Can You Ride an e-Bike in the Rain?

We cover all the DOs and DON'Ts you should know to ride an e-bike in the rain without damaging it
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Last updatedLast updated: September 11, 2022
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Wondering if you can ride an E-bike in the rain? Well, it is possible. Electric bikes have a water-resistant build, just like push bikes. If you can see well in the rain, you only need a few safety tips to ride an E-bike in the rain. Riding in the rain is different from riding in normal sunny weather. You will face a few challenges, including slippery roads, low visibility, and harsh, biting winds.

Other wet weather riding considerations you should know include the type of equipment on your bike. Check that the fenders and accessories are weatherproof. The tires must also be built for slippery roads. You must also know the best riding practices like braking early and cornering slowly for your safety. This article has all the pro tips on how to ride an e-bike in the rain safely. Read on to know the DOs and DON’Ts.

Do e-Bikes Have Rain Protection?

According to Forbes Trusted Source Five Reasons To Buy An E-Bike: Late 2021 www.forbes.com , E-bikes fall into the electric vehicle category as they are a combination of a standard bike and an electric device. All bikes, including push bikes and e-bikes, are designed to be weather-resistant, but they are prone to damage if exposed to water for long. Even the best quality bikes can rust if stored improperly.

E-bikes, unlike standard bikes, have an IP rating. According to the International Electrotechnical Commission, (IEC) Trusted Source IP ratings | IEC www.iec.ch IP (Ingress Protection) ratings grade the resistance of an enclosure against the intrusion of liquids and dust. You may see IP67 or IPX7 on an IP-rated device. The first number usually indicates resistance against solid objects like dust, and the second number is resistance against water and other liquids. X means no protection against foreign bodies and particulate ingress.

Most e-bikes have an IPX4 rating. The IP rating indicates that the bike has protection against splashes of water coming from any direction.

How to Check Whether or Not You Can Ride Your e-Bike in the Rain?

A well-documented IP rating on promotional and marketing materials of your bike brand is the first thing you should look for before taking your E-bike for a long ride in the rain. If there is no prominent listing on the packaging, spec list, or web description, then the e-bike has not been tested and certified. Also, keep in mind that there isn’t any bike that can withstand major weather events like a tropical storm as of yet.

If you are looking for an e-bike and have no idea what to choose from the sea of options, read our articles on the best electric bikes under $2000, best class 1 e-bikes, and best class 2 electric bikes.

According to popular reviews, the Sailnovo electric bicycle is one of the best adult and teen e-bikes that money can buy. Its robust, individualized design and IP54 waterproof rating make it a great choice for riding in the rain on a flat city road.

How to Run an e-Bike in the Rain Safely

Your bike can survive the rain, but can your riding strategies help traverse the weather? Here are some things you can do to avoid getting cold, wet, or injured when riding an e-bike in the rain.

Tip #1: Use Fenders

As mentioned before, E-bikes are sufficiently resistant to rain. The battery wouldn’t die because of a few raindrops, and the drivetrain will hold up well against a few splashes. Regardless, the last thing you want is spray water and debris from the road all over yourself and your e-bike’s parts. This is where fenders come in. They will keep the rain and dirt off of you and your bike.

Tip #2: Make Yourself Weatherproof

One of the biggest challenges of riding in the rain is getting wet. Being all soaked is not only uncomfortable but also increases your e-bike’s exposure to wetness. That said, you need to wear clothing that will keep you warm and dry.

Invest in a good quality raincoat, water-resistance jacket, and a pair of glasses to help with vision. Wear clothes with fabric that performs well in wet conditions, like wool and synthetics.

Avoid cotton at all costs. You can also get a pair of gloves to keep your hands warm and dry.

Tip #3: Make Your Gear Weatherproof

Getting wet when riding in the rain is inevitable. Just like you weatherproof yourself, you should make a point of weatherproofing your gear. This is especially important if you plan to bring delicate items like GPS, MP3 or a notebook. Get a sealed and waterproof dry bag to pack all of your non-weatherproof personal items.

Tip#4: Use Blinking Head and Taillights

Low visibility is a primary challenge of riding in the rain. Head and tail lights are a tad crucial when riding in the rain as they would help other road users spot you. Use the lights on your helmet and handlebars to increase your visibility. Many people tend to rely on reflectors alone for visibility. Although they help, they are not a substitute for front and rear light.

Tip#5: Make Yourself Visible

Can You Ride an e-Bike in the Rain?

As previously mentioned, visibility is a primary challenge for all road users when it rains. If you choose to ride an electric bike in the rain, you have to ensure you are highly visible to other road users. According to the National Safety Council (NSC), Trusted Source Bike Safety - National Safety Council With about 80 million bicyclists sharing the road with motorized vehicles, it is vital bicyclists – and drivers – take some safety precautions. www.nsc.org wearing neon or luminescent attire with reflectors is a great way of increasing your visibility on the road as a cyclist. In addition, you need to follow all the traffic laws for yours and other road users’ safety.

Tip#6: Plan a Safe Route

Before leaving for your ride in the rain, plan a safer route, without loose stones, gravel, or cracks in the pavement. Besides being safe, you will protect your bike from being damaged by gravel, stones, and other road elements that you may not be able to see because of low visibility in the rain.

Tip#7: Be Extra Keen on Corners

Electric bikes are more fun to ride than their traditional counterparts because of the additional power they provide. When riding an e-bike in the rain, you have to be extra cautious of the amount of power you are using when approaching corners. You have to slow down more than you would when riding the bike in normal weather conditions.

Avoid leaning too much when around the corner to keep as much tire as possible on the ground.

Tip#8: Brake Early

Braking to a complete stop can be difficult when riding in wet weather. Many e-bikes feature disk brakes which function better in the rain than the rim brakes on traditional brakes. Nonetheless, you have to brake earlier than you would when riding in normal weather conditions. Braking early helps you avoid hydroplaning if your tires have high pressure.

Tip#9: Clean the e-Bike After Riding in Rain

After a rainy ride, take your time to wash and dry your bike including the battery to increase its longevity. Remember, e-bikes are only water-resistant and there is no model that is entirely waterproof as of yet.

Here’s a quick video overview of some trips you can use to ride an e-bike in the rain safely.

What Not to Do

Here are the big DON’Ts.

Tip #1: Do not ride through water that may submerge your battery

Avoid riding through flooded water, especially fast-moving floods as your battery is prone to shorting out if submerged. Also, do not leave your bike outside in the rain as prolonged exposure to water can easily damage it. Instead, clean, dry and store it in a dry place. If you don’t have indoor space for storing the bike, get a high-quality outdoors waterproof bike cover, like the popular Puroma bike cover. It is made with premium quality fabric that is lightweight yet tear-resistant. It will offer your bike maximum all-season protection with its waterproof polyester that has PU and UV coating.

Tip #2: Do not ride on slick spots

When riding in wet weather, avoid slick spots with puddles of standing water, especially puddles that look colorful. The colorful puddles are likely to have gas or lubricant substances in them making them much slicker. Lane markers and railroad tracks can also get quite slippery when wet.

Can You Ride an e-Bike in the Rain?

Final Thoughts

Many people do not know that it is possible to ride an e-bike in the rain. Provided you can see well when it’s raining, follow the traffic laws Trusted Source State Electric Bicycle Laws | A Legislative Primer www.ncsl.org , and use the tips we have provided on this guide, you will make it to your destination safely. For your safety, ensure you are well-dressed in weatherproof clothing that also maximizes your visibility on the road.

You have to be extra cautious with speed, angles, braking, deep puddles and potholes to avoid accidents, injury and damage to your bike. White lines, metal tracks, and roads with oil, petrol, leaves, or mud are dangerous slick spots you should be on the lookout for. When you finish your fun ride in the rain, clean your bike, dry, and store it in a dry place. Just like traditional bikes, an e-bike will rust and get damaged when exposed to water or wetness for long.

References

1.
Five Reasons To Buy An E-Bike: Late 2021
2.
IP ratings | IEC
3.
Bike Safety - National Safety Council
With about 80 million bicyclists sharing the road with motorized vehicles, it is vital bicyclists – and drivers – take some safety precautions.
4.
State Electric Bicycle Laws | A Legislative Primer
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