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Can Electric Scooters get wet? What’re the consequences

Wondering if your e-scooter can get wet? Read on for why you need to take care with your e-scooter around water, and what you can do to keep your scooter free of those inevitable drips and splashes.

If you are looking forward to hitting the streets on your sweet new ride, we encourage you to exercise caution when taking your electric scooter through that expansive glistening puddle or finishing up the daily commute in heavy rain.

Yes, you will look cool, but with an e-scooter, the big splashes simply aren’t worth it and may come at the cost of completely ruining your scooter’s electronics.

This is because, frustratingly, e-scooters, and water don’t mix.  We also find it surprising that a roadworthy piece of personal transformation may not be able to cope with some ‘harmless’ precipitation, but the delicate engineering and electronics of an electric scooter can be readily scrambled by even the smallest amount of moisture ingress, putting the entire scooter out of action. 

So, how does water affect an e-scooter?

We all know that water and electricity are a dangerous combination and if water gets into the circuitry of your scooter, you will either have an instant or gradual onset of damage. Even small amounts of water hitting the flowing current can cause surging and short-circuit that can prove instantly fatal for the scooter.

Alternatively, gradual uptake of moisture in the internal compartments of the scooter can cause corrosion of nearby electrical components. The corroded elements have a raised resistance when current flows through them which leads to overheating and fire or carbonization which permanently damages the scooter.

Either way, the scooter will fail to function properly which is a problem if you want to rely on it for getting to work or downtime recreation.

But aren’t there waterproof e-scooters?

Over time, scooter manufacturers have become more adept at protecting the electronics that power and operate your scooter. This had led to the development of waterproof models like the Xiaomi M365 or the Ninebot ES2.

However, the waterproof rating does carry a lot of brag, and in reality, these scooters are really only just water-resistant as attested by the manufacturer ratings and instructions. This means that if you rough ride a ‘waterproof’ scooter through puddles and in heavy rain you can still run into problems, especially if the deck and battery pack become immersed.

Water-resistant e-scooters will certainly help you keep moisture ingress at bay for longer, making them a popular option for the rider who wants to use their e-scooter in all weather conditions.

Ninebot ES2

Ingress Protection ratings are a great way of knowing how much water exposure your e-scooter can tolerate.

Ingress Protection codes also known as IP ratings measure the permeability of electronic products to moisture and particulate substances. If you are unsure about how vulnerable your electric scooter is to water, it is well worth checking the IP rating it carries. These codes are made up of two digits and it is the second number in an IP rating that will tell you how your e-scooter will cope with water. The rating ranges from:

  • X or 0 meaning the scooter has absolutely no protection,

through

  • 4 protection against water splashes from all angles,

up to 

  • 7 which indicates full immersion up to a depth of 1 meter and sustained for up to 30 minutes. 

The only scooter known to have the highest level of water resistance is the EMove Cruiser which carries the IP67 rating. Despite having a waterproof rating the manufacturer cautions that riders should still be careful of water! 

Where can water get in on my e scooter?

Most pros make it their priority to identify and tackle the vulnerable points on their ride to better protect their micro transport from water. Common areas of an electric scooter where water can enter include:

  1. The control panel and power button can let water track inside around edges that are not sealed.
  2. The steering stem can track water towards the deck of your scooter or towards the control panel if it is folded down while wet.
  3. The scooter’s deck can have water run towards screw holes that are not properly protected. The lower deck lid may also not be well waterproofed
  4. Charging points that are left open while you use the scooter are especially vulnerable.
  5. Wires often track rainwater to connection points on the scooter where it can accumulate and get inside.
  6. Battery packs can become corroded quickly if accidentally immersed. 
WET SCOOTER

Think like a pro and don’t get water on your scooter

Water is a feared foe of anyone who is serious about keeping their scooter roadworthy. In fact, e-scooter waterproofing is almost a subculture of its own!  Unless you are riding a heavy suspension off-road scooter it is well worth familiarizing yourself with some reliable hacks that help keep water out of your e-scooter.  If you are warranty conscious or want to keep your ride looking pristine, look away now.

Here are some top tips for waterproofing an e-scooter that are doing the rounds online:

  • Pros are adept at using super glue to reinforce the seal on screwed components.
  • The motor axel is vulnerable to moisture and can be protected with silicone grease. 
  • A mobile phone screen protector can be co-opted to seal an e-scooter’s control panel.
  • Waterproofing spray or stickers can be used to seal the deck and battery pack.
  • Rubber gaskets can be used to add a waterproof seal to screw down components.

Basic care for your scooter is also important. Thoroughly drying down your scooter after use will make a big difference in keeping moisture out of its electronics. Indoor storage in a dry place will also keep your scooter at its best.

Finally

Despite the waterproof models on the market, the consensus between manufacturers and users is that electric scooters should not get wet. If you want to prolong the life of your scooter don’t take the risk and avoid water as much as possible when riding your pride and joy.