Efforts At Replacing A Battery

bikerjohn

Well-Known Member
Here is some background on my effort at resolving my battery issues, after reading suggestions on EBR forums and advertisements from RPE, I made contact with RPE. First with an email communication back in September. Back then, RPE made a reply to my initial inquiry with a response which requested images of my battery. After providing the requested images there was no further communication from RPE.
For historical purposes, here is a chronicle of my communication with RPE back then:
Sent: Wednesday, September 21, 2016 6:14 PM
To: mhoran@rpe-na.com
Subject: Email from Contact Page, RechargeablePowerEnergy.com

Name:
john f migliore
Email:
jfmigliorejr@gmail.com
Phone:
5853525253
Message:
What is the cost for a replacement battery for an EG Zurich e-bike? the battery pack is a 36v 12Ah capacity. I am interested in a higher capacity replacement, and a rebuild price.
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On Thu, Sep 22, 2016 at 9:05 AM, Mikehoran <mhoran@rpe-na.com> wrote:
Good morning John,
I have not seen that battery yet.
Can you get some pictures & dimensions to Sean?
Thanks,
Mike
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-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Re: FW: Email from Contact Page, RechargeablePowerEnergy.com
From: John Migliore <jfmigliorejr@gmail.com>
Date: Thu, September 22, 2016 7:41 pm
To: Mikehoran <mhoran@rpe-na.com>
Cc: rzimlich@rpe-na.com, Sean Turner <sturner@rpe-na.com>


Mike, Thanks for getting back to me on the subject of a battery rebuild for the EG Zurich.


The battery pack housing measures 15.25" in length; 5.5" in width; 2.5" deep;

The main body material of the housing is metallic (Aluminium it would seem), with plastic componentry on each end of the length.One end houses a power meter, on-off toggle switch, and the charging receptacle. The other end is the discharge outlet and a recess hole for the locking mechanism that secures the battery in the bike rack/carrier. The bottom of the battery pack is a tongue designed to slide into the rear carrier rack. Check the photos:



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sturner@rpe-na.com

9/26/16



to me
Good Day,
Please send in the battery to this location using the form attached and we will be happy to help you with your rebuild needs.
Sean Turner
Service Application Engineer

Rechargeable Power Energy Inc.
6585 Arville St.
Las Vegas, NV 89118-6826

Tel.: (888) 456-9410 ext 109
Cell.: (757) 303-1441
Fax: (702) 749-5906
email: Sturner@rpe-na.com
Web: www.rechargeablepowerenergy.com
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Even as that initial effort seemed to stall after my request for more information on procedure and cost, RPE was looking like my best direction to getting my power needs back on course.
Continued suggestions from EBR forum members encouraged me to take a more direct way, next with a phone call. Having had a pleasant and reassuring conversation with Rebekah Zimlich, Sales and Marketing Manager at RPE, I sent my battery to them, -a $30 cost for ground shipping. Worth it understanding the volatility of potentially damaged Li-on batteries.

Rebekah sent me a follow-up e-mail after our phone conversation:

Communication from Rebekah at RPE:
"John,
Great speaking with you today about your ebike battery. This is my contact info, please call me anytime with any questions you might have. Sincerely,"
Rebekah Zimlich, Sales and Marketing Manager RPE | Rechargeable Power Energy
6585 Arville Street, Suite A, Las Vegas, NV 89118 {702.637.4394 Desk} {888.456.9410 Main}
www.ebikemarketplace.com
That day of our phone conversation I mailed the Battery and emailed this message:


John Migliore <jfmigliorejr@gmail.com> Jan 23 (12 days ago)

to Rebekah:
Rebekah,
Thank you for clarifying the procedure on getting my e-bike battery refurbished.
I shipped the battery and charger to your address and it should arrive on Friday, Jan.27th.
My goal is to have the battery rebuilt to 15Ah if possible. Please contact me on payment procedure. Perhaps Paypal works for you? Anyway, let me know.
Thanks again
-bikerjohn

And then I sent another message 6 days later to RPE:


John Migliore <jfmigliorejr@gmail.com>Jan 29 (6 days ago)
to Rebekah
Hello, Rebekah!
The Battery pack has arrived according to FedEx.com;
The tracking # is:
785380593049
Please let me know the cost and best method for refurbishing and completing our transaction.
->and then another message sent to Rebekah on 2/1/17:
-----Original Message-----
From: jfmigliorejr@gmail.com [mailto:jfmigliorejr@gmail.com] On Behalf Of email@addthis.com
Sent: Wednesday, February 1, 2017 10:10 AM

To: rzimlich@rpe-na.com
Subject: Rechargeable Power Energy - Lithium Battery, Rechargeable Power, Solar Battery Charger

Rebekah, it was a pleasure to speak with you back on Jan 23rd; FedEx shows my 36volt lith-ion battery arrived on Jan 27th; The tracking # is:785380593049; I expected to hear some information regarding cost and payment and a timetable on the procedure.
http://www.rechargeablepowerenergy.com/#.WJIkh_OWJKQ.email

and finally Rebekah replied:

Rebekah Zimlich Feb 1 (4 days ago)
to me:
"I will look into this at once and get back to you asap. Thank you for the email."
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Today is Feb. 4th, there has been no further communication from RPE and that continues as the current situation...
Still awaiting any updated communication of any kind related to my battery issue. Clearly, RPE has pitched a desire to provide a reliable service that addresses the weak link of battery reliability/wear. When I spoke to Rebekah the first time on the phone she explained the turnaround would be fast, and so my expectation was for there to be a confirmation of receiving the battery and a timetable on moving forward with refurbishment or replacement. But honestly, it becomes a concern when replies are vague and time marches on. A Company like RPE may or may not have their act together with regard to rebuilding/refurbishing Li-Ion batteries

This weak link of battery wear and non-succinct methods for replacing or refurbishing batteries has become an obstacle in the whole e-bike concept as a sensible transportation method. And while the RPE "pitch" sounded encouraging, there seems to be a weakness with providing an assessment and timetable for follow through on battery issues from e-bike customers.
 
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bikerjohn

Well-Known Member
Thanks for your report. I won't be mailing any batteries.
I'm Not sure that RPE is not going to be the solution to the issue of refurbishing my battery, but I wanted to keep our members informed of my efforts at trying. I promise to keep my experience present and updated. At this point, I am a bit dissatisfied with RPE's customer relations and lack of follow through. But maybe I need to be more patient with what I've deemed to be at best a slow follow-up?
 

bikerjohn

Well-Known Member
I have invited the folks at RPE to join the EBR community and help keep our membership advised on the latest materials and techniques for refurbishing batteries.

Hi, Rebekah!
Here are the EBR blog links which will chronicle my experience with the battery rebuild. There are many EBR members who have batteries that will soon need or already need refurbishment. My experiences with the process will be very illuminating for EBR members and could become a free advertisement on RPE's quality. Please keep me updated with any challenges with regard to my battery's refurbishment.

https://electricbikereview.com/forums/threads/getting-a-rebuild-for-my-battery.2141/#message-13037

https://electricbikereview.com/forums/threads/efforts-at-replacing-a-battery.12083/#post-94823

https://electricbikereview.com/forums/threads/optimizing-battery-usage.8708/#post-95108

I invite you folks at RPE to join the EBR community and post your perspectives on the latest techniques and materials available for battery refurbishment.
 

bikerjohn

Well-Known Member
Just to let everyone here at EBR stay informed on my progress with RPE, I've had another positive phone communication with Rebekah and Sean at RPE.
However, there is, unfortunately, a bit of time-lag involved with configuring a rebuild at RPE due to shipment delays because of the Chinese New Year holiday.
It will be about two weeks before Sean at RPE can let me know how much capacity he will be able to build into my bike's battery case.
Yesterday after speaking with Rebekah and Shawn at RPE, I was informed there are some space challenges with my battery pack housing for upgrading it with 18650 cells. They think it may be possible to fit enough cells to upgrade the battery to 13Ah, but there is a bit of lag-time in procuring the 3-volt cells from China due to the Chinese New Year holiday. In order for them to determine what will be doable with regard to refurbishing, Sean's estimation that another 2 weeks or so would be needed to best configure the rebuild.

I am gratified that RPE seems enthusiastic about the project. I sort of feel like a pioneer somewhat, at least as far as being able to share my experience with other EBR members.
 

SuperGoop

Active Member
I believe 18650 cells is the "sweetspot" in terms of price / quality. It is one of the most popular standard for many applications, which keeps the price low. If you had to source other cells, I think the price will be much higher for the same quality.
 

bikerjohn

Well-Known Member
As far a replacing, refurbishing, or upgrading an old battery, my conclusions about doing business with RPE are positive!

RPE is a battery solutions provider for lithium and other chemistry battery related products. Among their services and specialties include refurbishing old lithium batteries for e-bikes. E-bike components and e-bike battery refurbishing seem to be growing niches for RPE's business.http://www.rechargeablepowerenergy.com/

The company cares about customer satisfaction and was very responsive to my needs. After some initial communication about their service, I decided to send them my 36-volt Lithium-Ion battery for evaluation. They quoted a price to rebuild the battery at $490 -which seemed reasonable for an upgrade from 12Ah to 15Ah. Somewhere along the process of shipping the battery back to me, the battery turned up missing. RPE promised to make good on the loss and followed their words with deeds. They refunded my $490 and gave me a lightly used original equipment battery as a replacement. So, I didn't get the upgrade, and although I incurred one-way shipping costs, the replacement battery is next-to-new and should serve me well for a while.

The bottom line for me is that RPE is a company I can depend upon to provide trustworthy and reliable service. I intend to do business with them the next time my e-bike battery requires service. Thanks to Rebekah and Sean and the entire RPE team for being responsive and dependable.
bikerjohn