Can I Ride Electric Bike in Rain? Here's Your Answer

Updated On: 21 September 2021 Dheeraj Nair

Are you worried that operating your electric bike in rain could stop it from functioning properly? Here's everything you need to know regarding riding an EV while it is raining!

At a time when the entire world revolves around technological advancements that potentially promotes various sectors such as e-mobility for the convenience of mankind, it is inevitable to discount the fact that with complex technology arises the problem of complex functioning. Various factors play a major role in affecting the performance and smooth operation of products that are technologically complex to understand and operate. A few of the factors that affect the performance of the e-mobility sector and its products are climatic conditions, extreme temperatures and the complexity of components. Thanks to this, many wonder if they car ride electric bike in rain.

Like mentioned before, the EVs do not necessarily have simple components onboard. The need for electrical components in an EV makes it 10 times more difficult to maintain and scenarios such as rain could easily hinder the performance and functioning of the vehicle but there are exceptions. Therefore, it is necessary to understand how to maintain and ride or drive your EV in rain to keep them functional.

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To begin with, let us discuss whether it is safe to charge the battery pack while it is raining?

Is it safe to charge EVs during the rain?

EV in rain

EVs are designed and engineered to be charged in conditions such as rain. The equipment that comes along with an EV is waterproof and well insulated to prevent any sort of damage caused by rain. EVs can be ridden in the rain, however, riding an EV in flooded areas could affect its functioning.

As for the charging equipment, it comes with something called an IP rating which indicates the level of protection against two particular elements- Dust and Water. Nowadays, the battery packs of electric vehicles have an IP67 rating wherein the 6 refers to total protection of equipment from dust and the 7 denotes protection against the effects of temporary immersion in water between 15cm and 1m (Duration of test 30 minutes).

Therefore, the misconception owing to lack of awareness that EVs are unsafe to drive in rain can be refuted. As a matter of fact, electric vehicles are more than safe in rain and even during lightning and thunderstorms.

Safety features of EV battery:

  • IP rating: EV batteries and their components such as the motor, speed controller and battery are all protected from water and dust.
  • Weather-proof: Batteries are designed and engineered in a way that they stay protected from water, dust and other elements.
  • Encased: Batteries are encased in containers made of robust materials like steel to prevent any sort of contact with water.
  • Ground fault detection system: It is a complex system onboard a vehicle that monitors the interaction of metal parts of the vehicle with high voltage systems. Basically, the ground-fault system will turn off the electrical supply to the component that has a faulty wire or loose connection that could cause harm.

Therefore, there is no need to worry about the battery pack being destroyed by rain!

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Challenges while riding your electric bike in rain:

EV in rain

Like every other IC vehicle, riding an EV too will come with certain challenges especially if it is being operated while it is raining. It could cause the rider to lose balance and sway. This is because rain leaves the road slippery and wet, reducing friction between the road surface and the tyre. Therefore, it is necessary to understand the conditions given below to proceed cautiously:

Reduced Friction: 

Road surfaces are prone to have chemicals, oil and other contaminants that are dropped or spilt by IC vehicles. Once it rains heavily, the oily residuals on the roads make the surface quite slippery and moist. This impacts the amount of friction that exists between the road and the tyre surface. It is recommended to wait for the rain to stop or wait until it washes away the residuals.

Aquaplaning: During heavy rainfall, there are chances that the tyres of vehicles might lose contact with the road surface causing one to lose control over the vehicle. This usually happens when a vehicle rides over a thin surface of the water. This process is called aquaplaning or hydroplaning.

To avoid aquaplaning, it is recommended to ride slowly by maintaining a constant speed. Also, quick and abrupt changes must not be made as it could enhance aquaplaning.

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Visibility: It is quite obvious that heavy rain obstructs and causes hindrance for riders as visibility is affected. Therefore, it is recommended to use anti-fogging treatment to have better visibility.

Hindrances in Braking: It is important to understand the fact that riding on wet surfaces is quite different from riding on dry pavement as the vehicles capacity to brake efficiently is compromised during heavy rainfall. It is advised to be cautious while taking sharp turns when it is raining heavily as the vehicle could lose control even with the slightest braking input.

Thus, due to the above-mentioned factors, it is advised to take precautions and conduct a quick checkup before riding away while it is raining. To make your life simpler, we have provided a list of things that need to be checked to have a safe journey. Please do give the following a read:

What to check before riding an electric bike in Rain:

EV maintenance
  • Tyres: It is important to check if the tyres have the correct air pressure. If not, try to inflate them up to the optimal amount of air pressure.
  • Batteries: Check for any kind of leaks or discharge from the battery as it could stop the vehicle from functioning optimally.
  • Charge: While raining heavily, it is quite hard to navigate and find the nearest charging station. Therefore, it is recommended to charge the battery pack fully before your leave for a journey.
  • Brakes: Even the slightest wear or tear of your brakes can compromise the braking efficiency while you are riding your vehicle. Therefore, it is recommended to replace brake pads and such before the arrival of monsoon season as a precaution.
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