These bikes are not your “typical” bike. It is not just a matter of basic, clean maintenance. These bikes have an electrical system that runs on batteries. This system is now much more complex and must be worked by a certified technician. There are several organizations in the world that come together to do just that. The eBike market is growing exponentially every year. While the strongest growth continues to take place in Europe, Asia is fast catching on from the bug. Not far away is North America. Several prominent vendors are teaming up to establish a standard eBike service certification. This market is expected to grow at least 9.5% in the 2017-2021 period.
In the US, the Light Electric Vehicle Association (LEVA) is leading the way with online and in-class electric bike technical service certification training. Classroom training is offered at one of three locations: Fort Myers Florida, Danville Virginia, and Winston-Salem North Carolina.
The Level 1 course is offered online and is free. There is a $ 50 fee to take the exam and obtain the certificate.
Level 2 is an 8-hour intermediate course that includes face-to-face and hands-on training. Topics covered include electrical theory, the function of eBike components, how to diagnose component failures, and how to replace faulty electronic components. Students will also learn how to set up eBikes, weld, make electrical connections, use multimeters, use motor-controller-throttle testers, and how to install and interpret Cycle Analyst power meter data during training. A Level 2 Toolkit is available for purchase (USD $ 750) after class.
The Level 3 course is also 8 hours long and contains more advanced training. Again, this class is taught both in the classroom and in practice. Students receive instruction in hot-running computer-controlled battery analyzers, in addition to diagnosing and repairing complex electronic faults. 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 interconnected through technology, certified eBike technicians will learn how to troubleshoot Wi-Fi and smartphone connectivity issues, as well as other software issues.
Classes are taught by industry experts Dr. Don Gerhardt and Edward Benjamin. Cost varies by level and status of membership. There is a discount for the LEVA membership. Currently, membership costs $ 30 per year.
The training is intense. There is an investment of time 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 to bicycle enthusiasts.