Electric Bikes

Electric Bike Brakes Not Working – Reasons And Fixes

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Electric bike brakes may not work due to various reasons such as worn-down brake pads, loose cables, stagnant brake rotors, or misaligned calipers. To fix the issue, one can inspect the brake discs for debris, clean off any grime, check the brake pads and rotors for signs of wear and tear, tighten the brake lever or cable adjuster, or realign the magnets on the brakes. It is important to troubleshoot the issue based on the type of brake system and follow the appropriate steps to fix it.

Electric bikes have become increasingly popular in recent years, offering a convenient and eco-friendly mode of transportation. However, like any other vehicle, electric bikes can experience issues with their brakes. If you’re experiencing problems with your electric bike brakes not working, there could be a number of reasons why.

In this article, we’ll explore some of the common causes of braking failure and provide some tips on how to fix and maintain your electric bike brakes. Whether you’re a seasoned rider or new to the world of electric bikes, understanding the reasons behind brake failure can help you stay safe on the road.

Common Types of Electric Bike Brakes

Electric bikes are becoming increasingly popular, and it’s important to understand the different types of brakes available. There are two fundamental categories for electric bicycle brakes: rim brakes and disc brakes. Rim brakes are the traditional type of brake, and they work by applying pressure to the rim of the wheel. Disc brakes, on the other hand, work by applying pressure to a rotor attached to the wheel hub.

Disc brakes are divided into two types: mechanical and hydraulic. Mechanical disc brakes use a cable to tension the brake pads, while hydraulic disc brakes use fluid to apply pressure to the pads. Hydraulic disc brakes are generally considered to be more powerful and offer better modulation than mechanical disc brakes.

When it comes to disc brakes, there are two brake options: organic and metallic. Organic brake pads are made from a softer material and are quieter, but they wear out faster. Metallic brake pads are made from a harder material and last longer, but they can be noisy.

In summary, the common types of electric bike brakes are rim brakes and disc brakes. Disc brakes can be further divided into mechanical and hydraulic, and there are two brake pad options: organic and metallic. It’s important to choose the right type of brake for your electric bike to ensure safety and optimal performance.

Signs of Electric Bike Brakes Not Working Properly

Electric bike brakes not working properly can be a serious safety issue. Here are some signs that your electric bike brakes may not be working properly:

  1. Out-of-place cables: One of the common reasons why electric bike brakes fail is due to out-of-place cables. You’ll notice that your cables need adjustment if you experience a spongy feel when you apply the brakes.
  2. Dirty or damaged braking rotor: One of the most common causes of braking failure is a dirty, damaged, or gunked-up braking rotor. Depending on how your bike is used, the rotor can become contaminated with dirt, oil, or other debris, which can cause the brakes to fail.
  3. Mechanical disc brake issues: Mechanical disc brakes can be prone to issues, such as rubbing, overheating, and air mixing. These issues can cause the brakes to fail or not work properly.
  4. Improperly set brake pads: A common problem with disc brakes occurs when the pads are not set right and rub off the disc even when the brakes are not engaged. This will cause your brakes to wear out faster and not work properly.
  5. Hydraulic brake problems: Hydraulic disc brakes can also have issues, such as strange noises, improper trips, air mixing, oil leaks, and overheating. These issues can cause the brakes to fail or not work properly.

If you experience any of these issues, it is important to have your electric bike brakes checked and repaired by a professional. Regular maintenance and inspection of your electric bike brakes can help prevent these issues from occurring in the first place.

Reasons for Electric Bike Brake Failures

Electric bike brake failures can be caused by various reasons. The most common reasons include damaged brake levers, worn-out brake pads, and rotors, poor brake alignment, and external dirt and debris entering the brake system.

The battery is also a vital part of an e-bike and is susceptible to damage due to its location and operating conditions. Other reasons for brake failure include throttle damage, cable tension, and motor inhibitor switch issues.

To avoid brake failure, it is recommended to check brake pads and exchange them when required, check cable tension, and avoid using improper washing methods. It is also important to inspect the brake discs for debris and clean them off, check the brake lever or cable adjuster, and replace damaged brake levers.

Most brake manufacturers recommend replacing brakes every 2-5 years, depending on the type of pads and how they have been used. By following these tips, you can avoid brake failures and ensure your electric bike is safe to ride.

Troubleshooting Electric Bike Brake Issues

Electric bike brake issues can be frustrating and dangerous. Here are some tips to troubleshoot your e-bike brake problems. First, check if the cables are attached correctly and have not slipped out of place.

If the brake lever is damaged, it can cause problems when you try to brake. Another common issue is dirty or damaged braking rotors. Clean them regularly to avoid braking failure. If you have hydraulic disc brakes, try flicking the brake lever to knock loose any air that may have been trapped in the system.

If you’re still experiencing difficulty, take your bike to a professional for repairs. Remember, taking care of your e-bike brakes is crucial for your safety and the longevity of your bike.

Maintaining Electric Bike Brakes for Optimal Performance

Electric bikes are a great way to get around, but it’s important to maintain the brakes for optimal performance and safety. Here are some tips to keep your e-Bike brakes in top shape:

  • Clean the brake surfaces regularly with a soft cloth or brush.
  • Check the brake cables for wear or stretching.
  • Set up a regular maintenance schedule, especially if you use your eBike heavily.
  • Keep the braking rotor clean and free of oil.
  • Check the brake pads for wear and replace them if necessary>

By following these simple steps, you can ensure that your e-Bike brakes are working properly and keep yourself safe while riding. Remember, regular maintenance is key to keeping your e-Bike in top shape!

Seeking Professional Help for Complex Brake Issues

If you are experiencing complex brake issues, it is important to seek professional help. While there are some signs that you may need brake repair, such as hearing a noise when you apply the brakes or feeling a soft brake pedal, a professional inspection is necessary to determine the extent of the needed repair.

Depending on the issue, the cost to repair your brakes can vary from under $200 to more complex and expensive repairs. If your brakes fail while driving, it is important to signal for help and get your brakes inspected by a professional. Don’t delay needed services, as it could put you at risk. Visit a nearby Firestone Complete Auto Care or Les Schwab location for expert advice and top-notch brake repair service.

Frequently Asked Questions Related to Electric Bike Brakes Not Working:

How can I tell if my electric bike brake pads are worn out?

To tell if your electric bike brake pads are worn out, you can check for signs of wear and tear such as reduced braking power, unusual noises, or visible wear on the pads themselves.

You can also check the manufacturer’s recommendations for replacing brake pads, which can vary depending on factors such as riding conditions and frequency of use. If you are unsure, it is best to have a professional mechanic inspect your brakes to ensure they are functioning properly.

Why is my electric bike’s hydraulic brake system making a squealing noise?

The most common cause of squeaky brakes in electric bikes is contamination, which can be caused by dirt, oil, or other substances on the rims, brake blocks, or rotors. To fix this, clean the rims and brake blocks thoroughly with a degreaser and ensure that the brake blocks are properly positioned.

Loose parts, such as bolts or spokes, can also cause vibration and noise, so check the torque and tension of these components. If the problem persists, it may be necessary to replace the brake pads or rotors.

Is it safe to ride an electric bike with malfunctioning brakes?

No, it is not safe to ride an electric bike with malfunctioning brakes. Brakes are a crucial component of any bike, and malfunctioning brakes can lead to accidents and injuries. There are several reasons why electric bike brakes may fail, including out-of-place cables, dirty or damaged braking rotors, and low-quality components.

Regular maintenance and cleaning of brakes are essential to ensure their proper functioning. If you notice any issues with your electric bike brakes, it is best to get them fixed by a professional before riding the bike.


In conclusion, electric bike brakes not working can be a frustrating and potentially dangerous issue. However, with the right knowledge and tools, it is often possible to diagnose and fix the problem. From cleaning the braking rotor to checking the alignment of the brake caliper, there are several steps that can be taken to ensure that your electric bike brakes are working properly.

By following the tips and tricks outlined in this article, you can keep your electric bike brakes in top condition and enjoy a safe and comfortable ride.

Charlotte Barnes

Charlotte Barnes is a trailblazing mountain biker who is passionate about exploring the great outdoors on two wheels.

Alice Eleanor

Alice Eleanor, a seasoned pro who has been cycling for more than two decades. Alice Eleanor’s extensive knowledge of biking equipment and techniques has helped countless riders optimize their biking experience.

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