One of the things we advise riders when converting bicycles to ebikes is to upgrade bikes to disc brakes. When braking on any bike shifting your weight backwards will balance the braking force out and will give you more control of the bike. Ideally braking early will help, none of us want to be having to hit the brakes hard in an emergency, so brake early. Finally, another important tip is that braking in the wet will reduce your braking by up to 3 times so braking early is even more important!
Why are we mentioning braking and converting to disc brakes. The two main types of brakes on a bicycle are disc and rim brakes. Rim brakes stop the bike with brake calipers that apply braking force directly to the flat sides of the bike’s rims. Disc brakes stop the bike with calipers that apply braking force to rotors (the discs). There are several advantages when using disc brakes over rim brakes:
- Disc brakes offer more stopping power than rim brakes
- Heat build-up is less of an issue with disc brakes
- Disc brakes perform better in wet weather
- You can ride faster with disc brakes (note comments above)
- Less stress on your hands
One other precaution we offer is the wear on rims when using rim brakes. Whilst you should be constantly checking the condition of your bike and this includes the rims, electric bikes put an excessive strain on your rims with the increased power available to the rider. Cheap pads will cause more wear and eventually will cause the rim to wear away and you could be in for a nasty shock. If you ride off-road then you will increase wear with grit getting into the gap between pads and the rim which is less likely with disc brakes.
We recommend ideally converting to disc brakes but if you can’t then always keep an eye on your rims to ensure they are in good condition… and with the summer shortly arriving we will all be back out on our bikes once again. Enjoy the summer and happy biking.