Can you ride in rainy weather? Not everyone is a fan of getting their clothes wet and shredding through puddles, but bad weather can catch you anywhere and anytime, so it’s not like you have another option when you’re on the road. The real question is: is it safe?
EBikes are usually waterproof ‒ the main electrical elements (motor and battery) are shielded from water and it’s really unlikely that it can get inside the casing during the ride. Let’s see how it works.
What makes an eBike battery waterproof?
The battery is probably the most important part of the eBike (and the heaviest one). The plug tightly closes the charging channel, and no water can possibly get in. Plus, Li-Ion elements are enclosed separately, so there’s no way that occasional raindrops can slip in and cause malfunction. So, yeah ‒ riding in the rain is definitely okay while going through a typhoon or a proper storm will be dangerous both for you and your electric bike.
In most cases, if you have an eBike designed with off-road riding in mind (like Delfast’s TOP 3.0), it’s definitely protected for situations like this. Of course, if you want to wade through a small lake, you have to take precautions but otherwise, you’re good to go.
Power cells in Li-Ion batteries are protected in multiple ways: first by their separate encasings, then by battery case, and by charging plug. As far as we know, with a setup like this, any electric bike can survive a ride on a rainy road without consequences for battery stability. Besides, it’s not like it’s raining 365 days a year in most states ‒ you’ll possibly have to ride in rainy weather only a few times per season depending on where you live.
But what about washing an eBike? Some say that you should take off the battery before wiping it with a wet cloth. While the battery is prepared for this kind of maintenance, your safest option will be to remove the battery and wash your eBike separately. This way, the frame, and the wheels will get a thorough cleaning with an appropriate amount of liquid to scrub down all mud, and the battery will get a gentle but thorough wipe without risks. There are plenty of tutorials to guide you through this process, so you definitely won’t be lost there.
Tips on riding in wet weather
While you can’t do anything about the rain, there are some things you still can do to make your drives easier and safer.
- Use fenders. While yes, of course, eBike’s crucial elements are already protected and work just fine in rainy weather, water splashes and mud are not that good for your eBike maintenance. Using a fender made of plastic or metal will make your offroad rides and trips under the rain safer and easier on your eBike.
- Decrease air pressure in your tires. Wet and slippery roads require you to have better traction if you want to have better control of your vehicle. You’ll get a better grip if you’ll reduce air pressure by 10 psi.
- Make sure your lights are working. Having your front and rear lights intact is already required by the law in some states, but in wet or foggy weather they’re your must-haves. You need them as well whenever you’re riding past sunset, but in bad weather, they provide additional guidance for other vehicles on the road, too.
- Dry your eBike immediately after you’ve been in the rain. This part includes taking off the battery and drying it, too. You don’t have to use sophisticated dryers ‒ just wiping off the rest of the water (especially from the metal parts) will be enough to maintain your electric bike in a good shape.
Another piece of advice we can give you is also about the battery. The thing is, wet and slippery weather tends to come with cold and windy times. Li-Ion batteries discharge faster under lower temperatures, causing charging cycles shortage and charge malfunctions. With that in mind, always charge your battery to the full charge before taking every ride. Also, using a lower pedal-assist setting will prolong your battery life in times like that. On the other side, warming up both battery and motor in cold weather with higher power settings will prevent them from cooling down too much.
Your battery always needs care and proper maintenance, regardless of whether you’re riding in the rain or not. Charge it according to manufacturer rules, dry it out after wet rides, clean it properly, and your electric bike will serve you for many more years.