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Do Kick Scooters Have Brakes? Some Are Safer Than Others

kick scooter braking system

A kick scooter is an urban ride, and people are increasingly using kick scooters for daily commutes. Since the kick scooter is a ride for the cities, newcomers may feel concerned about the rider’s safety with all the traffic around them.

So the most frequently asked questions about kick scooter’s safety features are brakes; Do they have brakes? How can one use those brakes? Is it safe? Well, this article will answer all these questions.

Kick scooters are manufactured with different brakes; Footbrake, V-Brake, or a Disc Brake.

  • The least powerful braking system, a footbrake, slows the kick scooter down by pressing on the rear wheel. This type is ideal for kids.
  • The V-Brake brakes are a more powerful braking system, resembling the brakes on a bicycle; these types are recommended for (commuting) adults.
  • The Disc Brake is the most powerful and is recommended for high-speed riding.

Let us face it; a kick scooter is a stylish way of going to your office. Kick scooters are easy to ride, but you want to be safe.

There could be traffic on your daily route, ad you might need to pull over suddenly, so having a handbrake is the best-case scenario. You cannot always jump off the scooter and start running alongside to stop it gradually, although my 5-year-old is a master of this craft – I do not recommend it at all!

Kick Scooters Models & Brakes

Please do not underestimate the scooting skills of my 5-year-old daughter, as previously discussed, when she pulls over herself instead of making her scooter stop.

Jokes aside, the rear fender is a do-able brake for a kick scooter. All you have to do is, place your game-foot on that fender and press it. It works as a friction brake. It is the most practical way for a traditional kick scooter.

However, some riders prefer a handbrake instead of this friction brake on the wheel. We will discuss later in detail the reasons for a rider’s preferences.

You can purchase a model with handbrakes, and these smaller-than-a-bicycle hand brakes are easy to use. Comparatively, an old-school scooting whiz, like me, would never want the brake cables to get in the way of a smooth ride. Well, to each his own, right?

This blog post will discuss the following points.

  1. Types of brakes in a kick scooter
  2. Benefits of brakes (hand and foot brakes)
  3. How do you brake on a kick scooter?
  4. How do you deal with the brake setup’s noise?

Types of Brakes in a Kick Scooter

There are the following types of brakes in a kick scooter.

  1. Foot Brake: Typically, a rider steps down on the rear fender, which creates friction against the rear wheel. This resistance helps the scooter slow down or stop. Every kick-scooter has this manual brake even when there is a handbrake. This is extremely useful for kids and newcomers.
  2. Handbrake: Most models of kick scooters now have handbrakes. Additionally, these are crucial for electric kick scooters. These handbrakes are smaller than bicycle-sized brakes. Besides, manufacturers install these handbrakes on the handlebar where a rider can easily pull the brakes without much effort. Handbrakes on a kick scooter are much easier to use than the friction brakes.
  3. V-brake: There are many models with V-brakes on both wheels. For instance, inSPORTline Disparo has an added safety feature of these brakes installed on both wheels. This style of brakes is best suited for a large-sized kick scooter for longer commutes.
  4. Disc brakes: If you wish to use your kick scooter on a daily route with downhill slopes, you should pick a kick scooter with disc brakes. Since it is the most powerful brake for a kick scooter, it is effective for high-speed scooting.

How Do You Brake on a Scooter With the Foot Brake?

When you are riding on flat ground with your standing foot on the deck and your game foot kicking the scooter, you should rest the game foot on the rear fender to apply brakes at any time necessary.

If you are at a slow speed and want to pull over the scooter, you can use your game foot and place it down flat on the road carefully with friction to stop the kick scooter. (Just like my daughter). Do not use this method when you have a speed higher than two mph.

You should always keep one foot covering the brake whenever your scooter is in motion, and you do not need to push it.

Benefits of a Handbrake on a Kick Scooter

Here is a list of the benefits if you have a handbrake installed on your kick scooter.

  1. Handbrake is easier than rear wheel brakes, especially on rough terrains. The mud could obstruct the way of foot brakes. Also, foot brakes do not work well on gravel or muddy paths.
  2. If you have an electric kick scooter, the handbrake is essential for practical use and safety. Because of an electric scooter’s high speed, it becomes crucial to pulling over swiftly, especially in urban traffic.
  3. Considering the rider’s safety, foot brakes could be slippery in wet conditions like rain or snowfall. Handbrakes, however, are great to use in such conditions.
  4. A sudden need to pull over is vital for a metropolitan ride, and handbrakes are necessary to avoid accidents.

Benefits of a Foot Brake in Kick Scooters

Foot brakes, commonly known as rear fender step-over, is the traditional setup for a kick scooter. Let us list down the benefits of a fender brake (foot brake).

  1. Manufacturers typically install Foot brakes in EVERY kick scooter you buy. Hence, a rider learns how to use it from a very early age.
  2. Handbrakes have cables hanging around the handlebar and can be a distraction for the rider, whereas the foot brakes are on the rear wheel without an objection from a rider.
  3. A kid should have a kick scooter with foot brakes because handbrakes could tumble forward, which could be dangerous for the young rider.

Do Your Scooter Brakes Make Noise?

A handbrake setup is crucial for a kick scooter’s construction. If things go south, even a newly bought kick scooter can have noise effects from the brake setup. Typically, your scooter brakes last as much as you use them. After a certain amount of use, these brakes make a rattling sound.

Once you hear that rattling sound, you can do two things:

  1. Dismantle the brake on your kick scooter, and bend its spring a little. Now, when you reassemble it, it should go noise-free. Moreover, you can purchase a new spring and replace it in your brake setup.
  2. If the above solution does not solve your noise problem, you should replace the brakes. Just make sure the brakes are compatible with your kick scooter’s brake setup.

Safety Instructions for Kick Scooter Brakes

  1. Never lock your brakes. You do not want flat-spots on your scooter’s wheels.
  2. Kick scooter brakes do not need extensive oiling. As it is close to the foot deck, oil could make it slippery.
  3. Replace the brakes after they are worn-out.
  4. Do not pull disc brakes hard, or you will tumble forward with the moving force.
  5. Always wear appropriate footwear that will not slip against the rear fender while applying foot brakes.
  6. Keep the brake cables within the brake setup to avoid getting your game foot stuck in it while riding.
  7. Check your back wheel quite regularly. This check-up is for the reason that you will use the rear wheel extensively for brakes. The back wheel could become flat more quickly than the front wheel.
  8. Always ride at a moderate speed to keep the pedestrians safe.
  9. You should learn to brake gradually. Applying brakes suddenly could be dangerous.
  10. Reduce your kick scooter’s speed beforehand and anticipate the brake.

Conclusion – Do Kick Scooters Have Brakes?

There are two types of brakes, foot brakes and handbrakes, available on a modern-day kick scooter. Even if your kick scooter does not have a handbrake, the flex fender brakes (or foot brakes) will always be present.