5 Tips for Riding Electric Bike in Winter

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Yes, you can ride your electric bike in the middle of winter. But it is better to apply some good practices. Let’s talk about them!

Winter is here. Whether it’s meteorological or astronomical winter, we’re in it. Even if the temperatures are a bit yo-yo, it’s not the best time to ride your bike. 

Suppose you run your days on a bike like a ninja without worrying about the weather. In that case, you will undoubtedly have noticed that the cyclist or bike rider is a rare species and that you are alone to fight against the weather.

Cycling in winter can sometimes be quite tricky and uncomfortable. It also has charm, especially when riding an electrically assisted bike, which makes it easier to get around, especially when you have to deal with the typical headwinds at this time of year.

Obviously, the number one enemy of the bike commuter in this season is the cold, which causes inconveniences to the rider in terms of comfort and safety, but not only. Because when you talk about electric bikes, you talk about batteries, which are expensive when temperatures drop, especially in terms of loss of autonomy.

Read also: How to maintain your electric bike when you know nothing about it – in this article and this article. E-bike for the winter – safe choice collection from Gogobest.

There is also the question of snow, even if it tends to be rare these last years in our area. If you are not comfortable with your e-bike, it is better to avoid riding because mastering this machine on snow is not for everyone.

Another important tip is to stay off the roads if there is the slightest risk of icy conditions. Even the most confident cyclist can find himself or herself on the ground very quickly if he encounters ice while riding. Therefore, it is best to wait until the ice has melted and the roads are cleared adequately before attempting to ride through town.

Here are some tips on how to get through the winter on your e-bike.

1. Keep the battery warm

That is probably one of the most essential tips for riding an e-bike in winter. Batteries don’t like to be too hot or too cold and react negatively to both situations. When temperatures drop too low, the battery reacts by losing range up to 30%.

Easy E-Biking - KBO e-bike battery, helping to make electric biking practical and fun
Photo credit KBO e-bikes

It is, therefore, essential to always remove the battery from the e-bike after use and take it with you to put it in a warm and dry place. To ensure it stays warm, you can wrap it in insulation.

Another essential tip about EV batteries in winter is never to charge an extremely cold battery. Trying to charge a frozen battery can damage the plug and the battery; it will not charge while frozen. Therefore, wait for the battery to warm up before charging it for your next trip.

And if your e-bike does not have a removable battery, try to find a way to keep it warm.

Read also: What are the differences between e-bike batteries? And, How to properly store an electric bike?

As for those who take a winter break and do not use their bike anymore or very little, remember not to leave it with the battery fully charged because it can deteriorate it. The idea is to ensure the battery stays with a charge of around 50%.

2. Clean your e-bike to protect it

A tip that concerns all types of vehicles. Winter is the enemy of all moving parts, not only because of the cold and humidity but also because of the mud, snow, and salt scattered on the roads to melt the ice. All these elements are aggressive for the mechanical parts, not to mention the fluids that tend to freeze and harden in case of extreme cold.

Easy E-Biking - Gogobest e-bike winter, helping to make electric biking practical and fun
Photo credit Gogobest e-bikes

If you can keep your bike warm and sheltered when not riding, it is ideal, but in any case, do not hesitate to wash it regularly with soap and water to remove mud and salt.

Read also: How to clean your electric bike (and not mess up)? And, How to prepare your e-bike for winter?

You can also protect the corners of your bike with an anti-rust spray.

3. Consider winter tires

So yeah, this doesn’t come to mind first, and you can probably get by with your regular tires. Still, if you want optimum grip and safety, you should seriously consider installing a good pair of winter tires on your bike, just like on your car.

Be careful; we’re talking about tires specially adapted for winter conditions, usually large tread tires for soft snow, not to be confused with tires designed for rain, which won’t do the trick because the lower temperatures on these tires can reduce traction as the rubber hardens.

And for extreme cases, you can do it with studded tires if you want to drive in the snow. They are known to be the best choice for safety and traction in the snow, assuring the rider that they won’t slip. 

Easy E-Biking - e-bike winter tire snow, helping to make electric biking practical and fun

However, remember that studded tires should not be used when the ice begins to melt. If you ride with studded tires on the road, the studs will wear out, and the e-bike will run slower. That will also have an impact on your battery life. And it’s a pain in the ass, too.

Read also: Why fat tires are good news for electric bikes? And, How to select the best hybrid e-bike?

Another little tip about tires: take a puncture-proof spray. It’s not ideal, but it will allow you to keep riding. Above all, it will prevent you from having to repair in the cold, which is a rather unpleasant experience, if not downright horrible.

4. Beware of bridges

You leave quietly on a cold morning, but everything is fine; the road seems dry and not slippery. Then, finally, you arrive on this bridge you know well, and there… the front wheel suddenly slips, and it is the bowl. What happened? 

What happened is that the moisture coming up from a river towards the bridge stagnates and settles on the cold surface, then freezes slowly until it forms an invisible and very thin layer of extremely slippery ice. The bridge is sneaky, and you have to beware of it.

As a general rule, always test the ground with your feet before getting on your bike. Do it regularly at each stop because the ice is sometimes invisible and does not form homogeneously throughout the route.

Read also: Equip yourself for cold and rainy weather. And, Can I ride my electric bike in winter?

5. Adopt muffs

We’ll skip over the best way to dress for cold weather on a bike, as everyone has their method and preferences. However, you should know that a good windbreaker, even a very thin one, slipped under a thick layer (down jacket, anorak) is often more effective than three sweaters. 

Easy E-Biking - e-bike cyclist winter snow, helping to make electric biking practical and fun

Also, think about a scarf, balaclava, or full-face visor because it is often through the face and neck that you get cold. But the hands take the most in winter because they are very exposed and “tightened” on the handlebars, which hinders blood circulation. And there, whatever the thickness of the gloves, the nail quickly arrived.

Besides a good pair of gloves, installing muffs on the handlebars is the best solution to keep your fingers warm. With this equipment, you have a good chance of solving the issue once and for all.

Read also: Can electric bikes get wet? And, Can I ride an e-bike in winter?

Riding Electric Bike in Winter – In Conclusion

Riding a bike in winter can sometimes be unpleasant, but not always. Once suitably equipped and protected from the cold and bad weather, facing the elements on often deserted roadways or bike paths can have a charm.

And you, do you take your bike right now, or does it spend the winter in the warmth?

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