Hoverboards Buying Guide
Hoverboards became one of the hottest and most popular gadgets in 2015. These gadgets are the most favorite transporter of kids and teens, and even adults love to ride on them. Hoverboards are electric hands-free scooters that allow you to hover around with ease. However, these boards don’t hover; instead, they use wheels to glide around, and the user has to perform a self-balancing act to use them efficiently. Hoverboards still get a lot of attention but getting one can be a bit challenging as there are many brands on the market. Before you buy a hoverboard, read through this detailed hoverboards buying guide.
What are hoverboards and why are they so hot?
Hoverboards use cutting edge technology such as highly efficient sensors that can quickly detect even the slightest movements. They are very smooth and easy to control, and when you lean forward they move forward, and when you lean back, they do the reversing or braking thing. They are called personal mobile devices and allow you to move freely anywhere you want to. They have two motorized wheels located at the middle of the gadget and are connected by footpads that enable the user to steer and control the hoverboard.
Hoverboards are very compact, and they can easily be carried around, also fit in your backpack to take them anywhere. They can be used on any flat surface, but they are mostly used off-road for safety purposes. They are available in many different sizes and types, and some of them are designed ruggedly to be used on roads too.
It’s not that hoverboards are very easy to use and they provide the most comfortable mode of transportation. The actual thing is the trend which made these gadgets famous. Do you want to act cool like Justin Beiber, Nick Jonas, Wiz Khalifa, Kendall Jenner, Nick Khalifa, or Skrillex? Buy a hoverboard because they use this gadget too.
You must have seen many other celebrities using these hoverboards in videos or public places. Also, hoverboards have introduced an innovation in the technology, and they are easier to control as compared to the skateboards. Self-balancing hoverboards are the favorites of kids and teens because they are like a dream come true. This is the reason these gadgets became quickly accessible, and children all over the world are eager to try them at least once.
How do hoverboards work?
Hoverboards are equipped with two gyroscopes that are self-balancing and connect separately to two different motors. The connection of wheels to the separate motors allows them to steer in the direction in which the user wants to ride the hoverboard. The hoverboards are split from the middle, and there is an axle connected to them so that the two wheels can turn out of sync with the other wheel. This feature allows the user to set the hoverboards around and spin them in a circle. The sensors are equipped in the two footpads where the user places his feet.
Many people wonder whether the hoverboards are safe or not because of some incidents that occurred in the past. During the first year of introduction, there were incidents of these gadgets exploding or overheating due to their batteries. Due to this reason, the hoverboards were banned and recalled from various stores in the United States.
However, later new UL certification standards were set up that resulted at the end of these batteries issues. Now the hoverboards are sold in many countries with a UL 2272 certification, and they are considered safe to use. Hoverboards are entirely safe, and they are similar to the electric skateboards. However, we still recommend wearing the safety gear to avoid any bad experience.
Are hoverboards legal?
Hoverboards are not legal in all the states or countries because of the safety concerns. Though they are entirely safe to be used inside the home or your garden, still they aren’t legal in many countries. This is because hoverboard owners use these gadgets on roads and streets and this result in accidents. The New York City Police Department has announced the hoverboards as illegal, and they charge penalties and fines to people who are found riding them on the streets or roads.
Similarly, they are illegal in the United Kingdom, and one can’t use them even on sidewalks there. The United Kingdom and New York City, both almost use the same rules and regulations to deal with the people who use such self-balancing scooters in public places. According to the administrations, the hoverboards can distract and disrupt the flow of traffic even if they are used in sidewalks.
Things to consider before buying a hoverboard:
If you are willing to buy a hoverboard, you must first consider some factors that can make your purchase an informed one. It is imperative to do some research work so that you get the best and the safest gadget for you or your loved ones’ use. To help you with your search of hoverboards, we have compiled a list of things that are necessary to look for in a hoverboard. Following are the list of things that you should look for in a good quality hoverboard:
Size of the hoverboard:
The size of the hoverboard is a crucial thing to consider, and it depends on your preferences and ease of use. You can quickly evaluate the size of a hoverboard by looking at it, but we recommend asking for the dimensions too so that you have a complete idea. You should also try once riding on it so that you make sure that you don’t have to strain much while riding on it. Also, you should choose a hoverboard according to your weight and capacity of riding. The smaller a hoverboard is, the easier it is to carry around. However, a large hoverboard may offer more space to hover everywhere.
When it comes to hoverboards, there are three main sizes available. The wheel sizes of hoverboards that are mostly used are 6.5 inches, 8 inches, and 10 inches. Smaller wheels limit the hoverboards to be used on flat, smooth and wide surfaces but they are easy to carry around because of lesser weight.
However, a big wheel will give you a smooth ride even when the surface is rough. If you want to use the hoverboard for transportation, you should go for the larger wheels whereas if you are willing to do tricks and stunts with the hoverboard, one with small wheels will be a better choice. However, if you’re confused between the larger and the smaller wheels, you can go for the medium-sized wheels which have the features from both types.
It is very necessary to consider the build quality of a hoverboard. Obviously, you won’t want to invest in an expensive gadget that won’t last for long. Though it is tough to evaluate the build and design there are some small tips that you can consider to analyze the construction and quality of a hoverboard.
There is a wide variety of materials, motors, sensors, frames, and electronics used in the construction. If the material is not good enough and has a scratch-prone housing, you’ll start noticing scratches and marks on the Achilles’ heel of all the hoverboards. If you live in the U.S, you must not go for foreign brands and prefer the local hoverboards that are available with a warranty too. There are many premium quality hoverboards available on Amazon and you can read the customer reviews there too.
Speed and range:
The range of the hoverboards is almost same in all the hoverboards. The range will let you know how far you can go riding on the board. The range also depends on the terrain and the weight of the rider. If you’re riding on a smooth surface, you’ll ride 10 to 15 miles easily while you won’t be able to do so on rough terrain. Hoverboards have a low and high-speed option too so that the user can set the level according to his/her preference. The slow speeds can start from 2 mph while the most advanced hoverboard models have highest speeds of around 12 mph.
Most of the users don’t pay importance to the speed of a hoverboard, but it should be considered too. If you’re a beginner, you won’t be able to balance on a very speedy hoverboard and it will turn out to be disastrous for you. More advanced hoverboards have big ranges of speed levels which allow the users to use very low and high speeds at any time.
Another factor that you need to consider is the battery life of the hoverboard. The hoverboards are powered by batteries and their performance also depends on them. Only a powerful battery will allow the hoverboard to run smoothly and till long. The distance that you cover in miles on the hoverboard will depend on the battery quality.
Charging time is also an important factor and if the battery is not powerful enough, it will take more time to charge and keep you waiting for long. If you want to buy a hoverboard for traveling purposes, you must consider one with a powerful battery as it will indicate the runtime of the hoverboard.
Are you planning to ride on the hoverboard all day? If yes, then it would be better than you consider the weight of the gadget too. Most of the hoverboards weigh around 20 to 30 pounds and this weight can a bit heavy for people who want to carry a hoverboard along with them on the go. However, you can ride on your hoverboard all day long if it has a powerful battery with a long runtime and short charging time. Some hoverboard manufacturers’ increase the portability of the gadget by providing a carry case with a padded strap so that it can be carried easily when required.
If you’re a beginner, you’ll find the majority of the hoverboards similar in design and performance. However, their price will tell you about their quality in a better way. The pricier and better quality gadgets have sturdy frames, powerful batteries, and are equipped with advanced technology to make sure that the ride is a pleasant one. Most of the excellent quality hoverboards cost more than $1000 while the affordable ones can cost between $500 to $900. So, if you’re willing to buy a hoverboard, you must have a budget of at least $500.
These hoverboards are designed to withstand the bruises and bumps on the road and will allow the user to ride on the rough terrains and steep surfaces easily. Some of the hoverboards are even available with a keychain remote control so that the user can lock them when he/she isn’t near.
Some hoverboards are equipped with built-in Bluetooth for music streaming while others have dual direct-drive motors that improve the power and range of the device. If you’re a beginner, we’ll recommend going for the lower price models so that you can learn self-balancing and get used too. However, if you’re ready to do the self-balancing act and can handle an advanced model, you are free to use the pricier models also.
Where to buy a hoverboard?
Buying a hoverboard before holidays is a good idea as there are many retailers who put sales and give discount offers at this time. You can also visit the manufacturer’s website directly if you want to buy from that particular brand. Also, set up an Amazon alert for the brand or company from which you want to buy, this way you’ll be notified when there is an amazing deal on the way.
Which ones are the safest?
As stated earlier, you must use the hoverboards that are available with a UL certification only. Even if you’re going to buy a cheap hoverboard, it is just to check the UL certification to avoid any damage or injury. There are many reports of the hoverboards exploding or overheating due to lower quality battery packs. The popular brands are the safest to use and that includes IO Hawk, PhunkeeDunk, Swagway, Ninebot, and Hovertrax.