What is Pedal Assist and How Does it Work?
By Sam Hartman
Are you an ebike owner or curious about the workings of electric bikes? Either way, you’ve probably heard the term “pedal assist.”
In this article, we’re diving into the awesome world of pedal-assist systems and their perks for all you ebike enthusiasts. At Go Ride Bikes, we’ve got your back on all things electric bike – with our guidance, you’ll be a pedal-assist pro by the time you reach the end. Let’s roll together!.
What is Pedal Assist?
Pedal assist is the operating mode on an ebike that, once activated, starts the motor to boost your speed and reduce effort while pedaling.
The system enables you to cruise along at your preferred speed without taking too much strain. Once you switch it on, you’ll feel a slight bump in speed and power, letting you go further and faster without getting tired.
Modern ebikes have different levels of pedal assist. A higher level will make pedaling very easy, while a lower level allows you to get a moderate workout, extend your ebike’s battery life, and increase your range of distance.
We’ll soon get into the nitty-gritty of how these bikes work, but, in basic terms, the bike uses sensors that monitor your pedaling power. The motor kicks in accordingly to provide you with assistance based on your chosen level.
Check out Go Ride Bikes’ ebike range calculator to help in finding your ideal model.
How Does Pedal Assist Work?
The electric motor is the heart of the ebike. It assists the rider when pedaling to reduce the load.
The motor can either be on the wheels or centered on the frame. On the rear wheel, the motor interacts with the gears to provide traction. When it is centered, it interacts with the pedals, offering stability and power.
The sensor is responsible for activating the motor to provide pedal assistance. There are two kinds of sensors: a cadence sensor and a torque sensor.
Most ebikes have this kind of pedal-assist sensor, as it’s straightforward and relatively affordable.
The H6 MAX has a flexible hydraulic front fork that takes the worst sting out of bumps, even when taking the bike off-road. You can adjust the stiffness, depending on how much you weigh and your riding style. We loved this customizable feature as it always ensured a comfortable ride.
It also comes with double rear shocks which are designed for urban and rural environments, ensuring a stable ride no matter where you go.
The battery is the power source for the motor.
Most ebikes make use of lithium-ion batteries, as they are sustainable and lightweight. The voltage of the battery will determine how far you can ride on a single charge, ranging from 25 to 65 miles – although some ebikes do go further.
The control unit is fitted on all modern ebikes. It monitors the battery, motor, and charging efficiency, as well as allowing you to set your level of pedaling assistance.
Benefits of Pedal Assist
1. Reduced physical effort
You can easily cycle to work or the shop without becoming hot and bothered. By adjusting the pedal assistance level, you can decide how much of a workout you get.
Find yourself pedaling into a headwind or uphill? With pedal assist, this isn’t a problem, as the bike will give you that oomph you need.
2. Extended range
3. Great cardio workout
You may not be pedaling very hard, but even with pedal assistance, you’re still getting decent, low-impact cardio exercise, which benefits your health and wellness.
Ebikes work your core and legs, and give your heart and lungs some exercise, making it ideal for those who want to get the blood pumping. By selecting your pedal assistance level, you can adjust how tough your workout is.
4. Eco-friendly choice
5. Great for all terrains
These bikes do well on paved roads, and certain ebikes with fat tires can give you a boost when you’re off-roading as well.
Pedal Assist vs. Throttle Activated Electric Bike
Both throttle-activated and pedal-assist ebikes let you cruise with the help of an electric motor, but there’s a small difference.
Throttle-activated bikes are perfect for a laid-back ride. With the throttle mode, you can enjoy a relaxing cruise without even pedaling!
An electric bike with pedal assistance still requires pedaling to keep you going.
Some electric bikes have both throttles and pedal assist.
Does pedal assist make you faster?
Are pedal assist bikes worth it?
Can I turn off pedal assist and ride the e-bike like a regular bike?
Are pedal assist e-bikes street legal?
Can I retrofit my regular bike with pedal assist?
There are plenty of electric bike models on the market, and knowing the lingo can help you find the right bike. Now that you understand bike pedal assist and how it compares to throttle-activated bikes, you can go out and get a bike that works for you.