How to maintain the battery of an electric bicycle?
Motorized personal mobility devices (MPDs) such as electric bicycles and electric scooters are among the new solutions for sustainable urban mobility. These modes of transport are set to replace the internal combustion engine car as part of the ecological transition, to meet new social, economic and environmental challenges.
To take advantage of all the benefits of electric bicycles when traveling in the city, their maintenance is essential. How to properly maintain an electric bicycle? All the components of an electric bicycle (battery, motor, tires, brakes, chain, cables, etc.) require special maintenance, through regular servicing (at least twice a year) and repairs as soon as any anomaly is detected.
Find out how to maintain the battery of an electric bicycle, one of the central components of this moving machine. Purchase, use, storage, recharging, management of the end of life: we tell you everything.
What is the battery of an EAB?
The battery is one of the main components of the electric bicycle, beside the motor in particular. Its role is to store and restore the energy of the motor to make the bike work, and this thanks to the cells which compose it, called accumulators. The nature of these cells determines the type of electric battery.
There are in fact several types of batteries:
- lead batteries: they are no longer really used on recent EABs;
- Nickel batteries: like lead batteries, they are no longer part of the EAB horizon;
- Lithium batteries (polymer, iron-phosphate, prismatic or lithium-ion): they are at the heart of the construction of electric bicycles because of their performance linked to their weight and their energy capacity.
The good maintenance of the electric bicycle is therefore first conditioned by the purchase of a quality battery. To do so, the purchase of an EAB must be made according to several criteria, notably the quality or reliability of the manufacturer, the date of manufacture of the components or the quality-price ratio. The latter must reflect the quality of the components used to build a high-performance and resistant EAB.
How to optimize the life of the battery of a VAE ?
The quality of the components of an EAB guarantees their life expectancy: this is the case of the battery. Apart from the precautions to be taken when buying an eBike, how can we optimize the life of the battery?
EAB users must adopt habits of recharging and use of the battery to optimize its life. Several points are to be considered:
- Do not wait for the battery to be completely discharged before recharging it (except for some models);
- disconnect the battery from the charger as soon as it is full;
- use only the original charger or a CE certified charger sold by reliable professionals;
- Connect the charger to the socket first, then the battery to the charger;
- Use the battery regularly;
- Do not recharge the battery after each use of the bicycle;
- Do not charge a battery that is too cold or too hot.
For an electric battery that lasts a long time, it is therefore important to focus on the quality of the component, but also on the regular use of the bike and the respect of the recharging procedures.
How to ensure an optimal autonomy for the electric bike?
Once you have considered the right way of recharging the battery, you need to look at the right ways of using your EAB. How to optimize the autonomy of an electric bicycle ?
It is possible to optimize the autonomy of the battery when using the eBike for urban travel. To do so, you must :
- adopt a smooth driving style (stable speed, preferably under the authorized limit of 25 km/h, smooth movement);
- choose the right electric assistance mode and use the different speeds available;
- monitor the pressure of the tires (they must be well inflated);
- Make sure you have the latest system updates.
How to store the battery of an eBike?
When the electric bike is not in use, it is important to store the battery in good conditions, especially during winter. How to store the battery of an electric bike in winter ? It is necessary to pay attention to the temperature of storage of the battery, by privileging a dry place with stable temperature, between 10 and 30 degrees according to the possibilities. In case of using the EAB in rain, snow or very low temperatures, it is better to protect the battery with special accessories.
Whatever the season, the battery should not be stored for too long without use. The longer the battery is idle, the faster it will fail. In case ofprolonged disuse, it is advisable to keep the battery at a charge level between 30% and 60% of its total capacity, and do not hesitate to recharge it from time to time.
Moreover, it should always be removed from the EAB when not in use, since the controller (the central component of the bike) consumes a small amount of energy at all times, which discharges the battery.
When should I replace the battery of an EAB?
The life span of electric batteries is obviously limited. At the end of its life, the battery loses autonomy: its capacity goes down more quickly than at the beginning. When to change the battery of an electric bicycle ? To get an idea of how long it will take to replace the battery, you need to look at the number of charge and discharge cycles.
Lithium batteries used in newer electric bicycles can typically last for 500 charge cycles (or even up to 1,000 for some high-end models). Depending on how often the electric bicycle is used (daily or occasionally), this number of cycles is reached more or less quickly. In most cases, the battery must be changed after about 5 years.
Moreover, users of connected electric bikes can take advantage of practical features to keep themselves informed of the maintenance operations of the EAB, including the replacement of the battery. Indeed, the connected electric bike or smart bike offers access to accurate usage data, via the eventual screen integrated into the bike frame or the mobile application installed on the bike owner's device.
What about the used battery of an electric bike?
When replacing the battery of an electrically assisted bicycle, it is important to pay attention to the best practices for disposing of the used battery. What to do with the used battery of an electric bicycle?
The management of the end of life of batteries and accumulators is the subject of a specific collection and treatment channel. These elements are composed of certain substances that are potentially dangerous for the environment and consumer health (rare and heavy metals).
In this sense, French regulations require manufacturers and retailers to recover used batteries from electric bikes, whether they are made of lithium, lead or nickel. These actors will then be responsible for recycling the batteries, to ensure that they are not incinerated or buried with conventional waste. During the recycling process, the metals that make up the batteries are extracted to be reused in future batteries, thus limiting their overproduction.
In any case, the battery of an electrically assisted bicycle must be the subject of regular and complete maintenance to offer optimal performance over a long period of time. This allows the owner of the EAB to limit the additional expenses related to the replacement of this component: the purchase of a battery as a spare part can be rather expensive. You should not hesitate to ask for advice from the manufacturer or the electric bike dealer in order not to make any maintenance mistakes.
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