According to market researchers Mintel, consumers are now spending an average £233 on their bicycle. Consumers are becoming more selective - using grandma's old Raleigh to cycle to work or buying a cheap bike from Halford's won't cut the mustard.
And many keen cyclists have electric bike worth considerably more - up to £9,000 for a top of the range road bike or tourer.
But is your electric bike properly insured? Are you covered if your bike is nicked, or if you have an accident?
We've put together this guide to cycling insurance for ebikes specifically so you can get the right cover - whether you love cyclo cross, compete in time trials, or just commute to work on your bike.
Table of Contents
What are the best electric bike insurance quotes?
We selected a few providers that propose the best electric bike insurance, here are their must-have features:
Do I need electric bike insurance?
Repairing your electric bike is much more expensive than just insure it for a few pounds per month. Here is a quick summary of main repair types and cost for your electric bike:
|Repair Types||Repair Cost|
|Tubeless disc brake||£719|
Electric Bike insurance per model
Is my home insurance enough to cover my electric bike?
Seems that taking out an ebike insurance for few pounds per month can be really useful if something were to happen to your moutain bikes. Taking out a specialized ebike insurance is a good idea, you will be covered for things that will not be covered by your standard home insurance coverage. For example:
- limits are higher than cycle insurance under Home insurance
- you will covered for much specific things, for example your could be covered in case you want to take your electric bike abroad, you could be covered for accidental damages
- you will also be covered for accessories, which is quite important; as it can be really expensive items, such as GPS, or lights.
- home insurance might also not cover you for lending your ebike to a friend or even another member of your family (unless you put their name on the insurance)
- you're almost certainly not going to be covered for racing, sportives, and charity events
- if your ebike is worth more than £1,000 or so, most home insurers won't want to insure it at all.
Many home insurance policies won't cover you when you're actually riding your electric bike. "
What is covered by electric bike insurance?
electric bike insurance should at the very least cover your electric bike against theft and damage whether it's at home, on the road, or safely locked up outside the office or the pub. (Cover against theft is very important - insurer Velosure says the value of bikes pinched from railway stations amounts to more than £1.5 million a year.)
Many policies offer enhanced cover which can include:
- hiring a electric bike while you're waiting for yours to be repaired or replaced.
- cover for any claims made against you by a third party (for instance if you knocked someone over or scratched their car with your handlebars).
- legal expenses, if you have to take a third party to court after they damage yourelectric bike in an accident.
- personal accident, giving you a lump sum if you die or are severely disabled following a bike crash.
Other types of cover may be included, often as paid-for extras;
- for riding your electric bike abroad.
- accessories and cycling gear,
- loss of earnings if you can't work following a electric bike accident,
- cover for competitions and races
- electric bike breakdown cover.
How long can I get electric bike cover for?
Most specialist insurers will offer you cycle insurance for a month at a time. However, some of the best deals are reserved to those who take out annual cover.
What is not covered by electric bike insurance?
Bicycle insurance won't cover everything. You'll need to check your policy's small print for the detailed exclusions, but most insurers exclude the following:
- Accidents when you were under the influence of drink and drugs.
- Accidents that happened when you were breaking the law, for instance going through a red light or cycling the wrong way in a one way street.
- Business use. Cycle couriers and delivery services need a business policy, not a regular electric bike policy. However, if you're just commuting to your usual place of work, that's covered.
- Cosmetic damage. If your paint gets scratched, tough.
- Theft if you did not secure your electric bike properly.
- 'Abandoned' bikes. If you leave a electric bike locked up outside for more than 12 hours (other than at home or at work, or at a railway station when commuting) it is most unlikely to be covered.
- Some insurers won't pay out for injury claims if you weren't wearing your helmet.
Securing your electric bike is very important, even at home. Your electric bike must either be in a locked and secure place (like your own home, but not the common areas of a block of flats), or locked up securely.
Insurers will usually specify the type of lock that they expect you to use, and you should check the policy to see their precise requirements. For instance, you may need to use a electric bike lock with a Sold Secure Gold rating, if your electric bike's worth £1,500 or more.
How much does electric bike insurance cost?
The biggest factor affecting the cost of cycle insurance is the value of your electric bike. For instance, it could cost £70 a year if your bike is worth £1,000, and that might rise to £130 a year for a £2,000 bike.
The cost will also be affected by the type and amount of cover that you want. For instance you might add on another 10-20% if you want a high level of personal accident and personal liability cover.
It's worth reminding yourself just how much bikes actually cost. Though the average cost of a electric bike in the UK is £233, this includes cheapies and kids' bikes. If you look for a reasonably serious electric bike, you're soon looking at over £1,000, and if you really get into the sport, you could be spending more on your racer than some of your friends do on a car. Cannondale's best road bike costs more than a Fiat Panda. (It's probably more fun, too.)
How to claim on your electric bike insurance?
You'll need to contact your insurer as soon as possible. If you're at home, you should check your policy booklet first to make sure you're covered - but if you're on the road, particularly if you're touring, make the call as soon as you can. Even if you're not covered for everything, specialist insurers can often give you good advice.
Your insurer will then either send you a claims form, or ask you to fill in a claims form online. They'll also ask you for supporting documents.
If you have been involved in an accident, or if your electric bike has been stolen or vandalised , make sure you contact the police, and obtain a Crime Reference Number (CRN) or incident number.
It's also a good idea to take photos of the scene of the accident or theft. If your lock has been smashed in order to steal your electric bike, keep the parts in case the insurer wants to see the evidence. Your insurer might also want to see the keys for your lock, so don't throw them away.
To process your claim you'll need to be able to show your insurer proof of ownership - for instance, the receipt for your bike, or failing that, photographs, the serial number on the frame, or even the instruction booklets that came with the bike or components. Your insurer may then ask you to obtain estimates for repairing your electric bike.
You'll have to pay an excess, which might be set at a given amount (for instance, £100) or at a percentage of the claim. Some insurers consider electric bike's value when setting the excess, so a cheaper bike would have a lower excess, and a bike that's worth more would have a higher excess to pay.
If your claim is rejected but you think the insurer is wrong, you can make an official complaint by letter. If you don't get a response or they don't change their mind, you can then go to the Financial Ombudsman to ask for your case to be considered.
By the way, one insurer published its top three reasons for rejecting claims. They give you a pretty good guide to what not to do. In reverse order, the three reasons were:
- no proof of purchase or photos of the electric bike.
- accessories and components hadn't been listed on the policy.
- and with an amazing 3/4 of all rejections - not using the right lock to secure the electric bike!