Battery Range Guide: Understanding Electric Bike Range & Batteries

Battery Range Guide: Understanding Electric Bike Range & Batteries

    The electric bicycle is becoming increasingly popular as a transportation option. With an e-bike, you can effortlessly ride up to 28 mph. It's a great way to avoid traffic and arrive at work without feeling tired. E-bikes are also suitable for bike tours and can handle sporty trips in the forest or even the mountains with steep terrain.
    The range of your electric bike determines how much you can enjoy riding at high speeds. Let's explore how it works and the distance you can cover with an e-bike.


    How far can you go with an e-bike?

    There are various models of electric bikes with ranges typically ranging from 31 to 75 miles. Of course, there are exceptions with some bikes having more range. For example, Fuell Flluid-1S electric bike offers a range of 125 miles. A classic electric city bike can cover an average of 45 miles before needing a recharge. However, the distance you can cover depends on several factors.


    What do I need to know about charging an e-bike battery?

    Don't worry, you won't be stranded in the middle of nowhere. You can still pedal like you would on a regular bike. Just keep in mind that an e-bike with its electrical components is heavier than a traditional bike, so pedaling without electrical support can be more challenging. It's crucial to choose your electric bike wisely, considering the range you need. Once you reach your destination, you simply connect the battery to a power source. Depending on the model, it takes 4 to 7 hours for a full charge.


    How does the battery impact your range?

    The battery is a vital component that significantly impacts the range of your e-bike. It serves as the energy source and determines how far you can ride. The range of your battery depends on its capacity, usually measured in watt-hours (Wh). Higher capacity means more energy storage and greater range. 
    On average, a 260 Wh battery provides a range of approximately 25 miles, a 375 Wh battery offers a range of around 37 miles, and a 520 Wh battery can cover about 50 miles. Keep in mind that manufacturer-provided ranges are for reference only and are often tested under favorable conditions. They serve as rough guidelines.
    A battery can typically handle 500 charge cycles before experiencing range loss. With 37 to 62 miles per cycle, an electric bike can travel between 18,000 and 31,000 miles before potential range reduction (Bosch claims their batteries last for 20,000 miles, and Shimano guarantees 60% capacity after 1000 charging cycles). The battery's lifespan is generally 4 to 6 years, but it can extend up to 8 years, depending on usage. When the capacity diminishes, you have two options: purchase a new battery from the manufacturer or opt for a complete battery overhaul.


    Range of your e-bike: It also depends on you!

    While the mechanics of your e-bike affect the number of miles you can cover, your riding behavior plays a role too! Here are some factors that can impact your range: 
    1. E-bike riding style: Most e-bike models offer multiple levels of electrical support. The more assistance you activate, the quicker your battery drains. In urban areas, frequent stops and starts consume more energy.
    2. Terrain: The type of terrain you ride on affects your e-bike's range. Flat, paved roads require less battery power, while hilly paths demand more assistance and higher energy consumption.
    3. Weather conditions: Weather is an external factor influencing your e-bike's range. Extremely low temperatures reduce battery energy storage, resulting in fewer miles covered. It's normal for your e-bike's range to decrease in winter. Wind also affects e-bikes. Headwinds slow you down, requiring more pedaling assistance, while tailwinds increase speed and reduce assistance. Windy regions should be considered.
    4. Weight: Your weight impacts the e-bike's range. Heavier riders require more energy from the bike's motor. Additionally, the total weight of the bike and any load you carry also affect the range.

    How to maintain your e-bike's battery

    By following a couple of best practices, you can make sure that your battery will stay healthy for the maximum amount of time. Here are a few tips on how to maintain your e-bike batter correctly:
    1. Charging: Charge your e-bike battery properly and regularly. Most batteries should be charged using the charger and plug specifically designed for them. Use a surge protector when charging and don't leave the battery charging unattended. It's generally not recommended to charge a battery to its full capacity every time, as this could reduce its lifespan. Instead, consider charging it to around 80-90%. Similarly, don't let the battery discharge completely; recharge it before it drops below 20%.
    2. Storage: Store your e-bike battery correctly. If you're not using your e-bike for an extended period, make sure to store the battery in a cool and dry place. Extreme heat or cold can damage the battery. Ideally, the battery should be stored with about a 40-60% charge. Check the battery every few weeks if stored for a long time, and give it a top-up charge if necessary.
    3. Cleaning: Keep your battery clean. It's important to ensure the battery and its connections are kept clean to ensure optimal performance. You can clean the battery and its connections with a dry or slightly damp cloth. Avoid getting the battery wet. Before cleaning, make sure the battery is detached from the e-bike.
    4. Usage: Proper usage can extend your e-bike battery's life. Avoid using the highest level of pedal assist all the time. This drains the battery faster and can put unnecessary stress on it. Similarly, when going uphill or starting off, use your pedals to help the motor. This will consume less power and put less strain on the battery. Moreover, consider using the battery's energy-saving modes if available.


    Tips to improve your e-bike's range

    By choosing an electric bike suitable for your needs, you can cover a sufficient number of miles without exhausting yourself. Here are some tips to enhance your e-bike's range:
    1. Regularly check tire pressure and the braking system. Well-inflated tires reduce resistance, improving efficiency. If you don't use your e-bike for an extended period, disconnect the battery.
    2. Use assist levels wisely. Start slowly with lower support levels (speed 2 or 3) and gradually increase as needed. When in the city, anticipate red lights by slowing down instead of coming to a complete stop, as restarting requires more energy. Consider using higher support levels only on climbs or when fatigued.
    3. Maintain the battery properly. Charge it regularly (at least every 60 days with the original charger) and store it in a dry and cool place. For optimal maintenance, perform a full charge and discharge cycle every 4,000 miles. Avoid leaving your e-bike charging overnight after it's fully charged.

    If you’ve chosen an e-bike that has a battery that doesn’t suit your needs, at Upway, we offer a 14-day trial period for your e-bike. If you're not satisfied with the model you've chosen, returning it is not a problem. To be eligible for a return, your e-bike should be reasonably used and in the condition you received it, including the original packaging.