Author Topic: Replace car w/electric bike in extremely cold climate?  (Read 1682 times)

ellequoi

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  • Age: 30
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Replace car w/electric bike in extremely cold climate?
« on: August 10, 2014, 07:55:37 PM »
I've decided that it's time to sell my car while it's still an easy sell (Grand Prix heading on 200,000 km). I have ~$1k owing on it to my parents. Hoping for $4-5k in the sale, based on the history of the car, then I'll pay them back. The car is my only debt right now, but I pay everything for me and my partner so he can pay off debt (started at $30k, now down to $12k - next year we can start saving his salary!).

We were looking at cars and really liked the Matrix/Vibe, but I realized there's still some good weather left in the year, so now might be the time to start biking. I'm looking at a used electric folding bike for $600. Snow will hit mid-October to (if I'm lucky) mid-November, and work is 8-9 km away. Just re-signed my lease.

I want to sell the car, buy the bike, and save money and use it as long as I can until I (knowing myself) want to switch because of the cold. Might get another car then. Am I crazy?

There are bound to be weeks of -20 to -40 degree weather, tons of snow, and layers of solid ice on the road, so I am definitely calling it quits at some point. Public transit is available too... I might combine public transit with biking but hate just transit. Some of the routes in the city suck, and the one between home and work is one of them. I can get weekend rental cars as needed for ~$10.

Car costs per month:
Loan $250
Insurance $130 (this is Canada)
Gas $100
Maintenance $150 (averaged)
Total = $600

Adding it all up, it sure seems like a lot!

Monthly income after retirement fund contributions (15%) and taxes: ~$2,900

Commute: 20 min driving, 45-60 min transit (not 100% reliable)

Thegoblinchief

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Re: Replace car w/electric bike in extremely cold climate?
« Reply #1 on: August 10, 2014, 08:19:50 PM »
Any specific reason for the e-bike instead of a standard bike?

I'd personally be concerned about cold-weather drain on the batteries. Ask what chemistry the bike uses.

ellequoi

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Re: Replace car w/electric bike in extremely cold climate?
« Reply #2 on: August 10, 2014, 08:52:45 PM »
I'm pretty out of shape, and there are a bunch of valleys I'll have to traverse. I'd like to be able to have the option of a little extra push while I'm getting started.

Didn't think about the battery! The bike is lithium ion. Since it's folding, I can take it in with me so it doesn't need to be parked in the cold.

wizlem

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Re: Replace car w/electric bike in extremely cold climate?
« Reply #3 on: August 10, 2014, 09:29:05 PM »
Have you tried riding a regular bike any distance close to 8-9km before? If you haven't and are just looking at an electric bike because it sounds easier, I'd give a regular bike a try first. 8-9km isn't all that far by bike and if you're out of shape it's even better reason to do it.