Electric Bike Maintenance 101

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While doing maintenance on your electric bike may seem scary and unfamiliar at first, when you know what to look for, it becomes as easy as caring for a regular bike. Here are a few things you’re supposed to take care of when doing maintenance on your electric bike:

AMP Electric Battery image with AMP logoBattery – Charge at least once every two months

First is the bike battery, a lithium ion bike battery should last around 1,000 charge cycles, and shouldn’t be stored in an area that is too hot or cold.

If you don’t charge your battery at least once every two months, you’ll run the risk of it dying.  Don’t leave your bike battery in the charger for more than 48 hours though. In order to make sure your battery lasts long, it is important to charge it after each ride. Each battery is made up of cells with 1000 charge cycles, so you have 1000 full drains and charges of your battery until it dies. If you go for a ride for a certain amount of time each day and use 10 cells, when you charge your battery afterward, you will only have used 10 cells in your battery. The remaining cells will be “new” and unused because you have not used any of their charging cycles. As you continue to use the cells, the battery management system will move onto the new cells as the old ones are used. So, charging your battery directly after you use it will preserve its battery life.

Eventually, you’ll need to replace your battery to keep your bike performing. Most manufacturers will offer replacement batteries on their websites.

Drivetrain – Clean monthly

Next, you should clean the drivetrain. You’ll need to buy degreaser and a chain scrubber, or just use an old toothbrush. You can also use warm water to clean your drivetrain if you don’t have degreaser. Clean the bike chain with these items, and dry it off with a cloth. Then, lube your bike chain with a lubricant that works for your bike. Wipe off any excess lube with a cloth.

Derailleur gears – Adjust every year or so

AMP Electric bicycle gears close up

You also need to keep an eye on your derailleur gears. Go to a bike shop to get your derailleur gears adjusted and tightened once per year. A professional will do the best job on this part of your bike maintenance. 

Tires – Check weekly, replaces every 2000 miles

Caring for your electric bike’s tires is an important step in bike maintenance. You’ll need to make sure that your tire pressure is within the range of your tires. Buying a bike pump that shows you how much pressure is in your tires is recommended. You should also check that your tires are not too worn down, as this can lead to reduced traction and will make it easier for your tires to get punctured. Of course, this depends on the terrain you’re riding on, but it is recommended that you replace your tires for every 2000 miles you bike.

Brakes – Check at least twice a month

Next, you need to check your brake pads. Depending on the type of brakes you have, the maintenance will be different. A few types of brakes are rim brakes, mechanical disc brakes, and hydraulic disc brakes. Adjust your rim brakes and tighten their cables once per year. Replace your brake pads and mechanical disc brakes every year or so.  Hydraulic disc brakes also need to have their brake pads replaced every year. However, you might need to “bleed” your brakes and replace the hydraulic brake fluid needs every few years if you want your brakes to continue to work well. You can go to a shop to get this done, or learn to do it yourself.

Matte black AMP electric bikeElectric Bike Frame – Clean when it’s necessary

Second, clean your bike frame regularly. You don’t want rust forming on your bike, do you? It is important to check the manual that comes with your bike to see if they recommend any cleaning solution for your bike frame. Once you find a cleaning solution that works for your bike and clean the frame with a soft cloth. You can also clean the bike frame with paper towels.

Motor Maintenance – Check as needed

Lastly, taking care of your bike motor will ensure that it has a long life.  There are a few different types of bike motors, and each requires a different type of maintenance. The types of motors include geared hub motors, gearless hub motors, and mid-drive motors. If your bike has a geared hub motor, make sure you aren’t overworking it, and that your wheels are aligned. When you overwork the motor, it will wear out faster. If your wheels aren’t aligned they can throw the gear off, which will cause the gear to damage itself. Bikes with a gearless hub motor don’t require a lot of heavy maintenance. These motors contain electromagnets that do the turning of the rear wheel and cause very little friction. If you have a mid-drive motor, you need to make sure that the gears are tuned finely and keep the drivetrain clean. You should always start at a lower gear when using this motor, if you start out at a higher gear, you’ll use up more of your battery because of how fast a mid-run motor runs.

Overall, you need to know the basics of your electric bike. Know what type of motor you have, what type of brakes you have, and know the pressure range of your tires. Read the manual that comes with your electric bike to get information on what you’re unsure of, or go to your local bike shop for help. Knowing your bike and knowing how to take care of it is important in ensuring that your bike has a long life.

Sources:

https://www.greenpathelectricbikes.com/electric-bike-maintanence-tips/

http://sandiegoflyrides.com/maintaining-and-caring-for-your-electric-bike/

21 Ideas for Your Light Frame

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The Green Light Innovations Light Frame provides our customers with the opportunity to creatively communicate with their communities. The write on- wipe off Light Frame can be used for dozens of purposes in your business, school, community center, or even home. With eight different border colors and several functions, the Light Frame can be customized to fit your brand or theme. We decided to show you some of the ways that you can use your Light Frame and include some tips for best use.

Light Frame advertising a fall festival

Always start your designs on a completely clean Light Frame for best results. We find that a standard glass cleaner and some paper towels do the trick. Then, get designing! Here are 21 ideas for how to use your Light Frame:

  • Menus
  • Drink specials
  • Sales
  • School events
  • Announcements
  • Store hours
  • Holiday greetings

We recommend preplanning your designs, to ensure that once you get started you won’t have to back track and inadvertently smudge your design. Also, don’t forget your straightedge! Use a ruler or a sheet of paper to help you keep your design straight.

  • Schedules
  • Quote of the weekLight Frame with bar specials listed for game day
  • Welcome sign
  • To do lists
  • Garage sales
  • Count downs
  • Classroom rules
  • Homework lists

You can find inspiration for your Light Frame designs all over! Pinterest is a great resource to check out small simple doodles to dress up your design or to find easily replicable fonts. Get creative and your customers or audience will love checking out your sign.

  • Advertising your social media sites
  • Weekly verses or inspiration
  • Pop-ups
  • Posting your wifi information
  • Craft fairs
  • Holiday marketsLight Frame with fall sale advertisement. Reads buy one get one scarves, 25% off sweaters, and all jeans $10 off.

Remember the final step is plugging in your sign and turning it on! The Light Frame has eight different border colors and can be set to flash one color or many. It comes with 8 markers, but if you visit the Green Light Innovations website you can expand your collection to include our extra wide tip markers for those occasions when you want something to be extra bold. Get creative with your designs and post them to social media using the hashtag #GreenLightFrame so we can see your creations!

Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business

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Red and blue service disabled veteran owned small business logoHave you seen this logo on Green Light Innovations website, packaging or social media sites? Have you wondered what it really means to be a Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business

? We want you to know what it means to be a SDVOSB in general and what it means specifically to Green Light to be owned by and employee veterans.

The History of Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Businesses

In 1999 the federal government passed the Veterans Entrepreneurship and Small Business Development Act. This law established an annual goal for the government to have at least 3% of the total value of all prime contract and subcontracts to be won by small businesses owned and controlled by service-disabled veterans. After the passing of the 1999 law, several other laws were passed to standardized the meaning of a Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business. These laws ensure that the federal government helps support disabled veteran owned businesses. Moreover, it provides these veteran owned business with opportunities to win government contracts.

In order to be considered a Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business, a business must meet several criteria. These criteria include that the Service Disabled Veteran (SDV) must have a service-connected disability as determined by the Department of Veterans Affairs or the Department of Defense. The business must be considered “small” via the North American Industry Classification System. The Service Disabled Veteran must own at least 51% of the business. Finally, the Service Disabled Veteran must control the management of the business, and hold the highest officer position.

What does it mean to Green Light to work with veterans everyday?

Green Light Innovations meets all of these criteria set by the federal government. However,  being a Service Disabled Veteran Owned Small Business means so much more to us than just meeting a list of requirements. As a SDVOSB, we’ve incorporated the principles of military service: Excellence in all we do and Service before Self, into the DNA of our organization and it sows in the products we make and our commitment to customers and all stake holders. Green Light knows the capacity and the potential of our veterans and takes pride in hiring veterans whenever possible. Additionally, we ensure that we connect our veteran employees to resources that help them navigate life after the military. Finally, we pride ourselves on partnering with other veteran owned small businesses.

Above all, Green Light Innovations recognizes and honors the veterans that have served our country.

Teachers Giveaway Recap

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On May 22, we launched our Teachers Giveaway campaign. The Teachers Giveaway was a photo contest where teachers across the United States were offered the opportunity to submit a photo of their classroom and share it on social media to earn votes in order to win one of 20 free Light Frames from Green Light Innovations.

Illustration of the Green Light Innovations Light Frame

Green Light Innovations has always put a lot of stock in this country’s educators. Teachers in the United States are consistently underpaid, overworked, and under-appreciated. Additionally, the average American teacher spends over $500 per year to stock his or her classroom with supplies. For these reasons, Green Light wanted to brainstorm a campaign that would not only recognize teachers for their hard work, but would also thank them by giving away a free product.

 

The Green Light Innovations Light Frame is the perfect product to add to any classroom. The write on, wipe off board allows teachers to post announcements, reminders, and daily messages for their class. It can be used for open houses, book fairs, and other special events. The bright LED message board illuminates a message to capture the attention of students, administrators, and parents. 

Light Frame with homework reminder written on it

We recruited four bloggers to help us in our efforts. Bloggers have made a huge effort to not only demonstrate the hard work that goes into teaching, but also providing resources to teachers to make their jobs easier. The bloggers at Little Kinder Warriors, First Grade Brain, Surfing through Second, and Laugh Eat Learn blew us away with their efforts to promote the Teachers Campaign on Facebook, Instagram, and Pinterest. They created content using the Green Light Innovations Light Frame, and shared it with their vast networks of teachers, encouraging them to enter the Teachers Giveaway.

 

After ten days of the contest, we had over one hundred and forty teachers submit photos of their classrooms. Teachers from all over the nation submitted photos and shared their photos on social media. The top twenty submissions with the most votes were selected to win the Green Light Innovations Light Frame. Some of our top performers garnered over 800 votes, and the photos we received were incredible. Our submissions included jungle themed classrooms, space themed classrooms, classrooms with innovative storage solutions, and student learning centers.

 

 

Jungle themed classroom

We are so excited to be shipping Green Light Innovations Light Frames to twenty deserving winners. We hope the teachers that won Light Frames will use them often in their classrooms, but even more so we hope that they feel a little bit more appreciated for the work that they do everyday. Green Light Innovations cannot wait to partner with the education community in the future and we look forward to offering more promotions to our country’s educators soon.

Open Sign Survey: What do business owners want in an open sign?

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Recently, Green Light Innovations has been doing some self reflection. After meeting with a new buyer for one of our retail partners, we found ourselves with a handful of questions the buyer had asked that we didn’t know the answers to. The buyer had asked questions about what our open sign customers care most about, and while we can list a number of things that our business owners care about- customer service, brightness, size, and price- we couldn’t quantify or characterize what business owners care MOST about.

Picture of open sign

With this in mind, we developed a survey. We asked five quick questions about open signs to get to the bottom of what our customers care most about and some answers surprised us and some answers reaffirmed our longstanding values. We sent our survey out to everyone who had registered an open sign warranty with us in the last ten years, and we posted about it on our Facebook page. Then, to sweeten the deal we offered to randomly pick twenty people that took our survey to win a free Digital Business Hours open sign. Here’s what we learned:

 

97% of our survey respondents said that service and quality were very important. We patted ourselves on the back because we know and have always known that quality and service are a top priority for our customers. We stand by our statement that if something goes wrong we will make it right. Green Light Innovations won’t make you wait for days to hear back from our customer service team and when you register for your warranty with us, you’re covered for three years – “No Questions Asked”.

 

The second most important consideration for business owners when they buy an open sign is brightness. 89% said that the brightness of an open sign was very important. This didn’t surprise our team, and neither did the 63% of business owners who said size was very important. You buy an open sign to catch your customer’s eye and if it’s dim or it’s too small that will not be accomplished and you will have wasted your hard earned dollars. Green Light knows that our customers are savvy business owners who make every dollar count, so brightness and size are priorities when choosing an open sign.Digital Hours Business Sign

 

Only 53% of our survey takers said that price was very important. Our customers prioritize service, quality, brightness, and size over price, which means they are going to pay for a top quality sign rather than buy an inexpensive, but poor quality sign. Green Light Innovations always looks to make the best quality, most innovative open signs that will communicate for your business for many years to come. We know that for business owners time is money, and if you have to spend time troubleshooting open sign problems or on the phone with customer service, that’s money lost. Green Light does not cut corners and we hold ourselves to an exceptionally high standard of quality.

 

Finally, Green Light always strives to provide our customers with innovative products, which is why all of our open signs currently feature the ability to match the colors of your open sign to your business. Our open signs come with this ability to change the color with just a click of a button because we know that business owners spend time developing and cultivating their brand and we believe that they should have the ability tOval open sign in five different color combinationso make their open sign match as well. What we discovered when asking our customers about the ability to purchase a sign with color changing capabilities is that 88% of business owners would pay more for a sign with color changing options. We were thrilled to learn that our customers recognize and appreciate the value in innovation.

 

We deeply appreciate everyone who took our survey and we want to congratulate the 20 lucky winners of the free Digital Business Hours open sign. Green Light Innovations loves getting customer feedback and we are prepared to not only inform our new buyer of our survey results, but also use this information as we go forward and continue to innovate. We will utilize this information as we work to bring you better, higher quality, and more technologically advanced products in the future. 

The History of Open Signs: From Neon to LED

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Green Light Innovations was founded in 2008 with the belief that inspired, responsible innovation can transform everyday lives in meaningful ways. Our team has over 50 years of combined experience in open signs. We’ve worked hard to develop the best lighting and signage solutions for your business, and we work hard to understand your business so we want you to understand ours. Here’s our history and story, so you know what motivates us to produce top quality open signs and lighting solutions for you and your business.

A timeline summarizing the history of open signs
A Brief History of Open Signs

In 1985, Fallon Neon started producing neon open signs and selling them in wholesale clubs. Although filling glass tubes with neon gas, causing them to glow was not a new concept- in fact it was first introduced by French inventor Georges Claude in 1910- the neon open sign was a relatively new idea. Fallon Neon produced open signs in the hope of creating a low cost way for small businesses to advertise the fact that they were open and to draw customers in, and they rapidly grew in popularity.

 

The first neon open signs produced by Fallon Neon were red and blue. Neon burns bright red and argon burns blue. The clear and phosphor coated glass colors were the least expensive and were the easiest way to make open signs affordable.  Thus the red and blue open sign became the industry standard. Fallon Neon continued to produce standard red and blue open signs until the early 2000’s.

 

In 2005, LED (light emitting diode) technology entered the open sign industry. LED lights are more energy efficient, environmentally friendly, and have more color changing capability. LED technology was presenting the open sign industry an opportunity to grow and innovate to match new technology. While, some open sign producers began utilizing LEDs in their open signs, none took advantage of their color changing capacity.

 

In 2008, Green Light Innovations was founded by Tim Fallon with the hope of utilizing his knowledge and experience gained during his tenure at Fallon Neon to innovate new lighting solutions that made sense for small business owners and for the environment.   GLI recognizes that business owners spend a lot of time and money cultivating and developing their brand, and for this reason their open sign should match the colors of their business. While a red and blue open sign may have met consumers’ needs when red and blue were the only color options, Green Light’s customers demand more of their open signs.

 

Today, Green Light Innovations produces a range of LED open signs. We strive to create the brightest and most efficient signs on the market, and all of our open signs have color customization capabilities. Whether it’s our largest sign, the classically oval shaped Typhoon open, the smaller Digital Business Hours open sign, a Vertical Open, or even our Spanish Abierto sign we think our customers should be able to change the color of their open sign to match the colors of their business, a promotion, or just their mood.

Oval open sign in five different color combinations

The team at GLI has been working with open signs for a combined 50 years, but that does not stop us from consistently seeking new innovations. Creating beautiful, quality products and offering the best customer service is what we’ve been doing and what we will continue doing. Our story will always center on our customers and our journey to meet their needs.  Stay tuned and plugged in with us as we work towards inventing the next generation of tools for business to customer communication.