Electric Bicycle Batteries
In this installment of the 3 Minute Electric Bike Video Series, Bill is talking about how to care for an electric bike battery. We are focusing primarily on Lithium Chemistry batteries.
To start, when you first get your bike, charge your battery for 12 full hours. What this does is make sure the current is flowing through all the cells and you’re really conditioning the battery right out of the box.
After that the next best thing you can do is use it regularly. Ride your bike a lot, use your battery often, that’s the best thing that you can do to maximize battery life!
You want to avoid temperature extremes both in usage and in charging. During charging, basically from freezing to about 110oF is the acceptable range. During usage, it’s a little bit broader; you can go -4oF up to about 140oF, but you want to avoid extremes outside of that range.
You don’t want to leave your battery on the charger for multiple days. A day or two is fine but when you leave it on for days at a time, the battery will dip below and naturally discharge a little bit. When this happens the charger will automatically kick on and then will be doing a cycle that’s right at the top of its limit and that’s not ideal, so unplug it once its charged up.
There are going to be times when you will need to store your battery, especially in the winter climate. Never store it for extended periods with an empty or very low charge. Optimum is between 40 and 70% of full charge so you can use the gauge on your bicycle’s display to let you know when you are about in that range. You don’t want it to be fully charge when storing either.
And lastly, you want to charge it about once every 3 months. That helps keep all the electrons flowing through the system and does the best to maximize the life of your battery.