Blog : Bike to Work with EZ Bikes and Scooters

By Ken | May 15, 2015 | in

By John Brescia

The heat and sunlight are on the rise, but so are the gas prices. It's a simple equation of supply and demand: greater gas consumption creates higher gas prices. But in this month, there is a solution to alleviate the burden of increasing gas prices. May is National Bike Month, a time meant to encourage commuters to embrace the mild weather in order to utilize bicycles and other forms of cheap, non-polluting transportation to get to and from work and other nearby locations.

Last week was Bike to Work week; over half of the U.S. population lives within five miles of where they work, making biking a viable mode of transportation. However, 51 percent of Americans say they never ride bikes. In fact, 12 percent of the population living in the northeast say they don’t even know how to ride bikes.

But Tom and Teresa Hemenway want to change those numbers. This husband and wife duo are the owners of EZ Bikes and Scooters, an Exeter-based business that sells electric bikes and scooters. Before opening EZ Bikes, the Hemenways ran Autosounds of NH, an auto electronics company. They were inspired to expand into bike sales shortly after Tom discovered he had diabetes in 2009. He said the disease was due to his inactivity and poor diet. Tom's complacency about his health was so extensive that his physician dropped him as a patient, causing Tom to realize he needed to alter his course in life. So he stopped smoking, quit drinking, and improved his diet. But after trying and failing to exercise on his son’s 21-speed bike, Tom noted how difficult it would be for an inactive person to suddenly begin an active lifestyle.

But then, Tom discovered electric bikes, and his life completely changed.

“For people out for a long pleasure ride or just getting back into a more intense routine, it’s the perfect option because it allows you to customize your experience,” explains Hemenway. “If you’re just out for an easy coast, you can do that. And if you’re out for some serious exercise, you can do that, too.”

Electric bicycles can be pedaled like a regular bike, but they are equipped with a small electric motor attached to the front wheel, which can be used as an alternative means of propulsion. Such an innovation would be helpful to a beginner in the active lifestyle if they grow tired while riding or encounter a particularly difficult obstacle, such as an incline. With the electric motor, the rider is able to burn calories only when necessary. Since discovering electric bike's for himself, Hemenway's health has improved and he's lost 20 pounds.

EZ Bikes and Scooters offer five different brands and ten separate models of electric bicycles, all of which are reasonably priced compared to their competitors. EZ Bike's selection vary in design and functionality, either helping the rider’s pedal power or a more moped-style. There is the eBike, which allows for pedaling and has a throttle to activate the motor, and the EPAC, which has a pedal-activated motor. Bicycles are powered by a lithium ion battery which is plugged into a regular home outlet to reach a full charge in four hours. Most electric bicycles can run for 40 miles when regularly charged and travel at 16-20 mph. However, a new bike introduced by EZ, the Outlaw SS, has a top speed of 28 mph.
Electric bicycles are regarded as environmentally-friendly given the low emissions they produce and the small amount of gas needed to fuel them; they consume 1 kilowatt per hour for every 100 kilometers and approach 2,000 miles per gallon.

“No other commercially available vehicle comes anywhere close to that,” said Teresa Hemenway. “Particularly here in New England, where a lot of people live within a short drive of home, it’s the ideal way to commute.”

EZ’s entry-level bike models start at $500. They also offer three-wheelers and beachcombers. “I joke that if anyone comes to EZ rides on one of these bikes and doesn’t love it, I’ll give them $20,” said Hemenway. So far, he hasn’t had to make good on the offer.

In addition to bikes, EZ also sells gas-powered scooters, which travel between 30 to 80 mph, depending on their size. Filling the tank can cost as low as $6 and a full tanks can last as long as two weeks. With a 50cc engine and no special motorcycle license required, the scooters EZ sells are considered easier to learn to ride. EZ’s Taiwanese Sym scooters are regarded as some of the best on the market.
Ironically, rising gas prices will only cause the market for electric bikes and scooters to continue to grow. While their popularity is a relatively new sensation in New Hampshire, electric bikes and scooters have been a popular commuter option in Europe, China, and other U.S. states, such as California, for decades.

Befitting their dedication to healthy, sustainable transportation, EZ Bikes and Scooters is an active member of the Green Alliance, a union of nearly 100 green businesses across New Hampshire, southern Maine, and northern Massachusetts, implementing sustainable, environmentally-friendly business practices amongst businesses and consumers. 

Green Alliance members save $100 on a new bike or scooter, $50 on a used bike or scooter, and 20% on parts for repair at EZ Bikes & Scooters. Not a member? Join here!