top of page

Hydraulic Brakes Basics: 3 Things You Should Know

1. Hydraulic disk brakes are a type of braking system that uses a fluid-based mechanism to transfer the force of the brake lever to the brake pads, which then press against the rotor to slow the bike down. They are considered to be more powerful and more reliable than traditional cable-actuated brakes, and are often used on high-performance electric bicycles.

2. One of the main advantages of hydraulic disk brakes is that they offer better stopping power. This is because the fluid-based mechanism provides a more consistent and stronger braking force than cable-actuated brakes, which can be affected by cable stretch and other mechanical issues.

3. Another advantage of hydraulic disk brakes on electric bicycles is that they are generally more low-maintenance than other types of brakes. The brake pads can be easily replaced, and the brake fluid only needs to be replaced every few years. Additionally, they do not require adjustment as often as cable-actuated brakes and they are less prone to wear and tear. While they tend to be maintained less over all, when they DO need to be maintained, such as a hydraulic brake bleed (the industry term for oil replacement), the process is slightly more involved and messy. We always recommend taking your bike in to an experienced mechanic who can bleed the brakes.

4. If your brake pads themselves are significantly worn out, the pistons holding the hydraulic fluid in can be pushed out farther than intended and air can seep in. When air gets in the lines, you may need to do a "burp" (a process to get ride of the air) and most likely a bleed to replace any lost fluid. So while Hydraulics are generally a lower maintenance option compared to mechanical brake lines, when they do need maintenance it is often more time consuming and tricky.

Please note that this is general information and some of the details may vary depending on the specific model and brand of the e-bike, and also on the quality of the components used.


bottom of page