Buying an electric skateboard can be tricky because there are many models in the market, and they have different prices. It’s even more confusing when they have similar specs and features. To help you budget better, our team of experts researched factors that affect electric skateboards’ prices. Here are the things they found.
The Reason Behind its Costly Price Tag
When asking ‘how much do electric skateboards cost?’, you must first understand all the work that goes into making them. Most electric skateboards are made of high-quality materials like maple wood, fiberglass, and even carbon fiber. These cost a lot to produce and incorporate into the board. You also have metrics like speed and range.
More sophisticated skateboards require a powerful motor, lithium ion batteries, and strong trucks to reach average top speeds. People looking to buy electric skateboards want the best performance they can get. This usually includes multiple speed modes, remote controls, and fast charging. All of these have significant manufacturing costs.
Finally, our team of experts suggests that you consider the brand name. Popular manufacturers like Tornado, Boosted, and Blitzart Huracane will charge more for their boards. Sometimes, the extra charge is for special features like unique designs, custom wheels, and even extra power. Other times, they simply charge you more because of the trust that goes with brand recognition.
Factors Behind The Cost
When you pay for an electric board, here are major factors that affect the price.
The motor is the powerhouse of the electric skateboard. It’s responsible for most of the functions, from the top speed to the battery life, miles per hour, and even charge time. A bulk of the cost goes into manufacturing the motor. This is why you may spend a small amount on an electric skateboard but have it only go 10 mph. On the other hand, a couple of hundred dollars will get you an electric skateboard that travels up to 25 miles per hour.
Manufacturers usually rate their skateboard motor in watts. The higher the wattage, the more powerful the motor, and the faster the electric skateboard will go. However, higher wattage usually also equals greater strain on the batteries.
The motor build is only part of the story. You need to consider its placement and integration with other parts of the board. Models like Boosted place the motor in the middle of the electric skateboard to maintain balance while skateboarding . The trade-off is that you need extra components to connect it to the wheels, where they deliver power. Electric skateboards like this may cost slightly more than boards with the motor right next to the wheels.
There are two types of skateboard motor: brushless motors and brushed motors. A brushless motor is quieter, but you’re going to get less power. Therefore, electric skateboards with these may cost less.
Brushed motors, on the other hand, deliver more power to the ground during operations. Because of their high functionality, these electric skateboards cost more money. Brands like Boosted or Blitzart use both motors on the boards.
Most electric skateboards have lithium ion batteries that can hold a charge for longer, and distribute it more efficiently. Lithium ion batteries are also more available, and therefore cost less than other battery types.
A skateboard battery is usually rated in amp hours. The higher the rating on the battery, the longer you can travel on a single charge. It’s common to see skateboard batteries rated between 2 Ah and 5 Ah.
In average conditions, a 2Ah can take you up to 6 miles on a single charge. However, this number depends on several factors, like the speed you’re travelling, weight, terrain, and other factors. Travelling at top speed will obviously get you fewer miles from the batteries.
The Electric skateboard cost isn’t directly proportional to battery life. The cheapest electric skateboards can still have a decent battery and travel distance. It all comes down to the manufacturer’s design, quality of materials used, and how you use your skateboard.
While we’re on the subject, one way to avoid spending even more money is to maintain your skateboard properly. Lithium ion batteries should not be overcharged, so be sure to unplug once full. Even better, keep the batteries from filling all the way up — it should always be between 20% and 80% charge.
With regular skateboards, you can take liberties like riding across wet surfaces and performing tricks. However, the best electric skateboards need care. Even though many of them have waterproof ratings, keeping them away from moisture can preserve your expensive investment, not to mention, project the batteries from water damage.
Electric skateboards are made of polyurethane, lithium ion, maple wood, carbon fiber, metal, aluminum, plastic, and almost every other material used in constructing machinery. They are highly portable personal transportation vehicles, and manufacturers use some of the most advanced tools for their creation.
Material build is where you can easily tell a cheap electric skateboard from an expensive one. Cheap boards use low-grade materials to keep the costs down. This may result in a moderately powerful motor, weak base, low grip tires, and even an unappealing design.
But premium models like Boosted like to use the best quality materials they can find. They use polyurethane for the wheels of their on-road skateboards and rubber for their off-road products.
Polyurethane can grip asphalt, concrete, wood, and other hard surfaces quite easily and keep the electric skateboards on the road. It can also maintain control when the rider travels at a high mph. Rubber tires are usually pneumatic and reserved for boards that go all-terrain.
All-terrain boards are usually more expensive due to other material requirements, like stronger shock absorbers, higher weight capacity, and increased grip on the deck.
Regular skateboards can get away with a simple base and wheel design, but an electric skateboard has higher requirements. You also have to think about the brakes, motor, LED lights, and other components that require premium material builds.
Deck Design and Size
Our team of experts believes that deck design is one of a board’s most aesthetic features. It’s also where brands have a chance to shine and display their superiority and justify the cost. After all, who wants to spend several hundred dollars on an ugly electric skateboard?
In the past, electric skateboards had a simple, streamlined design to maximize performance. But since we got powerful motors and higher mph ranges, they could go crazy with their aesthetics without sacrificing speed.
These days, electric skateboards have various deck designs, from those maximized for standing and foot positioning to those built strictly for aesthetics. Some manufacturers even go one step further by painting their boards with unique colors. For example, the Swagtron Swagskate has a unique lion logo on the deck with a unique yellow, black, and ash pattern. This makes the skateboard standout among its competition.
Deck size also plays an important factor because the skateboard needs to be sturdy enough to bear your weight and protect the batteries underneath. Some other factors that manufacturers consider when they create skateboard decks include the rider’s age and comfortable foot placement. That’s why models like AZBO have foot straps to keep you attached to the electric skateboard when you’re traveling at high speeds.
Depending on the build, electric skateboards can hold raiders of between 50 pounds and 330 pounds while still maintaining top speed. As you can imagine, higher weight capacity equals a more expensive electric skateboard.
Additional Features and Parts
Electric skateboards often come with additional features that raise their cost even more, like a wireless remote and a mobile app. The wireless remote helps riders control the accelerator and brake while riding. You can think of it as an extra set of controls, besides the ones you trigger with your body weight.
Wireless controls are often made of high-grade, durable plastic. Some of them also come with a wrist strap, so you don’t drop it while at top speed. The remotes have a variable influence on board cost; skateboards with remotes aren’t necessarily more expensive than those without.
The mobile app also influences price in uncertain ways. Many brands have a mobile app for their board, and it’s difficult to tell how the relationship works. However, our team of experts found that brands with mobile apps usually charge more for their board than those without.
One feature that isn’t very common on an electric board is regenerative braking. This technology allows you to conserve power when you ride and recharge the battery when you brake. The mechanism is quite simple: braking converts the board’s kinetic energy to power that’s stored in the battery. This power is then discharged when you speed up.
Regenerative brakes increase the cost of a board because it influences so many other aspects as well. For example, you can ride at top speed for longer, thanks to the feature. It also allows your batteries to hold more charge, reducing the time the board spends plugged in and maximizing your riding distance. When buying an electric skateboard, remember that all these play into the cost.
Technology is where manufacturers really show their prowess. They develop all kinds of innovative features to get one up on the competition. It’s why a board may be able to reach 40 miles per hour, almost as fast as an electric scooter. It may also be why you can travel 30 miles without recharging.
It’s difficult to identify the exact details since most of the technology is proprietary. However, our team of experts discovered that all technology advances add little improvements to the board’s performance and riding experience.
Cheaper boards feel different when you ride them. They may have less responsible brakes, slower turning mechanisms, or stiffer shock absorbers. A cheaper board may also have a lower load capacity, making it unsuitable for heavy riders. Expensive brands, on the other hand, give riders the best possible experience.
Some manufacturers have also found a way to put larger motors and batteries on their boards. For example, the MEEPO mini electric skateboard has a beastly top speed of 28 mph thanks to its 1000 watt motor. It also has batteries that can travel up to 11 miles.
You may buy a model with multiple riding modes. These help you preset parameters like speed, braking, and even steering sensitivity. They often include low, medium, and high settings, although these tags may vary on other brands. For example, some boards have beginner, advanced, and pro. These all mean the same thing.
The low setting has a minimal top speed and may be great for beginner riders who need more practice. As you get better, you’ll use the higher modes with greater ease.
Sometimes, manufacturers also get independent organizations to rate their technology. This may include waterproof ratings, battery safety, or other customer-centric ratings. These reassure customers that they are paying for a premium product because you expect whatever you pay for to have all the cutting-edge bells and whistles.
Company Location and Reputation
The manufacturing company is perhaps one of the most important influences on board cost. Consider a company like MEEPO. It’s based in Idaho in the US but outsources its manufacturing to China. MEEPO creates unique electric skateboards like the Mini 2 with an incredible battery and balanced cost. Despite its advanced technology, the electric skateboard company keeps prices down thanks to affordable manufacturing in China.
RazorX, another company based in the US, has a similar profile. Their headquarters is in California, even though they have tons of international offices. Razor X also outsources some of its manufacturing, and that’s why it’s able to be cost affordable despite having stellar performance.
Before you buy a skateboard, our team of experts recommends reviewing the warranty information. It describes what you can and can’t use your skateboard for, if you want to keep your warranty valid. Even though warranty terms are quite similar, there are significant differences as well. For example, a board without a waterproof rating will develop problems not covered if you ride it in wet conditions.
Besides having a warranty, you also want an electric skateboard company that honors its guarantees. There’s no point in paying for an expensive electric skateboard if you can’t get replacement parts.
Some brands also engage in sketchy behavior, like ignoring customers or refusing to honor the guarantee. Whether you’re getting a budget board or an expensive one, you should still be able to get the best possible service.
Production Costs and Location
When asking, “how much do electric skateboards cost?’ you need to consider the manufacturing cost and location. Goods manufactured in China are usually cheaper than elsewhere due to lower labor costs. As a result, brands that have a factory in China will offer lower prices. This is in contrast to brands with manufacturing plants in the US which will naturally be slightly more expensive.
Most riders may never need customer support when they buy expensive boards. This is because the boards have a solid design. However, some of the common parts you may need support for include the batteries, motor, and overall performance. The battery is often the most problematic of any parts on the electric skateboard. It may stop charging, suddenly turn off, or develop other faults.
When this happens, it helps to contact customer service immediately. They can give you instructions around how to fix the battery, which may include trying a different charger, draining and recharging the battery, or ordering a replacement. However, you can’t do any of these if your board manufacturer has lousy customer support.
This is why our team of experts recommends that you investigate the provider’s customer service. So while asking, ‘how much do electric skateboards cost?’, you should also ask how good are electric skateboards’ customer service.
A great place to start is the manufacturer’s website. If you can’t find a straightforward way to contact the company, the odds are that they have poor service. The ideal situation would be a phone number that you could call, although an email or live chat is still acceptable. An electric skateboard costs a lot, and getting your money’s worth should be top priority.
Other Contributing Factors
Maintenance requirements can also influence the cost of your board. For the most part, you’ll only be concerned with small-scale maintenance like charging the battery, keeping the board clean, and following other usage instructions. The only cost you’ll worry about is your electricity bill.
Maintenance costs stack up, however, if you void the warranty. Then, you may have to worry about replacing board parts, like the battery, wheels, or even the trucks. If the warranty is intact, you won’t have to spend a dime because the company will replace the damaged parts.
When buying a board, be aware of other costs, like replacement batteries for the remote, for example. These can sneak up on you, and because you didn’t budget for them, you may end up spending more. This problem is common with cheaper electric skateboards.
Taking adequate care of your board can also preserve the model and keep you within budget. Maintaining an electric skateboard is quite different from maintaining a regular board. It also depends on the model you have; a cheaper board may require more maintenance than a pricey brand.
With a cheaper model, you want it to last as long as possible. Thus, it’s helpful to keep the battery halfway full — not filled up but not empty either. This is best for a lithium ion battery. You also want to stay below the maximum weight capacity as much as you can. Even though the board cost is low, you may spend more in the long run with replacement parts and repairs without proper maintenance.
With a premium brand like the Boosted Mini, buying it comes with some assurance and peace of mind. As long as you follow the manufacturer’s instructions, you’ll be fine. Additionally, Boosted also offers some custom skins. Buying these can improve the visual appeal of your model.
Battery and Parts Replacement
The best way to handle replacement parts is to contact the manufacturer. If you’re buying from Amazon, you may need your purchase information when you speak to a customer care agent. They’ll usually want to know where you purchased the product, how long you’ve had it, and other details.
A brand may only honor purchases from their website. In this case, you won’t get any replacement parts for purchases in other market places. This is rarely the case, however. If you stick with top brands, you can expect fair treatment. You may pay more for the board, but it’s usually worth it in the long run.
Sometimes, the brand may require that you try other solutions before sending you replacement parts. These may include little things like charging the board, changing the remote’s batteries, or others. Since you won’t pay for the replacement parts, they avoid sending you expensive parts if you can solve the problem otherwise.
If the warranty doesn’t cover your replacements, make sure you only buy parts from the manufacturer. Getting from a third party may get you parts that don’t work or won’t last.
Why are electric skateboards so expensive?
Electric skateboards are expensive because you don’t pay just for their functionality. You also pay for the manufacturing cost, proprietary technology, and quality of materials. Boards with cheaper manufacturing standards are usually more affordable.
Our team of experts discovered that many factors are responsible for an electric skateboard’s cost, including material quality, functionality, and even brand name. The next time you purchase a board, keep these factors in mind because they can help you budget properly.