Q: Has owning an e-bike changed your car driving habits?

Do you drive less?

  • I want to bike instead of drive, but the distances are too far.

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • Cars rule, bikes drool

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    30

James Kohls

Active Member
As I've said in several other posts, I bought my e-bike for transportation, not health, fitness, etc. I bought it because my car is now 17 years old. It still runs just fine, but I feel it is not long for this earth. My hopes are to avoid replacing it when it does die and at the very least, use it infrequently enough to extend its life significantly.

I feel I am in a particularly good situation compared to most. Pretty much everywhere I go on a regular basis is within a 10 mile radius. I have a few friends and relatives that are over 20 miles away, but those visits are only a few times a year. If I had to guess, I only make one trip longer than 10 miles (one way) per month, on average.

Within 3 miles, I have all the essentials from groceries to home goods to hardware. Within 10 miles, I have pretty much every major retailer and a major shopping mall, plus many many restaurants and entertainment venues. My commute to work is also less than 10 miles.

After nearly 3 months owning an e-bike, my gas usage has gone from filling up my tank once every 2-3 weeks to not having filled my tank once since I bought the e-bike. Three months without filling up the tank...even with most everything so close to me, that's something I've never come close to before.

I'm guessing most don't have quite that many close conveniences. But even if you don't, has owning an e-bike changed your car usage?
 

Berry78

Active Member
Well, I'm still in the shopping phase, so can't answer the question..

but did want to say that you may be killing your car by not driving it. Regular driving keeps the tires round, engine oily, etc. Not sure what the minimum miles driven should be...
 

James Kohls

Active Member
You bring up a very valid and important point for people considering sidelining their car.

I still use my car at least once week to keep things oily. I probably won't fill it up the tank very full next time I need to—I just happened to have a full tank when I bought my bike. I'm below 1/4 of a tank now. Mine also goes for long drives at least once a month. I've seen first hand what a sitting car can become. My grandfather became disabled for over a year before he passed away and refused to get rid of his car. It has 20,000 miles on it when he died and it was a total loss. All the gaskets and seals had dried up and cracked. The gas had gone bad. The oil turned to sludge The tires were ruined. Even the wipers had solidified to the windshield.

For those interested, here is a nice article about infrequent car use:

http://www.cars.com/go/advice/Story.jsp?section=cd&story=cd_infrequent&subject=cd_theft
 

pxpaulx

Well-Known Member
I had sold my truck and we were down to 1 car for a couple weeks. unfortunately a back injury forced me to get another cheaper 2nd vehicle - not the worst thing in the world, but frustrating as the short ride to the bus stop daily was an enjoyable part of my day! I'll be back at it as soon as I know I can (orthopedic surgeon couldn't figure out what is going on after 2 mri's on my back, now referred to a neurosurgeon). Thankfully not in pain, but my back is definitely not normal (some numbness in feet and a couple of other areas...not to be taken lightly).
 

Ann M.

Well-Known Member
@pxpaulx! Hope you're back in riding shape soon; I know that's got to be frustrating. Can you ride your bike a little modified in a stand like a trainer?
 

Hugh

Active Member
I,ve been riding my bike to work all summer so except for a couple of camping trips and a few shopping trips have rarely used either of my 2 cars. One is a 24 yr old Miata bought as a self retirement gift that gets infrequent use and the 2nd is a 4wd Nissan truck for those camping trips and winter use. Where i live we really have a winter, sometimes a few weeks of minus 30 below. I used to ride all winter but my fingers are hurting in cold weather now, so I might try it again but not too hopeful. Anyway I just filled the Miata yesterday for the 2nd time this summer to the tune of $24 and the Frontier has had its gas consumption cut a huge amount as well being topped up maybe once every 3 weeks except of course for those 3 camping trips this summer
 
i have been commuting to work for 2 years on 2 different e bikes, i put the same mileage on my ebike as i do my truck about 4000 miles a year. so i have cut my truck use in half and i dont like driving as much as riding just too paranoid about having it stolen to use it for all my trips.
 

Over50

Well-Known Member
No ebike yet so pardon my chiming in. Our 2nd car is a 2010 and we were starting to discuss replacement. I call it the '2nd' because we require 2 cars (commuting to work in different directions at different times). But the 2nd only accumulates about 9K miles per year. Getting the ebike and commute to work bug has made me think I can delay replacing that car for another year or hopefully two (dependent on how things go with a bike commute). And when I do replace, if the 9K per year drops to 7K per year thanks to the ebike, it will definitely impact the purchase decision (ie probably buy an older/cheaper used car (and maybe a better bike)).

I currently ride my regular bike for groceries quite often. And I think the ebike would extend my range and allow some additional car trips to be replaced with bike trips.
 

EddieJ

Well-Known Member
Sadly I need a van to carry out my work, but I have started to leave the van on site, and just ride in to and home from work as often as possible.

I now turn a 2 mile drive into a 10 plus mile off road adventure each day.

Today it was pouring hard with rain, long grass was making my legs soaking wet, and mud was being flung everywhere. I'm in heaven, and loving every second of it. :)

ebr 1.JPG ebr 2.JPG ebr 3.JPG
 

James Kohls

Active Member
No ebike yet so pardon my chiming in. Our 2nd car is a 2010 and we were starting to discuss replacement. I call it the '2nd' because we require 2 cars (commuting to work in different directions at different times). But the 2nd only accumulates about 9K miles per year. Getting the ebike and commute to work bug has made me think I can delay replacing that car for another year or hopefully two (dependent on how things go with a bike commute). And when I do replace, if the 9K per year drops to 7K per year thanks to the ebike, it will definitely impact the purchase decision (ie probably buy an older/cheaper used car (and maybe a better bike)).

I currently ride my regular bike for groceries quite often. And I think the ebike would extend my range and allow some additional car trips to be replaced with bike trips.

Getting an e-bike really helped me choose my bike versus my car for short trips (<10 miles). There were always excuses: too far, too slow, too windy, too hilly. I actually get bored in my car now. Riding a bike is much more fun. Especially riding an e-bike that takes out all the hard parts of cycling and just leaves the fun parts.
 
I'm not sure that now having a e-bike will make a huge difference to my using a car but I think it will certainly cut down on the local trips on my motorcycle.
 

harryS

Well-Known Member
I owned four cars 18 months ago, Now I'm down to two, but I still only ride bikes for fun. Never took one on an errand, unless ice cream runs count as errands.
 

harryS

Well-Known Member
Is that because of distance/time? Cargo capacity? Just convenience?

Home Depot and the supermarkets are only 2 miles away, but the access road is 45 mph with no sidewalks or shoulder. Too dangerous. Very little infrastructure on the public roads where I live. Good bike paths though.

The last time I rode on a rural type road, I heard a screech , glanced back, and saw a Jeep Cherokee sliding sideways. Driver didn't expect to see a bike, on a sunny day?
 

James Kohls

Active Member
The last time I rode on a rural type road, I heard a screech , glanced back, and saw a Jeep Cherokee sliding sideways. Driver didn't expect to see a bike, on a sunny day?
That's a good enough reason as any. Bummer. I ride on the road constantly, but luckily don't have many streets like that to contend with. In St. Paul, MN, where I live, we are still playing catch-up to our neighboring Minneapolis, but they are putting in new bike paths and bike lanes every year.
 

EriderM

Member
I ride mine as much as possible reducing car trips significantly! I have put over 1k miles on ebikes in the last 8 months. Winter is about to start, so we'll see if I can ride the bike through the cold.
 

ebikes rock

New Member
I've been shopping (drooling over) ebikes for several months. once my employment situation is finalized, I plan to pull the trigger on an ebike for me and wifey each. we already bike frequently, including work commute ...I actually made it a point to drive the station wagon on the highway over the weekend (GREAT problem to have, btw). we're looking at e-bikes as way to BIKE MORE, like for those "fringe trips" that are more than 3 miles away
 
James, I'm in the same situation than you are. I live in Paris, and everything, work, shops, friends, is under 10 miles away. Before buying an E-bike, I didn't use my car in Paris. I used a motorcycle. It was an old beauty but the very new regulations in Paris don't allow old vehicles to circulate.
I don't really know why I decided to get an E-bike, I could have bought a new motorcycle, but now, after 4 months I couldn't be happier. Riding an E-bike in the city is a new feeling, it's fun, no doubt and peaceful (sometimes).
 

Cnugget

Active Member
Trying my best to use the ebike before the car when possible. Intending to extend the life of my car, reduce emissions etc. Having an eBike makes for good entertainment value too. I tend to be OUT more now which can incur extra costs (dining, shopping).. So I guess it's good for the economy too but not quite for my pocket book as of yet. :p