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A MAJOR RECALL OF ALMOST 500,000 HOVERBOARDS WAS ANNOUNCED TODAY

Breaking news: a major hoverboard recall has been announced for several different brands of hoverboard. It’s unclear whether additional models will be added to this list.  Currently, here are the brands and models that have joined the recall:

  • Swagway X1
  • Powerboard by hoverboard
  • Razor Hovertrax
  • the Hype Roam
  • the Wheeli
  • the iMoto
  • X Rider
  • the Airwalk Self-balancing electric scooter
  • MobileTech
  • Hover Shark
  • NWS
  • Back to the Future
  • 2Wheelz
  • any hoverboards purchased from Overstock.com
  • any purchased at Boscov’s

As you can see there are several different brands included, but the investigation is still ongoing, so the CPSC says that it is possible more brands or models could be added in the future.

WHAT TO DO IF YOUR AN OWNER OF ONE OF THESE MODELS?

The exact procedure varies from brand to brand, so you will have to contact either the brand or the store where you bought your hoverboard. Typically what will happen next is that you will be required to show proof of purchase, and then they will have you send in your hoverboard. Once the vendor has it, they may repair your hoverboard, replace it entirely (with a new or refurbished unit), or even issue a full refund (in some cases)

WHAT IF I HAVE ONE OF THE BRANDS LISTED, BUT I DON’T HAVE PROOF OF PURCHASE?

Ah, you didn’t see my Where to Buy A Hoverboard article, did you? It will depend on the brand of hoverboard; you will have to contact them to see. Check out where to find a cheap hoverboard for next time. Want to know how to make your hoverboard safe?

WHY ARE THEY RECALLING ALL THESE SELF-BALANCING SCOOTERS?

The biggest reason that they recalled these is that the risk of fires. There have been almost 100 incidents (according to the CPSC) related to hoverboards causing approximately $2 million in damages in 20 different states.

WHAT’S BEING DONE TO PREVENT FIRES IN THE FUTURE?

There is now a new safety standard in place UL-2272 that all self-balancing electric scooters are required to meet for them to be sold in the US. The standard includes more than 40 different tests, all designed to make the hoverboard safer for both riders, and their surroundings. You can learn more about the technology involved in making hoverboards safer in my is the Swagtron T1 safe review.

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Steven Steven May 12, 2020 0 Comments

Top 4 50 cc Moped and Scooters

Recently, the market has seen a significant drop of 50 cc moped and scooters in production, but is still an abundance of these mopeds – both brand-new and second-hand – worth purchasing. If you’re looking for a cool child-friendly toy to take your children’s attention away from their PCs and PS4s, getting them a moped or scooter might be the perfect solution. Here is our list of the top four 50 cc scooters than you can purchase now.

TAOTAO ATM50-A1 SCOOTER (± $670)

TAOTAO ATM50-A1 SCOOTER (± $670)

The ATM50-A1 is best known for its sleek matte finish. From the company’s inception roughly a decade ago, this is their best-selling 50 cc moped. Customers and industry experts alike commend the ATM50-A1 for being gas-efficient, saving a lot of money on fuel and time since you can travel long distances without frequent gas refills.

Specs:

  • 3.5 HP 4-stroke 50 cc engine
  • 100+ miles/gallon
  • Fully automatic
  • Kick and electric starter
  • Top speed 40 mph
  • 10-inch steel rims (front and back)
  • Hydraulic suspensions
  • 220 pounds tare weight
  • 250 pounds weight capacity
  • Front disc brake and drum back brake

TAOTAO THUNDER SCOOTER (± $750)

TAOTAO THUNDER SCOOTER (± $750)

The Thunder is another of TaoTao’s best-sellin 50 cc models. Customers praise this model for its sporty look. It’s the brother-model to the Zummer (item number 3 of this list), and they have several overlapping features. However, what makes the Thunder stand apart from the Zummer is its more masculine-looking build. Because of this, the Thunder is carrying around several extra pounds of weight with the same exact engine so reaching its top speed (30 mph) requires a little bit of extra time. Overall, it’s a great mode of personal transport, to and from work and school.

Specs:

  • 3.5 HP 4-stroke 50 cc engine
  • 100+ miles/gallon
  • Fully automatic
  • Kick and electric starter
  • Top speed 30 mph
  • 12-inch alloy rims
  • Hydraulic suspensions
  • 195 pounds tare weight
  • 250 pounds weight capacity
  • Front disc brake and drum back brake

TAOTAO ZUMMER SPORTY SCOOTER (± $850)

TAOTAO ZUMMER SPORTY SCOOTER

We don’t have a biased view on TaoTao scooters, but they offer some of the best budget-friendly, best-performing scooters available for sale. The Zummer is another one of TaoTao’s popular sporty-look 50 cc mopeds available on the market. It’s the sister model to the Thunder so it has a lot of overlapping specs. The main difference is in the single large headlight design and slimmer design.

Specs:

  • 3.5 HP 4-stroke 50 cc engine
  • 100+ miles/gallon
  • Fully automatic
  • Kick and electric starter
  • Top speed 30 mph
  • 12-inch alloy rims
  • Hydraulic suspensions
  • 195 pounds tare weight
  • 250 pounds weight capacity
  • Front disc brake and drum back brake

LEXMOTO ECHO 50 (± $1,000)

LEXMOTO ECHO 50 (± $1,000)

Last but not least, we have the Echo 50 by Lexmoto. This model is mainly known for its beautiful design and speed. For those of you who like to travel fast (at least as fast as a 50 cc scooter can take you), the Echo 50 could be the perfect model for you. Its lightweight design (172 pounds tare weight) is what lends this beauty its speed and fuel-efficiency. Most users praise this model because of its super-fast acceleration and quick-to-reach-50-mph ability. The only drawback is its limited color-scheme choices (white/blue and red/black).

Specs:

  • 2.01 HP 4-stroke 50 cc engine
  • 100+ miles/gallon
  • Fully automatic
  • Kick and electric starter
  • Top speed 50 mph
  • Hydraulic suspension
  • 172 pounds tare weight
  • 250 pounds weight capacity
  • Front disc brake and drum back brake

WHAT TO LOOK FOR IN A 50 CC SCOOTER

For most people, buying a $500-1,000 scooter from an unknown source online can be scary. For many people, the price tag can turn them off from looking for a nice scooter, though they tend to not take fuel-saving features into account. One of the best things about scooters is that, even for adults, they can be your everyday mode of transport. Of course, this means you’ll have to do a little bit of research in order to find a reliable scooter that won’t die out on you when you’re making your daily trip to work or school.

So what features make a reliable scooter?

ENGINE POWER

There are several engines sizes for scooters, but we’re only going to focus on the 50 cc variety. Several companies will market their 50 cc scooters as 49 cc ones since, in many states in the US, any vehicle under 50 cc doesn’t require having a driver’s license or learner’s permit to operate on the road. In addition, scooters with this type of engine can carry passengers of up to 270 pounds, and anything heavier will either overwork the engine and tires.

SPEED

If you’re a speed-freak, maybe a 50 cc scooter isn’t for you. At most, you’ll only be able to travel at speeds of up to 45 mph. This is what makes this sort of scooter the perfect option for avoiding traffic by going through alleyways and remote areas in your town. Also, if you need an intercity scooter, 50 cc scooters aren’t for you.

DESIGN

This is totally up to your subjective preference. If you’re looking for sleek, sporty, or simple designs, rest assured that there’s a manufacturer out there for you. Mopeds also come in different colors so you can pick one that appeals to you the most.

SAFETY

Last but not least, safety is of the utmost importance. Most scooters available on the market offer safety features that come standard with their products. These include drum brakes, electric and kick starts, and rear-view mirrors.

Electric and kick starters are helpful for when, God forbid, the moped’s battery fails. This helps the user get home or to the nearest moped garage for repairs. Most manufacturers also offer insurance and warranty benefits. These are especially useful if, God forbid, you get in an accident, totaling the moped in the process. In addition, you should consider purchasing helmets, vest guards, and even elbow and knee padding – just in case.

CONCLUSION

We hope this was a helpful guide for first-time scooter-buyers out there. Just remember that 50 cc scooters are the bare-minimum which requires users to have a valid driver’s license or learner’s permit to operate on the road. If you’re looking for top-speed scooters, a 50 cc engine won’t be your best choice, but the models we listed don’t guzzle gas and have enough features to get you from place to place within a single city.

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Steven Steven March 31, 2020 0 Comments

What are Hoverboard Stickers and Where Can I Get My Own?

BUY NOW

If you’re in the know, you are probably already familiar with what a hoverboard is. Hoverboards are like the skateboard’s hulked out sister. And if you ever owned a skateboard, you know just how important “decorating” it with stickers is. Following suit, hoverboards also have stickers, but these are “hulked out” as well.

SO WHAT ARE HOVERBOARD STICKERS?

These stickers are for far more than just show. If you just went out and spent over $300 on your new self balancing scooter, you want to know its going to last and you’re going to make sure it does.

Sure, hoverboards are supposed to bring out your inner wild child, but that doesn’t mean you have to be reckless and allow every little dent and ding to show. You want peace of mind while riding around like a futuristic madman.

Now, a lot of other accessories can protect your hoverboard, too. These include hoverboard backpacks, silicone cases, hoverboard bags, protector guards, rubber protective strips, and scooter bumpers.

But if you’re looking for style along with protection, then these sticker decals are where its at.

AND WHERE CAN I GET MY OWN?

There are several retailers out there selling hoverboard stickers these days, but there is one manufacturer that stands out from the rest. It is called MightySkins.

This retailer understands that hoverboards are already a little bulky. So they’ve minimized the bulk that these stickers add while still providing basic scratch protection to keep your board in tip top shape.

Their product, the Self Balancing Board Skin has a variety of designs called “ultra-inks.” That design is then covered with a clear protective layer which gives your board some extra durability. The material is top grade vinyl made with UV resistant color which means you don’t have to worry about fading.

But there is something even better! You know when you have one shot to put something sticky onto a surface and if you screw up, you have to deal with a crooked design forever or at least until it wears off?

Not with a MightySkins sticker. This company uses a patented repositionable and removable adhesive that allows you to quickly install it and remove it with out any goo left behind.

They’ve really answered all your prayers for a hoverboard sticker, am I right?

Here are a few of their most popular, best selling designs available to you:

  • American Flag
  • Blue Flames
  • Basketball
  • Carbon Fiber
  • Backdraft
  • Neon Splatter
  • Drips
  • Green Flames
  • Bright Smoke
  • Alien Invasion
  • Nebula
  • Lightning Storm
  • Solid Hot Pink
  • Baseball
  • Loud Graffiti
  • Light Waves
  • Grey Camo
  • Black Aztec
  • Bio Glow
  • Abstract Black

These are just the beginning. There are hundreds more.

BUY NOW

WHAT DOES THIS MEAN FOR ME?

Whatever your style, MightySkins has it. And with so many options available, and so many changing moods and interests, its a good thing you can switch out each sticker with ease. And it fits most hoverboard models, including but not limited to the Razor Hovertrax, Swagway T1, Powerboard, Sogo, Leray, and Glyro.

You may be wondering the price. Depending on the design you choose, there are different prices, but they start as low as $19.99 on the MightySkins website or $14.99 on Amazon. Not bad, huh? This means you can even start a little collection and not go totally broke doing it.

And for those of you who like purchasing U.S. made products, you can add MightySkins to your list.

Pros: affordable, protective, no mess left behind, made in the U.S., many designs, no fading

Cons: some people complain that the fit isn’t perfect, doesn’t protect from major damage (but doesn’t claim to, either)

Final Thoughts: If you are looking for minor protection and style all in one, MightySkins is perfect and affordable, too.

WHAT ARE OTHER PEOPLE SAYING?

Jimmy G. gives MightySkins a 4 out of 5 stars. He says, “Worth the money. Remember you are only buying a protective vinyl skin. This is not a big ticket item.”

Kristina H. gives it a 5 out of 5 stars. She says, “It clearly says it’s not a case! It is a sticker!”

WHERE CAN I GET ONE?

At the beginning of this article, you came in wondering, “What are hoverboard stickers and where can I get my own?”

I hope you found your answers above, Check this.AMAZON link for a wide variety of stickers.

HAPPY HOVERING!

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Steven Steven March 31, 2020 0 Comments

HOW TO MAKE BUYING A SELF-BALANCING SCOOTER PAIN-FREE

BUYING A SELF-BALANCING SCOOTER DOESN’T HAVE TO BE DIFFICULT

When picking a self-balancing electric scooter, you first have to check the technical specifications. Each brand is different and provides unique features that you may or may not need. Two models that look identical can be vastly different when you begin to examine them. Apart from that, there are some key details you’ll have to take into account if you want to sort out the difference between a useless product and a hoverboard that can get you to the stars.

Unsure about what the specs for your self-balancing scooter might mean? See a general explanation of them here on my hoverboard reviews page.

THE MOTOR

Essential for making the scooter scoot, the power of the motor is probably the most important factor to consider. Speed may not differ too much here (although it can range from 5mph to 10 mph), but, generally, motors weaker than 300 watts are not recommended for heavier folks.

You can expect that a motor with more wattage will propel a self–balancing scooter better than a lower wattage version.

I’ve seen several hoverboard brands mention that they are water-proof. While the motors may have tight seals to prevent water damage, this doesn’t mean you can ride through water more than 1-2” deep. Current 6.5” models only have 1.2” clearance between the chassis and the ground. By driving through a deep puddle, you will submerge the bottom of the scooter. Submersion could allow water to leak into the motor and wheels—or even short-circuit your battery.

BATTERIES AND CHARGERS

Most electric self-balancing scooters come with a sealed battery and charger. Inside the battery package is 12-18 smaller battery cells. Each of the batteries provides from 12-18 volts. (It all depends on the brand/model) Depending on the quality of the charger, will determine how long it takes to recharge your scooter.

The trick here is to keep in mind that the best batteries will take only about 2 hours to recharge (when fully drained), and that, before they “die of old age”, you should be able to recharge them at least 400 times. The CPSC recommends as a safety precaution that you only charge your battery for 2-3 hours before removing it from the charger.

THE DRIVE TRAIN

When you drive a car, the transmission transfers the energy from the motor to the wheels, making it possible for you to move. With a self-balancing scooter, the wheels are directly connected to the motors (a direct drive system). That direct connection is part of what gives the hoverboard such a quick response when the engines are engaged. You’re not losing energy like a car’s transmission does. A more traditional scooter or motorcycle use a belt or chain to transfer the motor’s energy into motion.

the components inside a self balancing scooter

A diagram listing the major components of a self-balancing scooter

THE GYRO-SENSORS/ACCELEROMETERS

What your hoverboard does have, is a pair of accelerometers inside connected to the motor. These sensors are extremely accurate and can convert the rider’s slightest shifts of weight and balance into signals that tell the motors to drive forwards or backward. By making the engine on each side of the scooter independent, you can perform extremely tight turns and spins.

OVERALL DURABILITY AND CONSTRUCTION SPECS

Other important aspects of an electric scooter’s manufacturing specifications are the tires, chassis, deck, and features. Make sure to look for brands and manufacturers that pay attention to these features, as a sturdy construction will help you stay safe on the road, while also keeping your scooter up and running for years. Tires can be either solid rubber or pneumatic. Pneumatic tires are in the 8” or larger models. Theoretically, they offer a smoother ride since the pneumatic tire can absorb some of the bumps you experience while riding where the solid rubber tires don’t absorb as much.

CHOOSING WHERE TO BUY A SELF-BALANCING SCOOTER

Con artists and scammers are in every industry, and they’re usually not that hard to spot. You’ve probably seen lots of them trying to sell “sensational” deals when in fact they’re just out fishing for fat wallets. These scammers selling inferior and unsafe hoverboards are the reason that many places halted the sale of them.

Hundreds of reputable vendors sell hoverboards. These dealers not only provide you with a self-balancing scooter that runs but also give you advice regarding maintenance, extending battery life and much more. When you visit a website belonging to a specialty electric scooter dealer, they should be able to give you exact details about all the technical features of even some of the most complex models. A genuinely good salesperson should also help you to find useful additional accessories batteries or parts. Here’s a link to my article on what I consider being the essential hoverboard accessories.

However good a specialty store/website might be, I would recommend you go with somewhere like Best Buy or even better Amazon or a smaller site.

Always look for reviews when you find dealers that sound reputable, as the “real” ones usually have a lot fewer complaints than second-hand dealers who sell their products under questionable circumstances

SOME SELF-BALANCING SCOOTER BUYING DOS AND DON’TS

  • DO spend a little bit more to buy a quality self-balancing scooter. I know I work hard for my money, and I’m sure that you do too.
  • DO consider the age of your child if you are thinking about buying a hoverboard for kids. The recommended age is 14+.
  • DON’T buy a self-balancing scooter from some random guy at a gas station. Any savings upfront might be spent maintaining it in the long run.
  • DO get an extended warranty. Unlike other protection plans so far it seems that hoverboard warranties are useful.
  • DON’T skip the extended warranty. Yes, I just said the same thing, but if there’s an extra warranty available, you should get it. Hoverboards are just too new, and nobody quite knows what the expected life of one is. By purchasing an after-market warranty, you can protect your investment in case the vendor disappears. I can name at least ten that is no longer answering customer emails and phone calls.
  • DO consider Amazon as a place to buy your self-balancing scooter. You can often get free shipping, some states don’t pay sales tax, and there are buyer protections that the site offers to anyone who buys from them. Also, if you get a hoverboard from Amazon, you can add a SquareTrade protection plan.
    • It provides an extra two years of warranty for your self-balancing scooter.
    • It costs about 10% (the $400.00 plan is only $32 at the time of writing this article.)
    • To get your hoverboard fixed, you email them and then send you the shipping labels. Quick, painless, and a great value

See My SquareTrade Review Here

PRICE COMPARISONS

The number of electric self-balancing scooter brands has changed exponentially in the past six months. In the 18 months that they have been available for sale, the prices have ranged from $2000 to as little as $197. The average price for a quality model is around $500.

Segway has announced that they will be selling their version of a hoverboard (the MiniPro) for $1000. I don’t know if that’s worth the price yet. I will know more when they start shipping the first units to customers on the 28th of June.

In short, it’s hard to say what’s a good price to pay for a self-balancing scooter. The different qualities of brands and the number of sellers keep me from saying that this or that is a good deal. If you ever want my opinion on one that you are considering purchasing, use the contact form at the bottom of the page. I love hearing from readers, and will help you as best I can.

The best piece of advice, therefore, is not to be rash. First, look for a brand and a model that might suit your needs perfectly, and then, far from being over, the real adventure will begin. Next, you want to get the best bargain; you will have to search for that particular model, and compare prices from as many different places as possible. Once you find the best price, go for it – you’ll get a great scooter, and you’ll still afford to pay the power bill to recharge it.

SUMMARY

Buying a self-balancing electric scooter may seem like a difficult task at first, but nothing is too hard once you’ve got some insight on the matter and you know what to do. Research, a little patience, along with a little sense of adventure, and you will have your new hoverboard/electric scooter ready to take on the rush hour madness in no time at all.

Amazon and other big box retailers will be able to provide you with some of the best bargains, allowing you to order your very own electric scooter without even breaking a sweat. Now that Amazon has relisted them I think we’ll start to see them on the shelves of other retailers very soon. So stop poking around local shops, and keep your wallet full and your spirits high by getting the newest, most reliable electric scooter on the internet. It will probably be a lot cheaper than in regular stores.

Check of the hoverboard buyer’s guide for more help with buying a hoverboard.

FINAL NOTE:

I deliberately chose not to link to any sales, deals, or products on this page.  My hope is that by not having those links this page will continue to be helpful for a long time.  Having said that, I do earn a small commission on any purchases made by people who click on some of the external links on the site.  This pays for hosting and other needs of the site.  If you came here looking for purchase suggestions, please visit my hoverboard comparison page.  As always, please feel free to contact me via the form below if you have any scooter questions.

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Steven Steven March 31, 2020 0 Comments