I bought a cheap electric bike 36V 10AH, 250W brushless motor. On my 4th ride, I climbed a little hill and I smell something burning and the motor stopped completely. Is that because the motor can not run at maximum power to climb a small hill? Anyone has reliability issue with electric bike?
If you had say a 20 amp controller at 36 volts you are going to have around seven hundred watts going into your nominal 250 watt motor. Although I think it could be good up to say 500, that might be too much power for it, especially if the phase wires are very thin wire. I suspect maybe you melted a phase wire...
Thank you very much for your reply.
Why can't those E-bike controller have a fuse to limit current? Why mfg. choose 20 AMP controller at 36V, i.e. 720W, for 250W motor?
Seems to be stupid design problem.
I bought online from a company called ElectricWheels. The company really sucks. I have to say I did not do enough Research. But I'm not sure that I can do better since I have not found many discussions on reliability, failure modes of various eBike. I'm not into performance. I just want a practical bike that is not too expansive and it can carry me to work. I work on top of a small hill, 200 meters above Sea level. The darn bike failed on my first attempt to climb that hill, at less than 20% of climbing. I ended up to push the bike up remaining 80% of the hill. I can not imagine such un-reliable product. Since I rode about 20 miles OK on almost flat roads on 3 other rides, I concluded it must be the hill. The 250W motor simply does not have enough power to climb the hill and burnt it out. Seems really stupid design without any safeguard of overload.
E bike motors shouldn't burn out that easiliy if it was well made. There's different grades and some brands have waaaaay better quality control than some no names from ebay. This ebike forum is the best place to start to see reviews of everyones motors on reliability. The good motors would not have burnt out like that, it just would've been a little harder getting up the hill and maybe needed pedal assistance. Like others stated research is heavily needed in the ebike field since it's still quite a new field to cycling and the reliable stuff still needed to be weeded out with testers unfortunately.
Ebike reliability - in my case awsome reliability, My Tidal Force has just crossed 20,000 km/!!!!/ last week.
TF are a legend for two reasons:
the most smooth hub motor on the planet and the most reliable hub system on the planet.
I MEAN HUB NO other drives.
There are not made anymore but if you find little used one buy it immediately!!!
After installing little jumper in console you can use any 36V battery you like.
E+ ebike is based on TF but is at very least 10% more efficient, lighter and slightly smaller tha TF.
My TF after getting rid of original NMH battery runs for hundrets of kms with virtually no problems.
I ride 330 days a year at minimum, through rain , heat, snow , subzero temperatures year after year.
TF motor like E+ motor is hand made in USA - it's made all the difference.
No loose/broken spokes here, no water penetrating hub here, no undersized wires entering through axle ,
motor unlike Chinese "technologies" has all kind of protections: overcurrant, overtemp, etc.
because well designed motor will never allow owner to burn it!
Designed and built in USA.
iT COST 3500 DOLLARS but it paid for itself since 2005 more than once.
Maybe your experience was with POC from Walmart, dep store type or other Chinese brand.
Like with oter merchendise - you get what you pay for.
On average you cannot have lasting ebike for less than 1000 bucks.
Glad it worked out good for you. After reading your comment above, I immediately Googled Tidal Force. Unfortunately, I found below poor review. http://www.epinions.com/review/Tidal...t_231715278468
Biggest problem: Repairing and Servicing the bike is so painful. Had to ship heavy bike back to seller, costing about $100 just for shipping. Finding local service shop is near impossible. Bottom line: Electric bike is a toy for enthusiasts, mostly guys. It is not ready for mass market, not for someone like me who is mechanical inept lady.
"It worked out" term would be appropiate for China brand with such a spotty quality that...
Every TF system after factory battery replace worked out,
if you can find any problems with TF motor discribed on Internet I would read it.
in link owner describe ORIGINAL battery Tidal Force, and his problems are directely related to battery data connector so unfamous
"after getting rid of ORIGINAL BATTERY" -
orig battery was weak link on only weak link on TF every owner knows this, few owners ride on original NMH battery still. No way anybody has any problem with motor/controller.
If you find any, I mean any TF of course it will have most likely DEAD spent original battery, what you need to buy is motor /controller, wires, console, break levers etc.
I mean who needs original NMH , even new NMH is a museum if you have all this choices of Lithium.
TF still has excellent after warranty service , it is called LEVT company, they rebuild batteries/which as I said doesn`t make sense if you can connect any Lithium/, reprogram software, sell you parts, etc.
Tidal Force is one of the best for a reason, just ask LEVT stuff how old TFs/millage they are getting for service, very often 2003-2004 made TFs.
A member of the ES forum has some TF S-750 bikes without motors or batteries for sale. He bought a bunch when the company went out of business. They are very good. Then just find a good ebike kit from Amped bikes or Grin technology, 9C motors and put them together for a great bike. Here are some links:
ampedbikes and Tidal Force or E+ are day and night comparison in terms of technology, reliability, quality, efficiency. We are talking Chinese "technology" versus USA made technology in terms of quality of material like metal,steel, bearings, to start with which Chinese has no idea how to quality make.
To start with TF and E+ has controllers and all electronics inside motor, this alone make system more reliable, no China brand has it, wires do not enter through axle but has seperate entiries/holes which allows for AWG10 wires, China uses typical AWG12 not enough, and list goes on and on. In general all China brand even gearless hubs are not completely silent, they whine like jet on acceleration or make another noises, etc.
Again search for used possibly slightly TF and buy it without battery of course /it is dead anyway but ask if it was possibly rebuilt -that's different story/ buy Lithium 36V install and you have ebike which would last.
It depends how you use your e-bikekit,I cannot imagine it at 25 000 km and would not believe anybody can run no way without problems at such millage.
Reliability cost money, efficiency cost money, much ???more than 500 dollars.
Of course technical/electrical person can keep it running with constant patching up, pushing loose connectors , protecting from rain, taping, soldering you name it, but ONLY tech person. But the ride quality ???