Electric bikes are not built the same way as fuel-powered bikes. Their fuel costs are almost negligible, and they are better for the environment, making them the perfect mode of intercity transportation. Eco-friendly bikes have already established their prominence in several Indian states, and the demand for them has been on the rise. However, the maintenance for electric bikes and fuel-powered bikes is different. An electric bike has other focus points and things to consider when compared with a fuel-powered conventional bike. A little extra care, specific to the electric bike’s requirements, can enhance not only the bike’s performance but also its life. The recommended maintenance for an electric bike would involve:
A scheduled weekly wash
During the weekly washing and cleaning of your electric bike, make sure that your bike’s engine and chain are cleaned well and free from dust and debris as they can meddle with the smooth running of the electric bike. If allowed to collect on the chain and engine, the dust can cause the engine of your electric bike to work to its total capacity.
Keep an eye on the extra luggage you carry
If you need to transport luggage often, keep an eye on the maximum weight you carry on your electric bike. Frequently overloading your electric bike will result in an overworked and fast-draining engine. This will affect the battery life and engine performance, and you will notice a drop in performance.
Check tyre pressure
Judging a change in the tyre pressure while riding an electric bike is not advised as the best way to know if the tyre pressure, especially since most electric bikes are moreover lightweight only. Lower tire pressure is said to meddle with the bike’s performance, affect the engine’s performance in the long run and drain battery quicker too. Therefore, checking and keeping a tab on the tyre pressure of your electric bike is a crucial step in maintaining an electric bike.
Avoid using the emergency brakes
The emergency brakes should be applied only in case of an absolute emergency. For example, when you suddenly apply the brakes in an electric two-wheeler, you risk stalling the engine and other mechanical and electrical components of the bike. It is also seen that two-wheeler EV’s shock absorbers are likely to get damaged more easily than others and thus need proper maintenance every now and then.
Lubrication and oiling
Proper lubrication helps avoid friction between the moving components of your electric bike, which in turn ensures the longevity of your electric bike. Keep an eye on the oil and liquid levels in your electric bike’s engine and mechanical parts. If ignored for too long, your electric bike shows deterioration in performance and an increase in its maintenance cost.
Despite the usage of the bikes, experts in battery care and maintenance recommend charging the vehicle’s battery every 3 to 4 days. Since batteries in an electric vehicle undergo an idle drain, the battery levels drain notably despite the bike being parked and not in use for a prolonged period. Treat the manufacturer’s manual of the bike as the ultimate guide when it comes to the battery. Always note the timing of when you charged it last. The charging also depends upon the batteries being Lithium or SMA Batteries like Lithium must not be charged and stored batteries near flammable items. All the charging connectors should be properly cleaned.
Park in a cool location
As e-bikes, like all electric devices, are sensitive to extreme temperatures, parking them in a cool and covered space helps ensure the battery life is maintained efficiently.
Shutdown mode/Vacation mode
Many electric two-wheelers come with a shutdown mode/vacation, and as the name suggests, it switches off the vehicle completely. Therefore, it is advised that you disconnect the battery and completely shut your electric bike off when you know you will not be operating and using it for a long duration.
Keeping your electric bikes insurance policy updated and inclusive of all components ensures you can get your bike checked and fixed professionally as and when the need arises. In particular, the insurance for an electric bike is highly affordable and cheaper when compared to the insurance of a fuel-run bike.
The Indian government and many others have been trying to encourage their citizens to transition more towards buying and using electric vehicles instead of vehicles that run on petrol, diesel, and gas. Many people are strongly considering the shift in an attempt to help fight pollution and the growing fuel rates. To further encourage the public to invest in electric vehicles, the government has offered a tax rebate and lower taxation for those who opt to buy and use an electric vehicle.
While the maintenance may seem different and more taxing than the maintenance of a regular fuel-based vehicle, the benefits to your lifestyle and the savings you make by not relying on fuel in the long term should be considered when you need to decide which vehicle to buy next. In addition, the eco-friendly aspect of being an electric vehicle owner should also be a solid point to consider before you purchase your next vehicle.
The author Ashutosh Verma is Founder, Exalta India. All views are personal.
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