Over the last year and a half, we have witnessed a rise in the number of people who are trading in bikes and other modes of transportation for the hoverboard. If you are considering switching your mode of personal transportation or investing in a hoverboard to ride around certain areas, first take into consideration a few helpful pieces of safety advice.
In this post, we will uncover eight important safety tips to remember in regards to your hoverboard and hoverboard riding.
Make Sure The Hoverboard is Authentic Before Buying
This might seem like an obvious piece of advice at first, but the unfortunate reality is that far too many people are inadvertently buying bootleg hoverboards. But how can you tell if a hoverboard is authentic or not?
Are the more expensive hoverboards the official ones?
And what if you accidentally buy a bootleg version that looks exactly like a genuine hoverboard? The best way to make sure that you are getting an authentic hoverboard is by purchasing one of the models ChooseWheels recommends (wink wink).
But in all seriousness, avoid buying from individual sellers on places like Ebay or Craigslist (unless the hoverboard is being sold by an actual manufacturer).
Finally, make sure it is UL Certified.
Steer Clear of Rough Riding
It goes without saying that if you want to maintain the longevity of anything that you own, whether it’s a new piece of kitchen equipment or a hoverboard, you have to treat it with care.
If you want to make the most out of your hoverboard investment while keeping yourself safe on the road when you are riding it, make sure that you are not abusing it.
Watch out for bumps on the road and keep the hoverboard off the rough pavement. When you are first learning how to ride your hoverboard, it is not out of the realm of possibilities for you to potentially crash it a few times (the same way you would if you were learning how to ride a bike).
However, after enough experience riding it, the crashing incidences should subside, and your riding will become smoother. Don’t intentionally take it out on a bumpy road or try to do tricks with it.
The self-balance scooter is designed for smooth gliding, so reserve the use of it for that purpose.
Know Where You Can Safely and Legally Ride
Are there restrictions on where you can ride?
If you live anywhere in the UK or New York City, we have some bad news for you. They are illegal to ride in public areas (private property is fine), although there are plenty of people who do it anyway.
Of course, this is not to say that you can disregard the law and do it too just because you see other people doing it. It’s just to inform you that if you do spot people riding their hoverboard in the UK or New York City, they aren’t doing it legally.
Additionally, some campuses across the United States have banned the use of hoverboards on campus. If you aren’t sure if you can legally ride your hoverboard around the area, you live or on your campus, ask someone in law enforcement or a person in a position of authority at your university.
Don’t Take it With You on Flights (or Be Aware of Regulations)
Before you do any air traveling, check with the airline that you are flying with before bringing your hoverboard with you. There are certain carriers that have outright banned them from being taken on planes.
Such airlines include JetBlue, Frontier, Delta, and Alaska. However, some airlines do permit them with certain regulations. If you are flying Virgin America or American, your hoverboard is allowed as a carry-on only. If you are flying Southwest or United, you may take it with you only if you are checking it with your baggage.
However, some airlines do permit them with certain regulations. If you are flying Virgin America or American, your hoverboard is allowed as a carry-on only. If you are flying Southwest or United, you may take it with you only if you are checking it with your baggage.
Do Not Charge Overnight
While many of us are used to charging our tablets, smartphones, and other devices while we sleep, it is not advisable that you do this with hoverboards. Generally, hoverboards will take about two to four hours to charge completely.
Although authentic, safe hoverboards made by reputable companies design batteries that do not continue to suck the power out of the outlet after fully charging; it’s best not to leave it plugged in.
You don’t want to run the risk of potentially setting your house on fire simply because you charged the hoverboard for too long. Stick to powering up during the day when you are home and make sure it is plugged into an outlet where it has plenty of space.
Get in Enough Practice Before Hitting The Roads
Like riding a bike or a motorcycle, you don’t want to immediately start riding on the roads when you have never ridden a hoverboard before. Practice on private property before taking to the streets. While some hoverboard riders opt to leave helmets, knee pads, and elbow pads behind (although it is highly recommended that you wear them while you are riding), you should at the very least wear the safety gear when you are still practicing.
Again, like riding a bike or a motorcycle, perfecting your balance is critical to avoid crashes and falls.
You want to stand straight while maintaining proper posture and not bending your knees. You should maintain a forward gaze and keep your legs apart, not too close together. In addition to balancing while riding, knowing how to get on and off of the board is important.
Learning how to step on the board one foot at a time is trickier than it appears at first, but with sufficient practice, it will become second nature. When you are preparing to step off of the hoverboard, always step backward, not forwards, and step off with your dominant foot.
Don’t be like these people, PRACTICE!
Take Proper Precautions if You Plan to Ride at Night
While clearly riding anything during the day is substantially safer than riding at night, people still ride bikes, motorcycles, and hoverboards during the darker hours.
If you plan to do this, take the proper precautions before jumping on your board. To start, wear white or some other reflective clothing, so vehicles can see you in the dark. If possible, always ride in well-lit areas with plenty of bright street lights. You can also consider investing in some light up shoes for added light.
While hoverboards do come with lights, you can’t rely solely on them as they aren’t that bright.
Remember, Hoverboards Are Not Skateboards
Hoverboards are not skateboards, which means that if you try impressive tricks with it, you will end up with less than impressive results. Not only will treating a hoverboard like a skateboard be damaging to the hoverboard itself, you could end up with a broken bone or another serious injury.
Undoubtedly, hoverboards are meant for fun, but they should not be used on ramps or down a flight of stairs. As stated previously, treat the hoverboard with care and stick to easy gliding. If you crash your hoverboard repeatedly, it could result in anything from the need for it to be re-calibrated to the battery exploding.