What certifications are required for exporting electric bicycle/motorcycle batteries to the United States?

As an importer or manufacturer of E-bikes, the concern of what certifications are required to export electric bicycles/motorcycles to the United States will always exist.

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The electric bicycle and motorcycle (E-bikes) market size was valued at USD 17.83 billion in the year 2021 and is predicted to grow at a compound annual growth (CAGR) of 13.5% up until 2030. Of the USD 17.83 billion, the U.S. market commands a USD 899.6 million in 2021.

This presents a huge market opportunity for manufacturers, importers, and sellers of E-bikes in the U.S. Let’s look at the certifications that you must have in order to export to the U.S. and how important they are.

1.     FCC

This is a mandatory electromagnetic compatibility certification for all products that radiate radio-frequency energy whether intentionally or unintentionally.

All products that are made outside the United States and comply with this regulation either have the FCC mark or logo.

Getting the FCC compliance certificate takes anywhere between 3 weeks to several months.

By sourcing your LEV batteries from Tritek, you will get FCC compliant batteries. Tritek submits all required documents upfront, uses an experienced and reputable testing laboratory and certification company, and performs in-house compliance testing throughout the product development cycle.

Here’s a detailed step-by-step process for getting certified by the FCC.

2.     UL2271 (Below 1500 Wh, excluded ISO 13849 HW)

This is a standard for batteries for use in Light Electric Vehicles (LEV) which was developed by Underwriter Laboratories (UL) in 2013.

UL develops safety standards for most modern electric products to align them with its mission of a safer world.

UL2271 focuses on the construction criteria of the products; which should be resistant to impact, crushing, heat, flame, water, and UV rays.

UL2271 certification for lithium batteries for use in LEVs except scooters is voluntary. Certification for lithium batteries for use in scooters (and the scooters) is mandatory in the U.S.

The requirements for UL2271 are listed in detail here.

3.     IEC62133

This certification provides for requirements and testing necessary to ensure safe operations (under intended use and reasonable misuse) of portable secondary cells and batteries which contain the non-acid electrolyte.

To be IEC62133 compliant, a battery is tested against abuse simulated conditions. A compliant battery should work efficiently while maintaining physical integrity within allowable stress levels.

Test parameters here include charging procedures, continuous charging, case stress at high ambient, temperature, external short circuit, and forced discharge, among others.

LEV batteries submitted by Tritek are tested and are compliant with the IEC62133 standards.

4.     UN 38.3

This is a test summary report from the supplier or manufacturer showing compliance with section 38.0 of UN manual tests and criteria (UN Transportation Testing). It is mandatory for most electric batteries entering the U.S. market as well as other global markets to ensure safe shipping.

This certification was laid out after lithium batteries were identified as class-9 dangerous goods during transport since it is a potential fire hazard. It is also important to note that this certification applies to batteries imported into the U.S. as a unit or installed in other devices.

All electric bike smart lithium-ion batteries made by Tritek are certified with UN38.3.

The list of tests comprising this certification consists of altitude, thermal test, vibration test, shock test, short circuit test, impact, crush, overcharge, and forced discharge test.

5.     ISO 13849

This is an international standard to ensure critical safety functions for machinery. The number of safety measures provided for a product is directly proportional to the risk a failure of that product poses to the end user.

ISO 13849 is a multi-step certification involving risk assessment (to classify risk situations into performance levels), identifying safety functions, and analyzing and designing safety systems for a product or a whole machine.

Adhering to this ISO standard reduces identified risks in the event of a failure. Products that meet this standard are of international first-class level and help support the SDG goals.

6.     Prop 65

This is a Californian law that requires manufacturers to indicate a warning to the public about the presence of chemicals that could either cause cancer, birth defects, or other reproductive harm.

This proposition also directs the state to update over time the list of chemicals known to cause cancer or reproductive toxicity.

To be compliant, a warning regarding the presence of the chemicals should be provided unless there is a guarantee by the manufacturer that exposure to the chemicals poses no significant risk level.

Conclusion

A range of setbacks faces importers or manufacturers who don’t comply with certifications required for exporting electric bicycle/motorcycle batteries into the US market. Most of the compliance certificates and reports act as ‘passports’ for the products to enter other countries. The major problems that manufacturers and exporters will face if they are not compliant include:

  • Delayed entry of their products into the market.
  • Fines, sanctions, and re-modeling/re-manufacturing costs.
  • Destroyed reputation lowers market opportunities, and increases scrutiny, and inspection.

To avoid the negative results of non-compliance, work with experienced manufacturers or exporters who are already certified.

Tritek is a full-range battery manufacturer for LEV and battery management systems. By working with leading manufacturers of electric drive systems, bicycles, and motorcycles, and having more than 12 years in the LEV batteries industry, Tritek proves to be an authority in the market.

Tritek takes between 3-10 months to make customized batteries to suit customer needs with all the necessary certifications.

FAQ

Q: How much does shipping an E-bike battery cost?

A:  It varies depending on size, weight, and other important factors.

Q: Do I need certifications for a safe lithium battery pack?

A: Yes you definitely do. Here’s an ultimate guide to those certifications.

Q: How do I extend the lithium battery lifetime?

A: These simple 10 steps will prolong your lithium battery lifetime.

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