How to Prepare Your Cargo eBike for a Long-Distance Tour

Riding a cargo eBike is a unique experience, even when compared to other electric bikes. The extra weight and bulkiness of the ride can impact mobility. For example, you may need to anticipate corners sooner than you would on a lighter model. You must also consider weight distribution, as an uneven balance could result in a tumble.

The good news? Preparing how to ride a long-range cargo eBike is easy – once you know what precautions to take. Let’s dive in!

Can Your Cargo eBike Go the Distance?

This is the most important question to ask yourself first. And the answer depends on how far you intend to travel.

A typical electric cargo bike can travel 45-55 miles on a single charge. Mileage will vary based on the total battery capacity. Other factors like max load, rider weight, route, and riding style will influence battery life, too. For example, you are less likely to travel far with the throttle way down than if you ease off.

Riding in situations that require more electrical assistance, such as climbing steep hills, will also influence your travel range. Consider your route and riding style to determine which long-range cargo eBike is right for you.

How to Optimize Cargo eBike for Range

Aside from your choice of model, there are many ways to optimize the range of your cargo eBike. Here are some of the most effective ways to go the distance.

Maximizing Battery Life

The battery is the lifeblood of your electric bike. The more you use it, the faster the energy drains. This means slamming the throttle and setting the pedal assist to max will result in a shorter ride.

How do you extend the lifespan of your battery? Here are a few ways.

Spare Battery

Another way to extend the life of your battery is to, well, bring another one!
You can buy spare battery components to match your electric bike manufacturer. Just make sure the specifications are consistent with what you already own. Most modern batteries offer rapid charging as well, at least for the first 80%.

Another solution is to ride a long-range cargo eBike with a dual battery system. The Heybike Hauler has a dual battery version, which can travel up to 85 miles on a single charge. With a 1464Wh battery capacity, the Hauler electric cargo bike is perfect for delivery drivers covering large miles and cross-country riders who love long expeditions.

Heybike Hauler cargo e-bike come with dual batteries

Optimize Pedal Assist Modes

First, set the pedal assist mode for the right situation. Are you climbing a steep hill? You can use level 3 or higher. Are you riding on a mostly flat surface? Set the assist mode to low – perhaps 1 or 2. Then, gently apply pressure on the pedals to keep up the momentum.

Go Easy on the Throttle

Secondly, if your electric bike has a throttle, go easy on it. Gently rest your finger on it to accelerate at a steady pace. Then, when you encounter a tough spot, press down on the throttle to go faster. Just don’t overdo it for too long.

Charging on the Go

Almost any electric bike you buy today will come with a portable charger. This allows you to recharge the battery on the go.

The average charging time depends on battery capacity. For example, the Heybike Horizon has a 692Wh battery that takes about 3-4 hours to recharge. Just find a suitable location to take a break and recharge. Of course, stopping to recharge does add time to your journey.

How to Keep Your Cargo eBike Running Smoothly?

The key to keeping your cargo eBike running smoothly is simple: look after it. And the best place to start is with a pre-tour maintenance session.

Pre-Maintenance Checklist

Here is what to check before you hit the road.

1. Tire Pressure

Maintaining proper tire pressure is vital to absorbing bumps and avoiding punctures. First, check the tires for any signs of damage, including air leaks. Then, use a tire pump to raise the tire pressure to the recommended manufacturer levels.

2. Battery

Make sure the battery is fully charged before you leave. And remember to take your battery charger with you. Depending on your battery capacity, it can take 3-5 hours to recharge from zero.

3. Brake Pads and Wheels

Test the quality of your brakes. If it’s taking longer than usual to reach a complete stop, the brake pads may be worn and need replacing. Also, check that the axle nuts on each wheel are tight and there is no wheel wobble.

4. Drivetrain

Check the drivetrain for any dirt, mud, and other ingrained debris. If dirty, prepare a warm water and mild detergent solution and clean it with a sponge. If necessary, use a toothbrush to scrub between the chain links. Finally, apply some bike lubricant to prevent further dirt build-up.

5. E-Bike Toolkit

Another way to keep your electric bike in great shape is with an e-bike toolkit. Also known as a bike repair tool kit, this is a portable and compact kit you can bring with you to resolve minor eBike issues.

Common toolkit items include:

  • Allen wrenches
  • Open-end wrenches
  • A bike tire pump
  • A tire lever
  • Puncture patches

How to Pack Your Cargo eBike for a Long Tour?

How you pack your electric cargo bike depends on the type of storage accessories you use. This could be a simple add-on like a front or rear basket. Or it could be something more elaborate like a rear row.

The Heybike Hauler has a DIY pegboard, which lets you clip items like water bottles and bike locks to the side.

Heybike Hauler has a DIY pegboard

Regardless of what you are transporting, follow these best practices:

  • Ensure your load is secure to minimize movement
  • If transporting small children, make sure they wear the provided seat belts
  • Don’t overload items on one side – distribute the weight evenly
  • Don’t exceed the manufacturer’s total payload capacity

How Much Weight Can You Carry on a Cargo eBike?

That depends on the type of long-range cargo eBike you have.

The average payload capacity of a cargo electric bike is from 300 to 400 lbs. Be sure to confirm this detail before you buy an electric bike. As a reference, the Heybike Hauler has a 440 lbs total payload capacity – the highest in the Heybike range.

When assessing weight capacity, make sure to include rider weight. So, if your electric bike has a 400 lbs payload capacity, and you weigh 120 lbs, you would have just below 280 lbs left for storage.

Planning Your Long-Distance eBike Route

Going on a long-distance journey is exciting. But remember to take precautions and stay safe. Even if you don’t plan on riding too far, it’s important to follow the below tips:

  • Notify a close contact: Let a close friend or family member know where you are riding and when you will return.
  • Bring a physical map: Phone reception can be spotty in remote areas. Bring a physical map and draw out your exact route before you arrive. Landmarks can be a useful point of reference, too.
  • Bring supplies: Be sure to bring food, water, and – if necessary – at least one spare battery. Don’t forget your eBike toolkit, too.

Further Reading: Top 5 Springtime Adventures With a Heybike Cargo E-Bike

Enhance Your Long-Distance Riding Experience

A long-distance ride is the perfect opportunity to explore new places, revisit familiar territory, and test your limits. Just remember to be smart and plan first. This way, you can get the most out of your battery and your riding experience.

Explore our full electric bike range today. Your next journey awaits!

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