March 28th, 2024

Angella and Verne Windrem began Peterborough-based e-bike retailer and repair shop Green Street over 15 years ago from their home garage and at farmers' markets before expanding to a retail storefront in downtown Peterborough. The couple, who have been married for over 33 years, wanted to do something that would contribute to environmental conservation efforts. (Photo: Ashley Bonner)

Angella and Verne Windrem began Peterborough-based e-bike retailer and repair shop Green Street over 15 years ago from their home garage and at farmers’ markets before expanding to a retail storefront in downtown Peterborough. The couple, who have been married for over 33 years, wanted to do something that would contribute to environmental conservation efforts. (Photo: Ashley Bonner)

By: Angella Windrem, Green Street Peterborough, guest author for GreenUP

As the warmth of spring beckons, it’s time to awaken your trusty e-bike from its winter slumber and prepare to embrace the fresh air and landscapes! Ensure your e-bike is in top condition for the season ahead with these 5 quick tips:

  1. Cleanse, Assess and Refresh.

A clean bike not only looks better but also performs better.

Begin by giving your e-bike a thorough cleanse. Use a mild detergent and water to wash away any grime, salt residue, or debris accumulated during winter rides or storage. Pay special attention to the drivetrain, brakes, and suspension components.

Once clean, assess the frame for any signs of damage such as cracks, dents, or rust. Ensure all bolts and fasteners are tightened securely including those on the handlebars, seat post, and wheels. Test the lights, display, and other electronic components to ensure they function correctly. Check the functionality of the horn or bell, reflectors, and lights.

Feel refreshed knowing you’ve set yourself up for safety!

  1. Check the Battery.
Preparing your e-bike for the cycling season includes inspecting the battery and charger, tires and wheels, brakes, and drive system. For a more comprehensive spring tune-up, you can visit a professional e-bike mechanic. (Photo courtesy of Green Street)

Preparing your e-bike for the cycling season includes inspecting the battery and charger, tires and wheels, brakes, and drive system. For a more comprehensive spring tune-up, you can visit a professional e-bike mechanic. (Photo courtesy of Green Street)

After cleansing and refreshing, continue with a visual inspection of both the battery and charger.

Look for any signs of corrosion or discoloration, exposed wires, swelling, or leakage. If no damage is seen, proceed to give the battery a full charge. Notice if your charger indicator lights are coming on and off at appropriate times. Listen for any unusual noises.

If all is good, test the distance and performance of your battery by going for a good ride. If you notice any significant degradation, consider getting your battery checked or replaced by a professional.

  1. Inspect the Tires and Wheels.

Next, look for signs of wear and tear on your e-bike’s tires, including cracks, bulges, or worn treads. Inflate the tires to the recommended pressure specified on the sidewall and ensure the wheels spin freely without any wobbling.

Check to make sure all the spokes are tight. Clean any dirt or debris accumulated on the rims or spokes.

  1. Inspect the Brakes.
Located at 237 George Street in downtown Peterborough, Green Street storefront sells electric bikes and related accessories, and also offers repairs and tune-ups. Green Street is a member of GreenUP’s Green Economy Peterborough program. (Photo courtesy of Green Street)

Located at 237 George Street in downtown Peterborough, Green Street storefront sells electric bikes and related accessories, and also offers repairs and tune-ups. Green Street is a member of GreenUP’s Green Economy Peterborough program. (Photo courtesy of Green Street)

Safety should always be a priority.

Check the brake pads for wear and replace them if necessary. Ensure the brake levers are functioning smoothly. Adjust the tension if needed.

Test the brakes to ensure they respond effectively and bring the bike to a complete stop without any issues.

  1. Inspect the Drive System.

Finally, examine the chain, cassette, and derailleur for any signs of rust, corrosion, or damage.

Clean and lubricate the chain to ensure smooth shifting and efficient power transmission. Check the gears for proper alignment and adjust if necessary.

Tighten any loose bolts or connections in the drive system. Lubricate moving parts such as the pedals, headset, and suspension.

E-bikes have surged in popularity because they offer a convenient and eco-friendly way to get around while also easing the physical demands of cycling, including for people with mobility or fitness issues who assistance with pedalling. (Photo: Ashley Bonner)

E-bikes have surged in popularity because they offer a convenient and eco-friendly way to get around while also easing the physical demands of cycling, including for people with mobility or fitness issues who assistance with pedalling. (Photo: Ashley Bonner)

Proper maintenance and preparation of your e-bike enhances your ride and improves your safety on the road. For a more comprehensive spring tune-up than what we’ve described here, consider visiting a professional e-bike mechanic.

Pedal forth into the season of renewal with confidence and enthusiasm. Whether you’re commuting to work, running errands, or embarking on leisurely rides, let the fresh air and vibrant surroundings invigorate your senses.

Before you know it, you will be appreciating nature’s splendor on your e-bike and recharging your spirit along the way.

Angella Windrem is the co-owner and founder of Green Street, a Peterborough based business and member of GreenUP’s Green Economy Peterborough program. She and her partner, Verne, sell a wide variety of electric bikes, scooters, and a full range of parts and accessories. They also operate a full-service repair shop from their location at 237 George St. N in Peterborough.