Houston is a city located in Texas, USA, and is the most populous city in the Southern United States. Known by multiple nicknames, such as “H-Town”, the “Bayou City”, and “the 713”, Houston is globally recognized for its rich cultural diversity, museums and galleries, performing arts scene, and much more.
If you’re thinking of exploring Houston by electric bike, this article will help you prepare and answer all the questions you may have ahead of time!
E-biking rules in Houston
First, it is important to know what the rules surrounding e-bikes are in Houston. According to Texas e-bike laws, electric bicycles are required to:
- Have a motor output that does not exceed 750W
- Not exceed the speed limit of 20 mph (28 mph for Class III)
- Have fully operable pedals
Additionally, vehicles that are classified as electric bicycles are allowed on all roadways, but must be ridden as far right as possible except when making a left turn. E-bikes are also allowed on all bike paths and trails, unless posted otherwise.
Planning to take your e-bike on public transit? Here’s what you need to know. The Houston Metro includes buses, light rails, bus rapid transit, and paratransit services (METROLift). On buses, riders can put their e-bikes on the bike rack that is equipped at the front of the bus, which carries up to two bikes at a time.
Read also: What are the rules & regulations for electric bikes and speed e-bikes in the USA? And, Best known e-bike brands in the USA.
Bikes can also be taken on commuter buses; for this, visitors should keep an eye out for the baggage compartment icon on the door, as this is where you can lay your bike inside. On the train (or, METRORail), bikes are allowed onboard at any time and can be brought in on either the first or last door of every train, which is indicated accordingly by signage.
However, there is also a two-bike limit per train. For more information about bikes on the Houston Metro, visit this link here. For bicycle parking in Houston, riders will be able to find bike racks and corrals installed throughout the city.
Is Houston e-bike friendly?
Yes, Houston is a very e-bike friendly city! Riders can explore various city attractions, parks, and other sights on their bike.
Some of the top recommended bike paths and trails include Buffalo Bayou Hike and Bike Trail, White Oak Bayou Trail, Brays Bayou Greenway Trail, Rice University & Hermann Park, Heights Hike & Bike Trail, George Bush Park, Memorial Park, Zube Park, Terry Hershey Hike and Bike Trail, Jack Brooks Park Trail, Spring Creek Greenway Trail, Huntsville State Park, and The Woodlands. To view a full map of Houston’s bikeways, check out this interactive online map here!
If you are looking to charge your e-bike while visiting Houston, you can find the locations of each electric vehicle (EV) charging station on Chargehub, some of which you may be able to use for your e-bike. You may also be able to charge your e-bike at certain cafes, hotels, and restaurants, but be sure to ask for permission first!
To rent an e-bike in Houston, there are a few options. First, Houston BCycle, which is the city’s bike sharing program, offers e-bikes that visitors can rent from BCycle docks that are located throughout the city. Riders are able to locate BCycle e-bikes either through the app or online system map, as indicated by the electric bolt symbol.
Read also: Which electric bike to buy? Making your educated e-bike selection choice – also in this article, and this article. And, best folding e-bikes for women, reviewed and compared.
Alternatively, there are several companies where you can rent from Fly E-bike offers e-bike rentals in “Small”, “Street”, and “Fat Tire” options for one-hour increments, and Pedego has a Houston Heights location and a West Houston location, and provides rentals for either hourly or daily increments. Lastly, a rental equipment marketplace called Cloud of Goods offers e-bikes as an option and will drop off the rental item at your location.
How is the weather and city traffic in Houston? Is it fun to ride an e-bike in Houston?
In the city of Houston, rush hour traffic is at its height between 7AM – 9AM and 4PM – 7PM on weekdays. As such, we recommend that cyclists avoid riding the streets at these hours.
In terms of weather, the best time to visit Houston is between February and April, and September through November. Houston experiences warm weather for almost the whole year due to its close proximity to the Gulf of Mexico, and the climate is the most pleasant during spring (where temperatures average in the mid-60s to low 80s Fahrenheit) and fall (low 70s to high 80s Fahrenheit).
While summer is also a popular time of year to visit, hotel prices get the most expensive, and the humidity and heat are at their highest. Additionally, the winter months get relatively cold due to freezing temperatures, so we recommend e-cyclists to avoid visiting at this time. If you’re interested in coinciding your visit with a particular event or festival, be sure to check out Houston’s list of Annual Events to plan accordingly.
Read also: Can electric bikes get wet? And, Can I ride an e-bike in winter?
And lastly, don’t miss out on the many sights Houston has to offer! Some top attractions include the Houston Museum District (which includes 19 museums, galleries, and cultural centers), The Galleria, Toyota Center, Discovery Green, Rodeo Houston, NRG Stadium, Minute Maid Park, Bayou Bend Collection and Gardens, Rice University Campus, and Houston Arboretum & Nature Center. Check out Trip Advisor for more recommendations on things to do in Houston!
Houston city landscape, the best type(s) of e-bikes to ride in this city
Houston is considered to have a very flat topography, standing at 50 feet (or 15 m) above sea level with its highest point going up to 90 feet (27 m).
Due to its relatively flat terrain, a city cruiser or commuter e-bike is perfectly suitable for cycling in Houston.
Read also: How to select the best cruiser e-bike? And, How much does a good cruiser e-bike cost?
Where can I buy an e-bike in Houston?
There are a number of companies where you can buy an electric bike in Houston!
As mentioned earlier, Pedego has two locations in Houston; cyclists can either check in-store to see which e-bikes they have in stock, or buy an e-bike online and have it shipped anywhere within the USA. Electric Avenue also offers the ability to buy online, buy in-store, or pre-order if the e-bike isn’t yet in stock.
Sun & Ski Bikes – Houston offers a selection of e-bikes that you can buy online; as does Walmart. Lastly, Trek Bikes has multiple locations in Houston, where you can either buy online or shop in-store!
Read also: Best known electric bicycle brands in the USA. And, Best e-bike financing options in the USA.
Where can I repair an e-bike in Houston?
To get your e-bike repaired in Houston, here are some options!
Electric Avenue offers a range of services for e-bikes; REI Houston offers full services such as Bike Tune, Wheels & Tires, Bike Assembly, and Shifting & Brakes; and Pedego – Houston Heights offers parts and services for e-bikes that have been bought from their company.
Where can I recycle e-bike batteries in Houston?
If you need to recycle your e-bike battery while in Houston, the Call2Recycle program lists a number of locations where you can drop off your battery. These include Electric Avenue – Houston, West End Bicycles, The Home Depot, Lowes, and the Specialized Bicycle Company Houston.
Visit Call2Recycle’s webpage for more information! Trek Bikes also offers battery recycling; riders can find a location in Houston and drop off their battery there.
Read also: Check out USA best travel destinations by electric bike.
Houston programs to develop cycling infrastructure
The city of Houston is constantly working on developing new cycling infrastructure, safety, and accessibility through its Houston Bikeways program. On the website, cyclists can see which projects are completed, under construction, or in their design stages.
Now that you’re all set to visit Houston, Texas on an e-bike, we hope you have a great trip!