Electric Bike Brakes Not Working – Common Reasons and Solutions

Brakes are the most important safety component for any vehicle, as they ensure you are safe within your vehicle regardless of terrain or road conditions.

E-bikes are quite safe compared to the other vehicles you may travel in, yet there are always ways to increase your safety while riding e-bikes. 

Like any other vehicle, e-bikes have a braking system interconnected to their machinery. The distinction here is that many e-bikes have an electronic circuit in place for braking.

This fact means that the circuitry needs to be intact so that you can slow down and finally come to a halt when riding a bike. 

E-bikes are distinguished because these bikes are also a lot faster than regular bikes. Thus, the speed makes it more important than ever for the braking system to work.

If your electric bike brakes aren’t working, there are some common problems that you can check for. 

Common Reasons For E-Bike Brakes Not Working

Worn Down Brake Pads

The brake pads are the part of your braking system that gets the most friction. When you’re braking your e-bike, brake pads are your point of contact. When you press these pads, the stainless steel bar will stop the wheels. 

However, if the pads are too worn down, you may find that they don’t completely connect with the bar stopping your e-bike. The circuit may not be completed if the machine is electric, and the brakes won’t work. 


To solve worn-down brake pads, you only need to replace them. You can even replace the brake pads by yourself. We recommend you learn how to do this and always carry a spare pair of brake pads. 

How would you know when it is time to replace your brake pads? If pressing down the brakes requires more effort, then it’s time to change them. 

There are different ways for you to replace worn-down brake pads. There are brake clips and slip-on. Look at your brake pads and find the method that works before implementing them. 

The Cables are Not Attached 

If you have electric bike brakes that seem to have stopped working altogether, then chances are that the connections have come undone or are loose.

Sometimes your bike could also have passed through a hurdle that loosened your connections. 

To get to the root of the problem, you have to look at the brake line and see if it’s connected to your brake caliper. If it is, then it’ll work. If it’s not, then you’re likely to face issues. 


Not everyone knows how to attach cables for e-bikes, and that’s okay. You can go to the closest bike repair shop near you, and they will check your connections.

Check if the wire is attached to the nearest cable; if not, then you can simply tighten the bolt attached to the cables.

The Braking Rotor is Stagnant 

The braking rotor is the mechanical device that ensures the brakes remain functional. However, the braking rotors may become stagnant due to dust, dirt, or gunk getting stuck in between.

If you drive your bike through many different terrains, it only makes sense for it to take up all sorts of gunk and debris from all over town.

If the braking rotor is stagnant, the chances of you working the brakes are limited. 


It’s a simple fix. All you have to do is get a wet washcloth and clean up the whole rotor disc so that your brakes can easily work when you need them to.

Make sure that you remove any major debris from the disc and then wipe down the disc to ensure that nothing stands between the brake pads and the rotor. 

You must also ensure no major issues with your disc; otherwise, you will have to replace the disc immediately. 

The Caliper isn’t Tight Enough 

The caliper is the most important part of the braking system as it holds the brake pads in place. However,  the brakes can’t work if the caliper isn’t correctly aligned.

If the caliper isn’t tight enough, the movement will make braking ineffective. Thus, you won’t be able to brake in time which may be dangerous. 


If you want to correct your caliper’s alignment, you can start loosening your bolts. Once the bolts are loosened, you can fix the caliper alignment so that the brake pads work in tandem with the braking system.

The way to do this is by loosening the bolt grip and then applying pressure to the brake lever to align it correctly. Then, you can tighten the bolt again too. 

If you’re having difficulty solving the issue,  you can always go to the auto shop and ask a professional to fix this particular issue. 

The Brake Bolts are Loose 

If you find that the brake caliper is in the center, but if your brakes are making a lot of noise, you should clean your rotor and brake pad.

If the noise persists after cleaning everything, your brake bolts are loose, and you must tighten the system. 


Check the overall braking system for loose bolts, screws, or other hangings. You can tighten all the components on your own.

However, if you notice something is cracked and needs replacement, you may take it to a professional instead. Sometimes, a crack in a component can lead to bigger problems in the overall system, so you must get it tested. 

The Brake Lever is Broken 

The brake lever is the component that allows you to brake in time. If it breaks, the smartest decision you can take is to go to a professional to fix it.

Sometimes, the brake lever doesn’t break—it bends. In this case, it’s better to ask a professional to replace it. 


Professionals easily install E-bike brakes. If you have mechanical brakes, you can look for ways to replace the brakes on your own.  

Benefits of Working Brakes on E-Bikes:

  1. Safety 

The most important aspect of your brakes is allowing you to slow down when needed. E-bikes can be very fast, and thus brakes are necessary for you to stop in your tracks.

If the brakes on your e-bike won’t work, it can lead to many accidents on the road. 

Taking a particularly treacherous path when riding your e-bike, then not having the proper brakes, can result in injuries that would take time to recover from.

Hence, you’re not only saving yourself, but you’re also saving the people all around you. 

  1. Better Electricity Usage 

With brakes that work well, you won’t have to worry about the e-bike running out of electricity easily.

Vehicles, including e-bikes, work better when the brakes are efficient and working well. Thus, you must maintain the working brakes to ensure you get the most out of your battery life.

  1. Increased Cost Efficiency 

When your brakes are working well, you will avoid many accidents and, thus, damage. You won’t have to spend money fixing any of this damage; thus, you can save a lot.

With working brakes, your e-bike is also likely to work more efficiently; thus, maintaining brakes can save you expenses in the long run. 

  1. Fewer Maintenance Costs 

When you consistently invest in maintenance, you will spend less on your e-bike overall. There will not be any breakdowns or failures that may otherwise cost you extra money.

Instead, regular servicing can ensure your bike is efficient while it’s functional, thus avoiding extra damage, and maintaining the overall life of your e-bike. 

  1. Less Lever Effort

Working brakes are much more efficient, so you won’t have to put a lot of effort into stopping the e-bike.

Since it requires less effort, you won’t have to replace your brake pedals consistently. The optimized lever effort also keeps you much safer overall. 

  1. Better Performance 

You’ll likely reach your destinations at the right time if your brakes work well. You no longer have to worry about accidental breakdowns in the middle of your ride. 

You can e-bike to your destination, finding peace because your bike serves you.

Having working bikes makes you feel safe and secure in the knowledge that you’re in control of the machine, instead of the other way around. 

Final Thoughts 

Electric Bike brakes are important for your safety while riding your e-bike. You must maintain your brakes properly, as in any vehicle, to practice maximum safety.

Many people believe that bike brakes aren’t essential, but e-bikes are not like regular bikes. 

If you want to avoid any major issues, then you must have functional bike brakes. E-bike brakes are generally quite sensitive, so if you have to press extra hard to stop your bike, it may be time to go to the bike shop. 

You must regularly inspect your e-bike brakes, so you don’t harm yourself or anyone else while biking.

If you remain unsure about how to take care of your brakes, you can always show them to a professional for maximum efficiency. 

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