What Is Pedal Assist And How Does It Work?
Updated: Jul 9
You may have heard about all the benefits of riding an electric bike and that they assist your pedal power. But, if you are uninitiated, you may not know how they work. At SDREAM, we want you to be fully informed about electric bikes, so in this post, we will answer the question of what is pedal assist and how does it work?
What Is What Is Pedal Assist Exactly?
Pedal assist is the main feature of an electric bike. As you ride, an electric motor engages to amplify your pedal power. The idea is to make pedalling much easier, but electric bikes have different levels of pedal assist. You can choose a high level of assist, which makes your rides effortless. Alternatively, you can select a lower pedal assist level to make your ride more of a workout, save your battery, and extend your range.
If you are familiar with cycling, you will find it to be a natural transition when you first ride a pedal assist bike. The main difference is that as the motor seamlessly kicks in, it will accelerate more quickly. You will also experience a much higher level of torque than normal.
How Does It Work?
A pedal assist bike uses a cadence sensor, which is built into the bike's drivetrain.
When you pedal, the sensor monitors each revolution of the pedals. It then sends a signal to the electric motor to tell it how much assistance to give you based on your chosen assistance level.
What Are the Pedal Assist Benefits?
There are many benefits of riding a pedal assist bike, and they are great for all sorts of people.
If you want to ride faster, further, or make light work of hills, a pedal assist bike is an excellent investment. Also, pedal assist bikes are great for giving independence to people with mobility issues.
Pedal assist bikes are also great for exercise. With the different pedal assist modes, you can choose how hard you want to work. Therefore, you can tailor your rides to suit your energy and fitness levels.
Pedal assist allows you to ride much longer distances before you get tired. As a result, you do more exercise. You can still get an intense workout riding an electric bike; it is just that they help you ride faster and for longer.
The assisted pedal power also allows you to explore previously inaccessible terrain. For example, a pedal assist mountain bike will enable you to access more exciting and technical trails.
People who own pedal assist bikes lead a more active lifestyle. As they are much easier to ride, they encourage people to ride their bikes more. Riding bikes is fun and keeps health problems at bay.
Commuters are also benefiting from riding pedal assist bikes. Urban travel is much faster on a pedal assist bike than by car or public transport. In addition to this, commuters can arrive at work fresh. If they were to ride a regular bike, they would likely get to work hot and sweaty, needing a shower. But, riding a pedal assist bike also is a great way to start your day. The fresh air and light exercise puts you in a good mood for work. It is also a great stress reliever during your ride home.
What Is a Throttle?
Some electric bikes have a throttle, usually operated by a trigger or button mounted on the handlebars. Although some electric bikes like the SDREAM X750 S use a grip twist to accelerate. The throttle allows you to ride the bike like a moped or scooter without the need to pedal. Not all electric bikes have a throttle, but you can buy throttle only bikes and bikes that have pedal assist as well as a throttle.
Pedal Assist Vs Throttle
Both pedal assist and throttle propel your electric bike forwards with electric power. But is a bike with a throttle better than a one with just pedal assist?
You can use the throttle when you fancy a rest or a relaxing ride. The throttle allows you to easily keep up with and pass traffic with no effort from pedal power. Another benefit of having a throttle is that you can use it as a boost to pass slower-moving bikes or to climb steep hills.
However, if you want to stay active or get some exercise, pedal assist is the best option. If you have an electric bike with throttle and pedal assist, you can pick and choose to suit your mood. Having the best of both worlds in a bike such as the SDREAM Ur makes your electric bike more versatile.
Can You Stop Pedaling on an Electric Bike?
If the bike is only pedal assist, you need to pedal for the motor to be engaged. But, you can ride an electric bike without the motor's help. This is especially important if your battery runs out of power during a ride. The only difference is that you will have to contend with the bike's extra weight.
How Much Assistance Do You Get from an Electric Bike?
How much pedal assist you get depends on the bike you buy. Electric bikes often have 4 different levels of pedal assist. The maximum level of assistance can be from 250% up to 400% of your pedal power. But, the lowest level usually adds between 40% and 60% to your efforts.
How Fast Do Electric Bikes Go Without Pedaling?
When you ride a pedal assist bike, you will notice that the top speed while pedalling is limited. When you reach the limited top speed, any extra pedal power you put in won't make a difference. If you are freewheeling down a hill, there is no limited speed.
There are three classes of electric bikes. Class 1 and 2 bikes assist your pedalling up to 20mph, while Class 3 bikes are limited to 28mph. These top speeds are more than enough for most people's rides.