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How to choose the right ebike wheel

How to choose the right ebike wheel

ebike wheel

Ebike wheel is one of the most important parts of your electric bike. The force you exert on the pedals, brakes, road bumps, and changes in direction are all related to the ebike wheel. Wheels affect many aspects, so their quality will definitely affect your riding experience and riding safety.

If you plan to buy an electric bicycle but don’t know much about wheels, read on to learn about the different types and sizes of electric bicycle wheels, and how these differences affect wheels that suit your needs.

Different ebike wheels

Electric bicycle tires can be classified according to the type of terrain and riding style you are riding. On this basis, we roughly divide it into five condition categories.

Road tires
Road tires are usually very thin, usually about 23 to 25 mm wide and light in total weight. The smaller tread and the smaller surface area in contact with the road ensure less friction and faster speed when riding. They are suitable for riding on asphalt roads. The ground pressure is small, acceleration is much easier, and the rider feels lighter, so many people prefer to use road bikes. But on the other hand, these tires are more prone to skidding in wet conditions, so if you live in a place where it often rains or snows, road tires may not be the best choice.

Off-road tires
Off-road tires are between road tires and mountain tires. They are a bit wider than road tires, usually between 30 and 33 mm. The tires can be almost flat with small patterns or small studs for better grip on muddy surfaces. For those who ride on gravel and muddy trails, off-road bike tires are a good choice.

Commuter bicycle tires
People who commute by bicycle often ride on hard surfaces such as asphalt or concrete. Being able to drive safely in wet conditions is a top priority. Commuter bicycle tires are specially designed for this type of riding and have a flat, smooth and all-weather tread pattern. The width of most commuter bicycle tires is between 28 mm and 42 mm. Wider tires provide greater grip and comfort because they have more air and can reduce tire pressure.

Mountain bike tires
Unlike the thin tires of road bikes, mountain bikes are equipped with rigid, wide and wide tires. These tires have an aggressive tread that can grip the ground and obtain maximum traction in harsh environments. In other words, they are suitable for those who do most off-road riding on surfaces such as dirt, sand and grass. In addition, some mountain bike tires are made of natural rubber, and some people believe that this tire has better grip than synthetic rubber.

BMX tires
BMX stands for Bike Motocross. This is a sport of special bicycle racing on rugged off-road tracks, including built-up obstacles. Similar to mountain bike tires, BMX tires tend to be wider, thicker and more knotty. Most BMX bicycles have 20-inch tires, while larger frames may use 24-inch tires. Different styles of BMX riding require different tread patterns and widths. The racing BMX uses narrower tires and a high level of PSI, while the freestyle BMX requires wider BMX tires to provide grip, and the PSI level during soft landing is higher than average.
ebike wheel

Electric bicycle wheel size

Bicycle wheels come in various sizes, from the tiny 12-inch diameter to the huge 29-inch diameter. Wheel size has an impact on the performance of electric bicycles, because they determine the ease of movement of the bicycle, the degree of rolling and riding stability. Check out the most common electric bicycle wheel sizes and their functions below.

16-inch ebike wheels
16-inch wheels are commonly found on folding bicycles. Folding bicycles use smaller wheels to reduce weight and keep the folded size as compact as possible, making them easy to transport. Correspondingly, the small size sacrifices riding quality. They do not work well on rough or bumpy roads because they are easily affected by even small debris and rocks. In addition, the smaller turning radius and wheelbase may cause the steering to be too sensitive. Smaller wheels also require larger gear ratios to make them turn fast enough to keep up with other bicycles, which makes climbing hills more difficult.

20-inch electric bicycle wheels
Similarly, 20-inch wheels may also appear on folding bicycles, and are more common than 16-inch wheels. Because of their high mobility, they are also the standard for BMX tires. However, for ordinary riders, wheels of this size still have some shortcomings. They are slightly better than 16-inch wheels. The 20-inch wheels are also more susceptible to rocks and obstacles than the larger standard wheels.

26-inch electric bicycle wheel
With a long history in the bicycle industry, 26-inch wheels are probably the most common and most popular wheel size, and can be found on everything from mountain bikes to road bikes to beach cruisers. They tend to be wider and fatter, and when you cross bumps, there is more air to disperse, making the ride more comfortable. They are more suitable for mixed terrain, so if you are going on and off-road, choose 26 inches. Both the Himiway Cruiser and Step Drive Speed are equipped with 26-inch diameter wheels, and 20-inch diameter wheels for Himiway Escape, which both provide improved grip and traction on the most troublesome terrain.

29-inch electric bicycle wheel
29-inch wheeled bicycles came out a few years ago. They have a larger diameter, less rolling friction, and more contact with the ground. More tires on the ground means better traction. The biggest advantage of 29 inches is that they can overcome obstacles in your path. It also requires less energy to maintain a constant speed on larger wheels because they can better store inertia. In addition, the 29-inch electric bicycle has a higher standing height. So, if you are tall, this is an obvious benefit, but for shorter riders (such as 5’6” or shorter), it may be more difficult to adapt to 29 inches.

In addition, the other side of the big wheels also includes the heavier weight of the big wheels, and the longer wheelbase leads to reduced mobility, and the acceleration is slower and less efficient than the small wheels. Compared with the smaller wheels, for the same motor, the larger wheels also transmit less torque to the ground.

ebike wheel

How to choose the right electric bicycle wheel

So all in all, how to choose the right electric bicycle tires, the following are the key factors that need to be considered:

Thick tires or thin tires?
Depending on the type, bicycles have wide or thin tires. If you are driving on rough terrain and paved roads, stick to fat tires. Thin tires are very suitable for flat roads. We summarize the advantages and disadvantages of fat tires and thin tires.

Fat tire
Fat tires run under lower pressure, have more traction and puncture protection, which allows the bicycle to work on a wider range of terrain. They are often found on mountain bikes and ordinary road bikes, which run on tarmacs, sidewalks, gravel, beaches, and snow. However, the thickness of the tire has a certain effect on the speed of the bicycle, causing additional weight and increasing rolling resistance. If you want to know more details about fat tires, check out this video.

High-quality electric bicycle wheels fat tires for all terrains

In contrast, thin tires use less rubber and are therefore lighter than fat tires. This makes it more effective and easier to handle. They are very suitable for flat roads. With higher pressure, lower rolling resistance and lower traction, they can easily surpass thicker ones in terms of speed and agility. The disadvantage is that they have lower puncture protection and are not as strong as fat tires.

Your best choice

When you are looking for an electric bicycle, you may ask yourself: “Ok, so what size tire should I look for?”

Generally speaking, 700c tires will be narrower; it will provide less cushioning and lower rolling resistance, thereby improving efficiency. Riding, because there is less cushioning, it will be more demanding. A 26-inch tire tends to be wider; it’s fatter; as I said before, there is more air, so when you encounter obstacles, the air in the tire actually absorbs some of the air, making it easier to ride More comfortable. They are more suitable for mixed terrain, so if you are going on and off-road, 26-inch rims may be what you are looking for. 29-inch rims are very rare in the world of electric bicycles, if you are looking for a more professional off-road electric bicycle rim.

Size matters

As we discussed above, the size of the tire is crucial. Larger tires may be thicker. Smaller and thinner tires also come in different sizes. If you already own a bicycle, of course it depends on the size of the frame you own. If you are new to electric bikes, then please take some time to understand your riding habits and buy accordingly.

If you value mobility and portability, 16 or 20-inch wheels are perfect for you. If riding comfort and speed efficiency are more important to you, then you should definitely choose big wheels.

Choosing the right electric tires and wheels can add fun to your riding experience. Hope this article can help you choose among various wheel sizes and types. Ride safely and have fun!

If you are looking for a new way of commuting or want a healthier lifestyle, we are here to help you. Visit our website to learn more about electric bikes and electric scooter or please leave information to us.