It's that time of year again. The salt's down on the roads, the trails have absorbed all the water they can and you haven't seen the fire roads for months from all the leaves. We all know that it's important to keep your bike clean but how do you keep an e-bike clean?
Before we start with any of the detailed maintenance of your Fazua e-bike. We have one must follow rule. Put the jet wash back in the shed. Dispute the high IP ratings on e-bike systems none of them are designed to withstand the high pressure of jet washes. They are bad for bikes full stop but add in the complicated electrics of an e-bike and you have a recipe for a broken bike and a void warranty.
So with that out the way, here is how to look after your e-bike with love and care.
First step get yourself a good cleaner, a set of brushes, some rag (old t-shirts and sheets do the trick) and good old elbow grease. We would recommend the Peaty's Loam Foam range of cleaning products. They are eco-friendly, minty fresh and of course, do a pretty good job of the cleaning. As for brushes the Park BCB 4.2 is a pretty comprehensive set and you can pick them up all over the web for a good price.
The basic principle of washing your bike is fairly simple. Spray, agitate, rinse. Nothing changes here for your electric bike. One thing you must always do and this is the case for any electric bike, remove the battery first. For a Fazua bike, this means fitting the lip cap to the top of you drive unit or down tube cover before washing.
Once all of the dirt and grime is gone, this is when you need to get down to the details. An old toothbrush and your rag is going to come in handy here. With multiple connections and ports on the Fazua system to keep your e-drive system in tip top shape, you need to make sure everything is dry and clear of dirt before hanging it back up in the shed. For anything that is an electrical connection make sure whatever brush or rag you are using is dry, do not use any water or cleaners in these areas.
Areas to pay close attention to:
- The pins and polygonic connect between the drive unit and the bottom bracket. Make sure these are clean, free of dirt and dry.
- Cable connections underneath the bottom bracket. (Careful, these cable are delicate and need to be removed and re-fitted in a specific way. If you are not sure please seek further advice). Same as above make sure they are clean, free of dirt and dry.
- The radiator underneath the down tube on the drive unit. Make sure to remove all the dirt from the fins, this will help the system from overheating.
- Battery removal button. Some times they can get a bit stiff, so be liberal with the general maintenance spray. Like Peaty's PT17 spray (its PTFE free).
That should be all the cleaning done. Now to get the bike ready for the next ride. This means re-lubrication and protection. First step here is to make sure everything is dry. Use your rag to chamois the bike down.
Re-lubrication is probably the most important step. We could go on and on about all the parts you could lube and grease. Lets face it - if you do a good job of the cleaning and you do this regularly then you should only need to re-lube your chain each time. For this again Peaty's is an excellent lube for this time of year. The Peaty's All-Weather Lube not only has the same minty fresh smell but applied right it'll even keep your chain clean...
That is it. Here are our top 6 tips for making the job easier and a little bit more bearable in the cold winter months.
- Use warm water. Seems like a super simple one but makes all the difference when its in the minus numbers and dark in the garden.
- Get yourself a protection spray. Protection spray helps stop mud, water and dirt sticking to your bike, so less cleaning needed. Peaty's Protect and Shine Spray is a winner.
- Add sandwich bags and elastic bands to your cleaning kit. Even when you are super careful you can still get oil and cleaning liquids on your rotors. Put the sandwich bags over the rotor before you start and then there is no need to worry.
- Get yourself a foldable workstand. There are some really good affordable ones out there these days, easy to store but it will make your life so much easier. (Just make sure it's rated to hold bikes up to 20kg). The range from Feedback Sports is awesome - higher end but Christmas is on the way so you still have time to add it to your list for Santa. Think one and done.
- Do not want to wash your bike all the time? Simply fit mudguards/fenders. You might all laugh but they work.
- Probably the most simple one of them all. BE PREPARED. Nothing worse than coming home from a great ride and having to dig around for all your cleaning gear. Add it in to your pre-ride prep. When you are getting your bike ready, make sure all your cleaning stuff is ready too. The quicker it's done, the quicker you can warm up and with a coffee and a hot shower after!
The Boring Bit - The Health And Safety Stuff
When working on your bike with lubes and chemicals like cleaners, wear gloves and eye protection. Some parts on a bicycle can be dangerous, you can trap fingers, break nails, slip, trip and generally hurt yourself when cleaning a bike. Take your time, make sure the area is well lit, non-slip, use common sense and be careful. If at any time you are not sure what you are doing seek further advice from a trained bicycle mechanic.
As always if you have any questions on anything above feel free to get in contact with us via all the normal channels. All the details can be found here.