Beginner’s Guide to Electric Bike Batteries | KBO Bike
The lifeblood of an ebike is the powerful battery system that powers the electric motor for assisted riding and cruising. Powerful batteries will give you extra performance and assist you when faced with difficult uphill riding situations.
When looking at battery descriptions for electric bicycle products, there are often many electrical technical terms you will need to navigate in order to find the right product that suits your needs.
Just as in our guide for electric bicycle classification, we want to break down the information so it is easier to understand and can help you make the proper decision when you are choosing the right ebike.
Key Features of a Powerful Battery
As pedal-assist and fully battery-powered bicycles become more popular, there are some key features to keep an eye out for to determine what type of battery system is first-rate and which are not worth it.
Below, you will find the main characteristics of an ebike battery that will last many charges and provide you with the power that you need to conquer your commutes. We will explore and define some of the main battery features like battery capacity and power output that influences an electric bike’s range and top speeds.
Battery Voltage, Amps, and Watt Hours
In order to define the perfect powered bike, we need to learn how to analyze the batteries based on some of the numbers that are provided by the seller. Sellers are often vague about these terms to make their bikes sound more powerful than they really are. Having some basic knowledge of electrical measurement terms will give you a consumer advantage.
The three key terms to measure battery power are:
To assist you properly choose your next ebike, it is important to know what each of these terms mean to make the most informed purchasing decision. To help you out, we have defined the terms in the following section.
Electrical Bike Battery Terms Defined
Battery Volts & Voltage (v)
Question: What does volts v on batteries mean?
Voltage, indicated as (v), refers to the passage of energy, known as horsepower, that pumps electricity into the bike’s motor. Typically, higher voltage equals more power for the motor. It is important to choose the right voltage that is suitable for the motor included in the bike.
Example: The KBO Breeze Commuter Bike has a battery pack measured at 48 volts. The combination of the 500-watt motor and 48 volt ebike battery outperforms the ebike industry standard of other bikes using 36 volt batteries.
Battery Amps (A) & Amp-hours (Ah)
Question: What does Amps Ah on batteries mean?
Amps, indicated as (A), is the measurement of force output from the battery. This is a standard measurement of electrical current moving out from the battery.
A battery’s Amp-hour rate, indicated as (Ah), is displaying the battery’s maximum capacity. Battery capacity defines the range of an e-bike.
Example: In order to get long-range battery riding capabilities, our KBO Breeze Step-Thru Commuter ebike uses a 16 Amp (Ah) battery.
Battery Watts (W) & Watt-hours (Wh)
Question: What does Watts Wh on batteries mean?
Watts, indicated as (W), is a measure of the rate of power consumption. This measurement is commonly found in the description of an ebike’s electric motor.
Measuring watt-hours (Wh) is simple now that you know what volts and amps are. Simply multiply a battery’s voltage (v) by the same battery’s amp-hours (Ah) to get the total watt-hours.
Example: The KBO Breeze commuter electric bicycles have a 48v 16Ah Samsung battery. Given these numbers, then the total watt-hours (Wh) is equal to 748Wh. That provides up to 55 miles of battery range on a single charge!
Battery Performance Wrap-Up
Bikes with a 48v battery will go much faster than a bike with a 36v battery. However, higher speeds will require more energy and drain the battery life faster. Having a balanced battery with high voltage and good amp-hours will ensure that you can ride faster for longer, conquer big hills, or cruise with no worry of a low battery.
Battery Brand and Quality Control
Similar to all types of products, when we are making a purchase, we want to be sure that we are choosing a reputable brand to buy from. Reputation in quality and performance are key indicators of a quality product. This is certainly the same when looking at batteries for electric bicycles.
With the ever-expanding catalog of electric bikes to choose from, you might need to weed through various bikes with batteries from untrustworthy manufacturers.
KBO chooses only the highest quality batteries from Samsung to ensure that all of our ebike’s have quality batteries that last.
What Makes a Good Quality Battery?
When looking at batteries, brand reputation is key. Part of this comes from one aspect of battery production: quality control.
Choosing batteries from a company like Samsung ensures KBO that each battery pack will be made up to our premium manufacturing standards. These batteries are built to last through over 900 charge cycles and have overcharge protection.
By choosing quality batteries, we can ensure that your KBO ebike performance holds up over time and reduces the cost of long-term maintenance.
What Makes a Poor Quality Battery?
Just as good quality control and brand reputation leads to good batteries, poor quality control and bad reputation can lead to poor battery production. Choosing a bad battery can seriously reduce the performance of your electric bicycles and even cause serious damage.
If you come across other bikes with poor-quality battery packs, you might risk the chance of:
- Battery fires from charging/overcharging
- Rapid loss of battery life
- Rapid physical battery wear
- Poor charge cycle ratings, leading to higher maintenance costs.
Battery Pack Design
Finally, we will look at the key physical aspect of a good ebike battery, the battery pack design. In modern e-bikes, we see two major designs; frame-integrated batteries and removable battery packs. We can look at both of the battery pack designs and observe the pros and cons of each battery style for an ebike.
Frame-Integrated Battery Pack
A battery pack that is integrated into the frame is often found on higher end ebikes due to the cost of manufacturing and the advanced designs that come with this battery setup. If you want a minimal electric bike design, something that strikes visually while looking like a traditional bike, then an integrated battery pack is probably the ideal choice for you.
In order to charge this type of battery, you will have to hook the charge up directly to the bike wherever you may charge it. Oftentimes, integrated battery packs can shave off some weight of the bike as well.
Removable Battery Pack
The removable, or detachable, battery pack is a commonly found design for many different types of e-bikes. Because of its nature, removable battery packs can be fit onto any bike type or retrofitted onto traditional bikes for electric upgrades.
At KBO, we have already outfitted our bikes with mounting tools in the ideal location for the removable Samsung battery pack. A removable battery is great because you can lock/unlock it to the frame and take it off when it is time to charge. This way, you can take the battery home without having to move the entire bike with you.
As an added benefit, removable batteries sometimes include a USB outlet for you to use the e-bike battery to charge your phone or other electrical devices.
As with the best step thru electric bike, KBO has engineered a low-profile removable battery that actually appears as part of the frame. This is a combination of the outstanding benefits of both battery pack designs.
Now that you are more familiar with some of the standard terms used to define and measure e-bike battery performance, you should feel confident in making your next purchase. The whole point of buying electric bicycles is to harness the battery power in order to assist with riding in challenging scenarios, such as uphill riding, or to help you zip around town with minimal effort required.
Batteries are the core of the performance of an e-bike, and help distinguish a quality bike from those that are not suitable enough.
If you are looking for further battery explanation or want to learn more about the powerful, yet efficient battery setups in KBO bikes, do not hesitate to contact us with your questions. Our goal is to help you make the best choice and find an e-bike that will suit your individual needs.