Electric bikes are designed to look more advanced, get you around faster, and require less effort to travel farther than the average bike.
Yet, they are built similarly. Both electric bikes and average bicycles are designed with water-resistant qualities, but the electricity used to power an electric bike raises the question: are they waterproof?
The answer is no.
Electric bikes are water-resistant, but electric bikes are not waterproof.
How to Figure Out Water Tolerance of my Ebike?
Every bike comes with an IP Rating.
Essentially, this rating tells you how much a bike can handle, or more specifically, the degree of protection it has against certain natural elements, like water or dirt.
All electric bikes are meant to provide you with all your needs when you’re out biking, but not all are in the same degree of protection against water.
It’s common knowledge that driving your bike through rain is different from driving it through a lake. Tiny water droplets shouldn’t impact your electric bike, but being fully submerged or covered in water most likely will.
Check the IP Rating of your e-bike first and foremost. It’s the best way to determine if your bike is water-resistant enough for your typical bike trail.
What If My E-Bike Gets Too Wet?
Getting too wet does not immediately point to your bike is ruined. However, long term-exposure and improper drying or cleaning can cause your bike to rust like any other metal.
Appearance aside, the real issue with rusting parts is their impact on your bicycle. It can slow your electric bike down and weaken essential bike parts.
Fortunately, rust isn’t a severe issue if you handle it properly, but the corrosion can still do strong enough damage that you may need new parts.
If water does get in through the controller, it’s time to be concerned. Water in the controller is a sign that your bike could stop working.
Despite water getting inside the electrical part of your bike, your bike has no power to harm you. It may be electric, but you won’t be electrocuted by it.
You will be down an electric bike, and they are not cheap. Consider your budget.
In the scenario your bike is destroyed, think if it is even worth the risk of buying a new bike. Ask yourself if you can afford such an investment. Think ahead.
How to Avoid Water Harming Your E-bike
Avoiding a problem from the start is easier than fixing it after it has already happened.
Here are a few preventative measures to help you avoid your electric bike getting damaged by water.
If you’re an avid biker looking for an electric bike to improve your experience, consider where you live, where you’re going, and how wet it truly gets.
If you most likely travel through heavy amounts of rainfall, through lakes or waterfalls, perhaps sticking with an average bicycle is the best option to avoid this.
Why get an electric bike if you live in an incredibly active rainstorm area?
The same goes for the other end; if you live in a dry area and love to bike, an electric bike shouldn’t even have these issues for you.
If you live in a wet area and still want your electric bike, taking precautions before hitting the trails will go a long way.
There are many ways to make your journey safe that surpass your bicycle.
This article from Electric Bikes Brisbane mentions several things that will help an e-bike in the rain. It mentions checking your tire pressure beforehand, safety gear, and weather-proof gear.
If you are aware you’re going to be driving into a rainstorm, prepare your person with lights and high visibility clothing. At least protect yourself if you’re going out in the rain.
There are also ways to protect your bike from damage, like mud flaps, which will keep thick mud from spraying onto your electric bike, and electrical tape for any exposed wires.
Most electric bikes don’t leave anything critical to the motor or battery exposed to damage. However, this video from Augustine Bikes says that water can get in through the controller, so be sure to use electrical tape to keep water out.
When you make it home from your rainy trip, be sure to keep your bike under a roof to let it dry.
Or, if you don’t have a shed or area to get a muddy, wet bike, consider purchasing a bike cover, so it’s not simply sitting in the rain for a considerable period.
If your bike is soaked and covered in mud, clean it. Do not risk letting the water or dirt soak into any control panels or exposed charging ports.
WD-40 or any other lubrication product designed for bikes can keep your chain, frame, handlebars, spokes, or anywhere on your bike that needs to work fluidly.
It can also be a massive benefactor in preventing rust in your electric bike. It keeps the metal fresh and adds a temporary layer of protection.
Take precautions. If you do, you won’t only have immense fun biking in wet weather conditions, but your expensive e-bike will be safe and work the way it should.
If you’re bringing your bike on the road with it attached to the back of your car, be sure to protect the essential parts in case it rains during your drive. The same applies if you want to be safe and take your bike out into a heavy rainstorm.
You can cover the controller and the other essential parts of your bike with plastic to keep it safe if you’re worried you’ll hit rain while traveling or biking.
Rust is another significant issue with some electric bikes. In the scenario that your bike does begin to rust, stay on top of it. As previously mentioned, and according to this article from KBO, you can remove it with the right products.
Some of those include baking soda, lemon juice, WD-40, Vinegar, Pepsi or Coke, and more. You can avoid this entirely if you’re tending to your bike. See the above sections where cleaning is mentioned for more information.
Simply taking care of your bike by keeping it clean goes a long way, and your bike will last a long time.
You can also have two bikes, electric and nonelectrical. So if you’re someone who likes pedaling through heavy water sources, take your nonelectrical bike out for that special occasion.
If you are just hitting the trails with a bit of rainfall, take the electrical out.
It’s ultimately up to you, but remember that water is not a danger. The danger is riding in heavy amounts of it.
There is only so much you control when it comes down to driving your electric bike in different weather conditions. Whether it’s rain or snow, knowing how much your bike can handle is vital.
Electric bikes are a fun and impressive source of technology that, for the most part, aren’t limited to specific dry weather. Still, that doesn’t mean it is impervious to wet weather.
However, riding your bike should be fun and stress-free, and doing so in the rain is more than possible and sometimes even more thrilling. It’s all about being safe and smart.
Pedaling in a light rainstorm is fine. Even driving in a heavier rainstorm is fine, with extra precautions taken.
But driving through a lake is not. For obvious reasons, avoid large bodies of water.
Bike through muddy grounds. Laugh with your companions when the rain gets too heavy. Dry your bike when you get home. Keep it clean and under a roof.
Take care of your bike, and it will take care of you. Don’t take care of it, and you won’t have it for a very long time. It’s up to you.
Electric bikes are water-resistant. They are designed to repel water and other liquids threatening their electricity source.
They are an impressive form of technology that you shouldn’t be afraid of taking for a ride on a rainy day.
However, electric bikes are not waterproof, so remember to take care of your bike and be mindful of when the water becomes too much.
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