I am excited to be able to help people get by with their ebike journey. Here at ebikewizard.com, I share my expertise and over a decade of experience riding, testing, and troubleshooting ebikes of all kinds.
E-bikes have taken the transport industry by storm. People have started preferring e-bikes over uber, buses, cars, trains, and so on.
Many tourists find e-bikes conveniently placed throughout multiple cities for transport purposes. The reason being that It is the safer and cleaner transportation method available.
With climate changes on the rise, people are becoming more aware of the damages caused by traditional transportation methods. People are highly concerned about global warming, frequent and intense droughts, wildfires, etc., and as people are becoming aware of environmental issues, e-bikes are quickly becoming a top choice amongst individuals.
As people are shifting towards e-bikes, it is important to know all the ins and outs. A huge component of the e-bike is the battery and charging it requires some attention.
Chargers are an important component when it comes to electronics. Having an authentic charger can extend the life of any battery. Whereas poor charging methods can lead to the battery life depleting.
Therefore, to extend the life of your e-bike, charger, and battery, we will be discussing everything that is needed to ensure the safe and efficient charging of your e-bike.
How Long Does It Take?
The length depends on the specific model of the e-bike and the type of battery it uses. However, mostly it takes around 3 – 5 hours to fully charge an electric bike.
If you are confused about which electric bike is the best for you, you should consider which e-bike offers the best recharge rate.
You can calculate the recharge rate by taking the miles an e-bike can travel on a single charge and divide it by the hours of charging it takes to fully charge your electric bike.
For example, if bike X can travel 50 miles on a 2-hour charge, the recharge rate for that bike is 25 miles per charging hour.
On the other hand, bike Y can travel 120 miles on a 4-hour charge, giving you a recharge rate of 30 miles per charging hour.
Clearly, bike Y is the better option when it comes to charging. However, other considerations such as speed can also impact your decision.
How Does the Electric Bike Charge?
Charging an electric bike may seem complicated but it is quite easy. The manufacturer’s manual will cover the process of charging and you should follow that for optimal performance.
However, if the manual is confusing, lost, or does not have sufficient information, follow the general guidelines.
The battery that comes with your e-bike is detachable. You will also get a charging cable. All you have to do is connect the battery to the charger and plug the charger into a power outlet and voila, your electric bike is now being charged!
A red light on the charger indicates that the electric bike is still charging while a green signal indicates that the e-bike has been charged and it is time to unplug the charger.
Should you Charge the Battery when your E-bike Arrives?
If you have just bought a new bike and it has arrived, you are probably excited and want to get on it straight away. Firstly, congratulations on making a ‘greener’ purchase. Secondly, do not get on your e-bike just yet.
Chances are that your e-bike will not be fully charged; usually, it is about 40 – 70 % charged when it arrives. Charging it to full will allow you to test the e-bike’s performance in terms of mileage, speed, recharge rate, and so on.
Moreover, the first charge usually takes longer as the battery had remained inactive for a long period. The extra time that your first charge takes will help configure and prepare the battery, charger, and e-bike electrical systems.
Patience is hard but is certainly worth it. If you ensure that everything is working fine from charging to performance, then the initial waiting period will be compensated by a longer life of your battery, charger, and e-bike itself.
How Often Should You Recharge your E-bike?
Most of us would want electronics that would not need recharging, if only there were a battery that could last forever. Unfortunately, that is not the case and we have to recharge our electronics frequently.
The same applies to e-bikes, you will need to recharge them frequently. Most of the batteries used for e-bikes are built with lithium cells. Lithium cells last longer and can hold a charge longer if you fully charge your e-bike daily. Moreover, you have to try to make sure that the battery does not go below 20%.
Lithium cells are prone to entering a faulty charge stage when they are not recharged or used. This causes the battery to deplete power. More importantly, due to the faulty charge state of the lithium cells, your battery might lose the ability to be charged to its fullest.
To keep the lithium cells active, you have to use and charge the e-bike daily. We understand that you may not have time each day to use and charge it; however, you can either ask someone or take out 15 minutes to use the bike and charge it to protect the life of the battery.
If your e-bike is not powering on or you are experiencing a similar issue, recharging the battery for 12 hours might resolve your problem. Again, this might have occurred due to the lithium cells entering a faulty charge state which can be resolved by a full charge. Now, your total capacity might have gotten impacted due to the faulty charge state but at least your e-bike will power on.
Do Not Run Out of Battery!
This is the most important tip because if you run out of battery then you will be left stranded. Jokes apart, running your e-bike on a low battery can impact the battery’s life.
We discussed above how you should not let your battery fall below 20% and here is why; if your e-bike’s battery is below 20% and you are using it then that will put a strain on the battery. Moreover, it can increase the potential of the lithium cells of entering a faulty charge state.
Think of how your work is impacted when you feel tired, your performance starts to fall because you do not have enough energy. Strangely, batteries operate the same way.
If you find yourself far from your destination and your battery is close to the 20 % mark, you can cut off your motor and power assist to ensure that you reach your destination on a relatively higher charge.
Avoid Fully Recharging your E-bike
We discussed that you need to charge your battery to full when it first arrives or to fix a faulty charge. Except for these two scenarios, you should avoid charging your battery to full power.
Just like an empty battery strains the charging ability, so does a full charge. It is not as bad as an empty battery but it also has its consequences. Any charge that is above 90% will cause the battery to degrade faster.
However, if you are planning on a long trip, then it is better to charge fully rather than risking an empty battery as the latter is more harmful.
Other Important Tips for Charging
- Never overcharge your battery! Overcharging can cause damage to battery life and the battery itself, so a safer option would be to set a timer when charging your electric bike.
- Avoid charging your electric bikein extreme temperatures. Batteries are kind of like us as they do not appreciate too much coldness or hotness. Charging in extreme temperatures can easily damage the battery and reduce its life. The ideal temperature to charge a bike would be between 50 – 80 degrees Fahrenheit.
- If you are not planning to use your e-bike for a long period, it is best to charge the battery to 50 – 75 percent. A full battery and an empty battery are worst for storing purposes.
Summing it up
Taking proper care while charging your electric bike can protect the battery life and offer more miles of traveling on a full charge. Typically, an e-bike battery will last 3 – 5 years, after that, you might need to replace your battery for optimal performance. However, if you follow all of our tips successfully, you can increase the life of the battery by a couple of years.
With that being said, a typical battery can withstand around 600 charges, while stronger batteries can support around 1000 full charges. Obviously, it depends on the specific battery and e-bike that you have.
Now that you have all the knowledge about charging your electric bike safely, effectively, and efficiently, we wish you happy charging and riding! Hopefully, you will be able to maximize the life of your e-bike and its battery.