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Can You Ride an Electric Bike in the Rain

Woman riding an electric bike

Low visibility, biting wind and slick roads can make cycling in the rain more challenging, but a few raindrops shouldn’t prevent you from enjoying your e-bike. In most cases, your electric bike will be perfectly fine in rainy weather, but there are some safety measures you can take to prevent precipitation from damaging your bike’s electrical components. 

Can Electric Bikes Get Wet? 

Most electric bikes, including cities, mountains, and folding electric bikes are built with waterproof components designed to withstand wet conditions. The bike’s electrical components, such as the battery, motor and controller, are usually housed in a waterproof casing to prevent water from seeping in. The bike’s wiring is also coated with a waterproof material to protect against moisture.

However, while electric bikes are water-resistant, there are limits to their wet weather resistance. Avoiding puddles or submerging your electric bike in deep bodies of water prevents damage to the bike’s electrical components that would make it inoperable.


Take Safety Measures in Inclement Weather

Like standard road bikes, riding an e-bike in the rain without proper safety precautions can be dangerous. If you plan on going out in the rain, take safety measures to keep you and your bike safe.  

Wear Protective Clothing

When riding a bike in the rain, wear appropriate clothing to keep yourself dry and make yourself visible. A rain jacket, waterproof shoes and pants will keep you dry and prevent discomfort while riding your electric bike. Also, consider wearing a reflective vest or attaching reflective strips to your outerwear to make yourself more visible in the rain. 

Install Headlamps

If you plan on riding in low light conditions, install headlamps on the bike’s handlebars and underneath the bike seat facing backward. Purchase lights with both a flashing function and a high beam. The flashing program makes the light more noticeable from a distance, while the high beam allows you to see further ahead, giving you more time to brake or swerve to avoid obstacles. 

Be Aware of Your Surroundings

Even if you make yourself more visible with your clothing, drivers and other bikers may be too distracted by the weather to see you. Wet roads can be slippery, especially when turning or braking, so always keep a safe distance from other vehicles, avoid sudden movements and brake early. 

Mount Fenders on Wheels

Consider installing fenders to avoid mud splashing onto the bike’s electric components. Fenders are protective covers that fit onto the frame above your wheels. They prevent mud and water from splashing up your back and onto the bike’s frame. 

Lower Your Tire Pressure

Your e-bike’s tire pressure depends on the bike’s weight, tire type and the manufacturer's recommendations. Road tires typically need around 80 to 130 PSI, while electric mountain bikes should have a pressure of about 20 to 35 PSI. 

When riding an e-bike in the rain, lower the recommended pressure by about 10 PSI. This gives the tires a wider point of contact with the road or terrain for increased friction and better handling. 

Waterproof Your Electric Bike

If you want extra protection from the rain, consider waterproofing your bike. To determine how effectively your e-bike keeps out water, check its Ingress Protection (IP) rating. This is a two-digit number between 0-6. The first digit is how well the bike keeps solids away from the electronics and the second is for liquids. The higher the number, the better the e-bike keeps out unwanted materials. 

If your bike has a low IP rating or you purchased a refurbished electric bike and are unsure of the rating, consider using a sealant or a cover. Sealants are often used by people who live in humid areas with a constant risk of liquid damaging the electrical components. A cover, such as electrical tape, is generally used as a quick fix before going on a trail or riding in the rain. 

Clean and Maintain Your Bike

If you purchase an electric city bike, you need to keep it in good shape by preventing wear and minimizing water damage from riding in the rain.

Once you have completed your ride, use a soft damp cloth to wipe down the bike to remove dirt and grime. Then, use a second soft cloth to dry it. Do not use water to wash off your electric bike, which could damage the electrical components and the finish. 

Check on the bike’s electrical components. If any water or dirt found its way inside, see if there are any issues, such as sensor failure or battery malfunction. If there are, you may need to take your bike to a qualified technician to have it checked.  

Under Rhode Island law, electric bikes are described as electric motorized bicycles and must have an electric motor rated at 2 horsepower and a maximum speed of 25 mph. Licensing and insurance requirements for electric motorized bicycles are the same as for cars

Find the Right Bike for You

Choose from mountain, city, speed, cargo or folding e-bikes and more to find the ideal option for your lifestyle. If you want an affordable electric bike that will give you years of reliable service, check out our selection at Upway.

At Upway, we sell certified pre-owned electric bicycles as an eco-friendly way to travel and stay healthy. Shop our e-bikes today to find a model that meets your needs and helps you get where you need to go.

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Upway offers the widest range of certified pre-owned electric bikes, reconditioned by professional mechanics. Thanks to Upway, you'll get a great electric bike at a price that's 20-60% off retail, with a one-year warranty!