Electric Bike

How to Remove Speed Limiter on Electric Bike

May 8, 2024


A speed limiter in an electric bike refers to limiting motor power to prevent the bike from exceeding a certain speed, usually around 15-28 mph, depending on local laws. 

These devices can impact on maintaining safety standards and complying with regulations and this article explores the methods of removing speed limiters, the technical and legal implications and safety considerations.

What Is the Role of Speed Limiter in Electric Bicycles?

speed limiter

The speed limiter in an electric bicycle is mainly used to control the maximum speed of the electric bicycle to ensure riding safety and comply with relevant laws and regulations. Specifically, the functions of the speed limiter include:

Improved safety: By limiting the top speed of an e-bike, a speed limiter helps reduce the risk of accidents caused by driving too fast.

Regulatory Compliance: Many countries and regions have specific requirements for the maximum speed of e-bikes. Speed limiters ensure that e-bikes do not exceed these prescribed speeds, helping users comply with traffic laws.

Maintains battery life: By controlling top speed, the speed limiter also reduces excessive battery discharge, helping to extend battery life.

Improved driving stability: At higher speeds, e-bikes may experience a decrease in driving stability, and the speed limiter helps improve this by controlling the speed.

In short, the speed limiter is an important part of the safety configuration of an electric bicycle. It not only helps to protect the safety of the rider, but also helps to improve the overall driving performance and extend the battery life.

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Why Remove the Speed Limiter?

Some people may choose to remove the speed limit on their e-bikes for several reasons:

Increased speed: The most immediate reason is to want the e-bike to go faster. By removing the speed limiter, the e-bike can exceed its original design top speed, providing a faster ride.

Improved efficiency: Cyclists may feel that the speed limiter makes the bicycle's acceleration performance insufficient and affects riding efficiency. Removing the speed limiter allows the motor to develop more power, improving acceleration.

Personalized modifications: Some cycling enthusiasts like to personalize their electric bicycles according to their own needs. Removing the speed limiter is one of the common modifications.

However, it should be noted that although removing the speed limiter can bring the above benefits, there are also some potential risks and problems, such as:

Safety Risks: Increased speed may increase the risk of an accident, especially in congested or irregular road conditions.

Illegal issues: In many areas, e-bikes exceeding certain speeds may need to be regulated as motorcycles, and the absence of legal speed limiters may result in violations of traffic laws.

Warranty Issues: Removal of the speed limiter may void the original factory warranty as such modifications are generally considered an unauthorized change to the product.

Equipment wear and tear: Increasing speeds can put additional stress on components such as motors and batteries, accelerating wear and tear and reducing the overall life of the equipment.

Therefore, when considering whether to remove the speed limiter, it is recommended to fully consider the above issues to make your bicycle comply with local laws and regulations and ride on the road safer.

Before replacing your bicycle speed limiter you can read the electric bike regulations to gain some understanding for your decision.

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How to Remove Speed Limiter on Electric Bike?

Here are a simple removal steps that may vary between different makes and models of e-bikes:

Power off: Make sure the bike is powered off and unplug the battery.

Access the electronic controls: Open the e-bike controller box, usually located on the bottom of the bike or near the battery.

Identify the speed limiter: The speed limiter may be part of the controller, or it may be a separate small device with several wires connected to it. Carefully read and understand the controller circuit diagram (if available).

Modify or remove a speed limiter

1. If the speed limiter is controlled via software, it may be necessary to use specialized programming equipment or software to reconfigure or update the firmware.

2. If the speed limiter is a physical component, you may need to disconnect the wires connected to the speed limiter. Be sure to label each wire correctly so that it can be restored if necessary.

Inspection and testing

1. Before reconnecting all components, double check all connections to make sure they are secure.
2. Connect the battery and test the bike's functionality in a safe environment. Make sure that all functions of the bike are working properly.

Tweak and optimize

1. Adjust speed and acceleration as needed. 
2. Make sure the braking system can handle higher speeds.

Each method carries risks, including warranty voiding, legal issues, increased risk of accidents due to higher operating speeds, and potential mechanical and electrical failures. Consider these factors carefully when removing the speed limiter.

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Alternative Ways to Increase Bike Speed

If you want to increase the speed of your e-bike without removing the speed limiter, here are some alternative ways to increase the speed of your e-bike that are safe and legal for your reference:

Replace the battery: Using a larger capacity or higher output voltage battery can improve your bike's speed and acceleration. Make sure the new battery is compatible with your bike to avoid any performance issues or damage

Install a more powerful motor: Changing to a more powerful motor can significantly increase speed and torque. When selecting and installing a new motor, it is important to ensure that it is compatible with the other components of your bike and complies with local legal regulations.

Change tires: Choosing narrower or less rolling-resistance tires can increase your speed. Slick road tires are generally faster than off-road tires because they reduce friction with the ground.

Adjusting Electronic Settings: Some e-bikes allow adjusting speed settings through an electronic display. You can increase the top speed limit of your e-bike by adjusting the settings on the display.

Install a wind deflector: A wind deflector can reduce air resistance while riding, thereby increasing speed. This is achieved by reducing wind resistance on the bike, helping the bike maintain higher speeds without requiring more energy.

Improve your riding position: Adjusting your riding position to reduce wind resistance can also increase your speed. For example, adopting a more leaned-over position can reduce your body's resistance to air and make your bike go faster.

Using the above methods, you can safely improve the performance of your e-bike without violating the manufacturer's warranty and local traffic regulations.
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When considering removing the speed limiter on your e-bike, consider that it may violate the law, increase safety risks, and may void your warranty. While there are several ways to remove a speed limiter, such as manually adjusting the sensor or using a speed adjustment kit, all should be approached with caution. 

Before making any modifications, strongly consider using safe and legal alternatives to improve performance, such as replacing the e-bike battery, motor, or tires, to increase your bike's speed without compromising its long-term performance and safety.

Related reading: How to replace batteries for electric bikes

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