Electric bikes work on pretty smart technology. They have a battery, motor, electrical driving system, and an electric speed controller. All this equipment makes them more expensive than a standard bike.
Kids love these electric bikes because they are fun to ride, but their safety comes first. Therefore, these bikes have a speed controller. Secondly, many states have regulations limiting the top speed of e-bikes. This is because of safety concerns.
As the name suggests, an electric speed controller keeps the speed of an e-bike under check. This ensures that you are within legal speed limits. It’s also a great way to let your children be safe while riding.
Speed Controllers are available in mid-tier and high-end electric bikes, but you can even add a controller on a low budget e-bike. This article will learn about the functioning, importance, and testing of an electric bike speed controller.
What Is An Electric Bike Speed Controller?
An e-bike speed controller is one of the essential parts of a bike. It is essentially the brain of an electric bike. The speed controller is an electric circuit responsible for controlling the motor’s actions such as starting, stopping, and speed. This circuit is connected to the motor, battery, throttle, display, and speed sensors (if there are any).
How To Test The Controller?
You cannot use a tester to test the controller, and these testers are useful for testing the halls and other features of an electric bike. You can hook the output of the controller to the tester to see if the lights blink.
The blinking of the light indicates that the controller is giving out signals. You can test the other parts of the electric bike, such as the throttle, hall, brakes, motor, and so on, with a tester. If all these parts function properly without any hindrance, that is a sign which shows the controller is working properly.
Core Functions Of An Electric Speed Controller
It controls the majority of the safety and protection features in an electric bike. For this, it requires electric signals from other components such as the battery and throttle. These signals help to determine the output signal. Some of its features are:
The e-bike controller constantly monitors the voltage signals from the battery. It sends a special signal to the motor causing it to shut down when the battery voltage is too high. This protects the battery from overcharging and keeps its longevity intact.
This function is similar to over-voltage protection. Here the controller again monitors and tracks the voltage signals from the battery. The controller shuts down the motor is the voltage supply is too low from the battery. It protects the battery from over-discharge and depletion.
Over Temperature Protection
An electric bike speed controller keeps track of the temperature of the FET ( Field Effect Transistor). When the controller senses FET temperature getting too hot, it shuts down the motor. The FET is the power carrying transistors. Instantly shutting down the motor prevents them from getting short-circuited.
Over Current Protection
Here, the controller checks the current reaching the motor. It reduces the intensity of the current if the excess current is reaching the motor. This function helps both the motor and the FET power transistors to function optimally.
The controller gives top priority to the brake function for the safety of the user. It shuts down the motor when the brakes are applied. Braking has a higher priority over other signals as well. For instance, if you press the throttle and the brake at the same time. The boke would stop instead of accelerating.
How to Choose the Best Electric Bike Speed Controller?
You can buy and purchase an external bike controller if your e-bike does not have it. You can also buy this controller if the existing controller is not up to your expectations.
You should keep in mind that the controller you choose for your bike should be compatible with the motor, display, battery, and so on.
Things You Must Consider Before Opting For An Electric Bike Speed Controller
Type of wave controller
There are mainly two types of wave controllers: the square wave controller and the sine wave controller. The sine wave controller makes low noise. It has a higher motor efficiency when climbing steep terrain or when running with a heavy load. It also has a smoother and more predictable way of operation.
A square wave controller is much cheaper than a sine wave controller. The square wave controller is also compatible with different motors, unlike the sine wave controller. It has a higher utilization of energy while instantly accelerating or braking. The square wave controller also consumes more power than a sine wave controller.
A low budget must use a square wave controller as it is a cheaper yet sustainable option. If you live in hilly areas and require more power while climbing, you can use a sine wave controller.
Type of drive
You should know that your bike has dual motors, a hall drive, or a non-hall drive design. If the bike has a hall sensor drive, then the controller must also be a dual or hall sensor. The hall sensors keep track of the rotation in the motor.
Then according to these rotations, the controller controls the bike. Hall sensors make an electric bike more stable with less power consumption. These bikes also have a higher starting torque than the bikes with dual motors.
Frequently Asked Questions
How do you troubleshoot an electric bike?
For troubleshooting an electric bike, you have first to check the battery voltage and the current. Nextly, check the battery prongs, throttle, pedal-assist, and controller.
Troubleshooting an electric bike is an important safety and preventive measure. People who use these bikes in urban areas should especially troubleshoot their electric bikes regularly.
Why do my electric bikes keep on cutting out?
Mostly, this happens when the motor is not getting sufficient power or voltage for proper operation.
This problem can arise for various reasons, such as low battery charge, battery depletion, excess weight or load on the bike, or the wear and tear caused to the motor.
Now, let your kids spread their wings. Let them enjoy their ride to the fullest without worrying about their safety.
An electric bike speed controller will keep a check on your kid’s ride and ensure his/her safety.