FAQApril 28, 2023 2023-11-23 0:40
How do e-bikes work?
All electric bikes can be pedaled, just like regular bikes. But depending on the type of e-bike, you may not need to pedal at all. Some electric bikes have a feature called pedal-assist, where the electric motor gives you a boost as you pedal forward, making your ride easier. The pedal crank bearing senses how hard you’re pedaling. Then, it gives your ride an electric boost until you hit 20 mph. This type of e-bike is called pedelec, and all of Smalo’s e-bikes are pedelec.
How to shop for an e-bike that's right for me?
This is a massive topic, one that warrants a blog post in itself. Here we’ll focus on two factors to give you a head start: style and price.
First, style. If you adore riding trails and adventuring off-road, you can’t go wrong with an electric mountain bike. If you want to do some serious downhill mountain biking, a downhill electric mountain bike is the way to go.
If your goal is to cycle as a hobby and you ride mostly on paved streets, an electric road bike will tick all your boxes. These are designed for ultra-efficient pedaling and are usually lighter than other styles. Often, you can ride them easily without pedal assist, which is ideal for cyclists that only want a helping hand uphill.
Consider an electric city bike if you plan on e-biking your daily commute or casually riding around your neighborhood. These are all about maximum comfort and style. Typically, they feature wide, plush seats (yes, please) and higher handlebars that sweep back toward the rider. The pedals generally sit further forward, allowing the rider to rest both feet flat on the ground at stops.
If you plan to put your e-bike in a car trunk or carry it onto the bus or train, a folding e-bike is likely in your future.
And second, price point. The electrical and bicycle components are what make or break your e-bike’s quality. On the lower end of the scale, we have budget e-bikes ($500 to $1,000). These are great for those wanting to experiment with the concept of e-bikes.
One level up, we have the mid-range category ($1,000 to $2,500), perfect for the committed rider that wants quality without the used-car price tag.
Then, we have premium ($2,500 to $5,000). You’ll start to see big-name, mid-drive motors in this category like Bosch, Shimano, Brose, Yamaha, and Panasonic.
Finally, we’re in the big league. The ultra-premium realm ($5,000 to $10,000) is home to e-bikes designed for serious enthusiasts. There’s no messing around here.
Can i still ride my e-bike when it's out of battery?
You certainly can! One of the best things about e-bikes is that it still functions like a mechanical bike even if it is out of battery. It’s a win-win.
Can I ride a Smalo e-bike in the rain or on a cold winter day?
Absolutely, and we salute your commitment, resolve, and motivation. Smalo e-bikes are water-resistant, so riding in light rain and snow is no problem at all. Just make sure the motor isn’t submerged in water. A lower temperature may affect battery performance and range, so keep that in mind. As always, ride safe!
What’s the maximum assist speed?
As a class-1 e-bike manufacturer, Smalo currently carries e-bikes that can boost up to 20 mph when pedal assist is on.
What’s your range?
It varies between models, so check each product’s detail page. In addition, several factors will affect the range you can squeeze out of your bike, including:
- Rider weight and cargo
- Style of riding
- Traffic conditions
How do I recharge my e-bike's battery? How long does it take to fully recharge?
It’s as easy as charging your smartphone. Either plug your bike or connect your battery (if it’s removable) to a power outlet. It’ll take around 2.5 to 3.5 hours to reach full charge, depending on the model and the battery size. For example, it takes 3h40min to fully recharge the LX2.
Can I remove the battery?
You can’t remove the battery on the LX2, but you can on the PX2.
What size e-bike battery is right for me?
It depends on the combination of some factors. That includes your riding style, the distance of your longest expected trip, the terrain of your regular route, and the total cargo weight you often travel with. Questions still? Not a problem. We’re here to help 24/7!
How do i make my e-bike battery last longer?
Here are our top 10 tips for prolonging the life of your battery:
- Reduce weight.
- Use the right tires.
- Ride a variety of terrain.
- Pedal smoothly.
- Don’t regularly fully discharge your battery.
- Use the charger provided.
- Stay away from extreme temperatures. Batteries love room temperature.
- Store your battery in a cool, dry place at 32ºF to 68ºF, and if you’re storing it for an extended period, then leave it 30 to 60 percent charged.
- Don’t jet wash the battery.
What are the differences between font, mid and rear motor?
The placement of the e-bike motor affects the riding experience, ease of maintenance, and costs. Riding a front motor drive e-bike feels like you’re being pulled forward. The main center of gravity sits behind the front wheel, so you might experience a few issues when climbing hills. On the plus side, because the front motor system is isolated from the rest of the bike’s parts, servicing the bike without interfering with the motor is a whole lot easier. Another pro is the price tag. E-bikes with front motor drive are usually the cheapest.
That being said, rear motor drive often gives you the best bang for your buck. Not only does it have a better-positioned center of gravity, but the resulting pushing sensation also makes riding more responsive and natural.
Middle motor e-bikes give you the most comfortable ride, thanks to the low, middle-positioned center of gravity. Despite this, climbing hills or cruising over long, flat stretches may feel uncomfortable, as you’ll need to shift gears more carefully. Middle-motor technology demands the least maintenance but is usually the most expensive because of the design requirements.
Pedal assist (pedelec) or throttle control? Which is right for me?
It depends on your style and how much exercise you want out of your ride. With a throttle, you are in control of how fast you travel without pedaling. In contrast, pedal assist only works when you do, so your speed comes down to your effort.
We always recommend pedal-assist over throttle. It gives you more control over your experience, making your ride more enjoyable and satisfying. However, if you want to ride longer distance, throttles take some of the strain off your knees.
Torque sensor or a cadence sensor?
Different types of sensors affect the type of pedal assist your bike will have. The sensor is what takes the pedaling motion and translates it into power pulsing through the motor.
Your motor will give you the power you crave if its cranks are moving with a cadence sensor, but it doesn’t know how fast you’re moving the pedals. To increase or decrease the assist level, you’ll need to manually dial up or down.
You don’t need much pressure to employ a cadence sensor, which is one of its biggest selling points. For recreational riders or riders with tender knees, a cadence-based e-bike may offer the most comfortable ride. Bonus: they’re simpler and more affordable.
A torque sensor detects how hard you’re pedaling and leverages that information to calculate how much power to supply. The only way you’ll get more power is by pedaling harder. Although a more advanced and expensive option, e-bikes with a torque sensor give a more natural, seamless ride.
Mechanical disc brakes or hydraulic brakes?
When it comes to performance, hydraulic disc brakes outshine mechanical disc brakes across the board. Hydraulic disc brakes deliver better modulation, increased stopping power, and less everyday wear and tear.
Servicing-wise, hydraulic disc brakes are more difficult to maintain than mechanical disc brakes but need less regular attention than their mechanical cousins. For off-road riders who want the best braking performance and have a little extra cash to splash, hydraulic disc brakes are the way to go. For casual riders and commuters, mechanical disc brakes will get the job done.
What is the difference between electronic and mechanical shifting systems? Which one is right for me?
Mechanical shifting systems are fun! Some cyclists prefer the greater tactile feel when shifting. They are cheaper and easier to fix.
Electronic shifting systems provide switches, use motor and electronic signals to shift gears instead of having the rider mechanically move the derailleurs through levers and cables. Electronic shifting systems, on the other hand, require less effort from the riders’ hands. Depending on the rider, some might find clicking switches more fun. They would be more expensive but tend to need less frequent maintenance.
What is the difference between derailleurs and hub gears? Which one is right for me?
Derailleurs consist of a chain, sprockets of different sizes, and a mechanism to move the chain between sprockets. Hub gears seal all the components inside a unit.
Hub gears tend to be heavier, but are much easier to maintain and chains last longer. Derailleurs need cleaning and lubricating on a regular basis. The LX2 has hub gears.
On derailleurs, shifting gears is slightly more mechannically efficient. You can get much greater gear range with derailleurs with a lower price, and they are easier to repair. The PX2 is equipped with derailleurs.
It all comes down to your preferences!
What's so special about Smalo Smart Mode?
Smart Mode intuitively and intelligently adjusts the pedal assist as you ride. It calculates the level of support you need by evaluating both the riding conditions and pedaling effort.
Simply focus on pedaling and enjoying the scenery; Smart Mode will do its magic to keep your riding experience comfortable!
What are e-bike "classes" and under which classes are Smalo e-bikes?
E-bikes are designated as class 1, 2, or 3. These classes vary between state laws and determine where you can ride. Here’s a quick rundown.
Class 1 e-bikes are limited to a top speed of 20 mph, and the motor only fires up when you pedal. Most municipalities treat class 1 e-bikes like regular old bicycles.
Class 2 e-bikes are also capped at 20 mph, but they have throttles that work when you’re not pedaling. Most class 2 bikes also offer assisted pedaling. Just like class 1, you can usually ride class 2 e-bikes in the same places as analog bikes.
Now, things get confusing. Class 3 e-bikes can go 28 mph and must have a speedometer. They may or may not have a throttle — it varies by state. In California, for example, class 3 e-bikes can’t have throttles. In other states, throttles are permitted but capped at 20 mph, while pedal-assisted electric power continues at 28 mph. In most states, you can ride a class 3 bike in road lanes and bike-only lanes on the shoulder of the road (AKA curb-to-curb). You can’t take them on bike paths away from the road or on multi-use trails shared by pedestrians. In other words, no Sunday sessions riding around your local park.
At the moment, Smalo only carries class 1 e-bikes.
What are some e-bike regulations in my state?
Regulations change all the time, so get the latest from your local Department of Transportation. For example, most states treat class 1 e-bikes as regular bicycles but some require a license.
Do I need a license to ride an electric bike?
Mostly no but sometimes yes. Some states do require you to have a license to ride an electric bike. Always check with your local authority for the latest updates.
Do I need the app to ride my Smalo e-bike?
It’s not necessary, but it does offer the very best riding experience. Both Smalo e-bikes are class 1 e-bikes, so they function like a regular bike if that’s what you want. Our app gives you insight into your ride, including your traveling speed, heart rate, battery level, and even weather forecasts. Learn more about our app here.
Do e-bikes need more maintenance or safety features than regular bikes?
The short answer is no. Just like traditional bicycles, regular mechanical check-ups and repairs protect you in the saddle.
Thanks to innovative designs, electrical components are usually well-protected against rain and splashes. As long as you don’t submerge the motor in water or leave your bike outside in the rain or snow, you’ll be golden. If your bike does get wet, a quick wipe-down works wonders and extends its lifespan.
If you have a gear hub shifting system, it’ll likely enjoy a maintenance-free life. Plus, proper battery care will keep your battery in top condition for longer.
E-bikes don’t really need extra safety features, either. But when you boost your ride electrically, safe riding behavior becomes even more critical. Just like you would when operating any other vehicle, share your road, keep your tires properly inflated, and be a defensive driver.
Can I customize or upgrade my Smalo e-bike?
Definitely. If you know what you want, you can pretty much customize your ride to your heart’s content. Check back for our range of compatible accessories.
If you go rogue with other alterations, you will void your warranty coverage. And remember to check and comply with local regulations before you mod your ride.
How to store my bike and keep it in top condition during colder months?
Wipe it down and store away in room temperature indoor. To better protect the electric components, keep it dry and maintain the battery level at 60-80% full. Stay away from any physical or chemincal hazard.
How to look after my e-bike?
Nothing too tricky. The mechanical bike components don’t require any special treatment. Simply care for them the same way you would a traditional bicycle. Things like checking your brake pads every 621 miles, when you feel a loss of braking strength, or when you hear a creaking noise. Your local bike shop can perform repairs and check-ups, too.
When it comes to the electric components on your e-bike, there’s no extra work on your end, as long as you purchase from a reputable manufacturer. One of the best ways to ensure your battery stands the test of time is to store it indoors. Batteries drain faster in cold weather. You’ll also want to keep your motor away from the rain.
If you run into any technical issues with your bike’s electronic components, get in touch with our Support team. We’re always happy to help!
How to travel with my e-bike?
By car: If the e-bike does not fit inside the car, you can use a roof or rear bike rack that has sufficient weight capacity and complies with your local laws.
By train: It is best to double check with the train company. For example, Amtrak allows e-bikes under 50lb as checked baggage and on trains with walk-on bicycle service.
By plane: Smalo e-bikes’ batteries all exceed The Federal Aviation Administration’s Lithium-ion battery limits, therefore traveling via passenger planes is prohibited. You should look into shipping methods. Regulations may change, so a rule-of-thumb is to always double-check the regulations before you travel!
Can you still get fit on an e-bike?
It depends on your e-bike. If you get a pedelec (or a class 1 e-bike in most states), then yes, you will absolutely get fit. Remember, you still have to pedal to propel a pedelec forward — you just get the bonus of riding with power assist when and where you want it.
In what ways can e-bikes replace cars?
Cars are out. E-bikes are in.
E-bikes are a great commuting alternative. They are eco-friendly, consuming less energy than cars when traveling the same distance. You can level up your incidental exercise while arriving faster with less effort (and less sweat!). E-bikes are small and nimble, so they navigate traffic jams with ease and need significantly less parking space (less space = fewer and cheaper fees). E-bikes also cost a whole lot less to purchase and maintain than cars.
In short, they’re better for you, your wallet, and the planet.
Are e-bikes safe?
Absolutely! E-bikes are as safe as you are, as long as you buy from a reputable manufacturer. That way, you can ride easy knowing your safety-related features, materials, and components, as well as the bike’s structural durability, are tough enough to withstand whatever the road throws its way.
Can I test ride Smalo e-bikes?
Keen to take LX2 or PX2 for a spin? We encourage you to test ride at home. If it’s not the ride for you, we’ll happily offer a free refund within 14 days. See our return policy here.
Alternatively, come say hi at our showroom in San Jose, CA. Give them a call to make sure they have your preferred bike onsite.
Why an e-bike?
There are so many benefits of using e-bikes. They’re a great replacement of cars and they’re fun. Depending on the type of e-bikes you get, they can keep you fit while getting you to places faster and less sweaty.
How to turn off theft alarm?
Press the lock icon on your app to unlock your bike and it will also turn off the theft alarm.
What's your return policy?
E-bike riding is all in the feel, and that’s why we offer free returns within 14 days. We encourage you to test ride at home. If it’s not the right fit for you, reach out, and our team will organize a free return. All you need to do is pack up the bike in its original packaging with everything included and wait for UPS to come and collect it. See our return policy here.
If you are ready to initiate a return, contact us today.
I would like to test ride, but the showroom is too far from me? Any suggestions?
Why not test ride at home? If the e-bike is not right for you for any reason, send it back for free in 14 days. Nothing to lose and no questions asked. See our return policy here.
Can I place an order and pick up at your store?
Get on the saddle faster with free in-store or curbside pickup. Currently Smalo offers one location in San Jose, CA for pickup. Contact us today to learn more.
What payment methods does Smalo accept?
We accept Visa, MasterCard, maestro, American Express, DISCOVERY, JCB, and UnionPay cards. You can also pay with PayPal. When selecting this option at checkout, you will be directed to the PayPal site to complete your purchase before returning to Smalo.
After placing my order, how long does it take for my bike to be delivered?
We’re as keen as you are to see you riding your new bike. We work with UPS to deliver your ride within California in 10 business days. You’ll receive a tracking code via email once your order has been shipped. For more shipping information, click here.
Do I need an e-bike insurance?
In most states, no. But policies may change over time. Always check in with your local authority for the most up-to-date information.
Does the federal government offer a federal tax credit for e-bikes?
The short answer is no. E-bike tax credit was a part of the Build Back Better bill. This bill was passed by the House of Representatives in November 2021 and is currently being evaluated at the Senate (as of March 2023). It may take up to 11 months until we have a verdict, so don’t hold your breath.
Do you provide financing?
Yes we do. Choose Klarna during checkout and you’ll be directed to the Klarna site to complete your purchase before returning to Smalo.
What's your warranty policy?
We stand by the quality of our products. The following warranty is only valid for the original buyer:
- Frame: 5 years
- Front fork without shock absorber: 5 years
- Electric components, such as instruments, controllers, motors, and batteries: 2 years
- Non-consumables: 1 year
See our full warranty policy here.
What do I do if my Smalo e-bike gets damaged during shipping?
How often should I bring my e-bike to a bike shop for maintenance?
The answer depends on how you use your e-bike and how often.
If you ride hard and tackle dirt jumps with an e-mountain bikes weekly, you need a few more check-ups than the rider who commutes with LX2 on a flat city road.
As a general rule of thumb, look after mechanical bike components just like a traditional bike. For example, check your brake pads every 621 miles or as soon as you feel a loss of braking strength or hear a creaky noise. Your local bike shop can perform these types of repairs. The electric components on your e-bike don’t usually require maintenance, as long as you follow the instructions in the quick start guide. When in doubt, contact us for details. We’re on standby 24/7!
Where do I go for servicing my Smalo e-bike?
For issues with the mechanical components, visit any reputable bike shop near you. They can perform check-ups and repairs. Batteries and e-bike motors are usually sealed, so there’s very little to worry about in terms of maintenance. If you do notice a problem, please get in touch with us rather than attempting to fix anything yourself.
How do i get in touch?
We love to chat. We’re available 24/7 via email, live chat, and phone. Or, slide into our DMs anytime! You can also book an appointment to visit us at our San Jose showroom during business hours.
Which app works with my Smalo e-bike?
Download Smalo app in your app store to pair your Smalo bikes. The app gives you detailed insight into your ride, including your range, trip planning, weather forecast, riding speed, and more. Smalo app is compatible with smartphones running iOS 16.0, Android 7.0 or later.
What kind of data does the app track during my rides?
More data empowers a better ride. To equip you with detailed riding information, our app tracks:
- Travel distance
- Total riding time
- Power speed
- Estimated calories burned
Like you, we value personal privacy and security. All data is stored locally on your phone, so only you have access to it.
I have connection issues with the app.
No one likes fussy tech. Here are our troubleshooting tips:
1. Make sure the internet, Bluetooth, and GPS connections are turned on and working properly.
2. Make sure your e-bike battery is on.
3. Restart the app and connect again.
4. If it still doesn’t work, uninstall and reinstall the app.
5. Contact us if nothing works.
As a premium e-bike brand, BESV has electrified global riders since 2013. Sold in 500+ stores worldwide, BESV e-bikes are built to amaze and endure for years to come. As BESV’s sub-brand, getting a Smalo means your journey is powered by beautiful design, high-quality components, meticulous execution, and world-class customer service. Come experience amazing rides with Smalo!
Looking for a showroom near you?
At the moment, Smalo work with a showroom in San Jose, CA. If you’d like to stop by for a test ride or pickup, contact us now!