Electric bikes are one of the cheapest forms of transportation. But when you are calculating how it cost to charge an electric bike, there are other factors to consider. Electric bike batteries don’t last forever, and their replacement cost must be taken into calculation. In this article, I’ll break down all the numbers for you.
How much does it cost to charge an electric bike? On average, it costs between 4-12 cents to charge an electric bike. This cost depends on your battery voltage, capacity, and local electric rates. Batteries with higher voltage and capacity will cost more to charge.
Calculate Cost Per Charge
Use the calculator below to find the cost per charge of your ebike.
To calculate the charging cost of your battery manually, you’ll need to know 3 pieces of information:
- The voltage of the battery
- The amp hour of the battery
- Your local electrical rates
The voltage and amp hour rating should be on your battery. If it’s not listed for whatever reason, try looking it up online, in your manual, or contact the manufacturer.
To find your local electrical rate, the easiest thing to do is check online for your local rate. If you can’t find it, try finding your local electric bill or contacting the power company.
Now, to calculate cost per charge:
- Multiply the voltage (V) and amp hours (Ah) to get watt hours (Wh).
Example: 48V x 8.8Ah = 422.4Wh.
- Divide the Wh (from step 1) by 1000 to get Kilowatt Hours.
Example: 422.4Wh / 1000 = 0.4224 KWh
- Multiple the KWh (from step 2) by your local electric rate per KWh.
Example: 0.4224 KWh x $0.1284 (2019 USA avg) = $0.05423616 or roughly 5.4 cents.
Factoring in Battery Cost
While it cost pennies to fully charge your ebike, there is a hidden cost that is often overlooked.
Electric bike batteries can only be charged so many cycles before they need to be replaced. If you calculate the cost of your battery into your charging cost, you’ll get a much different number.
How do you factor in battery cost? You’ll need two additional pieces of information:
- The cost of your battery
- The average battery lifespan in cycles
For a typical electric bike battery, let’s estimate the price of a new battery is $500 and lasts 800 cycles.
To factor in battery cost, take the cost of your battery and divide it by the number of cycles.
Example: $500 / 800 cycles = $0.625
Keep in mind, while this is a much higher number compared to the cost of charging your ebike, it all depends on the type of battery you have and how frequently you charge it. This cost could be spread out over the course of 5 years. Even taking this into account, the cost per mile is still incredibly low compared to other modes of transportation.
Calculate Cost Per Mile/Kilometer
Calculating the cost per mile/kilometer is a little trickier since your range will vary. So, when doing this calculating, you probably want to take your average range or use the lowest range to calculate worse case scenario.
For this, you’ll need:
- Your average range per charge
- Your charge cost (calculated above)
To calculate cost per mile/kilometer, take the range and divide it by the charging cost.
Example: $0.054 / 20 miles = $0.0027 or 0.27 cents per mile.
Want to know the miles per cent? Take 1 mile and divide it by the cost per mile
Example: 1 mile / 0.27 cents = 3.7 miles per cent
Riding your ebike is one of the cheapest modes of transportation, even cheaper than mopeds (see our moped vs ebike comparison). If you’re worried about charging cost though, you shouldn’t be. There are many other important cost factors to consider such as tires and inner tubes. And remember, you can greatly extend your range by using your ebike in the lowest power and even ride your ebike without a battery.