However, entry-level bikes quickly show their limits when regularly used over long distances. Before rushing out to buy an inexpensive electric bike, think about all the short car or foot journeys that could be replaced by a bike ride... A little extra investment can change your everyday life.
For your own pleasure
Contrary to what you may sometimes hear, electric bikes can also be used for sporting purposes. Indeed, the major brands have gradually developed a whole range of high-performance electric bikes.
Thanks to these top-of-the-range electric bikes, you'll be able to go beyond your limits and take on some very challenging trails, all the while benefiting from a carefully calibrated electric assistance system. You'll be able to enjoy riding at speeds you'd never be able to reach on your own.
For this, you'll need to opt for a pedal-mounted motor coupled to an electric motor. Battery of at least 600 Wh. With this power, most of the time you'll be riding gravels or mountainbike because there's no point in having that many watts to fetch Sunday croissants on a city bike 🥐
These models are obviously very expensive... The good news is that by opting for a Certified Pre-Owned bike you can save (a lot) of money.
⏩ Find out more about our tips for buying a electric mountain bike or an electric gravel !
To go the distance
If you're a fan of ultra-distance or bikepacking there's no doubt about it: this is the electric gravel bike for you!
A little help from the motor can extend the distance covered. You don't necessarily have to keep it running all the time, but you can save a lot of energy by taking advantage of the assistance in bumps.
Why choose a Certified Pre-Owned e-bike rather than a new one?
Unbeatable value for money
With a price difference of between 20% and 70%, an e-bike refurbished by professional mechanics is considerably cheaper. In our selection of used electric bikes you'll even find models that have never been ridden. In most cases, they're still covered by the manufacturer's warranty, in addition to the standard warranty (which we'll tell you about next!).
A smaller ecological footprint
As is often the case, economy rhymes with ecology...
Of course, a trip by bike (new or otherwise) will always be more environmentally virtuous than a trip by car. But that doesn't mean the bicycle industry is neutral for the planet.
A few figures... Every year, two to three million new bicycles are sold in France (including around 20% electric bikes, which require enormous resources to manufacture their batteries).
However, a study by Trek (one of the few brands to have attempted the difficult task of calculating the carbon footprint of its products) has estimated that the manufacture of its bikes generates between 116 and 229 kg of CO2, depending on the model. In other words, 600 to 1200 km flown per new bike! 😱
By choosing a certified pre-owned ebike, you save yourself a nice flight from Lille to Ajaccio... And for that, the planet will be very grateful... 🌍