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How to Prevent an E-bike Lithium-battery Fire

Feb 20, 2023

People are becoming increasingly concerned about the safety of electric bicycles on the road as electric bicycles continue to gain popularity. Recent battery explosions on electric assist bikes have drawn attention to the issue of battery safety. A fire in a high-rise or crowded apartment can be fatal.

The growing electric bicycle industry means that more and more manufacturers are entering the business. In addition to the quality products from well-known companies, there is no shortage of crude and inexpensive products made without safety certification. Many customers are discouraged by the high price of quality models and opt for cheaper alternatives. As a result, more and more battery explosions are occurring, posing a serious threat to personal and property safety. The purpose of this article is to show readers how to avoid electric bicycle battery fires, thereby protecting their lives and properties.

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Causes of e-bike battery fires

Poor battery manufacturing

As the electric assist bike industry booms, a number of regulatory gaps have emerged. For manufacturers, this can provide the opportunity to make cheaper products to earn a profit but consumers end up paying for the serious consequences that result. Most electric bicycles now use lithium batteries as a means of energy supply. Lithium batteries have a place in energy storage due to their small size, large energy capacity and ability to be recharged. The quality of lithium batteries on the market varies. If you search on the large shopping platform of Amazon, you will find that the price of a battery fluctuates greatly. Furthermore, there are even batteries that can be purchased for around 30 dollars or a little more. This is absolutely not a coincidence. Due to the lack of regulation in this market, there is a potential risk to electric bicycle battery safety and it is up to the customer to be aware of it. Understandably, the customer can find it very difficult to identify poor quality. Cheap and shoddy batteries may not be rigorously inspected and tested before they are released onto the market which obviously presents a serious risk. Fires that start in products with poor chemical composition cannot be easily extinguished and these products can definitely cause fatal injuries when they catch fire. In order to identify the quality level of electric bicycle batteries, regardless of what shopping platform you are using, you need to check if the products have been tested by CE, UL, etc. If you are buying from a well-known manufacturer, be sure to choose an original  battery for replacement. For example, Cyrusher's website has a full range of spare batteries available for purchase. 

Overuse

As we all know, a lithium battery can offer up to 800 recharge cycles. After a long period of use, its storage capacity will drop extremely fast which means it needs to be replaced. There are some batteries that, if not replaced, can have their internal structure damaged when a collision happens during the ride. This results in 'thermal runaway' when the battery heats up which leads to explosive combustion. Therefore, if the internal structure of the battery is damaged, it should be replaced as soon as possible and with the original battery manufactured by the same company.

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Wrong way of charging

Riders often fail to take enough care when recharging their electric fat bike. The wrong charging method causes accidents and irreparable damage. In the majority of battery fire cases, people choose to charge at night while they sleep. Some even keep charging all night as they will need to use the electric bike the next day. This is a very dangerous way of charging and once danger arises, reacting quickly is critical to avoid a more dangerous situation. Moreover, many riders choose third-party chargers for recharging, resulting in unstable currents that affect battery safety. If the bicycle is left outside for charging, direct sunlight will intensify the heat generated by the battery, causing an explosion and other risks. Moreover, there are many improper charging methods that can cause battery fires and ought to be avoided as much as possible.

Circumvention methods 

When buying

When selecting an electric bike, you must choose one from a reliable manufacturer with products that have been tested for quality. Another criterion to assess the quality of the product is the warranty period. A longer warranty period means that the quality of the product has stood up to the testing process. Although the products of well-known electric fat bike manufacturers are usually priced higher, please do not purchase low-priced, non-safety-certified products in order to save money. This  is tantamount to risking your life. 

Recommended model - Cyrusher Kommoda

This is a quality product from Cyrusher, a professional electric bike manufacturer. The company has eight years of experience in manufacturing and production and has built a mature industry supply chain. It has brought high-quality products to customers in more than 10 regions around the world and harvested the love of well over 6 million dedicated riders. All of the products are internationally certified to CE, UL, Rhos and FCC standards. All products come with a two-year warranty (one-year battery warranty), giving customers added assurance with their purchase.

The Kommoda, a classic step-through model from Cyrusher, is a wise choice for entry-level riders. It is a high-quality product equipped with superior features but at an affordable price. 

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The Kommoda is equipped with a 250W Bafang motor, providing you with a quality ride and plenty of power at the same time. The full suspension setup helps you ride more comfortably on complex surfaces and also offers you the possibility of exploring more places. Its 48V 14Ah battery capacity can meet most of the needs of daily riding. In addition, the comfortable frame design makes it easier to get on and off the bike. Many riders with leg problems can also travel more easily with it. It is equipped with Shimano 7-speed gears and 5-level pedal assist mode that can be easily adjusted to suit your riding rhythm. 20x4 fat tires can be used to explore a variety of terrains with ease. As well, the high-quality hydraulic brakes allow the electric cycle to react quickly to hazards and enhance the safety of electric bicycle riding. The overall body is offered in orange, white, blue and gray color schemes to provide riders with a rich selection of colors to make their ride out more eye-catching.

When charging

Most battery fires on electric pedal bikes are associated with improper charging. Therefore, it is critical to pay special attention to how and where you are charging.

  1. When powering up your electric cycle, be careful to follow the charging process provided by the manufacturer and use the original charger, not another connector. Once you finish charging, be sure to unplug in time to avoid the danger of overheating caused by overcharging.
  2. Make sure that smoke alarms are installed and there are other safety features in the room so that you can react in time to the dangerous situation of charging causing overheating. If there is a strange smell when charging, the charging color is not right, there is a strange noise, etc., please stop using it immediately.
  3. The timing of charging is also significant. Try to choose to recharge during the day or when someone is awake at home. Avoid charging the battery at night when you are sleeping. If this is unavoidable, try to set an alarm to ensure that you unplug the charger head in time. Check your charger head for wear and tear. If needed, you should immediately replace it and buy an original charger head.
  4. Make sure you follow the manufacturer's recommended charging tips to avoid overcharging your battery. When there is no specific value, follow the general guideline of not overcharging the battery by keeping it between 80%-95%.
  5. Prevent the plug from being covered when charging, as a covered plug cannot dissipate heat and thus it may overheat and create a fire. Try to choose a charging location away from flammable materials and fire sources.
  6. Once a battery fireaccident occurs, do not try to put out the fire. Immediately evacuate to a safe area and call the fire alarm for help.
When storing
  1. Do not expose the battery of your electric bicycle to sunlight or store it next to flammable materials. Make sure you place it in a cool, dry area. Similarly, e-bike batteries should not be kept in locations that are critical in case of an emergency, such as escape routes. You want to avoid blocking the exit.
  2. Keeping the battery charged regularly if it is not used for an extended period of time is also imperative. It is extremely harmful to the battery when it is fully drained. If you don't use the battery for a long period of time without charging it, it may cause some dangerous accidents when you power it up again.

Conclusion

Due to the fact that battery fires are on the rise every year, there is a great deal of danger attached to them and they must be taken seriously. Choose an electric bike with quality certification, be careful when charging and replace old batteries in a timely manner. This will ensure that your electric assist bike riding trip is safe and worry-free.