Should You Delimit Your eBike Motor?
Delimiting, tuning, or derestricting your electric bike is an appealing prospect when taken at face value. Enabling your eBike to go faster and pushing the motor to its limits sounds cool, but there are major risks. Watch as Hector and Scott break down everything you need to know before considering tuning your electric bike motor.
Electric bike motors usually come in three categories: Class 1, Class 2, and Class 3.
- Class 1 and 2 are limited to twenty miles an hour.
- Class 2 is 28 miles an hour.
The main benefit of removing the speed limiter from your bike, also called delimiting or de-restricting, is that in theory you can go as fast as that motor will take you. Sounds pretty cool. Right? WRONG!
- While being able to go a bit faster sounds fun, everything other than that is pretty much all downside.
First and foremost, you're going to immediately void the warranty of that drive unit if you delimit the motor. There are a number of reasons for this, but the main reason is that the internal hardware is not designed to operate under such high torque and such high wattages.
- The speed limiter is designed to keep that drive unit working at a safe level and motor companies like Bosch, Brose, Shimano, and Yamaha won't service or warranty that motor that you have unrestricted.
- Yes, they can tell. If we see that the motor is under power above that speed rating for that class of motor, then we can tell whether that motor has been tampered with.
- So you can go over 20 miles per hour or 28 miles per hour but if they're seeing that you're still getting power from the motor over those speeds then they're going to know that you were messing with their motor, and, sorry, no warranty for you.
In addition to losing your warranty, it’s just bad form and will certainly not ingratiate you to any mountain biker, electric mountain biker, or hiker.
- Keep in mind that eMTB access is still hotly contested on many trails throughout the United States, so you don't want to be doing things that are going to limit trail access.
- Mountain bikers worked really hard in the 80s and 90s to get trail access for themselves and now we are working really hard to make sure eMTBs have trail access as well.
- If you're out there going 45 miles per hour on a trail that's designed for Class 1 eMTBs you are definitely, eventually going to screw up access for everybody, and do you really want to be that guy?
In short, don't do it!