How to maintain e-bike yourself: instructions, checklist and tips

If you look after your e-bike, you will ride longer and more safely. However, you don't have to go to a specialist for every e-bike maintenance job. If you are motivated, you can carry out many tasks yourself. We explain what these are and how to do them correctly here.

About e-bike maintenance in a nutshell

  • Regular maintenance extends the service life of your electric bike, prevents accidents and increases riding enjoyment. We recommend a thorough maintenance session at least twice a year.
  • In addition to cleaning, it is particularly important to check the brakes, drive and gears, wheels and lights. You only need a few tools for this. However, you should know exactly what you are doing, especially with safety-relevant components such as the brakes.
  • Remember to look after the battery on your e-bike. Maintenance of the electronics usually has to be carried out by a specialist.
  • The maintenance feature in the new PowUnity app for the BikeTrax GPS tracker reminds you when inspections are due. This makes it easier to keep your bike in good shape.

Bent gears, poorly adjusted gears, worn brake pads: Wear and tear on an e-bike reduces the fun of riding and turns your proud luxury vehicle into a bike with a motor. If the brakes suddenly fail or the chain breaks while you’re out and about, it can even become a fire hazard. To maintain your bike regularly increases the service life of bike’s parts. You will also recognise in good time when a replacement is necessary.

Sounds complicated?

With good instructions, it’s not that difficult. In the following, we will guide you step by step through the most important tasks. We explain what you need for electric bike maintenance, how to proceed and when a regular check at a professional bike shop is advisable.

How often is e-bike maintenance necessary?

You should check bikes and e-bikes at regular intervals. A thorough inspection is recommended at least twice a year, preferably in or after winter and in autumn. If you ride a lot and frequently explore rough terrain on your e-MTB, it may be more often.

Take between half an hour and an hour and have everything you need for maintenance ready.

What you need for e-bike maintenance

Is your toolbox limited to the minimum? Don’t worry. With the following equipment, you can get pretty far with a basic maintenance:

  • Warm water
  • Cloth or microfibre cloth
  • Tire lever
  • Bike cleaner
  • Washing-up liquid
  • Chain oil
  • Bike pump
  • Screwdriver
  • Allen key
  • Spanner
  • Brushes in various sizes

Depending on the scope of maintenance, additional accessories may be useful. These include a chain gauge, for example.

Step-by-step instructions for electric bike maintenance

The scope and individual steps of a maintenance unit depend on the condition of the bike. Use the following steps as a guide for thorough maintenance:

Checklist for the inspection of electric bikes

Done… Or not?

You can use the following checklist to check whether an electric bike service is complete or whether you have forgotten something. It is also a good indication of whether you should also have a professional service carried out.

  • Bike cleaned including reflectors
  • Tires in order and inflated
  • Wheels turn freely
  • Chain cleaned, checked for clogging and oiled
  • Gears work perfectly
  • All lights work
  • Brakes apply correctly
  • Brake cables and brake pads are in order or have been replaced
  • All screws are tightened

The power system: how to look after your electric bike battery properly

Modern lithium-ion batteries supply your e-bike with power for many years. However, how many years also depends on how you handle the lithium batteries. The following maintenance tips will extend its service life:

  • If possible, avoid discharging the battery completely and charge it to around 90% after every ride.
  • Only use original chargers from the manufacturer.
  • Expose the battery to extreme temperatures as rarely as possible.
  • If you do not use it for a long time, store it in a dry, clean place. An ambient temperature of around 20 °C is ideal.

If you are travelling by bike in winter, do not install the e-bike battery until shortly before your ride. Neoprene protective covers help to keep it warm and prevent it from losing too much power.

When a professional should service your e-bike

Even the most talented hobbyists take their bike to a professional from time to time. This is especially true for e-bikes. This is because you can only check the built-in electric bike components like the battery and motor with suitable equipment. Normal tools are not enough. An e-bike workshop has special software to service and update the motor. An experienced bike mechanic can also measure the battery capacity.

Apart from that, the same applies to regular bikes as to cars: safety first. If you don’t have the confidence to service sensitive parts such as brakes or gears yourself, it’s better to call in the experts. You can tips find out how bike inspections differ and what costs you can expect in our “Bike inspection: instructions and tips”.

With e-bikes, it makes sense to consult a professional for a bike inspection.

Never forget maintenance again with the PowUnity app

Never want to forget when a bike inspection is due again? You can save reminders in the maintenance section of the new PowUnity app. You also benefit from highly efficient theft protection with the app and the BikeTrax GPS tracker.

Conclusion: e-bike maintenance can be learnt

Whether electric mountain bikes or e-trekking bikes, every model needs electric bike maintenance. The winter break or after the cold season is the ideal time for this. You don’t necessarily need a professional to make your bike running smoothly. Some things can easily be done by yourself. However, if you dare to tackle the brakes and electrical components, you should know what you are doing to avoid damage and accidents. Otherwise, it is better to take your bike to a workshop before your next tour.

FAQs on independent e-bike maintenance

Can I maintain my electric bike myself?

You can carry out a lot of maintenance and care work on a pedelec yourself. Your knowledge and motivation are crucial. For example, you should only service the brakes yourself if you know exactly what you are doing. The electronics are best checked by a specialist with the necessary equipment. Software updates cannot always be carried out by yourself either.

What is the best way to look after my electric bike battery?

Avoid exposing an e-bike battery to extreme temperatures. A neoprene protective cover helps in winter. If you do not use it for a longer period of time, store the battery dry and protected at temperatures of around 20° degrees. Charge it to 90% after every ride.

How do I clean my e-bike properly?

Use a soft cloth and a mild soap solution to clean your e-bike. Avoid using high-pressure cleaners, as these can force water and cleaning agents into sensitive electrical parts. Make sure to protect the battery and display from moisture. After cleaning, you should allow all moving parts, especially the chain, to dry thoroughly before continuing maintenance.

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