A lot of people are now ditching conventional bikes for electric ones. The latter offers more convenience, thanks to its motor, which helps cyclists reach their destinations without too much effort. Whether exercising, commuting, or riding for fun, an electric bike makes excellent transportation.
However, an e-bike is undoubtedly more expensive than the standard one. On average, an entry-level e-bike can cost approximately $2,000. Fortunately, a cheaper way to own this efficient ride is converting your conventional bike into an electric one.
This article will discuss the following:
- How much does converting a conventional bike to an e-bike cost
- Bike conversion kit recommendations
- Things needed to convert a bike to electric
- How to convert a bike to an e-bike
Converting your standard bike to electric costs between $300 to $900. The exact cost depends on the kit’s motor power and battery capacity. Entry-level kits are ideal for commuter bikes, while off-road ones benefit from a high-end kit.
We’ve got you covered if you plan to convert your standard bike and power it up with a motor and battery. We’ll discuss what you need for your bike project and some of the cheapest yet most efficient kits on the market.
How Much Does Bike Conversion Cost?
According to Statistica, the e-bike market will grow by 12.27 percent annually from 2022 to 2027. If you are part of the 12.26 percent, you might think buying a brand-new electric bike is convenient. You can ride your battery-supported bike as soon as you get it.
However, some people find it more appealing to convert their old bike to electric despite all the work it requires. On top of that, converting a standard bike to an electric is one of the least expensive ways to have an e-bike.
But how much does converting a standard bike into an electric bike cost?
The Cost Of Converting A Conventional Bike To An Electric
Converting a conventional bike to electric requires a bike conversion kit. Such a kit typically costs $300 to $900.
Still, the actual cost of converting a bike to electric depends on the motor and battery included in the kit you are planning to purchase. Some motors allow you to control the bike better on challenging trails. In contrast, others offer incredible speeds for long-distance rides.
Apart from the kit you will purchase, the price of converting your old bike to an electric one depends on how you intend to use the bike. For instance, those who plan to use an electric bike for commuting may opt to install an average motor to the bike they will convert. As commuter e-bikes only tackle flat terrains, you do not need the high-end features that expensive e-bike motors offer.
On the other hand, mountain bikes will benefit from high-end conversion kits with powerful motors. The reason is that such bikes must tackle rough, obstacle-filled trails with ascents and descents.
Suppose you plan to convert your MTB to an electric one. Then, spending on an expensive conversion kit with a good motor and long-lasting battery will provide you with the needed e-bike features.
Bike Conversion Kit Recommendations
Bike conversion kits are increasingly becoming appealing to people who want to own an electric bike but cannot let go of their good old standard bike. By converting your old bike, your ride will feel familiar, as you only added a motor and battery. However, choosing a good bike conversion kit is crucial.
Yose Power Waterproof 500W eBike Conversion Kit
The Yose Power Waterproof 500W eBike Conversion Kit is a fantastic option for people who seek a waterproof bike motor.
This conversion kit features a 500-watt freewheel hub motor with 67 N.m of maximum torque, which is powerful enough to reach with little effort. Boasting a full speed of 40 kph, this conversion kit will turn your standard bike into a speed monster.
With this bike conversion kit, you can stretch the limits of your bike to an entirely new level.
Even better, this kit comes with a 48V 13Ah battery. Manufacturers claim the battery will remain at 78 percent capacity even after 1000 charge cycles. The kit also has a disc brake and an LED display to view the battery charge and gear information.
eBikeling 26” Direct Drive Rear Waterproof Conversion Kit
This universal conversion kit for 26” bikes (👈 shortcut link to Amazon) comes with various options. It has a direct drive motor with a power of 500W, 750, 1200W, and 1500W. These motor options allow you to select which one will best fit your bike and riding requirements.
What we like about this kit is it already comes with a lithium-ion battery. The battery voltage options are 36V, 48V, and 52V, while the types are bottle, dolphin, tiger shark, and shark. These battery options allow you to choose which will fit your bike frame best.
Cables, a controller, and an LCD also come in the package.
Voilamart Electric Bicycle Conversion Kit
This bike conversion kit is a fantastic option for those who want to convert their commuter bike to an electric one. It has a brushless non-gear hub motor with 1000W of power and 55N.m of maximum torque. This power is enough to bring you to your favorite shops or grocery stores and carry your loads.
Pair this hub motor with many of the 48 volt batteries on the market and you could be rolling in a matter of hours.
The Voilamart kit has both a PAS and throttle to give you that added boost for hills or fighting the wind. Read more with this shortcut link to Amazon 👉 Voilamart Electric Bicycle Wheel Kit 26″ Front Wheel 48V 1000W E-Bike Conversion Kit.
RIDE e MTB Tip: Are you thinking about building an eBike? It isn’t very hard – Heck I’ve got step by step instructions with videos along with all the tools. Check it out 👉 How to Build a Mid-Drive Electric Bike
What Do You Need To Convert A Bike To Electric?
An electric bike is a standard bike powered by a motor and a rechargeable battery. Apart from electrically powered parts, all the other parts of an e-bike, such as the frame, handlebar, and drivetrain, are the same as the conventional one. Considering this fact, you might be wondering what you need to install on your bike to make it electrically powered.
According to a study conducted by UPPSALA University students, the standard motors used on electric bikes are direct current (DC) and brushless direct current (BLDC) motors. However, bike conversion kits offer two types of motors:
- Hub Motor System – this motor type is the easiest installation option. You will commonly see this motor type in entry-level bike conversion kits. You can install it on the front or rear wheel, giving your bike a new range of power levels.
- Mid-Drive Motor System – this motor needs to sit at the cranks of your bike. So, it makes the front chainring and rear wheel work more efficiently by supplying them with power through the bike’s chain. This motor is ideal for people who want to convert an off-road bike to an electric one.
The reason is that a mid-drive motor can supply a bike’s drivetrain with more power, which you will need for tackling obstacles and steep trails. However, it is worth noting that this motor requires you to change your cranks. It will also wear the drivetrain faster than a hub motor.
Some kits offer 1000W of motor power, but you must first check your local laws before installing it into your bike. For instance, the Federal Register states that electric bikes in the US should not have more than 750W of power.
Your electric bike needs a power source to run in pedal-assist mode. Usually, bike conversion kits have batteries ranging between 250W to 500W with 36V to 48V.
Ideally, you want your electric bike to have a lithium-ion battery with a minimum rating of 36V and 10Ah. Such a battery will let you reach 20 miles at throttle mode and 40 miles using pedal assist.
But if you are in for a long ride, you can opt for an e-bike battery with 36V, 17Ah, and a 500W motor. This battery power will let you reach 60 miles on pedal assist and 30 miles on throttle mode.
However, it is essential to note that your weight, terrain, and additional load weight will affect how far an e-bike battery will allow you to go.
More eBike Battery Information
- Can you overcharge an eBike battery? Read more 👉 Overcharge battery for eBike?
- eBike Battery Charts, did you know your eBike battery cuts-out before it dead? Read more in this article 👉 eBike Battery Charts 36v, 48v and 52v
- What is BMS on an eBike? Learn more about it. 👉 eBike BMS (Battery Management System)
An electric bike controller is responsible for getting energy from the battery and transferring it to the motor. The power it directs to the motor depends on the user’s inputs.
The controller also monitors an array of data, such as the battery’s voltage, motor power, and bike speed, among other things.
Once you have installed a control unit into your bike, you will be able to control the following:
As the name suggests, a speed sensor measures the speed of your converted bike, allowing you to see how fast you are going. It also lets you switch the bike’s motor off to slow your pace.
For instance, the National Conference Of State Legislatures states that e-bikes should not exceed 20mph when running on the throttle on commuter roads. You can use the speed sensor to ensure that you are not running faster than this speed limit.
The speed sensor is compact and consists of an induction contact and magnetic steel ring. The magnetic ring connects to your converted bike’s crank, which allows it to pick up and transfer speed measures and information on your display monitor.
A display monitor or LCD/LED screen is precisely what it sounds like – a small screen that displays all the data you need to know about your e-bike. For instance, you can see your speed and battery left on the screen. You can also use it to control the bike’s settings, including the backlights, headlights, pedal-assist, or throttle mode.
Some display monitors also have an odometer, which allows you to see how many miles you have traveled.
The Pros And Cons An eBike Conversion Kit
|Less expensive than buying an e-bike||Requires mechanical skills during installation|
|It allows you to choose the bike you like||Time-consuming|
|Offers various customization options||Some kits are not universally compatible|
Should You Convert Your Bike To Electric? Final Thoughts
Electric bikes are becoming increasingly popular, so they are here to stay. While e-bikes are expensive, you may convert your old standard bike to an electric one using a bike conversion kit.
Do you have questions or suggestions about this article? Feel free to leave your thoughts in the comments.
Converting a bike to electric generally costs $300 to $900. The higher the motor power and battery capacity, the more expensive your kit is.
RIDE e MTB Pro Tip: With eBikes growing in popularity learning all the terms and definitions can be a bit overwhelming. Let me help with this comprehensive glossary. 👉 eBike Glossary
- Statistica Research Department. Size Of The Global Market For Electric Bicycles In 2021 And 2027. https://www.statista.com/statistics/674381/size-global-market-electric-bicycles/#:~:text=E%2Dbikes%20%2D%20market%20size%20worldwide%202021%20%26%202027&text=The%20e%2Dbike%20market%20is,percent%20between%202022%20and%202027. Accessed February 22, 2023.
- Uudelepp, Oscar, Ellen Nordén, and Douglas Lowén. “Electric Bike: Independent Project in Electrical Engineering.” (2018).http://www.diva-portal.org/smash/get/diva2:1218346/FULLTEXT01.pdf. Accessed February 22, 2023.
- Authenticated US Government Information. Federal Register: Vol. 85, No. 212. https://www.govinfo.gov/content/pkg/FR-2020-11-02/pdf/2020-22239.pdf. Accessed February 22, 2023.
- National Conference Of State Legislatures. State Electric Bicycle Laws | A Legislative Primer. https://www.ncsl.org/transportation/state-electric-bicycle-laws-a-legislative-primer. Accessed February 22, 2023.