Are Electric Bikes Designed to be Waterproof?

When you buy an electric bike, you need to ensure you make the most of your investment and ride the electric bike as often as you can, sometimes, even in inclement weather, especially in the USA.

By making your electric bike your primary mode of transportation, you can significantly bring down your average carbon footprint and play your part in helping the planet by reducing GHG emissions.

However, many people are unsure whether an electric bike is safe to ride in the rain or not. Fortunately, an electric bike’s water-resistant design makes it highly durable, no matter how often you ride it in the rain.

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Are Electric Bikes Designed to be Waterproof or Not?

Electric bike manufacturers and designers constantly encourage people to make their electric bikes their primary mode of transportation, especially when the total traveling distance is under 100 miles.

For this, they are continuously working to bring improvement and innovations in an electric bike’s design and mechanisms to ensure people can trust their electric bikes and use them in all kinds of conditions.

Moreover, since an electric bike is no small investment, it would not make sense to spend a fortune on a transport vehicle that has several limitations and weaknesses.

Hence, an electric bike’s overall frame, electrical components, and technological features are designed to be water resistant so that e-bike owners stick to riding their electric bikes even when it is riding outside.

However, just because an electric bike is designed to be water-resistant, it is not completely waterproof. This means while an electric bike can be ridden no matter how heavily it rains outside, submerging it in deep water can lead to water damage.

Hence, it is extremely important that all electric bike owners know exactly how much water is alright for an electric bike and when and what may cause permanent water damage.

Continue reading the article to learn what makes an electric bike water-resistant and what are the differences between the terms water-resistant and waterproof.

Moreover, the article also highlights what a person can do if their electric bike has undergone water damage to ensure the damage is repaired on time and does not become permanent.

Finally, the article will talk about tips all electric bike owners can use to limit the chances of water damage to ensure their electric bikes can retain their quality and performance throughout their expected lifespan.

Let’s get started!

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What Makes an Electric Bike Water Resistant?

An electric bike is an extremely technologically advanced and motorized version of the bike we all have grown up riding.

Not only is its price much higher than a regular bike, but all of its components, as well as the frame, are designed to be superior and highly durable, even during the rain.

Hence if you plan on investing in an electric bike, do not let any doubts or critics stop you from making this wise investment.

Unlike older and traditional bikes, an electric bike’s frame is heavily coated with waterproof paint that helps prevent rusting and any forms of damage to its joints and bearings.

Moreover, all of the electrical components of the electric bike, such as its lithium-ion battery, electric motor, LCD display screen, controller, energy transmitters, etc., are fully sealed and insulated to remain water-resistant and long-lasting.

Furthermore, most of the wirings that go around in an electric bike are built to run inside the electric bike’s external frame.

Hence, even if a wire gets loose due to an accident or rough usage, it cannot come in contact with the water at any point.

As a result of all these precautionary designs, an electric bike remains completely unaffected when you ride it in the rain.

However, while an electric bike and all its components are water-resistant, they are certainly not waterproof.

For a better understanding of this statement, keep reading to learn the difference between what it means to be waterproof versus water-resistant.

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What is the Difference Between the Terms Waterproof and Water Resistant?

Whenever people buy any electronic device, appliance, or gadget, they are usually interested in knowing if the device is water-resistant or waterproof.

Either of these terms helps a consumer get an idea of how much water will cause severe damage to the device and what kind of care the device will require in order to retain its quality and performance. 

Similarly, people are interested to know whether the electric bike they are buying is water-resistant or waterproof.

If an electric bike is designed to be waterproof, a rider can fully submerge their electric bike in a body of water at a certain depth for a certain period of time and the bike will function as it should after.

This means that the water won’t be able to penetrate the bike and damage the various components that are responsible for making the bike move and charging the battery.

However, before you decide to jump into a lake with your electric bike, it is important to know that your electric bike is not designed to be treated this way.

If you dip or completely submerge your electric bike or any of its electrical components in a body of water, the high external water pressure will cause water to penetrate through the sealed casings and enter the electric components.

If this happens, the water damage can cause the electric component’s functions to seize temporarily or permanently.

This is especially something to worry about when the water-damaged component is the electric bike’s lithium-ion battery.

Since the electric bike’s lithium-ion battery is its most expensive and sensitive component, severe water damage will drastically affect the electric bike’s traveling range, charge storing capacity, and usability.

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Eventually, if the battery is not treated for the water damage immediately, it can lead to extremely expensive battery repairs, and it might even require complete battery replacement, which is incredibly costly in the USA.

Moreover, the same happens if the electric bike’s motor is submerged. However, since an electric bike’s motor is designed to be less susceptible to damage, it may still be usable – however, only to an extent.

Hence, while riding an electric bike in the rain is completely fine, people need to ensure that they don’t drive on flooded roads. The water around the bike isn’t an issue, but if it’s able to find its way into the components, the bike is pretty much done for.

However, if you did end up accidentally riding your electric bike through flooded roads, it is extremely important that you address any possible damages immediately.

This is vital as delaying repairs can lead to highly expensive component replacement costs.

What Can Be Done if an Electric Bike has Undergone Severe Water Damage?

Ideally, one should make sure that their electric bike does not get submerged in water at any point.

However, if this does happen, the trick is to act immediately so that the water does not continue to penetrate the electrical components any deeper.

Follow these steps if you have driven your electric bike through a flooded road:

  • Park your electric bike inside a dry garage or shop as soon as you think water may have entered the e-bike’s different electronic components.
  • Take a dry rag and pat down the electric bike to wipe off any water from its body.
  • Remove the electric bike’s battery, place it on a dry surface, and use the same rag to dry it out.
  • If you feel like water has entered the battery, try shaking it gently, so the water drips out. However, ensure you are careful while doing this to prevent shock.
    • If you feel like there may still be some water inside the battery, the best tip is to take the battery to the closest repair shop without delay.
    • The professional electric bike mechanic will be able to open the battery without damaging any of its components and will make sure all of the penetrated water has been removed.
  • Moreover, once you have removed the lithium-ion battery, you can use a hair dryer at a slow speed to dry out any water from the electric motor or any other components.
    • However, if your electric bike’s lithium-ion battery is built inside the e-bike’s frame and is not detachable, skip this step and do not expose the battery to any heat as it will cause further damage to the battery’s components.
  • Finally, refrain from riding or turning on your electric bike for at least 24 hours to ensure all electric components are completely dried before you begin using it again.

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How to Make Sure Your Electric Bike Remains Protected from Water Damage in the USA?

If you want to protect your electric bike from severe water damage, you can follow these essential tips:

  • Always check the weather forecast before planning a trip on your electric bike.
    • It is important that the forecast you checked was updated at least a week ago.
    • If the forecast says it will rain heavily, try to refrain from riding your electric bike. However, if the forecast only expects gentle drizzling, you can ride your electric bike without worry.
  • Moreover, if heavy rain is expected and you have to get to work or office, try to find someone to carpool with.
    • This way, you can still get to work without increasing your carbon footprint.
  • Furthermore, investing in electric bike fenders can help protect your e-bike’s lithium-ion battery from water, mud, and debris.

Top Tips to Riding an Electric Bike Safely in the Rain

People sometimes underestimate how challenging riding an electric bike in the rain can be. Just because the electric bike claims to be water-resistant, it does not mean one has to endanger their safety.

However, if you have no option but to travel on your electric bike during the rain, it is extremely important to prepare yourself and the electric bike accordingly for damage control.

Hence, when driving your electric bike in the rain, make sure you take care of the following safety measures:

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  • Always leave your home in the proper outfit for riding the electric bike in the rain.
    • This includes wearing a raincoat, gloves, rain boots, and ideally, a rain cap that fits under the electric bike’s helmet.
    • When the person is well protected from the rain, they can focus their energy more on riding their electric bike safely.
    • Moreover, the rain cap will ensure water does not affect the rider’s vision, allowing them to remain attentive and vigilant during their ride.
  • If you are carrying some cargo such as your school bag or an office briefcase, try to cover it with a waterproof sheet to ensure all your important material remains dry and undamaged.
  • While riding, ensure you stick to a low level of pedal assistance and ride at controlled speeds to avoid skidding and crashing.
    • This tip helps protect not only the rider, but their electric bike, and other people and vehicles on the road as well.
    • Moreover, reduce the speed of your electric bike even more when taking a sharp turn.
  • Another extremely helpful tip is to reduce the air pressure from the electric bike’s tires.
    • Since a greater surface of the tires will come in contact with the road, friction will be increased; hence, the chances of slipping or crashing will be reduced.
  • Ensure your electric bike’s head and tail lights are turned on.
    • Doing so helps improve the rider’s visibility and reflexes while also helping other vehicles spot the e-bike on the road.

Final Thoughts

Whether you need your electric bike to get to work or school, or you simply have it to enjoy riding with interrupted momentum, protecting the electric bike from any lasting damages is incredibly important to secure the investment.

While an electric bike’s body and electrical components are designed to be water-resistant, they are not waterproof.

Hence, riding an electric bike in the rain or during wet conditions is completely alright as long as its lithium-ion battery does get fully submerged in water. For this, it is usually advised to refrain from riding the electric bike in swampy areas if it has been raining aggressively for multiple days.

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