As an Authorized Dealer Sarasota Scooters will inspect, prepare and road test your new or used scooter to ensure it’s in top running order. We will also advise you on the operation, scheduled maintenance, local licensing requirements, proper protective gear, and how to have a fun and safe riding experience. Only a locally owned authorized dealer can give you the service, accessory and warranty support you’d expect when you purchase a premium scooter. 
 In many States a standard driver’s license is all that is needed to legally operate a 50cc or smaller displacement scooter or moped. Some scooter models are factory restricted to limit horsepower and MPH top speed to comply with State Law. Please check with your local DMV to be sure. In Florida, scooters with an engine displacement of less than 50cc’s can be ridden with a regular automotive Driver’s license. Any Scooter with an engine displacement of 50 cc or more would require a driver’s licence with a motorcycle endorsement. 
 Typically, you first go to your local department of motor vehicles and take a written test. Upon passing the test, you will be issued a learner’s permit which will enable you to legally ride with a licensed rider during daylight hours. The DMV will also provide the specifics of the driving test, which you can simulate and practice by setting up cones in a parking lot. Since the DMV course is usually painted on the pavement, you also can practice on the DMV course when they aren’t conducting tests. Once you have practiced and mastered the test, you can take the driving test at the DMV and receive your license.

An alternative is to sign up for an accredited riding class, such as those organized by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. There is typically a fee charged to take the course. Small displacement motorcycles are usually provided, but many riding courses are adding scooters to their fleets. It may also be possible to get permission to use your own scooter. You will need to bring your own helmet, gloves, long sleeve shirt, long pants and over-the-ankle boots. There is usually a classroom session filled with valuable information on riding safely and skillfully in a wide variety of situations and weather conditions. The next classroom session is short followed by several hours of riding drills. The drills are conducted on cone courses at low speeds in a parking lot sectioned off from car traffic. The class concludes with a riding test. If you pass, you are awarded a certificate which in most states qualifies you for a motorcycle license without taking the DMV riding test. As an added bonus, many insurance carriers offer discounted rates for completing a safety course. In Florida you must complete a Safety Course given by MSF in order to obtain a motorcycle endorsement on your license.

IMPORTANT NOTE: This is a general description. You must check with your state licensing agency for laws that apply to you. 

 Two-stroke scooters that comply with EPA and local regulations are legal. We have scooters that feature eco friendly, EPA and CARB compliant two-stroke engines. They are 50 states legal to own and operate. 
 One of the most common starting problem is because of their size, scooter engines are much more sensitive to stale fuel and fuel impurities than a car. Fuel that is perfectly fine for a fuel injected car may clog up a fuel line if the scooter is left sitting for a long period of time. Or the gas used was not fresh. We recommend using fresh premium fuel as your first choice always. Another common reason is that scooters are often driven short distances at low speeds. This type of low RPM stop and riding, coupled with frequent electric starting can begin to drain a battery. Use of a Battery Tender and Fuel Stabilizer can easily correct both of these issues. Most hard starting issues are related to fuels containing ethanol, Carbureted engines are especially susceptible to ethanol related problem, where fuel injected engines are virtually immune. 
 Scooters are primarily designed for nimble, quick, convenient and efficient urban transport. They thrive in places where parking is scarce, roads are congested, and fuel prices are high. The minimum engine displacement is 150cc on interstates. Most scooters are too small to be legally operated on interstate. Scooters that are large enough and can attain a top speed in excess of 60+mph may meet the requirements of the road, however, these high speeds will shorten engine life and are not recommend for long periods of time. Our advice is to stay off the expressway and the interstate. 
 Scooter models have a weight capacity ranging from 320 to 340 pounds. But you have to remember that the weight capacity factors not only the weight of the rider and the passenger, but everything else the scooter is carrying. That would be the combined weight of you, the weight of your clothing, the fuel in the tank, the oil in the engine, cargo, your passenger, your passenger’s clothing, your helmets, any accessories mounted on the scooter, etc. must be equal to or less than the weight capacity of the scooter. Your passenger must also obey helmet laws in your state. 
 Sarasota Scooters offers pickup service to bring the scooter to our dealership for repair. We do not offer roadside service but will bring your scooter to our shop for diagnosis and repair. We will do everything we can to get you back on the road as quickly as possible. Simply keep our business card in your hatch for emergencies. We can also deliver the repaired scooter to your location if you are unable to pick it up. 
 At the time of purchase if your scooters manufacturer offers a warranty you will receive a warranty certificate with a detailed breakdown of what is covered and not covered. Generally most manufacturers insist that all warranty work be performed by an Authorized Dealer. Most manufacturers will not ship warranty parts directly to the owner, or to a third party dealership/mechanic. Most warranty parts are provided free of charge, but the costs of labor and transporting the scooter to and from the authorized dealership is the sole responsibility of the owner. If you experience a mechanical issue with your scooter and you believe it is warranty related, please call us to make an appointment for an inspection. If your scooter is not operating please call us for repair pickup. Sarasota Scooters will assess the cause of the malfunction and determine if the repair parts are covered under warranty.

In general, consumable parts such as brake pads, cables, tires, bulbs, belts, etc. are not covered by warranties. The scooter battery is usually covered for one month after purchase. Most non-consumable components such as the piston, the forks, the frame, etc. are covered for the entire length of the warranty period, which varies among manufacturers and will be defined in your particular scooters warranty certificate. What do we mean when we say “covered”? We mean if the failure occurred under normal riding conditions and your scooter has been regularly serviced and properly maintained and stored. 

We’d strongly advise you have the scooter maintained by us. Sarasota Scooters is your local Authorized Dealership. Proof of maintenance and Factory recommended service at the suggested intervals are necessary in keep your warranty in good standing. The number of problems we see with customer-maintained scooters vastly outnumber the problems we see with dealer maintained scooters. Our only focus is selling great scooters and making sure they run great too. Our mechanics are experienced with a couple of decades repairing, upgrading and maintaining scooters. If you are bound and determined to maintain your own scooter, we ask you to at least do the following:

Lets us perform the 500 mile first service. This is the most important service in the life of the scooter and is requireand goes way beyond an oil change. The valve clearances are inspected, the cables are adjusted, the brakes are tested, bolts are tightened, the carburetor is tweaked, and so forth. After that, if you choose to perform some or all of the maintenance, please make sure to purchase a shop manual, all special tools, a torque wrench, etc from us so we can be certain you have the correct items. Then make sure to closely follow the recommended maintenance schedule, read the instructions before you even think about picking up a wrench, and take your time. If you do all that, chances are you’ll be ok. But if you do something wrong and your motor starts sounding like a 4th of July fireworks display… it pays to keep our phone number handy. Don’t forget to bookmark our website for easy directions, business hours or to contact us by phone or email.

 Your scooter is designed to operate reliably at the factory settings using factory components. In addition, the scooter is only EPA certified (i.e. legal to ride on the street) in stock form. If you make modifications and/or install performance parts such as big bore cylinder kits, free-flow exhausts, and clutch kits, this not only voids or potentially voids the warranty, but could make your scooter illegal to ride on public roadways. Installation of a performance part usually requires additional adjustments (such as changes in the carburetor jetting) that if done incorrectly can cause extensive damage to your engine. Please contact us with any questions, we would be glad to help advise you. 
Most warranty agreements are valid only for the original purchaser of the scooter and do not transfer if sold. 
 The answer depends on the size of the rider and the type of riding he or she does.

For example, a 100 pound woman who cruises at 45mph on rural Iowa backroads will get better mileage than a 250 pound guy who battles rush hour traffic in San Francisco.

That said, we see riders of all shapes and sizes riding in all sorts of different places getting an HONEST 80+ miles per gallon on a Buddy 125. Some Buddy 125 riders have achieved over 100mpg! Figure that a 50cc model will get 5-10 mpg higher than that. Figure a 150cc model will get 1-3 mpg lower. 

 Practically all scooter and motorcycle manufactures calibrate their speedometers to read optimistically. This is because several safety studies conducted by the motorcycle industry proved that if the speedometer read slightly fast, accidents are dramatically reduced.

People also have found that their fuel economy goes up because they are traveling at slightly slower speeds, and they are less likely to get tickets for speeding. 

 If you really want to ride a scooter, but are unsure about your ability to handle one, we strongly recommend taking a reputable beginning riders course, such as those organized by the Motorcycle Safety Foundation. The classes take place in a safe, controlled environment and feature a series of easy drills that progressively get you feeling comfortable on a motorcycle and scooter. In fact, the first drills are done with the engine off and the instructor pushing you!

It’s a great way to learn in a relaxed setting, and decide if scootering is for you! 

 There is a lot of debate on this topic, and a lot of chatter on the internet. When in doubt, ALWAYS refer to your owner’s manual and talk to your authorized Scooter dealer. The manual was written by the engineers who designed and built your scooter. We’d say that carries more weight than some random guy with an internet connection.

Your manual goes into specifics, but here’s a general overview:

The engine in your scooter was run and tested at the factory, but only briefly. So when you’re breaking in your scooter, the internal parts of your engine are essentially rubbing together for the first time. The friction points between the various components need time to wear down to a smooth surface.

Among your engine internals, the most important parts to consider are the piston rings. If you break in your engine correctly, you’ll create a nice tight fit between the piston rings and the cylinder wall. A tight fit is necessary to create a barrier that prevents oil from leaking into the combustion chamber. You need your oil to lubricate, not to burn!

The best way to break in a scooter is to do a lot of city riding, places where there are lots of stop signs and lots of stop-and-go traffic.

Why is that? As you accelerate your scooter, you’re putting a load on the engine. When a load is put on the engine, the piston rings are forced outward, pushing them hard against the cylinder wall. As this happens, a nice, squared off edge forms on the rings. A squared off edge helps the piston ring do its job of creating an oil barrier.

The worst way to break in a scooter is to cruise on a highway, especially if it’s at wide open throttle.

If you’re cruising at the same speed, you’re not putting enough load on the engine. As a result, the piston rings get a rounded edge, and will not be able to prevent oil from leaking into the combustion chamber. Your scooter will burn oil, it won’t run very well, and you won’t be very happy.

Once you’ve logged a few hundred miles, your scooter should be broken in. your manual says that you need a 500 mile first service. To be honest, 500 miles is the longest you’ll want to wait for this service.

Here’s why: All those engine parts rubbing together scrape off tiny shards of metal. These pieces float around in the oil, acting like sandpaper.

Replacing the oil filter and putting fresh oil in your engine therefore, is crucial to a long engine life.