These bikes are not your “typical” bike. It’s not simply clean and basic maintenance. These bikes have an electrical system that is battery powered. This system is now much more complex and should be worked on by a certified technician. There are several organizations in the world coming together to do just that.The eBike market is growing exponentially each year. While the biggest growth continues to be in Europe, Asia is quickly catching the bug. Not far behind is North America. Several prominent vendors are coming together to establish a standard eBike service certification. This market is expected to grow 9.5% minimally in the 2017-2021 timeframe.
In the US, the Light Electric Vehicle Association (LEVA) is leading the way with online and in class eBike technician service certification training. The in-class training is offered in one of three locations: Fort Myers Florida, Danville Virginia, and in Winston-Salem North Carolina.
The Level 1 course is offered online and is free. There is a $50 fee to take the exam and get the certificate.
The Level 2 is an 8-hour intermediate course that includes both in-class and hands on training. Topics covered include electrical theory, the function of eBike components, how to diagnose component failures, and how to replace failed electronic components. Students will also learn how to set up eBikes, solder, make electrical connections, use multimeters, use motor-controller-throttle testers, and how to install and interpret data from the Cycle Analyst power meter during training. A Level 2 tool kit is available for purchase (USD $750) following the class.
The Level 3 course is also 8 hours and contains more advanced training. Again, this class in both in-class and hands on training. Students are instructed on hot operate computer-controlled battery analyzers in addition diagnosing and repairing complex electronic failures. All required components that are required for the class will be provided as part of the class.
As of 2015 LEVA has added a Level 4 course. This level teaches eBike connectivity and software troubleshooting. As eBikes become more interlinked via technology, certified eBike technicians will learn to troubleshoot wifi and smartphone connectivity as well as other software issues.
Classes are taught by industry experts Dr. Don Gerhardt and Edward Benjamin. Cost varies based on Level and membership status. There is a discount for LEVA membership. Currently membership is $30 per year.
The training is intense. There is time investment involved. It is not as simple as learning on the job. However, given the expected growth of the industry becoming a certified eBike service technician is valuable for the bicycle enthusiast.