Do you need insurance for an e-bike?

Whether it’s required by law is one question. Whether you should is another.

Man with his hands on his bicycle's handlebars

We’re not going to lie, e-bikes are pretty great and we’re stoked about them. Recently we’ve gotten a lot of questions about whether bicycle insurance is required for individuals who own e-bikes. Let’s break this down into two sections and get into the details, shall we?

Part One: Is it legal to ride an e-bike without insurance?

If you’re located in the United States, yes, but only if it falls within one of the classes below. If you’re in Europe or another country, the laws may be different. We’re only going to touch on the United States for now.

Class 1 E-Bike

  • Your bicycle is motorized
  • It has pedal assist up to 20 miles per hour
  • It doesn’t have throttle

Class 2 E-Bike

  • Your bicycle is motorized
  • It has pedal assist and throttle up to 20 miles per hour

Class 3 E-Bike

  • Your bicycle is motorized
  • It has pedal assist up to 28 miles per hour
  • It doesn’t have throttle

If your e-bike falls into these three categories, the general rule of thumb is that it’s legal to ride without insurance. It’s important to note that your city, county, and even state may enact new laws enforcing mandatory insurance, however.

Keep your eyes peeled for updates to make sure you aren’t breaking any laws because they can and do change. For example, while some states may not require a license or insurance to ride an e-bicycle, they might require registration. Also, how you ride your e-bicycle and where you can ride it may vary from state to state.

In short, the United States generally doesn’t force e-cyclists to carry insurance for their electric bikes as long as they are Class 1, 2, or 3. However, these laws can and do change – and they may depend on the state you live in. It’s your responsibility as an e-cyclist to ensure you aren’t breaking any laws.

Part Two: Even if I don’t have to legally carry e-bike insurance, should I risk riding without it?

Our answer is no. If you own an e-bicycle, you should probably insure it. Let’s dig into the reasons why this is a good idea to get a policy, and how it may not be as expensive as you think it is.

Person riding their electric bicycle to work

Your Renters or Homeowners Insurance Doesn’t Likely Cover Your E-Bike

Sad, but true. If you have renters or homeowners insurance, they might cover some of the costs associated with a lost or stolen e-bicycle. However, it’s unlikely and will depend on the type of coverage you have. Plus, they’re incredibly unlikely to cover it if your electric bike is damaged on a ride away from your home.

In the unlikely event you are able to file a claim with your renters or homeowners insurance, there might be some unpleasantly surprising consequences. Doing so is likely to increase your rates over time and cost you money in the long run. Additionally, filing e-bike claims can also “ding” your account and possibly make it more challenging to find affordable coverage in the future.

Pro tip: To get more in-depth about what renters or homeowners insurance covers and what they don’t, check out our comparison guide.

Just Like Any Bicycle, There Are Risks With Riding An E-Bicycle

Accidents happen and sometimes they can be pretty rough. Getting clipped on the road, collisions with cars, injuring pedestrians or other cyclists, injuring yourself, and more. These are all common experiences for cyclists and e-cyclists alike. If your electric bike isn’t insured, you like don’t have:

  • Liability protection
  • Reimbursement for damaged or stolen gear, accessories, or riding apparel
  • Coverage to pay for a replacement bike while yours is in the shop
  • And about a dozen more things that’ll eventually come in handy

We support cycling, know it can be safe, and encourage people to have fun. We also understand that sometimes things happen that are outside of our control. Wouldn’t it be nice to have that peace of mind for those more serious moments?

Person riding an electric bicycle in traffic

E-Bike Insurance Is Affordable And Easy To Get

With policies starting at just $100, Simple Bike Insurance makes covering e-bicycles easy and affordable. It takes just a few minutes to get a quote and sign up. Plus, we have awesome customer service backed by real cycling enthusiasts who understand.

As long as your e-bike is a Class 1, 2, or 3 and doesn’t use an auxiliary power source, you can get it insured. Call us, contact us online, or start an instant quote now. It’s easy – we promise.