Go further: E-bike battery maintenance and health

E-bike batteries come in different shapes and sizes, but whatever the model, it’s crucial to understand the basics of e-bike battery maintenance and health.


Looking after your battery can mean longer rides, with fewer charges required. 


What’s more, with sensible care, your battery can also remain functional for longer, saving the need of buying a replacement - and crucially reducing the environmental impact of battery disposal.


In this blog, we look more closely at e-bike batteries, specifically how proper maintenance to support their health can result in going further on your journeys.


Read on for more.


How long do e-bike batteries last?


How long do e-bike batteries last? Let’s first define what we mean by “last”...


There’s both run time (e.g. the range you can go with your battery on a single charge) and the length of time the battery remains functional (i.e. it retains charge and doesn’t need replacing).


At Eco Bike Co., we pride ourselves in only working with leading electric bikes brands, so battery quality is assured with regard to both these definitions. 


Before we get stuck into the details of battery maintenance, it’s worth reiterating, not all e-bike batteries are made equal.


Different models and brands feature batteries with varying wattage and ampere hours, resulting in different ranges.


Note: Range is also dependent on the different riding conditions - terrain, rider weight, tyre pressure, headwind etc.


In terms of a battery’s life cycle, there is always going to be an endpoint as they naturally discharge over time. 


Different models will be able to complete different numbers of charging cycles. Crucially, how you look after your battery can significantly influence how many this is. 


Battery cleaning and basic maintenance


After a wet or muddy ride it’s important to give your bike a once over. 


Dirt, grit and water can all cause issues in the moving parts of a bike, while the act of cleaning a bike gives you a chance to check for any minor issues that if caught early can be dealt with more easily.


The same applies to your battery. Remove it from the bike and wipe it down with warm soapy water. Avoid using a jet washer or anything similarly high-pressure, as while e-bike batteries are water resistant, we wouldn’t suggest pushing it to its limits in case there is some kind of damage present.


If you do notice any damage while cleaning the battery, stop using it immediately. Get in touch with an expert for advice on the best course of action.


How best to charge an e-bike battery


There are several best practices to be aware of when it comes to charging your e-bike. 


Follow these tips to maintain battery health:


  • Temperature can have an impact on how a battery charges. Charge your battery indoors, ideally somewhere with a moderate temperature of 10 to 20 degrees. 

  • Always use a charger approved by your e-bikes manufacturer to avoid risk of damage during charging. Note: Issues arising from using an unapproved charger could impact your warranty.

  • Don’t charge your battery immediately after finishing a ride - wait at least thirty minutes to let the battery cool down before plugging it in.

  • Avoid charging your battery all the way to 100%, and likewise don’t regularly discharge it to zero. Reduce battery stress by keeping it between 20% - 85% charged. This will extend it’s life

However, there is a quarterly exception to this final point. Every few months you will want to run your battery completely flat to keep the maximum charging capacity as high as possible.


Storage solutions and transportation tips for battery health


We’ve noted the importance of keeping your battery between 20% and 85% - and monitoring this when charging.


If you are storing your battery for a period of time, try to keep an eye on charge levels and maintain it around the 50% mark.

Unsurprisingly, it’s important you consider the temperature of wherever you are storing the battery. Just like when charging, opt for a moderate temperature if at all possible.


When transporting your e-bike on a rack, it’s tempting to stick it straight on and head off - particularly after a gruelling ride.


However, it is well worth removing the battery and transporting it inside your vehicle. Although e-bike batteries are hardy pieces of kit, were it to become detached from the bike due to road conditions or a loose fitting, there is a risk of damage.


Play it safe.

 

How you ride can impact e-bike battery life


Lithium-ion batteries hold a certain number of charge cycles. 


The more often you charge your battery, the sooner it is going to need replacing. 


Power-assist is an incredibly useful (and fun) part of owning and riding an e-bike. However, you may want to consider how much you are using it - and if it’s always necessary.


Opting for pedal power a little more often will reduce the number of charges you need, and extend your battery life.

 

E-bike battery maintenance and health


We’ve looked at how best practices when it comes to e-bike battery maintenance and health can ensure longer rides and longer lasting batteries.


It comes down to the principles of lithium batteries - how they discharge over time, the finite number of charge cycles they hold, and how they respond to environmental factors such as temperature.


We’ve got a little more technical in this article, so don’t hesitate to get in touch with one of our team if you’d like to discuss your e-bikes battery or any issues you might be having.


Remember, all our e-bikes are covered by a full warranty, so shop in confidence.





February 03, 2022 — Sasha Daley