Thinking of getting a tow-bar mounted bike carrier?
Make sure you read our quick guide below.
Choosing a Cycle / Bike carrier for your electric bike.
Before choosing your bike carrier you need to consider the weight of your electric bikes, on average an electric bike will weigh around 25kg. So if you want to carry two electric bikes you will be looking at around 50kg of load.
Looking at the bike racks listed on Halfords there are a few that only have a maximum load weight of 45kg. great if you are carrying one electric bike, but totally unsuitable if you’re carrying two. Then there are the three bike carriers that have a maximum load of 60kg. Again, unsuitable for electric bikes that weigh around 25kg.
Before choosing a bike carrier for electric bikes you need to know the weight of your bike/s and need to check the maximum load weight of the bike carrier.
The other consideration you will need to account for when choosing a bike carrier is the electrical connection to your car.
The choices here are a 7 pin or 13 pin connection. The main question to answer here is, what type of wiring does your car tow bar have. If you have a 7 pin socket there is little point in having anything more than a 7 pin plug on the bike carrier. The only difference between a 7pin and 13pin wiring on a bike carrier is that of reverse lights. You need a 13 pin connection on the car and cycle carrier if you want reverse lights to work on the carrier.
If you have an 8 pin connector on your cycle carrier then you need a 13 pin socket and wiring on the vehicle.
We’ve recently noticed quite a few cycle carriers that have the fog light on the left of the carrier. This is not UK legal and using this type of cycle carrier could end up with you being fined and receiving points on your l; license.
The law requires that fog lights (in the UK) are positioned far right, central, or both far right and left.
Please be aware, that there are many businesses selling bike carriers that do not meet the requirements of the Road Traffic Act.
Cycle Carriers and Tow Bars
Let’s start by confirming one thing that many people have a question about, the cycle carrier and the tow ball size.
All cycle carriers are designed to fit the standard 50mm tow ball. All UK tow balls are 50mm, so providing your tow bar is type approved for use in the UK, then your cycle carrier will fit the tow ball.
Again the big issue with electric bike cycle carriers and tow bars is that of weight.
You need to add together the weight of your cycles and of the carrier. A typical 2 bike carrier, such as the Thule Easy Fold XT, weighs around 17.6 kg. Add two average electric bikes and you have a typical load weight of 67.6kg.
A fixed swan Umbra Rimorchi tow bar for the Peugeot 2008 has a maximum nose weight of 60kg, So would not be suitable for use with any bike and bike rack that weighs 67.6kg. The Tow-Trust fixed swan bar for the Peurgeut 2008 has an 80kg nose weight, so would be suitable and legal. As you can see, different brands have different nose weights. So it is very important that you check your tow bar’s maximum nose weight before hitching up your bike carrier and heading off for an adventure.
Overloading the nose weight on your tow bar can lead to extensive damage to the tow bar and your vehicle. It’s also illegal, don’t risk it.
To find your tow bar’s nose weight you can either look at the documentation that came with your tow bar fitting or check the type approval information on the tow bar. (The nose weight is the S value)
Always stay within the tow bars limits and stay safe.
TOP TIP! To reduce the weight of your e-bike remove the battery before putting it on the cycle carrier.
For tow bar supply and installation please contact us today.