How Does an Electric Mountain Bike Work?

Anyone who enjoys the unmatchable feelings of an accelerated heartbeat and pumping adrenaline knows just how incredible riding a mountain bike in the USA can be.

However, even though a massive majority of the American population likes to ride mountain bikes, many complain about the knee and muscle damage that results from the extreme and physically demanding sport.

Fortunately, riding an electric mountain bike is as easy as riding a traditional pedal or gasoline-powered mountain bike. It can also protect the leg muscles and joints from any major damage.

How Do Electric Mountain Bikes Work?

A modern-day electric mountain bike’s external design is based on the blueprint used to design manual or gasoline-powered mountain bikes.

For instance, electric and gas or manual mountain bikes have foot pedals and two wheels. The pedals are used to propel the bike forward.

Hence, when you see a group of Americans riding their mountain bikes, it is hard to tell which bike is a motorized electric mountain bike if they’re all just pedaling normally.

However, despite the external similarities in the bike’s design and appearance, the internal mechanism of an electric mountain bike is completely different from that of a manual or gasoline-powered mountain bike.

For instance, while a gasoline-powered mountain bike comes with a fuel tank and a small bike-sized combustion engine, an electric mountain bike’s mobility and functionality depend on its battery and motor.

The main components that make an electric bike distinctive, functional, and useful are as follows:

  • The electric motor
  • The lithium-ion battery pack
  • The motion sensors
  • The energy transmitter
  • LCD screen
  • Gears to control the mode of pedal assistance
  • The connecting wires

Moreover, apart from adding the various electrical components, an electric mountain bike’s usability and reliability depend on its relatively more robust bike frame and thicker tires.

If any of the electric components or the unique design elements are absent or dysfunctional, the electric mountain bike’s purpose and the ride will be negatively affected.

To understand how an electric mountain bike works and why every electrical component and design characteristic is vital, it is important to understand the purpose of each component.

Continue reading the article to learn more about the purpose and usage of the different electrical components and the design attributes of an electric mountain bike.

This will give you a better understanding of how electric mountain bikes work, which should also help you understand their maintenance requirements.

Moreover, the article will also shed light on simple tips that will help you improve your electric mountain bike’s momentum, traveling range, and top speed to increase its usability.

Let’s get started!

The Purpose of an Electric Mountain Bike’s Different Electronic Components

The Electric Motor

One of the two key components that make up an electric mountain bike’s electric engine is the electric motor.

Usually, an electric motor is least prone to sustaining any damage, which means it barely leads to any repair and replacement costs.

The purpose of an electric mountain bike’s motor is to produce the energy needed to activate the bike’s pedal assistance features. This allows the rider to ride faster without having to pedal more aggressively.

Moreover, the electric motor is designed to automatically turn on and start performing as soon as the rider begins to physically pedal their electric mountain bike.

The Lithium-Ion Battery Pack

One of the most vital and sensitive electrical components in an electric bike is the lithium-ion battery pack.

Initially, electric bikes came with lead-acid or nickel-cobalt batteries; however, recently, the lithium-ion battery chemistry has completely replaced the two previous battery types.

The main reason electric bikes and mountain bikes now only come with lithium-ion battery packs is that this unique battery cell chemistry allows a far more impressive traveling range and a higher number of battery cells to be packed in small and compact casings.

Hence, although lithium-ion batteries can store more electric charge, they do not have to be larger in size or heavier in weight.

This quality of the lithium-ion battery allows the rider greater pedal assistance, reduced range anxiety, and higher top speed, which is essential for mountain biking.

All the rider has to do is plug their electric mountain bike into an available power source to start the charging process and top up the battery.

The main purpose of an electric mountain bike’s lithium-ion battery pack is to store electric charge in the form of chemical energy. 

The Motion Sensors

Motion sensors are an extremely important electrical component in an electric mountain bike. Their main purpose is to make pedal assistance a possibility.

These sensors detect the rider’s pedaling motion. When they do, they signal the electric bike’s motor to spring into action and provide the level of pedal assistance set by the rider.

The Energy Transmitter

The energy transmitters are designed and installed to work close to the electric battery. Their purpose is to carry the kinetic energy to the electric mountain bike’s tires.

LCD Screen

The LCD screen is usually fitted on the left or center of the electric mountain bike’s handlebar.

The most basic LCD screens in electric mountain bikes are responsible for notifying the rider about the distance traveled, the battery charge, the remaining range, the calories burned, etc.

Gears to Control the Mode of Pedal Assistance

Usually present on the right side of an electric mountain bike’s handlebar, the gears allow the rider to change and control the mode or level of pedal assistance.

The Connective Wires

Since all the different electrical components are designed to be installed in different parts of the electric mountain bike’s body, they are connected via connective wires or cables.

These wires help complete the electrical circuit and make motorized mountain bike riding possible.

Now that you understand what each of the different electrical components of an electric mountain bike is designed to do, let us now shed light on the electric mountain bike’s unique design features.

The Purpose of an Electric Mountain Bike’s Unique Design Features

Steel Bike Frames

Usually, an electric bike or a traditional mountain bike’s frame is designed from a blend of steel and carbon fiber.

However, an electric mountain bike’s frame usually is made only from steel. This gives the bike a stronger and more robust structure, which enables it to retain its quality and shape over high speeds under the influence of electric current.

Wider Handlebar

An electric mountain bike’s handlebar is usually wider than what you would find on a regular electric bike.

Since an electric mountain bike is made of steel, its heavier body weight makes balancing the bike at high speeds and on rugged landscapes far more challenging.

Hence, the wide handlebar is designed to give the rider better control of their mountain bike, improving their safety. 

Thicker and Wider Tires

Electric mountain bikes generally have thicker and wider tires than regular electric bikes or mountain bikes.

The thickness of the tires makes them more durable and long-lasting. This is a blessing when you’re looking to ride on difficult bike trails or when you have to make a jump over a hill or crevice.

Moreover, the wider surface area gives the tires more friction with the ground, which helps improve the electric mountain bike’s stability, balance, and safety.

Longer and More Aerodynamic Bodies

Lastly, an electric mountain bike’s body is designed to be longer and sleeker for better aerodynamics. This means you can ride faster without having to worry about air resistance impeding your speed.

Now that we’ve learned all about the different components of an electric mountain bike in the USA and how they work individually, let’s look at how they work as a unit.

Electric Mountain Bikes – How They Work

As we can see from the information mentioned above, an electric mountain bike, without its technologically-advanced features, is no more than a traditional mountain bike.

It’s the different components that make it the special piece of equipment it is. Here’s how these parts work together to give you a smooth and stable ride.

  • When an individual purchases their electric mountain bike, the first step is to plug in the battery to an available power source.
  • The convenience of the charging routine depends on whether or not the battery is meant to be detachable.
  • Moreover, the power source’s amperage or voltage should be in accordance with the electric mountain bike’s battery size.
  • As the electricity passes through the battery’s cells, it charges the battery.
  • Once the lithium-ion battery pack is fully charged, the rider can take their electric mountain bike for a ride.
  • As soon as the rider pedals their electric mountain bike, the built-in motion sensors detect the rider’s pedaling motion and begin to notify the motor.
  • The electric motor is automatically triggered to turn on when it receives the information collected by the motion sensors.
  • The motor starts by converting the battery’s chemical energy into kinetic energy.
  • The more stored chemical energy in the battery, the more kinetic energy is produced.
  • This energy is transferred to the tires, which causes them to turn faster, relieving the rider of the need to pedal faster to speed up.
  • This makes pedaling the electric mountain bike much easier and allows the rider to hit the speeds advertised by the company.
  • The electric mountain bike’s pedal assistance level will depend on the bike’s selected gear.
  • For instance, if the rider wishes to pedal less while still maintaining their speed, they can simply switch to a higher gear to increase their mode of pedal assistance.
  • This way, the motor begins to discharge the battery at a higher rate, and more kinetic energy is produced to maintain the bike’s speed.
  • The rider can also change or control their electric mountain bike’s mode of pedal assistance through the bike’s LCD screen.
  • Moreover, as the rider rides over inclined slopes and rugged landscapes, the steel frame of the electric mountain bike keeps everything safe and secure, ensuring that the rider does not get hurt in the process.
  • Furthermore, the wide handlebars and the thick tires help increase the electric mountain bike’s stability.
How Does an Electric Mountain Bike Work
How Does an Electric Mountain Bike Work

Top Tips to Improve Your Electric Mountain Bike’s Momentum, Range, and Speed

Now that you know how an electric mountain bike works in the USA, here are some tips to help you make your bike more usable.

  • Always leave for a mountain biking trip with a fully charged battery.
  • Not only will doing so allow you to ride your electric mountain bike for longer, but it will also help control your range anxiety.
  • Always ensure to check the condition and air pressure of your electric mountain bike’s tires before a ride.
  • This is extremely important as riding the bike on damaged, deflated, or poor-quality tires will affect the bike’s stability, add stress to the bike’s battery, and is incredibly dangerous for the rider.
  • Although an electric mountain bike is designed for inclined terrains and rugged landscapes, deliberately riding the bike over extremely uneven surfaces can puncture the tires or even lead to a fall.
  • If the external temperature is too high, installing bike fenders is important to protect the battery from overheating.
  • Not only will the fenders protect the battery against sharp rocks and debris, but they will also help keep the battery’s fluid temperature low.
  • Try to physically pedal more and leave the high modes of pedal assistance for riding on steep slopes.
  • Refrain from accelerating unnecessarily and try to maintain a stable speed.
  • If you plan on going on a long biking trip, packing an extra battery pack can be helpful.

Final Thoughts

An electric mountain bike is a true combination of modern technology and design excellence.

Not only is an electric mountain bike designed to be extremely strong and durable, but its battery-powered mechanism helps its rider enjoy a smooth ride.

Before investing in an expensive electric mountain bike in the USA, it is important to know how its different components work together. Now that you’re aware of all these features, it’s time to hit the trails!

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