Are you planning to purchase your first electric bike? They’re a great way to get around and there’s lots to learn about keeping it functioning properly. Ensure that you’re taking care of your investment by practicing regular maintenance on it. Your e-bike can be used in all kinds of fun and practical ways, and the last thing you’ll want is for the brake pads to fail, the tires to get flat, or the battery system to falter while on a ride. E-bike maintenance will help keep your bike in top condition.
We’ll be going over the most practical maintenance tips for electric bikes:
At-Home Electric Bike Maintenance Tips
Regular maintenance on your electric bike can be done at home. An e-bike is similar to a regular bike, as they have similar mechanical parts. The electric component of e-bikes requires just as much or more care as the rest of the bike.
Follow these e-bike tips when it comes to taking care of your bike:
Riding your e-bikes out and about can make them susceptible to getting dirty. Regularly cleaning will help keep dust, dirt, and debris away from the motor or drivetrain system. It will also allow your e-bike to perform and look better when clean.
However, due to the electrical aspects of the bike, you’ll want to make sure of a few things during the cleaning process:
- Before the cleaning, remove the battery and display.
- Cover the control unit with a cloth or plastic bag.
- Don’t jet wash your e-bike - use a garden hose instead.
- Use a mild soap or detergent and scrub the e-bike with a brush or cloth to remove any dirt or debris from the brakes, pedals, and between the tires.
- Use a cleaning solution on the drivetrain, including the chain, chainrings, and derailleurs.
- Clean the disc brakes by scrubbing them with a cleaner.
- Dry off the bike with a cloth and make sure there aren’t any traces of water left on the e-bike to avoid rusting.
- When placing the battery back on the e-bike, check that the battery compartment is fully dry before installing it.
It may seem like common sense to keep your tires well-maintained. After all, you need tires to get the most out of your electric bike.
You can start by inspecting your tires before each ride to ensure that the pressure is up to par. Check the PSI levels of both tires to ensure they’re full, based on the manufacturer’s recommendations. Each e-bike might have a different PSI depending on the type and what it’s being used for, such as for commuting or trail riding.
While investing in a pump with a gauge can help tell you how much air is in your tire, another method to use is to pinch the sides of the wheel. If the tire is full, it should feel solid to the touch.
You should also inspect your tires before taking your electric bike out for a spin. Check them to ensure there’s no wear on the tread or any glass, nails, or thorns embedded in the treads.
Protect Your Brakes
Brake pads are an integral part of all e-bikes, as they provide the correct stopping power necessary when travelling at higher speeds. That’s why it’s important to routinely check on them to keep your bike riding experience safe.
Before you get on your e-bike, inspect the brakes for loose parts, pad wear, or if there are any visible issues with the rotor. If you’re unsure or uncomfortable performing electric bike maintenance on your brake pads, you can take it to a bike shop. Professionals will be able to determine whether the brake pads or rotors need replacing.
Take Care of the Chain
If you ride regularly, your e-bike chain will go through a significant amount of wear and tear. As with the brakes, keep an eye on your chain and service it as often as possible. You can read up on our information regarding the question: “How often should an e-bike be serviced by a professional?” for a deeper insight on servicing your e-bike.
After a good cleaning, lubricate the chain to ensure all of the e-bike mechanics are in order. You should actually lubricate your chain at least once a week if you’re using the bike often. In some cases, a spray might be recommended instead of liquid lube, as it’s easier to apply and doesn’t leave behind a sticky surface.
You can use a chain wear indicator to determine whether the chain is going to need a replacement before it affects the rest of the drivetrain components.
E-bike batteries are essentially the “fuel in the tank” that helps power your motor. Read the manufacturer’s instructions to make sure that you’re charging your electric bike battery properly. If you’re charging the battery improperly, it can wear out faster or damage it. Most batteries are expensive to replace, which is why it’s paramount that you provide extra care when handling an e-bike battery.
To maintain your e-bike’s battery life, you can do the following:
- Charge the battery only when there’s 30-60 percent of the capacity left.
- Don’t overcharge the battery by leaving it on the charger for longer than necessary.
- Unplug it when it reaches a capacity of 90% or 95%.
- When storing, make sure that the battery is partially charged at around 40-70%.
- Keep the battery stored at room temperature to avoid damaging it.
E-Bike Transportation & Storage
E-bikes are typically heavier than regular bikes; the motor, battery, and other electrical functions can weigh them down. An e-bike also has a bigger frame than other bikes, which can make it difficult to transport unless you know how to do it properly. Bikes can often get dinged up when being moved from place to place. The best way to transport an electric bike is to use a rear-mounted bike rack on a vehicle. Make sure to remove the battery and keep it inside the vehicle.
When it comes to storing your e-bike, you’re going to want to keep it in a cool, dry place. Avoid spaces where the temperature fluctuates often. Remember to keep the e-bike battery stored in an area with an ideal temperature between 0 and 20 degrees Celsius.
If you’re looking to buy a new e-bike, you’ve come to the right place. Our bike shop in sunny St. James has a wide variety of electric bikes, from cruisers to hybrids. Come by today and take your first steps into the wonderful world of e-bikes.