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How to Repair Your Electric Mountain Bike

Posted by Dina Llabore on

The electric revolution for bikes has brought convenience, but sometimes these bikes need maintenance and repair. You might worry about getting many miles from home and your bike giving up on you. Basic knowledge of bike repair can help you ride with confidence.

Read on to discover our “golden rule” for electric mountain bikes. We also explore maintenance tips to keep you enjoying your ride without the hassle of a breakdown.

The Golden Rule - Maintenance First

Before delving into some common repairs, it’s important to explain maintenance. If you don’t maintain your bike well and keep everything in good condition then you will have to make repairs far more often.

Regular maintenance includes:

  • Cleaning the bike. This helps to prevent dirt and grit from building up and damaging the components.
  • Keeping the battery in good health. Don’t overcharge, or let it fall below 20% too much, this can cause extra battery cycles and shorten the lifespan of the bike. Keep the battery at room temperature, even if you have to remove it from the bike and bring it indoors. Extreme temperatures lower the lifespan of the bike. 
  • Lubricating the chain. Bike chains that aren’t lubricated wear much faster and can break when you are out on a trail.
  • Keep tire pressure within manufacturer guidelines. When you buy an electric bike you will get some guidelines on the maximum and minimum tire pressures. A simple foot pump with a gauge can help you to check and alter the pressure.

Repairing Your Electric Bike

No bike can last forever without repairs. Any cyclist will tell you that this is a regular part of using their bike. Most of the repairs are simple to get to grips with as the mechanics of an e-bike aren’t complex.

Repairing Punctures

Punctures are the main thing you can prevent with basic maintenance. Keeping your tire pressure correct helps, but you may still get punctures. For a mountain bike, this is even more common as you may be on challenging terrain at times.

If you do need to replace a tube, you can follow these steps:

  1. Turn the bike off
  2. Remove the battery
  3. Flip it upside down so that the handlebars and bike seats are resting on the floor. Lay it on a softer surface or blanket to avoid scratches.
  4. On the hub motor, loosen the nuts on the sides until the axle can move Mounted torque arms need to be taken out before the next steps.
  5. If you have a wheel-mounted motor, you need to disconnect this
  6. Loosen any rim or hub-style brakes
  7. Undo your bike’s wheel nuts or quick release to take the tube fully out
  8. Take both the tire and tube off. A tire lever will help with this
  9. Look for signs of why it might have happened. Glass, stones, and cracks in the casing. Remove any hazards.
  10. For the replacement, put some air in your innertube, and then push the valve through the wheel rim’s hole. Fit the tire bead around one side of the wheel, then fit the other side over the rim. Work the tube around until the tube has been fitted.
  11. Attach a foot pump or hand pump. Do a few cautious pumps to make sure that the bead has been seated all the way over the rim. If not, you will need to tighten it to fit the bead.
  12. Inflate to the desired pressure as per the manufacturer’s instructions
  13. Reattach the brakes and wheel-mounted motors, as well as the battery
  14. Check the pressure, and that the brakes are working before heading back out on your bike. Pedal slowly to test the tire.

Some of the best electric mountain bikes have tubeless tires. If this is the case for your bike, you can apply tubeless sealant periodically. This will repair some of the tears you get when out on the trails. The sealant will find the hole and plug it automatically.

If tubeless sealant won’t seal the hole, you need a tubeless tire plug. You can simply push the inserts into the tire, making the tire smaller and helping the sealant to plug this hole. You are making the hole bigger, so the sealant inside your tubeless tire will fill the hole.

Once you’ve put the tire plugin and made the hole a bit wider, you can then put some vulcanizing rubber over the area to ensure it doesn’t leak over time.  Vulcanized patch kits are simple to use.

Ensure that the sealant has plugged the hole properly, hold the tire in place for a few minutes to dry, and you should be ready to ride again.

Electric Mountain Bike Battery Repairs 

The main difference between an e mountain bike and a manual bike is the battery. This aids pedaling and makes it easy to go long distances.

Some issues you may come across that are different from a manual bike include:

  • The battery will degrade over time. This is always the case, and you will need to get cells replaced to rebuild the battery.
  • Loose or damaged wires, which need professional assistance. This can prevent the bike from working even if the battery cells are healthy.

If your bike is under warranty these issues will often be covered. A bike technician can be employed to make any repairs to the motor or electronics.

Reset The Batteries

If you are having battery issues, try to reset the bike. With the battery taken off, hold the “on” button that triggers your power. Hold it down for 30 seconds and this should provide a battery reset. This could be enough to get your bike back on the road.

Updating Bike Controller Software

Your e-bike will probably have a controller sitting between the handlebars. This lets you control how much the bike helps you with pedaling. They’re like the “brains” of the bike. The controller software will need you to update from time-to-time. 

Most models of electric bikes will show an alert sign that you need to update. This can be as simple as connecting it to a computer. Alternatively, a bike technician should be able to help you to get the latest software on your bike.

Can I Do My Own Repairs?

You will always have to make a judgment call about whether you can repair the issue yourself. Tire repairs are common, especially if you are taking your bike on rough ground. It’s important to learn how to fix these yourself.

Battery and motor repairs are not everyday repairs. There are times when you need a professional bike technician. If you buy a bike that has a warranty, you may be able to claim if anything goes wrong with your battery or your motor.

Conclusion

Like any bike, you’ll get more out of it if you know how to fix issues and keep it performing at a high level. We explore how to repair your electric mountain bike in this guide. If you’re used to carrying out bicycle maintenance or repairing non-electric bikes, there isn’t too much difference. The main difference is the battery and some small tweaks to how the bike works.

Learning how to carry out a few simple repairs can give you so much more confidence. Major repairs require a bike technician. With our range of electric bikes, you can take advantage of product warranties. This means if anything major goes wrong in the warranty period, you can ride with a smile knowing that your bike is protected.


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4 comments

  • Hugh, You are correct. It would be better to remove the battery first. We have changed this in our article. The battery still functions when removed. It will power on and off as well as reset. It does not need to be install on the bike to function.

    John on
  • tepastrick, All of the tips to maintain and repair your e-bike apply either if the bike is in warranty or without. If it is out of warranty and something you either cannot handle yourself, we advise customers to contact the manufacturer, or a local bike shop for repair.

    John on
  • You gave absolutely no advice on any repairs after warranty ends.

    tepastrick on
  • Hi, surly it would be easier to remove the battery first before flipping the bike over to repair a puncture. I bought handle bar jacks so don’t need to use a blanket to prevent damage. I don’t understand the battery reset procedure as when the battery is removed there would be no response at the power button?

    Hugh connelly on

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