Commuting despite the snow – a great start to the day
Many leave their e-bikes at home during the winter and opt for a warm car instead. But some people don’t have this option or specifically choose to use their e-bike. Spending time in the fresh air in the morning or having already done a little sport can be quite refreshing.
The days are shorter and it gets dark earlier. Winter is a challenge for most drivers and cyclists. After all, icy roads can be dangerous and even fatal. However, there are measures to prevent accidents. There are some FLYER AG employees who also ride their e-bike to work in winter.
“It makes sense for me to come to work by e-bike. It’s always a great feeling to be able to get past any traffic jam.”
- Fabian Maggio, Administrator Sales Support
“I wake up in the morning thanks to the fresh air. I also get to see a beautiful sunrise when it’s not raining. Since I have had a helmet with a visor, riding my bike is much more enjoyable.”
- Silvia Linder, switchboard specialist and FLYER experience guide
“When I sit on my FLYER on a winter morning, I feel the fresh air and the cool atmosphere. When I arrive at FLYER AG in Huttwil, I feel ready for whatever is going to happen that day.”
- Lea Marti, 1st year of apprenticeship as a commercial clerk with Swiss Federal Diploma
Tips for a warm and dry winter
Clothing plays a major role in many scenarios. Whether it’s the dress you wear for your Christmas aperitif or the suit you choose for your buddy’s wedding. You always have to pay attention to the weather and the surroundings. If you happen to forget your umbrella, that’s when it’s bound to rain.
That’s why it’s always important to keep an eye on the weather. This also applies to e-bikes in winter. Because when it snows, your face can quickly “freeze”. You can protect your face from the cold by wearing a balaclava, for example.
An appropriate jacket is also very important. Because if you choose a jacket that is too thin, the wind could well penetrate through it and make you feel really cold. A winter jacket or even an anorak can help. If you want to be on the safe side, you can also buy thermal underwear. This stores the body’s heat and ensures that sweat is transported away to the outside world. This keeps the skin warm and dry and prevents the clothing from becoming sweaty.
If you would like to find out more, we recommend our blog on the topic.
You've been there – it’s dark outside and you can hardly see a thing. This is why it is important to fit your e-bike with several reflectors because you’re much more likely to be seen than without reflectors. There are different types of bicycle reflectors. It is mandatory to have one reflector attached at the front and the back. It is also mandatory to have yellow reflectors attached to the pedals to the front and rear. But it’s not only the e-bike that needs to be seen, it’s also important to be seen as a rider.
High-visibility vests are a great help. Thanks to the reflective stripes and neon color, drivers can see you much more easily and also much faster. Helmets often have red lights installed in the back. The more you have, the better it is.
As of this year, it is also mandatory to have a front and rear light installed on mountain bikes. This is a major safety factor, as there are certainly mountain bikers who like to ride trails in the evening. They should also be visible in road traffic.
There are many other aspects related to bicycle lighting. You will find further information in the following blog:
What are the hazards of riding in the winter?
In winter, temperatures often fall below 0°C, which affects the roads. Because when the roads are wet, they become slippery. Thanks to their four wheels, cars are always balanced. On a bike, you need a little more sense of balance. Since the grip is only distributed over two tires, the traction is less constant. When you ride your bicycle on icy ground, it can often slip away from underneath you.
To prevent this from happening, you can use tires with metal spikes. Spikes give you a better grip on icy ground and you’re less likely to slip. However, you have to be careful with spikes. Because on asphalt without snow, these spikes touch the road first before the tread does. This reduces the grip and allows the bicycle to slip. That’s why we recommend: Only use spike tires when no asphalt is visible.
In addition to natural hazards, there are also the risks of riding. You can take bends in the summer without worrying too much, but in winter you always need to be careful. The less care you take when riding, the greater the risk of accidents.
You should also always apply your brakes with caution. Because icy roads can almost triple the braking distance.
Sometimes it can still lead to an accident. So it's good to already know where our specialist dealers are located.
The right care for your e-bike
Proper care of an e-bike is important. Because if you don’t take proper care of your e-bike, it can lead to rust or broken brakes, for example. Washing-up liquid is perfect for cleaning the frame. If the chain is heavily soiled, use creep oil. Creep oil helps to dissolve stubborn dirt.
In winter, the streets are full of salt. Just as it is harmful for cars, it is also bad for e-bikes. It is therefore important to thoroughly clean your e-bike after riding to remove any road salt. E-bikes should be cleaned thoroughly at least every 300 kilometers. Especially in winter, when you are not going to ride your e-bike for an extended period of time.
How? First, you should wash your e-bike and remove any dirt. You can then clean the bicycle chain and the brakes. It is best to grease or oil the bicycle chain again afterwards. To avoid traces of water, dry the frame with a cloth after washing.
What is the best way to take care of your bike? Take a look at this video from our partner Motorex.
MOTOREX AG – Oil of Switzerland
Please take the following into account when putting your bicycle away for the winter
It is important that the tires do not “flatten” over the winter. The tire pressure may decrease when the wheels are not moved. That’s why you should ideally hang your e-bike on the wall to prevent any damage to the tires. The wheel should also be located in a room without major temperature fluctuations. This is because any condensation forming as a result of extreme temperature fluctuations can lead to rust.
Batteries last longer in the warm
Rechargeable batteries are very sensitive to the cold. Batteries can drain very quickly when left to stand in the cold. This is because the electrolyte fluid thickens and thus clogs. If this happens often, the battery will quickly break.
To prevent breakage, you should always keep the battery warm when not in use. A temperature of 0—20°C is perfect. Batteries should also ideally be stored away from the sun to prevent them from overheating.
However, keeping the battery constantly attached to the charger is not a good idea either. Firstly, this speeds up the chemical aging of the battery cells (the battery decreases in performance) and, secondly, the risk of a defective battery catching fire also increases.
It doesn't matter whether you want to get on your e-bike all year round or "only" enjoy the benefits of commuting by e-bike in the warmer months. The FLYER Urban Bikes are your ideal companions and are suitable for commuting in all seasons.