Hoverboards are devices that you can use to move around quickly. Riding it indoors or in a space away from people and vehicles is usually recommended when you get a hoverboard.
You might get into a situation where you need to get to a particular destination fast, and the only means you have other than walking is your hoverboard.
Hoverboards are not the same as skateboards, so it’s reasonable to be skeptical about riding them outside.
So you start to wonder if you can ride your hoverboard outside, on sidewalks and pavements.
Yes, you can ride your hoverboard outside and on the sidewalk if it is an off-road hoverboard, but you have to research. Different areas have different laws on hoverboard riding. For example, some cities allow for riding in public spaces and on sidewalks, while some don’t.
I’ll tell you about some places and their laws against hoverboard riding in this article. After that, you’d learn off-road hoverboards’ features and safety tips for riding outside.
Is It Legal to Ride a Hoverboard on the Sidewalk?
The legal actions against riding hoverboards on sidewalks depend on the area to stay.
In places like the United Kingdom, it is against the law to ride hoverboards on sidewalks, parks, and public places.
You can only buy and sell UL2272-certified hoverboards in the UK, but you cannot ride them in public places. However, you can ride your hoverboard on private property.
In other places like Australia, you can ride hoverboards in public places, but this freedom is limited to a certain age and speed.
In New York, the laws prohibit people from riding hoverboards in public places, including roads, pavements, sidewalks, etcetera but are allowed to ride them on private property.
If you get caught violating the law on hoverboarding, you might get fined 500 US dollars.
In California, you’re allowed to ride your hoverboard in public, but you have to be aware of some restrictions passed into law by the government in 2016.
Here are the restrictions to riding a hoverboard in California:
- A hoverboard rider should be 16 years old or more
- A hoverboards rider must have safety gear on them when riding
- A hoverboard rider can only ride within the speed limit with is 35 mph or less except on bike lanes
- When riding at night on the road, a hoverboard rider must have a fixed and properly functioning headlight. The light should be visible from 300m away.
- You cannot ride a hoverboard when you consume hard drugs and substances like alcohol.
Violating any of the restrictions for overboard in California will attract a fine of $250 per infraction.
In Canada, riding hoverboards is not illegal, but rules change with different provinces and cities.
Although there are different laws for different areas, here are things that are common in hoverboard law in Canada:
- Hoverboards are not allowed on sidewalks, parks, bike lanes, bike paths, etcetera, because they act like motor vehicles.
- It would be best if you always had safety gear (helmet, knee pad, etc.) on when you’re riding your hoverboard.
- You are allowed only to purchase or sell UL2272-certified hoverboards
- You cannot ride hoverboards after consuming hard drugs or substances like alcohol
If you violate the laws on hoverboards in the UK, you will get fined up to 500 euros, and you’d have to pay for any damage you did while riding.
In New York, the law prohibits people from riding hoverboards in public places, including roads, pavements, sidewalks, etcetera but are allowed to ride them on private property.
Here are some popular places where hoverboard riding is banned:
- All airlines
- American University, Washington D.C
- Adams State University, Colorado
- Quicken Loans Arena in Cleveland, Ohio
- All public spaces in Denmark
- All shopping malls in Dubai, UAE.
- Duke University
- Eat Carolina University
- Eastern Illinois University
- Elizabethtown College, Pennsylvania
- Emerson Colleg, Boston
- School districts in Frisco, Texas
- Hong Kong
- Deerbrook Mall in Humble, Texas
- James Madison University, Virginia
- Metrolink trains in Los Angeles, California
- Louisiana State University
- Miami University, Ohio
- MSP International Airport in Minneapolis, Minnesota.
- New south wales, Australia
- North Carolina Central University
- Northwestern University
- Oklahoma State University
- Purdue University, Indiana
- Rutgers University
- Sacred Heart University, Connecticut
- Shawnee State University, Ohio
- Suffolk University
- Temple University Pennsylvania
- Tufts University
- University of Alabama
- University of Arkansas
- University of Bridgeport, Connecticut
- University of Central Florida
- University of Iowa
- University of Kentucky
- Williams College, Massachusetts
- Vanderbilt University, Tennessee
- University of Pittsburgh
- University of South Carolina
- University of Wyoming
- University of Massachusetts, Amherst
- University of Massachusetts, Dartmouth
- University of Missouri
Are Hoverboards Meant for Outdoor Use?
Some hoverboards have a design suitable for outdoor use. Therefore, you can take your hoverboard outdoors, but you must be cautious.
You must ensure that your hoverboard has features that make it suitable for outdoor use. Hoverboards that are suitable to handle harsh conditions outdoors are off-road hoverboards.
Here is a table to show some examples of hoverboards that are suitable for outdoor use and their features:
|Sharper image-sogo two-wheel electric||It weighs 100kg and delivers 700 watts of power||$560.69|
|Angell Hoverboost hoverboard||A maximum speed of 15km/h and charges within 60-120 mins||$449.99|
|Kebe Hot 2 wheel hoverboard||It weighs about 120kg||$369|
|Hoverboard by mikitokobayashi||The maximum speed of 10-12 km/h with a 162.8 Wh battery||$350|
|Electric self-balance hoverboard by Dakota||A maximum speed of 16km/h with a maximum payload of 120kg||$655|
|Razor Hovertrax hoverboard||A maximum speed of about 10km/h with a maximum payload of 100kg||$599|
|Leray self-balancing hoverboard||It takes about an hour to charge||$529.99|
|PowerBoard Hoverboard||The maximum speed of 13km/h and it weighs 110kg||$699.99|
|Swagway X1 hoverboard||Can travel up to 30km upon a single charge||$400|
|Skque Hoverboard||A maximum speed of 10km/h and can travel up to 20km upon a single charge||$649.99|
Can You Ride a Hoverboard on Concrete?
Yes, you can ride some hoverboards on concrete, but not all.
Hoverboards, known as all-terrain or off-road hoverboards, have specific features that allow you to ride them on rough terrain like concrete.
Here are the features to take note of that will allow you to ride a hoverboard on concrete.
#1. Tire Size
Hoverboards that allow you to ride on a rough surface like concrete have extensive tires.
A normal overboard for smooth sidewalks usually has tires 8.5 inches in size. Likewise, off-road hoverboards should be about 8.5 inches in size.
#2. Tire Material
Off-board hoverboards usually have tires made of solid rubber.
These rubber tires used in off-board hoverboards are puncture-resistant, durable, and can adequately handle sharp and rugged surfaces like concrete.
For hoverboards, the best type of tires to use are air-filled pneumatic tires.
Here are some desirable features of air-filled pneumatic tires:
- Pneumatics have a deep thread and very durable rubber. This feature makes it suitable for rough surfaces and harsh conditions.
- Air-filled pneumatic tires help to provide you with a comfortable riding experience. The air in the tires absorbs bumps on the ground, making your ride smoother.
- Air-filled pneumatic tires are suitable for rough terrains like concrete.
Here are some disadvantages to having pneumatic tires on your hoverboard:
- First, pneumatic tires are prone to punctures because they contain air.
- A temperature change will influence pneumatic tires. When the temperature is hot, the air in the tires will expand, and when it is colder, the air will deflate.
#3. Tread Pattern for Off-Road Hoverboards
The tread pattern needs to be deep and staggered. These rugged hoverboards need deep treads to help with rough terrains like concrete.
#4. Motors for Off-Road Hoverboards
Off-road hoverboards should have motors with string power. The motor for an off-road hoverboard must be 200 watts or more.
#5. Dust and Water Protection for Off-Road Hoverboards
Your off-road hoverboard should have protection against water and dirt. For example, you’d see dirt and gravel drops when riding your hoverboard along a concrete surface.
Check your hoverboard’s IP rating to determine its resistance against water and dirt. Your hoverboard should be rated at least IPX4.
Can You Ride a Hoverboard on the street?
Yes, you can ride a hoverboard on the street, but you must be cautious.
You must do proper research if you are thinking about riding your hoverboard on the street. First, find out if there are rules or laws against riding hoverboards on the streets in your area.
Check for the speed limit in the street. You cannot ride your hoverboard on streets where the speed limit is 35 mph or higher because you cannot hoverboards cannot be operated over 15mph.
7 Safety Tips for Riding a Hoverboard Outside
Riding your hoverboard outside is more challenging than riding indoors. There are rough surfaces, obstacles, and people moving around.
You must take specific measures to ensure you do not regret going overboard outside.
Here are seven safety tips for riding your hoverboard outside:
- First, buy hoverboards suitable for the outdoors. You should go for hoverboards that fall under the category of off-road hoverboards.
- Practice well in open spaces before you take your ride to the streets
- Make sure that your hoverboard is fully charged but avoid overcharging it
- Avoid knocking your hoverboard. Knocking down your hoverboard can reduce its lifespan
- Wear clothes with enhanced visibility, like bright-colored clothes, so people can see you riding and avoid bumping into you.
- Always wear safety gear like helmets and knee pads when going hoverboarding outside.
- Avoid speeding on the road.