When I was recently buying a new electric bike one of the things that I wanted to know was how I would be able to make it go faster. So, I did some research and testing to find some easy ways that I would be able to make the electric bike go faster.
So, how do I make an electric bike go faster? The main ways to make an electric bike go faster are to ensure that your battery is fully charged, using a higher voltage battery, using a higher RPM motor, reducing weight, using thinner tires and fully pumping them up.
There are actually a lot of things that you can do to make an electric bike go faster and there are also a number of considerations that you should consider before making the bike go faster.
How to Make an Electric Bike Go Faster
Most electric bikes come with a pre-specified speed limit of around 20mph. If you try to cycle above the limit then the motor will stop giving you assistance and you will be left to pedal on your own. With that being the case, the real speed limit on your bike is going to come down to how hard you can pedal.
Despite that, there are a number of things that you can do to make cycling at higher speeds easier and to make getting up to your top speed easier. Below I will a number of things that you can do to go faster.
- Reduce weight
The amount of weight that you and your motor are having to move will have a big impact on how fast you can go and how quickly you can speed up.
With that being the case, if you want to go faster then you are going to need to reduce weight.
You can do that by removing any unnecessary attachments on the bike, you can reduce the weight of your backpack if you’re using one, change the tires so that they’re thinner and you can try wearing thinner clothes.
- Keep the tires well pumped
If your tires are not well pumped then it can cause them to create more drag than they should be which can really slow you down.
This means that an easy way to quickly improve how fast you can go would be to simply ensure that your tires are pumped up to the correct amount before you start your journey. You can normally find the required tire pressure on the sides of the tires.
One thing to bear in mind, however, is that using highly inflated tires can cause you to have less grip. So, if you’re planning on using the bike in the rain or off-road then you might find that the e-bike becomes a bit more slippy.
- Use thinner smoother tires
Another way to reduce the amount of drag caused by the tires is to use thinner tires. There is a reason professional cyclists always have very thin tires, it’s because they reduce the amount of power needed to make the bike go, helping them to go faster.
So, if you’re currently using wide tires try swapping them for thinner ones, you’ll likely find that it makes a big difference.
In addition to using thinner tires, you can use tires that are smoother. The tires on mountain bikes are designed to be more grippy so they have square blocks on them designed to help you gain more traction, the problem is though that they reduce how fast you will be able to go.
So, if you’re currently using tires designed for a mountain bike, try swapping them for tires designed for road bikes, since they will be smoother and create less friction.
The amount of air resistance you create, when cycling, will have a large impact on how fast you can go. When professional cyclists are racing each other in the velodrome they always crouch down low because it reduces the amount of air resistance that they are having to pedal against.
This means that if you normally cycle with an upright posture, you can try crouching, in order to go faster.
Although if you have back issues then you might want to think twice about this one. In this case, you could consider getting a windshield for the bike which is designed to deflect the air above and around you.
- Prevent the battery from overheating (but not too cold)
If your battery is allowed to get up to high temperatures then it can have a bad effect on its performance. With that being the case, you should be mindful of how warm you are allowing the battery to become when you are using it. If you are using it as is without any kind of cover then it is unlikely that you will have overheating issues.
However, if you tend to place a cover over the battery then it might not be getting the air it needs to stay cool. In this case, if it’s a nice clear day then you should consider leaving the cover off and just use it when it is raining or when it’s wet outside.
Another thing to consider is that the cold can cause the battery to drain faster. With that being the case it is generally recommended to try to keep the battery between 0 Celsius and 40 Celsius (32-100 Fahrenheit) this includes storage.
- Remove the limiter and say that you have small tires
On the LCD display, it is sometimes possible to trick it into thinking that you’re going slower than you are, by telling it that you have smaller tires than you actually do.
The reason that this is the case is that, if you have a small wheel and a large wheel that are both spinning at 60 RPM, then the large wheel will be moving faster. So, by saying that your wheel is smaller the system will think that you’re not traveling as quickly, which will cause the limiter to kick in at higher speeds.
With that being said, be aware that your display will be showing slower speeds than you are actually moving at.
Another option would be to remove the display altogether. There are kits and services that you can pay for to have this done.
If you’re considering doing either of these things then you should remember that the limits are there because of local laws. So, by going faster than that you could be risking getting into trouble.
- Make sure the brakes aren’t touching the wheels
If you haven’t serviced your brakes in a while, then it could be the case that your brakes are touching the wheels and causing friction. Speaking from experience, this is something that can seriously slow you down and be very frustrating.
As such, it would be worth your while to take a few moments to spin the wheels and to see whether or not they are free spinning or not. If not then it’s likely that your brakes are rubbing on the wheels and should be reset.
- Change the motor
A way to make your e-bike more powerful would be to swap the motor on the bike for one that has a higher RPM rating (also called KV rating) for the specified voltage.
Doing this can increase the top speed that your electric bike is capable of going at. But be aware that this is likely to reduce the range that you will be able to get out of the battery.
- Use a higher voltage
Another option you have is to use a battery with a higher voltage. Doing so can have a large impact on how fast your bike will be able to go.
However, before you go out and get a battery with a higher voltage, make sure that your motor is able to handle it. Otherwise, you risk burning out the motor. You can find out whether or not your motor can handle a higher voltage by getting in touch with the manufacturer.
- Charge the battery
If your battery is at a lower charge then this can reduce is power output causing it to not be able to go as quickly. It also means that you won’t be able to go fast for very long.
So, if you want to be able to go faster you should charge the battery back up before it starts to get low on charge. Doing this is also said to increase the life of the battery so it’s a 2 in 1.
- Build your own
If you don’t like having your electric bike being limited to a specified speed limit then you could try building one of your own just like this person did who claims he was able to build an e-bike that could go up to 50 mph!
- Use a higher gear
When cycling a bike it’s easier to cycle slowly using a lower gear and to cycle faster when using a higher gear.
I find that at times it can be easy to stay in a middle gear and to just pedal faster, but if you want to go faster then it’s going to require that you continue to work through the gears as you speed up.
- Increase the strength of your legs
Unless you’re going to remove the speed limiter then ultimately your maximum speed is going to come down to how quickly you are able to pedal.
Sprinters, in cycling, always have very muscular legs which help them to generate the power that they need to cycle quickly.
So, if you really want to be able to cycle more quickly then you’ll have to get on the leg weights at the gym to increase how hard you can push with your legs.
- Stiffen the suspension
Stiffening the suspension is something that could help you to cycle more quickly., especially if you’re cycling on the road. If you’re cycling off-road, however, be aware that this will cause you to feel the bumps more so it might not be worth it for you.
- Clean the bike
As mentioned earlier, excess weight can slow you down drastically and something that can increase the weight of your bike considerable is mud. So, taking an hour or two to clean all of the mud off your bike will make it much lighter, increase how fast you can go and make it easier to get up to top speed.
While you’re at it, you should also take a moment to apply lubricant to the chain in order to help it to run more freely.
- Change the type of bike
Another thing to consider is to change the bike itself.
If you’re currently using a mountain electric bike, then be aware that these are designed to go quickly off-road. If you’re using it on the road then switching to a road-based electric bike could help you to cycle quickly much more easily.
Why you may not want to increase speed
Even though it can be a lot more thrilling to cycle more quickly, there are a number of reasons that you might not want to as detailed below.
- Risk of injury
As you cycle more quickly the potential of getting injured increases and the injuries that you do get are also likely to be worse. With that being the case you should consider wearing protective clothing and you should make sure that the speed that your going at is appropriate for the environment that you’re in.
- Legal trouble
If you cycle above the speed that your bike is limited to then you could be breaking the laws in your local area. Before cycling quickly it’s important to make sure that you’re actually allowed to and that you won’t get into trouble for doing so.
- Less distance
The faster that you go the more energy that your battery is going to be using. This means that as you cycle more quickly you will be decreasing the range that you will be able to get out of your battery.
- Battery won’t last as long
By cycling more quickly you will be putting the battery to more work which will cause it to wear out more quickly. This will especially be the case if you remove the limiter of the bike.
You will also be putting the motor under a lot more pressure which, again, could cause it to last less long which is something that you should consider before making any modifications to the bike.
- Requires more effort
Since, to cycle at maximum speed, you will not be cycling with any assistance from the motor, due to the limiter, it means that you will have to be putting in all of the effort yourself. This will result in you becoming tired and sweaty which may or may not be a good thing depending on your situation.
How to increase the bikes range? In order to increase the range of the e-bike you can ensure that the battery is fully charged, store it at room temperature and cycle with a lower power assistance setting. Other things that you can do include making sure that you are using the appropriate gear for the speed that you are going at, cycle more slowly, avoid hilly areas, reduce weight, reduce the amount of air resistance you’re creating, use thinner tires and use smoother tires.
How fast do e-bikes go? Typically electric bikes are limited to go 20 mph occasionally this is raised to 28 mph depending on the laws in the area. In Europe, the limit is normally closer to 15.4 mph.
Can I remove the limiter on an e-bike? It is often possible to remove the limiter on an e-bike. However, the limiter is probably there due to local laws and the bike probably hasn’t been designed to go much faster than the limit and you’ll risk damaging the battery and motor.