Don't go believing that an e-bike is riddled with maintenance issues, because that simply is not true. Just like a normal bike, their a simple beast to maintain. Now, a mountain bike in general is a pretty durable bike; however, with an e-bike there are certain details and considerations you need to bear in mind when maintaining it.
Now this sounds really obvious, but forgetting to charge your battery is one of most common e-bike mistakes. You get it in from your ride, you're cold, you're wet, and you're hungry and it's the last thing you wanna do, but getting some charge in your battery is better than getting no charge. So our recommendation is that you do charge your battery after every ride to keep as many cells in as new and as unused condition as possible to get the most from your battery life.
In the same way as you wouldn't work on the wiring on your house with the electricity switched on, the same is true of having your e-bike battery mounted. If you're working on your motor or your drivetrain, you really need to dismount the battery, because there's a high risk of you getting your fingers trapped in the sprockets or gears, if that motor suddenly gets connected. Now, taking the battery out is a pretty simple and easy task, and you probably want to do it to clean anyway, so there's not really an excuse.
Now, forgetting to keep your sensor aligned and tightened is one of the most common e-bike mistakes. It depends on what system you use, but ultimately, no sensor equals no power and that's not good for anyone. So, they might have slipped or they might be about to slip, so, you need to keep them clean, good, and aligned. So, don't forget also there's the lead which connects the motor to the sensor, and they can become quite easily dislodged, and your feet can then get tangled up with that. In fact, it's one of the most common sources of e-bike failure. Turning your mountain bike upside down isn't such an issue, however, if you do this on an e-bike, it's gonna cost serious damage to your computers and displays on your handlebar, so it's a quite common novice e-bike mistake.
Not only that, if you've got your bike upside down, just like on a normal bike, you're gonna get water into that head tube area, and ultimately that's gonna lead to seizure, and you won't know that until it happens, seriously.
Over tightening your nuts and bolts is a really common e-bike maintenance mistake. Just remember you don't work for a commercial haulage company, so you don't need to go hanging off these allen keys when you're doing your maintenance. Now even though there's some key torque set things which you need to bear in mind, especially on the cranks or on your handlebars, in fact it's quite good to have a bit a movement on your gearshift or on your brake lever, particularly when you come off your bike, so they're gonna get dislodged under impact. One good one to remember is your battery bolt. Now don't go hanging off this one with a long-handled allen key, because when you go traveling and all you've got is a multi-tool, then it's gonna be a lot harder to undo that with this, than it is with one of the these.
Remember the tires have an effect on both human and electrical energy. For example, you've gone out in dry conditions with high pressure in your tires, and it suddenly rains and you go back out again, and that spinning tire is gonna be using precious battery life. And remember, the opposite is also true. It's pointless going out with low pressures for a big day ride because that's gonna take an enormous amount of drain on your battery.
What about the spokes on your e-bike wheels? Well, more torque, increased stresses and more weight from the system as a whole, means it's quite likely that the wheels on your e-bike are getting a right caning, so message is keep an eye on them, so prevention is key. If you've got more than one spoke loose, then maybe get it done in your bike shop as quick as possible.
Okay, so you've been maintaining your e-bike. A really common mistake is not reconnecting things correctly. Number of times I've pedaled off thinking there's a major problem with my bike, and all it's been, is that I've simply just left one of the covers lose. So get all those leads lined up correctly, and importantly, if you've taken the motor out, make sure you've not pinched any of the leads when you've put it back into the chassis.
Right, what about lubricant spray and contact cleaner on your e-bike when it comes to maintenance? Now, get spray anywhere near your discs on the e-bike and they'll be done, so you need to be really careful when you're applying spray to your chain. Maybe if you're gonna be using spray, then the best thing to use it on the low part of your chain. Alternately, use some lube because it's far safer. Now when it comes to the battery terminals, we suggest that you use some contact cleaner to keep that really crisp, and also some grease when it comes to the ports to make sure there's no wear to the battery or indeed to your frame.
Mindset, what on earth is mindset got to do with fixing your bike? Well, it could be anything. Maybe the wrong parts have turned up, you've got the wrong tools for the job, you're fiddling around with nuts and bolts that won't come out, you've got pedals that are too tight. You're trying to hang off them to get them off. You haven't eaten properly. I mean rage is ever present when it comes to mountain bike maintenance, so the message here is, don't let the red mist come upon you, and tackle maintenance with a really good mindset.
And finally, don't forget all the other important components on your bike such as the gears, and the brakes, seat post, having a good look at the frame, inspecting that, and that's pretty much it. If you have any other common mistakes about e-bike maintenance, feel free to leave a comment in the comments section of Green Pedel.