Shimano STePS E010 Error Survey - On or Off Road?

If your Shimano ebike system ever gave the E010 error, was your bike primarily used off-road?

  • No

    Votes: 0 0.0%
  • N/A (please comment below)

    Votes: 0 0.0%

  • Total voters
    1

LimboJim

Well-Known Member
After 2250 joyous trail miles on my Commencal MetaPower eMTB with Shimano's e8000 motor, I've recently experienced the apparently common - and oft-dreaded - E010 error code. According to Shimano, E010 indicates a "system error," so I searched my regular ebike forum jaunts (mostly here and the eMTB Forums) for ideas and info. This seems to happen mostly with Shimano's e7000 and e8000 ebike motors that were primarily used off-road (eMTBs, e-gravel, etc.).

I thought maybe I could see if the off-road theory holds true with this survey. For anyone who wants more details, please read on.

My E010 code was preceded by the even more common W013 "warning" code, which means that the "initialization of torque sensor" failed. Most Shimano ebike owners know that this can usually be cleared by restarting the system, ensuring that no pressure is applied to the pedals as it boots up. The other day, however, it took me several tries but eventually worked - for about 3 miles. Then I got nothing but E010 codes from dozens of restarts, and (anaerobically) rode back to my car unassisted 😰 A few days of trying, E010 will not clear.

After reading dozens of posts, watching a few videos, and reading those videos' comments on the matter, I gathered that some folks found solutions by adjusting battery mounts, cleaning ports, and other relatively simple remedies. Others, including me, did not. For us, it seems that the torque sensor's often at fault. Unfortunately, Shimano doesn't service motors at all, they just replace them under their 2 year limited warranty. This is true for pretty much all the major motor brands, though Yamaha covers battery and motor failures for 3 years. I got my MetaPower just over 2 years ago, so I'm SOL...

eBike Motor Repairs (EMR) recently began offering out-ot-warranty service stateside in collaboration with Performance Line Bearings - now eBike Motor Centre - in the UK. EMR fixed my noisy Bosch CX for less than half the cost of replacement this Summer. They'll also work on Yamaha, Brose, Panasonic and Impulse motors, but they won't even attempt repairs on Shimano motors for a litany of reasons. You can read a detailed explanation of the primary one from the proverbial horse's mouth here, but the gist is that Shimano's failure rate is exceptionally high, even after repair.

My best guess is that the torque sensors on these motors can only take so many pedal strikes, heavy downpours, deep puddle splashes, etc. If I'm right, I hope Shimano's latest off-road-intended motor, the EP8, has more robust torque sensors - here's a pic of the e8000's.
e8kTorqueSensor.png


I've often touted Shimano's ebike systems, and when they're working, they perform amazing well. Now I'm telling folks to steer clear unless Shimano does a recall and/or warranty extension, similar to what Specialized did with their frequent failure rates on 2019/2020 Brose motors (video below). I won't hold my breath for that, however, and ordered a new motor for what equates to a month's mortgage payment for me. Way cheaper than buying a comparable eMTB, though, especially in the current marketplace!
 

LimboJim

Well-Known Member
More details quoted from someone with far more technical expertise than me in the Fb group, "Shimano E Steps Motor Users":
The upper right photo (below) shows the part that fails (within Shimano Steps' torque sensor).
The main problem is the connections of the chip underside the black resin to the rotary pcb.
Either the flex cable will fail or the connections inside the resin.
That posting goes on with an opinion that jibes with my first-post statement about the sensor's lack of robustness...
The complexity of this system and the super fragile nature of flex cables + epoxy coated chips make the application inappropriate in an... MTB riding scenario... not for a long service, at least.

Despite the lack of response to this poll, I've concluded that the E010 error code, which disables STePS assistance entirely, primarily affects e5xxx, e6xxx, e7000 and e8000 motors that are ridden off-road.

As it stands, I can no longer taut Steps mid-drive systems as I have been since 2017, and can only say -

DON'T BUY STePS-EQUIPPED eMTBs! At least not if you're going to do much trail riding with them, which is what they're supposedly built for...

1637420274181.png
 
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