FAQs

How long will the battery last?

The battery should last for a journey of at least 20 miles, with 35 miles plus possible. Factors such as the power setting, the gradients you climb, and wind resistance will all affect the life of your battery.  The routes we have designed should all be comfortably within the battery’s range.

Does the electric bike have different levels of assistance?

There are three levels of assistance which you can change throughout your ride to meet your needs. You can also turn the assisted power off and use the bike as a conventional bicycle, but this can be heavy going.

Does my pedalling recharge the battery?

No Recharging on the move is not yet possible on most electric bikes.  However, we will ensure that your battery is fully charged when you start, and there are many charge points available throughout the North Pennines.

What if the battery runs out?

If this happens within the 20-mile radius recommended by us then there could be a battery fault and you should ring the breakdown number for assistance.  Someone will come and rescue you and your bike, or provide a new battery.

If this happens as a result of trying to cycle beyond the recommended distance you can still ring the breakdown number but you may be charged for the service.

To boost your distance, find your nearest charging point on the route.  Once recharged the bike will work. We will provide you with the charging cable.

A full battery will take four hours to charge, but you can usefully top up the charge for half an hour or more when you stop for coffee or lunch.

What if I break down?

In the unlikely event of a mechanical or electrical breakdown, we have a dedicated emergency service who will either provide you with a replacement bike or battery, or return you to the hire point.  Please note, this service is only provided within a 10 mile radius of one of the hire points unless a prior arrangement has been made.

How fit do I have to be?

The electric bikes are designed to make moderate climbs achievable for all abilities. Pedalling is necessary for the assisted power to work, so please be prepared to put some effort in.  

The more effort you put in, the more the motor provides, so if you get tired the motor will provide less assistance.  The best thing to do in these situations is simply stop for a quick rest.  Once your legs are recovered you will find the bike gives you a generous boost.

What clothes should I wear?

Comfortable weather-appropriate clothing. A cycle helmet will be provided free of charge.

Will I have to leave a deposit?

You will need to leave photo ID, (such as a driving license,) and Full Contact details at your hire point.  Alternatively, you may leave a cash deposit.

Do I need to book in advance?

If you know in advance that you would like to hire a bike, we would recommend that you book ahead to avoid disappointment. This can be done by contacting your preferred hire point directly.

Can I hire a bike for a longer route over several days?

Yes. We have designed some longer routes in the North Pennines AONB which can be done over several days, as long as you charge the battery overnight.  

Can I hire the bike for a one-way route?

Yes. Just talk to the hire point about this.  There is likely to be an additional charge for the collection of the bike.

Do I have to use the recommended routes?

No.  We have designed the routes to be within the bike’s battery range and to make the most of the landscape and the quieter roads, but you are free to choose your own routes, within the limits of the bike and battery. The bikes are not designed for off-road use.

Just bear in mind that the breakdown service only operates within 10 miles of each of the hire points, and that most of the charging points are on our recommended routes.  

Can I ride off-road?

No. The bikes are not designed to be ridden off-road, and it could be dangerous to do so.  This is explicitly forbidden in your hire agreement.

Why can’t my 13-year-old ride an electric bike?

UK law states that you have to be 14-year's-old or over to ride an electrically assisted bike in this country.

How fast will the bikes go?

There is no speed limiter on the bike, but there is no electrical assistance beyond about 17 mph. When you reach this speed you will notice a bit more friction as the motor cuts out.

These bikes are not built for speed and may become unstable when ridden downhill at high speed.  We recommend that you do not try and cycle faster than 25mph downhill.