How to charge the battery of your e-bike safely
E-bikes have been hitting the news, and not in a good way. Electric bike batteries have been the cause of fires, with devastating effects.
In this article, we’ll talk you through how to charge the battery of your e-bike and how to do it safely.
Disclaimer: always follow the manufacturer’s instructions when charging your e-bike’s battery.
Essential safety tips for charging an e-bike battery
The National Fire Chiefs Council has put together the following instructions on how to safely charge the battery of your e-bike:
- Follow the manufacturer’s instructions when charging and always unplug your charger when it’s finished charging.
- Ensure you have working smoke alarms. If you charge or store your e-bike or e-scooter in a garage or kitchen, ensure you install detection, we recommend heat alarms rather than smoke detectors for these areas.
- Charge batteries whilst you are awake and alert so if a fire should occur you can respond quickly. Don’t leave batteries to charge while you are asleep or away from the home.
- Always use the manufacturer approved charger for the product, and if you spot any signs of wear and tear or damage buy an official replacement charger for your product from a reputable seller.
- Do not cover chargers or battery packs when charging as this could lead to overheating or even a fire.
- Do not charge batteries or store your e-bike or e-scooter near combustible or flammable materials.
- Do not overcharge your battery – check the manufacturer’s instructions for charge times.
- Do not overload socket outlets or use inappropriate extension leads (use un-coiled extensions and ensure the lead is suitably rated for what you are plugging in to it).
- In the event of an e-bike, e-scooter or lithium-ion battery fire – do not attempt to extinguish the fire. Get out, stay out, call 999.
How do I charge my e-bike battery and how long will it take?
Some batteries are mounted onto the bike’s frame, and others are integrated into the bike’s frame.
On most e-bikes, you take the battery off (after unlocking it with a key) and then you connect the battery to a charger which is plugged into the mains.
This charger will be provided with the purchase of an e-bike.
Some e-bikes have integrated batteries within the frame, which can be taken off, but it might be easier to charge the battery while it stays on the bike. Again, follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Charging the battery of an e-bike will take roughly between 2 and 7 hours.
It is usually recommended by the battery manufacturer to store the battery inside during cold weather to prolong the battery life, and also during very hot weather to prevent overheating.
Only buy an e-bike and replacement batteries from a reputable dealer
E-bikes can be bought from reputable online retailers or from your local bike shop and should always meet relevant safety standards.
Cheaper and poor quality e-bikes can be dangerous because their batteries will often be unbranded and their origin is unknown, and may not meet safety standards.
We would strongly advise you to only purchase an e-bike from a reputable online retailer or from your local bike shop, check it meets safety standards and always follow the manufacturer’s instructions.
Disposal of your e-bike battery
When the battery of your e-bike has come to the end of its life, it is vital to properly dispose of it for environmental and safety reasons.
Check with the e-bike manufacturer if they have a recycling programme in place. If not, check with your local authority on how to dispose of the battery.
Before you go…
We have written another article on e-bike motor and battery options, which can be useful when you are looking to buy an e-bike to carry kids, or to cycle with your children.
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