Is there a cold temperature limit for your Ebike?


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1:15 PM
Aug 15, 2020
Is it OK to use an Ebike in minus 20? minus 35?
Is the Yamaha, Shimano or other better in the cold?
since they all use similar li-ion cells, they're going to react similarly to changes in temperature. But I do not know the specific temperatures any individual+bike will experience as it is rarely freezing cold here.

probably won't notice a difference above freezing, 0C or higher

you will see some sagginess in the power relative to how low below 0C it is. will also see less usable capacity with lower temps. I suppose there is a point where performance becomes zero, but I do not know how cold that would be. Rarely gets down to freezing here (because this is Canada, lol, west coast).

If the battery capacity is smaller, then the cells are more likely to warm up if used in Turbo a lot. Just due to the faster chemical reaction inside the cells at higher power levels. In that case, the cells could provide a little more power and capacity. In RC flying in cold temps, we'll keep the lipo batteries warm in our pockets before flight, and then keep the throttle higher to keep the cells warmer in flight.
The Bosch user manuals show a minimum operational temp of -5'c, a minimum temp of 0'c to charge and a minimum temp of -10'c for storage.

Bosch user manual screenshot.jpg
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those numbers are in conflict with what Bosch puts on the website though. They don't really state a minimum temperature and I would personally ride it down to -10C if it was that cold here. Just be mindful to watch the battery level, anticipate the reduced capacity/range and don't over discharge it.

"The battery is the most sensitive component of the eBike. It can lose capacity at low temperatures, which in turn can limit the bike's range. During winter use with temperatures below zero you are advised to remove the battery, store it at room temperature and replace it on the bike shortly before your next journey. When you return, you should ideally store the battery indoors at temperatures between 15° and 20°C. The same applies to charging the battery: the lithium-ion cells should be charged at room temperature."
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Thanks. Around Montreal-Quebec many offer EFatBikes real heavy, real crappy for snow use. I will keep my fat with 4.8 studded tires, my mountain with 29x2.3 and my idea is to add a 27.5+ Ebike more for spring and autum and park it and charge it in an heated garage. Our next 4 months we have 6 celcius to minus 40, so rain, icy rain, snow.
I guess that's the difference between the Bosch Marketing and Technical departments :)

Shimano are happy to play in the same temps as you according to their E6000 instructions;

Shimano E6000 instructions screenshot.JPG
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My wife's e-cargo bike loses about 50% of it's range as the temperature drops below freezing. It sucks, especially since getting through snow take *more* power. We bought a second battery for it for this reason.

I've never tried to charge it outdoors so I can't say much about that, but cold and lithium ion batteries is definitely a sucky combination.

The lowest temp I have been out in on my commuter ebike was 7*F. Its a Bosch performance line. Definite decrease in range, but only about 10 - 15 miles and maybe a little decrease in power. I do have a neoprene battery cover that seems to help a bit. I also charge the battery in doors.
Battery aside I would be more concerned with the mechanical aspects of the drive reduction unless properly lubricated for low temps. Also subjecting electric motors to low temps from higher temps and back again can cause condensation within that can eventually lead to issues. Doesn't anyone XC ski anymore?
Stick some adhesive toe warmers on the battery or stuff a few handwarmers under the neoprene cover, if you have one?
Yes there are limits since battery chemistry really does not like cold or hot batteries are like goldie locks.

This video has some good suggestions.

"The data on that MIG is incorrect" LOL

So my experience in the cold is 100% opposite of all the posts so far and actually refutes most of them, but I ride a Levo.

First, my bike rides inside my SUV to the trailhead. My bike starts warm and maintains warmth. If your bike is transported on the back of your vehicle, then yeah, performance may suffer.

Second, the Levo stores the battery inside the frame. It generates heat when in use so it stays at what I believe is an optimum temperature when in use during the winter. This can be verified with the Mission Control app which lets the rider monitor the battery and motor temp.

Third, the motor is inside the frame and maintains heat when in use. This can also be monitored with the app.

I have nothing but praise to offer for winter performance on the Levo. Bar mitts are a must when cold because the ebike is going to generate more wind, of course. Even if the Levo started out cold, it would quickly warm up. My winter performance is close to summer performance and sometimes it feels like it has more low end torque. I've climbed ice hills with studded tires and the performance seemed to defy the laws of physics. During summer riding, the Levo gets hot and derates. The derate doubles riding distance. During winter riding there is no derate, the battery and motor stay warm and torque is possibly better. It really defies all known norms for battery vs cold. For instance, my Gopro doesn't work below certain temps, my bike computer stops working when cold, my cell phone doesn't like cold, my lights don't like cold. However, my ebike rocks in the cold. I've seen threads where fatties were talking about insulating their batteries. Not so with the Levo. Cheers