Taking your bike along for a camping trip is incredible and exciting. But it doesn't come without questions. For many, charging their electric mountain bike is a topic they ponder before heading out. And if they don’t figure out what to do, they skip taking their ride.
We have that answer! Here are several ways to charge your electric mountain bike while camping.
Solar panels are an attractive option for charging multiple things at a campsite. Full-time campers generally invest in a solar source to operate appliances, long-term heating and cooling systems, and digital devices.
Generally, any solar setup requires time to acquire energy. It can take several hours for panels to fully charge to send power to your QuietKat e-bike. So if you're looking for something quicker, this may not be the best option.
Something relatively common in the e-bike community is buying an external battery bank. Some campers come with one, but this is an excellent option for those who camp in cars or tents as well.
Consider investing in a deep cell 12V marine battery because they’re quieter than most generators and affordable for most budgets. It's worth noting these typically only service shorter camping trips and need dry, secure storage locations.
Many avid campers use a generator because it's affordable, accessible, and easy to operate. These are also suitable for charging e-bikes, and it's essential to do the math for watt-hours to ensure you have enough fuel.
A few drawbacks to a generator charging station are the rising gas prices and the loud noise it emits. So while this is a relatively common solution for camping, it could be a more cost-effective long-term solution to invest in an electronic or solar option.
Not everyone can afford an RV or camper van, and that's okay. Your vehicle's battery is an efficient and effective way to charge your bike as long as you invest in an AC or DC inverter.
There are a few qualms with this solution to consider. Your standard car battery won’t charge an e-bike over 30 Ah. You also want to verify from the inverter’s packaging that it can withstand a car battery. You don't want to damage a fuse and find yourself stranded in a remote location.
Since you plug your bike in at home, you might be thinking you can do the same in public. And while this may be true, it's not always convenient or economical. See if your campsite features a power source, and if you're not a registered guest at that time, there may be a small fee to use some of its power.
If you prefer boondocking, you may already have several workarounds in your toolbox. But a few places to consider include:
- Bike shops
- Coffee shops
- Public parks
- Fire stations
There are various ways to charge your electric mountain bike while camping, but you should choose the best method for you and your overall safety. A good rule of thumb is to perform a trial run for one or two methods. Then, you can head to your campsite prepared to perform both.
Contact Voltaire Cycles to learn more about our selection of electric mountain bikes and effective user strategies!