Like most other forms of transportation, e-bikes do require some care and maintenance to ensure they work properly. Maintenance will also help increase the lifespan of your e-bike. Luckily, most e-bike maintenance is easy and inexpensive. Here are some tips and guidelines for maintaining your electric bike.
Tools for E-Bike Maintenance
There are a few tools and supplies that will come in handy when performing maintenance on your e-bike:
- An old toothbrush or bristle dish brush
- Clean rags or paper towels
- Gentle degreasing soap
- Bicycle lubricant
- Tire pump
- Tire pressure gauge
- Basic toolkit or multi-tool
- Bike repair stand
How do you know your e-bike needs maintenance?
A few signs your e-bike needs some maintenance include rough gear shifts, loss of tire traction, reduced battery performance, and noisy brakes or difficulty braking. Other signs are excessive mud or dirt, and loose bolts or screws.
E-Bike Maintenance Tips
Overall, lithium ion e-bike batteries tend to be low-maintenance. However, there are some steps you can take to ensure your battery performs well and lasts longer. Start by checking the manufacturer’s instructions for battery care and charging. Fully charge your bike’s battery before each ride to help extend the longevity of the battery.
When your e-bike is not in use, make sure to avoid storing your battery in extreme hot or cold temperatures. Also, charging your battery occasionally even when not in use will help prevent the battery from dying. Check out this blog post for more e-bike battery do’s and don’ts from Crazy Lenny’s E-Bikes.
Drivetrain and Chain
To prevent rust and wear on your e-bike’s chain, regularly clean and oil the chain. To clean the chain, scrub the chain with warm water and an old toothbrush or bristle dish brush. Thoroughly dry the chain with a clean cloth or paper towels. Next, oil the chain using a lubricant designed for bicycles and the conditions in which you intend to ride your e-bike. Wipe off the extra lubricant with a clean, dry rag or paper towels. Adjust the gears, or have them professionally adjusted, as needed to keep smooth gear shifts.
A well-maintained set of tires is crucial for a smooth ride on your e-bike. Using an air pump along with a tire pressure gauge, keep tires fully inflated according to the PSI (pounds of pressure per square inch) indicated on the tire for a smooth ride, increased efficiency, and decreased chances of a flat.
Monitor tread wear to avoid decreased traction and replace your tires as needed. You should replace your tires if the tread has worn down, the rubber is cracking, or the tires start to get holes and cuts. Typically, tires need to be replaced every 2,500 miles depending on conditions of use. For quick fixes and easy repairs, keep a spare tire innertube and a patch kit on hand.
The specific maintenance required for e-bike brakes will depend on the type of brakes (disc, rim, hydraulic, mechanical, etc.). However, one universal maintenance check for brakes is checking the brake pads for wear and replacing them as needed. If braking becomes more difficult or the rubber on the brake pad is worn down, it is time to replace them. New brake pads will be noisy when stopping, but the noise should cease after a bit of use. If the brakes are still noisy, they should be checked for other issues.
Excessive mud or dirt on an e-bike’s frame can lead to rust or chipping paint. Clean the frame with water, a gentle degreasing soap, and clean cloths or paper towels. Do not use a pressurized hose, and make sure to thoroughly dry the frame to avoid the formation of rust. Leave the battery on while cleaning the frame to prevent water from damaging the connectors in the battery port. When storing your e-bike, protect it from weather conditions such as snow, rain, and direct sunlight.
If you would like to have your e-bike serviced by professionals, check out the bike service offerings from Crazy Lenny’s E-Bikes.