Electric bikes are an outstanding choice for people who wish to make healthy changes. They used to be a luxury many couldn’t afford, but nowadays, they are pretty much everywhere! The only problem with electric bikes is that the laws regulating them remain somewhat undefined. It might surprise you to learn that every state in the United States of America has its electric bike policy?
How does the state of Illinois declares what an electric bike is.
The state of Illinois has a straightforward definition of an electric bike - a bicycle assisted by a motor no stronger than 750 W. There are three categories of bikes:
- class 1 is meant for electric bikes with a pedal-assist motor which doesn’t assist when you reach the speed of 20 miles per hour or more
- class 2 includes electric bicycles that have a motor that propels the bike even when you don’t pedal, but there is still a 20 miles per hour limit on the assistance
- class 3 bikes provide assistance only when you pedal, but unlike bikes in class 1, the speed limit is slightly higher and reaches the speed of 28 miles per hour
How powerful can my bike be? The state of Illinois regulates the amount of motor power you get to use with your electric bike - you should not exceed 750 W.
Do I need a license or insurance? When riding in Illinois, you’ll have to keep the registration documents nearby.
Do I need to wear a helmet? Although the state of Illinois doesn’t have any regulations related to helmets, it is still advised that you wear one for your well-being and safety.
Are there age restrictions to look out for? Yes! The state of Illinois concluded that you could only ride electric bikes if you are over 16. However, if you are younger than 16, don’t worry - you can still be a passenger.
Can I ride on the road? You can most definitely ride on roadways, but make sure to stay far away from sidewalks! There are bike paths and bike lanes you can visit, which is why you must stay away from prohibited surfaces.
Do I ride in the same direction as traffic? Always! In the state of Illinois, riding on the far right, which is in the direction of the traffic, is a great way to make sure both you and other traffic participants remain safe.
Do bike riders need to obey all the traffic signs? Yes. You are still a part of the traffic, even though you might not have four wheels.
What about electric mountain bikes? Illinois considers electric bikes motorized vehicles and therefore does not allow such on trails. Make sure to ride where it’s safe - visit the Homer Lake Gravel ride and the DeKalb County Gravel Metric.
If you want to remain healthy and energized, make sure you ride your electric bike daily. In the United States of America, there are regulations that you must follow to stay safe and keep others safe - we hope you got them up to your sleeve now.