There are lots of options to generate electricity by yourself for your needs. So, as a bike rider or an enthusiast, you might be wondering about the ability of a bike to produce electricity. If it can, how much electricity can a bike generate?
Besides, can we use this electricity produced by a bike to power our house? This whole bunch of questions is being asked by people for a long time now. So, let us get more into this matter to get an idea about electricity production on a bike.
First of all, a thing you need to produce electricity from a bike is a Bicycle Generator. It will produce electricity and let you store that energy in a battery. The amount of electric energy is measured in kWh, which stands for Kilo Watt Hours.
You might know that you can use a battery for any household needs if it has enough power to run them. Then, all you need is an inverter to run as the converter between the battery and house. So, it is clear that a battery can run a house for sure.
Although the question is that could a bike can make a battery capable of it. If not, how much electricity we can produce with a bike. Let’s take a deeper look into that.
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How Much Electricity is Produced by a Single Bike Rider?
Cycling is done for many purposes by millions of people every day all around the world. It can be for a fun ride around nature, a competition, a fitness group, house needs, getting to work, etc. It also can be those stationary fitness bikes inside the house.
Whichever bike it is, there is work put into it by a person to make it rotate, so there is energy consumption. If you are looking into the amount of energy produced by one single person, read forward.
A person hops onto the bike and turns the wheel. This wheel is hooked up with an electric generator that will produce electricity. That can be stored in the battery so that we can use it for later needs.
When this person is turning the wheel on the bike, the whole energy he has is used for different needs. This will use half of this energy to keep him alive by functioning all his body needs. Lungs breathing, heart beating, and all the different parts are always working.
For a lead cyclist, the energy that he can produce is up to 0.4 kWh. However, all riders are not lead cyclists, so there is no chance for these figures when it comes to a normal rider. If a normal rider ride for eight hours a day, the best he can maintain is about a quarter of the energy produced by a professional rider.
That means up to 1 kWh per day, which we can use for running a light bulb for a full day. Although, we may not store all the energy produced by a generator in the battery. Small leaks are happening throughout the process.
Some of that energy will get lost on its way through the generator, and some will get lost in between the generator and the battery. At last, in the final calculations, the number of energy remains will be half of the total energy produced. That is about half of a kilowatt-hour in the battery.
If the rider pedals all day straight for a month, he can store up to 16 kWh of electricity. It is the same energy produced with half a gallon of gasoline can produce.
Things that can use Electricity Produced by a Bike
Many people do many types of research to find out if the electricity produced by a bike can run a house’s needs. And it concluded that you could not use it to power a house but can be used for other purposes.
This is because a normal household in the U.S uses up to 30 kWh per day in electricity. So there is not much explanation needed to prove that you cannot run household needs with a bike generator.
However, if you live off-grid or go camping out in the wood or live a van life, it will always have a bike generator. The first reason for this is that the usage level of electricity in all these cases is very different from a normal household.
You will only use electricity when you need it, but there will be things that never shut down in the case of a house. For example, there will be some temperature controllers, automatic systems, CCTV cameras in a modern house, and the list will go on.
So, there is no downtime for electricity in a house. Instead, in all the other cases that I mentioned, people will only use electricity when needed. Besides, it will never be a big deal compared to a normal house.
If they have a bike generator and can ride it for a while, it is possible to run lights, charge appliances, etc. After all, this will happen alongside their daily routines. All these together mean that you can accomplish uses with the electric energy produced by a bike generator.
After all, it is important that you have to keep the speed the same as earlier if you need the same amount of energy.
How to Make a Homemade Bike Generator?
If you have the materials and normal tools with you, it is easy to build a bike generator by yourself. Even if it may not become a reliable option for power, it will be a great experiment. So, we can start with the materials you needed to build a bike generator.
The main list of materials includes a motor that is 12v or above, a diode, a stand to keep your bike in place, a V-belt, wires, a battery, and an invertor.
- First, you need to build a stand to hold the bike above the surface to stay in place.
- Remove the back tire from the bike and insert the v-belt into the rim slot.
- Keep the generator motor behind the bike screwed or unmoveable.
- Pass the v-belt through the generator motor round. Make sure it is tight enough not to run out while the system is on.
- Connect a diode in series between the battery and the motor.
- Make the connections between the inverter and battery.
- Connect a bulb into the inverter to check if it is working.
- Start riding your bike and keep an eye on all the things you are connected to in the generator.
Over to You
As the last word, I can say that a bike generator is not a big success, but it can never be considered a failure. Like the situations mentioned above, you can use it for small purposes like charging mobile phones or running small lights.
Some other fun ideas for a bike generator are running small smoothie grinders, making breakfast with small appliances, etc. However, a human being can never make a bike generator to produce enough electric energy to run a household needs to date.
Anything happens in the future; let us leave it for the future. I think this information may solve your doubts about how much electricity a bike can generate.