Torque Sensor vs. Cadence Sensor on Electric Bikes | Himiway

Which is better: Torque Sensor vs. Cadence Sensor on Electric Bikes

Owning a high-quality Himiway electric bike has several benefits. One of these is the ability to decide whether or not you pedal while biking – this is made possible by a feature called pedal assist. Although they come in many different forms, they all share the same trait: they make cycling easier.

Moreover, the Pedal assist sensor in ebikes turns on the motor when you pedal automatically. This function eliminates the need to use a throttle to control your ebike's motor. The sensor transmits a signal to the pedal assist system (PAS) when you engage and drive the ebike. An electric bike can either use a torque or cadence sensor. Understanding each type of pedal assist sensor is essential since these sensors affect your riding performance.

This article will give you concise knowledge regarding the workings of a torque and cadence sensor. Knowing this would help you decide which sensor is best for you to have an enjoyable ride.

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What Is a Torque Sensor?

A torque sensor uses a precise strain gauge to determine and monitor how hard you pedal. This gauge measures the pedal pressure you exert and sends a signal to the e-control bike's system. Then, the control unit uses this information to calculate the level of power the motor needs to supply based on the force you apply while peddling. 

Thus, it means that the more you pedal your motor, the more it absorbs energy. Also, the less pressure you put on the pedals, the power declines automatically at the same rate. In the same way, the power also goes off when you stop pedaling. The Himiway Cobra electric mountain bike with an excellent torque sensor can also sample your pedaling force up to 1000 times per second, allowing the device to alter the pedaling power as it fluctuates quickly and instantly. 

Furthermore, this pedal-assist system intensifies your pedal input to produce an equivalent output. The majority of ebikes have diverse pedal assist settings. The lowest setting, also called the 'eco-mode,’ may increase your pedaling force by 50%, while the highest setting or 'performance mode' can boost your pedaling strength by 300%.

Pros of A Torque Sensor

Offers natural riding technique

Having torque sensor ebikes makes you feel more independent since it can automatically adjust the motor's power based on the pressure of your pedaling. Also, with this sensor, you would not experience a power jolt when your pedals pressure either increases or decreases.

Pedal Assistance

The torque sensor in your ebike eliminates the problem of a lower range which occurs when you use the throttle to control your motor. When you use this sensor correctly, it can triple your capacity, providing you with a higher range and enabling you to cover more ground per full charge of the battery. More so, this can happen since the motor enhances your power by pedaling rather than powering the bike directly.

Long-Lasting Battery Power

An electric bike with a torque sensor has a battery power that lasts longer. The battery constantly charges as you pedal, irrespective of the pressure you place on the pedal. Moreover, even when you brake, the battery may recharge, enabling you to ride further.

Cons of the Torque Sensor

Challenging to attain a top speed

Since the speed of a torque sensor, ebike is the amount of pedaling force inputted to the motor. So, you can achieve maximum speed only by putting more pressure on the pedals. But it is difficult to sustain this level of speed once attained because you will require more constant pedal power, which can be hard to maintain.

High acquisition cost

The cost of purchasing a torque sensor ebike is around $2,000, while a torque sensor costs around $150. These costs are expensive for a sensor

It requires more effort to ride.

You need to provide pedaling force to keep the motor constantly moving as it requires great strength for long hours.

What is a Cadence Sensor?

Electric bikes with cadence sensors usually engage when the rider starts paddling forward. In short, the cadence sensor measures if you are pedaling or otherwise. The Himiway Zebra all-terrain electric bike’s speed sensor works with a switch button, so that when you pedal, the sensor sends a signal to the bike's control unit. The control unit then automatically turns on the motor; similarly, it switches off when you stop pedaling.

The cadence sensor has two parts: a sensor and a magnet. The sensor is attached to the ebike's frame, usually near the bottom bracket. A series of magnets connected to a disc mount on the crank passes through the sensor when you start pedaling. As soon as you stop, the magnet also stops. This helps the cadence sensor detect the magnets' movement to determine if you are cycling. 

A cadence sensor ebike's magnet disc typically has 3 to 14 magnets in the disc. The higher the number, the more responsive the pedal assist system will be and vice-versa. Thus, the control unit of the ebike receives signals more frequently when there are more magnets.

Pros of a Cadence Sensor

Affordable cost of acquisition

A cadence sensor ebike costs around $800, while a cadence sensor costs around $20. This price implies purchasing a cadence sensor ebike is less costly and affordable.

It requires less effort to ride.

The cadence sensor bike is easy to use since it requires little or no effort. You have to spin the pedals to keep the motor engaged. Doing this makes the cadence sensor bike a comfortable option for seniors or riders with tender knees seeking an easy ride.

Easily Accessible ebike

The cadence sensor-based ebike is easy to get, as most ebikes have the cadence sensor. Thus, producing the cadence sensor bike would cost less, resulting in massive production, eventually selling for a low price.

Cons of a Cadence Sensor

Less range

Ebikes with a cadence sensor can only go as far on a single charge because the engine has to work harder. Additionally, the ebike utilizes a strong battery to activate the motor.

Less autonomous

The cadence sensor electric bike is unsuitable for riders who want to feel more of their bikes and their effort while riding. Thus, the cadence sensor can make the pedal assist system feel erratic and counterintuitive.

Harder to control

The time between the motor turning on and off may vary. The electric bike might require assistance in this situation for control. Additionally, when the e-bike turns on, it can produce a surge.

How durable are pedal-assist bikes?

Since e-bikes survive about ten years on average, your pedal assist can last the same number of years. The figure may be higher or lower depending on your bike's brand and use.

How fast can one go with pedal assist?

Most electric bicycles stop assisting the rider once they reach 20 mph for Class 1 and Class 2 ebikes, while class 3 ebikes are at 28 mph.

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The selection of a pedal assist sensor is a crucial decision to be made as an ebike rider. It's advisable to choose the pedal assist sensor that suits your need. Therefore, the question of 'which sensor is better depends on different factors such as your style of riding, your comfort, the distances you ride, and your budget for the electric bike. Whatever your decision today, shop for your preferred electric bike at Himiway.