Internal Power Cable Failure, Levo 2019

Sep 1, 2018
127
59
Newcastle
Have just read through this thread and can see there are a few similar (but not identical) issues going on. Apologies to those of you that have had problems - we'll take some time to investigate with engineering and speak to a couple of key retail partners before coming back, so please allow a few days for that.

I can clear up some of the questions/comments however: -

1) Yes - the battery-to-motor cable is intentionally quite long, to allow for enough play on the Rosenberger (battery charging) end. (If it was exactly the right length, pulling the charging end of this cable would put direct pressure on the motor connection - which we don't want)
2) Yes - the cable is curved/bent around in a tight profile close to the motor. The bend radius however is absolutely fine. We've had cables back to inspect (including Rob Hancill's ;)) and we have tested a number of them - none (including Rob's) had any damaged cores, i.e. continuity was good on all pins.:unsure:
3) Yes - there was a minor running change requested to this cable by our design team (before any field issues were reported) to shorten the amount of thick rubber sheath on the bend itself, ensuring a more flexible curve with less pressure on the rubber boot at the motor connection. Largely cosmetic.

So - what do we believe is going on in the cases above? Hard to diagnose over a forum, however there are a couple of key retailers listed on this forum which we'll reach out to. It's probable that a short-circuit or break in connectivity IS involved - however cable inspections have shown no evidence of this between the electrical terminations on the cable itself. Much more likely are one or all of these scenarios: -

1) Water/grit in the battery charge connector. Usually happens when washing the bike with the cable disconnected (please don't!) - but if grit/dirt HAS got in to this area it may compromise the rubber seals or stop the connector fitting tightly. Solution is to dry the area and blow out any gunk with compressed air.
2) Water/grit in the Rosenberger connector. This has two possible effects that are quite different a) water causes a short between some of the 4 small pins - which are very sensitive and typically put the battery into protect mode (The four LEDs on the battery will flash in alternating pairs to indicate a short). It will get you home, but once you turn the bike off it won't turn on again until the short is resolved. b) grit in these sprung pins will prevent a good connection with the battery pins - most sensitive are the data pins. Visually inspect these and really gently depress the four sprung pins one at a time with a small flat-bladed screwdriver, clean with compressed air if they seem stuck (a small amount of contact cleaner won't hurt if in doubt).
3) Metal in this plug or socket is unhelpful - especially if it is magnetic it will stick to the socket and prevent the plug from fitting tightly. Check carefully as compressed air may not always remove metal. Small shards of metal are often on workshop floors - so don't rule this out.

Will dig further and come back once we can shed more light.
If this is for real it’s a major design flaw, it’s obvious that ,dirt, grit, water ingress will occur in this area. My bike in for a second time today, not a happy chap, this Rosenberger connection is obviously not sealed correctly, what are Specialized going to do?
 

All Mountain Coaching

E*POWAH Elite
Oct 3, 2018
1,332
980
GB
Ok, so my bike turned itself off again today and wouldn't turn on. After being ok all week. So I decided to take it all apart...

The motor case was actually bulging apart. So that was a sign there were naughties in there.

Inside the case was full of crap, see pics, a lot of crap. I took all that out and noticed the power cable had a serious kink in it, see pics. There was no dirt etc on the connectors.

Once I cleaned it out I stretched out the power cable and connected the battery. Boom, bike turned on. So I put everything back together and tried to put less pressure and less of a kink on that cable.

Guess what... Bike now turns on/off with the power button. It hasn't done that in weeks. So I think this excessively long power cable is to blame and is damaged or squashed because of the size. In touch with spesh to get a replacement.
20190222_134649.jpeg
20190222_134657.jpeg
20190222_135108.jpeg
20190222_135119.jpeg
 

Specialized Rider Care

Official Specialized
Subscriber
Official Specialized
Jul 12, 2018
363
1,375
Thanks for the feedback @All Mountain Coaching - once you have the cable replaced we'll make sure to get it back and inspect.

@Paul Carruthers - we'll follow-up with your dealer and get your cable back if that's the issue. Will report back to this thread in due course.

Sorry to hear both - hope you're back on your bike soon Paul.
 

Maastricht

E*POWAH Master
Oct 3, 2018
646
654
M
Thanks for the feedback @All Mountain Coaching - once you have the cable replaced we'll make sure to get it back and inspect.

@Paul Carruthers - we'll follow-up with your dealer and get your cable back if that's the issue. Will report back to this thread in due course.

Sorry to hear both - hope you're back on your bike soon Paul.

Thanks for the excellent support! These contributions are of high value and gain back a lot of trust.
 
Sep 1, 2018
127
59
Newcastle
Thanks for the feedback @All Mountain Coaching - once you have the cable replaced we'll make sure to get it back and inspect.

@Paul Carruthers - we'll follow-up with your dealer and get your cable back if that's the issue. Will report back to this thread in due course.

Sorry to hear both - hope you're back on your bike soon Paul.
The TCU was alternating between Normal and the top two LEDs illuminated, red over blue. The shop didn’t recognise this error, hope you can.
 

Specialized Rider Care

Official Specialized
Subscriber
Official Specialized
Jul 12, 2018
363
1,375
The TCU was alternating between Normal and the top two LEDs illuminated, red over blue. The shop didn’t recognise this error, hope you can.

"Motor not found". Believe this is in the user manual @Paul Carruthers so the store should know, however to be fair the manual doesn't go into a lot of detail of what to do next. Here's the advice on our retail troubleshooting doc: -

"Generally, a "Motor Not Found" error means that power is getting from the battery through the motor and to the display unit but data is not. The most common causes for this symptom are usually minor connection issues rather than more complex internal faults. Check all connections thoroughly before replacing expensive components."

Most suspicious would be the small data pins in the battery socket or the spring-loaded pins at the Rosenberger connector that plugs into the battery. These need to be well seated, so any grit in this connector or any damage to the guide fins on the battery socket that prevented the plug fitting fully would cause it.

1 Check battery contacts for damage
2 Check main harness contacts at battery end
3 Check main harness contacts at motor end
4 Check sockets in motor for damage
5 Check TCU connections at motor and in top tube

If all of these are fine, then we'd recommend the retailer change cables/components until the issue is resolved - this is the point at which we'd work with the retailer to diagnose further should it be necessary.
 

Sep 1, 2018
127
59
Newcastle
"Motor not found". Believe this is in the user manual @Paul Carruthers so the store should know, however to be fair the manual doesn't go into a lot of detail of what to do next. Here's the advice on our retail troubleshooting doc: -

"Generally, a "Motor Not Found" error means that power is getting from the battery through the motor and to the display unit but data is not. The most common causes for this symptom are usually minor connection issues rather than more complex internal faults. Check all connections thoroughly before replacing expensive components."

Most suspicious would be the small data pins in the battery socket or the spring-loaded pins at the Rosenberger connector that plugs into the battery. These need to be well seated, so any grit in this connector or any damage to the guide fins on the battery socket that prevented the plug fitting fully would cause it.

1 Check battery contacts for damage
2 Check main harness contacts at battery end
3 Check main harness contacts at motor end
4 Check sockets in motor for damage
5 Check TCU connections at motor and in top tube

If all of these are fine, then we'd recommend the retailer change cables/components until the issue is resolved - this is the point at which we'd work with the retailer to diagnose further should it be necessary.
Thanks for that I will be calling the shop this afternoon, what concerns me is the fragility of these pins/connection on a bike that is designed for rugged use, if this is the issue Specialized should publish a warning regarding this issue and how to care for what should have been engineered out at the design and testing phase of the bike.

Also why the failure mid ride?

It gives me less and less confidence in this unit, while you have a good warranty system I’d rather have a bike I can confidently jump on and head out.
 
Last edited:
Sep 1, 2018
127
59
Newcastle
"Motor not found". Believe this is in the user manual @Paul Carruthers so the store should know, however to be fair the manual doesn't go into a lot of detail of what to do next. Here's the advice on our retail troubleshooting doc: -

"Generally, a "Motor Not Found" error means that power is getting from the battery through the motor and to the display unit but data is not. The most common causes for this symptom are usually minor connection issues rather than more complex internal faults. Check all connections thoroughly before replacing expensive components."

Most suspicious would be the small data pins in the battery socket or the spring-loaded pins at the Rosenberger connector that plugs into the battery. These need to be well seated, so any grit in this connector or any damage to the guide fins on the battery socket that prevented the plug fitting fully would cause it.

1 Check battery contacts for damage
2 Check main harness contacts at battery end
3 Check main harness contacts at motor end
4 Check sockets in motor for damage
5 Check TCU connections at motor and in top tube

If all of these are fine, then we'd recommend the retailer change cables/components until the issue is resolved - this is the point at which we'd work with the retailer to diagnose further should it be necessary.
Well it appears I need a new motor, hope it’s readily available!
 

All Mountain Coaching

E*POWAH Elite
Oct 3, 2018
1,332
980
GB
My issues have gotten worse. The bike turned off the other night mid ride and wouldn't turn back on, ride aborted. The next morning it turned on via charge port I took two pedal strokes and it turned off not to be turned back on with any method. Which is similar to the first time that happened I actually changed power mode and it shut off.

Today it turned on and off just fine (charge port), but the power selection doesn't work at all. No mode swap, walk nor straight to turbo. I've turned on and off several times and it has just stopped working.

Spesh rider care has been in touch direct via PM and very good, things are moving along to get the cable replaced. I'll report back. Hopefully sorted tomorrow. Fingers crossed that fixes all.
 
Sep 1, 2018
127
59
Newcastle
My issues have gotten worse. The bike turned off the other night mid ride and wouldn't turn back on, ride aborted. The next morning it turned on via charge port I took two pedal strokes and it turned off not to be turned back on with any method. Which is similar to the first time that happened I actually changed power mode and it shut off.

Today it turned on and off just fine (charge port), but the power selection doesn't work at all. No mode swap, walk nor straight to turbo. I've turned on and off several times and it has just stopped working.

Spesh rider care has been in touch direct via PM and very good, things are moving along to get the cable replaced. I'll report back. Hopefully sorted tomorrow. Fingers crossed that fixes all.
Glad you’re sorted, wish they’d PM me with when they’re sending a replacement motor to my LBS
 

Maastricht

E*POWAH Master
Oct 3, 2018
646
654
M
Hi @All Mountain Coaching, must be very irritating! I hope Specialized and the LBS are able to sort the problems quickly.

What did you mean with charge port in this sentence? "Today it turned on and off just fine (charge port), but the power selection doesn't work at all. "

Did you mean turning the bike on and off via the TCU worked just fine?
 

All Mountain Coaching

E*POWAH Elite
Oct 3, 2018
1,332
980
GB
I mean I don't use the power button on the TCU to turn it on/off, as it usually doesn't work. I unplug the charge port to turn off and plug it back in to turn it on.

By the power mode selection, I meant the + - on the handlebar remote. Which has stopped working today.
 

Maastricht

E*POWAH Master
Oct 3, 2018
646
654
M
I mean I don't use the power button on the TCU to turn it on/off, as it usually doesn't work. I unplug the charge port to turn off and plug it back in to turn it on.

By the power mode selection, I meant the + - on the handlebar remote. Which has stopped working today.

Sorry, now I understand and I understand that you seem to be required to perform this abnormal procedure as the TCU seems not to work properly. I only understood that if you pull out the charge plug when the bike is still switched on the electrical contacts in the plug can burn in. If this happens at the cable side contacts then it will not be such a big issue (cable can easily be replaced) but if it happens at the battery side then you will maybe end up with new future issues.

I would be very carefull with that although I also understand you try to keep your coaching business running and will not have much time to focus on these issues. I hope they find the root cause quickly for you.
 

BBK

Member
Feb 28, 2019
6
3
UK
Hi all, my first post as just joined the forum as was looking for people that have had similar issues to my self with my 2019 turbo levo and have been reading through your comments. I bought the bike in Nov 2018 and after a few rides I was having the following issues:

TCU did not power up so I did the basics and checked connections all ok, next day it decided to work, a few days later had a long bike ride and on return leg the TCU was dead again, did the basic checks but no luck, but then later it powered up and then had TCU error indicating Battery Error, continued cycling and it cleared itself, of note during the issues even though the TCU was dead you could see the battery LED's come on indicating to me that it wasn't making a complete circuit.
On my return to the UK the bike was inspected and tech suspected loose connection, also carried out software update, first ride out motor not engaging even though TCU powered, switched off and on and it worked, later on in ride had TCU error indicating Battery Error, switched off TCU and it wouldn't switch on again.
Back to bike shop and they changed out power cable, not long after had TCU error indicating Motor Error which happened twice, back to shop and tech checked all the connections again.
All error codes were sent to specialized and had to wait 2 weeks for them to reply to the tech suggesting that if any further issues change out the complete wiring harness.
Just the other day the TCU powered up but no drive, switched off and on and it worked, out on long ride today and had another Motor Error, switched off and on and all OK.

Today reading your comments and advice I checked the battery connector for any debris or water ingress and all good, removed motor cover and observed that the outer rubber on motor connector is split, also the cable would appear to be a bit kinked rather than a nice bend on it, please see picture if i manage to load it.

IMG_5245.JPG

On my return to the UK I will be dropping the bike off, will keep you updated as to progress or any further issues.

A bit of a long post but thanks for your time and any advice.
 

Jeffw

Member
Mar 2, 2019
112
61
North West
My motor replaced by Specialized only last week (after 11 rides, 6 of which were aborted due to power failure) and all cables replaced also. Thank goodness it was under warranty and first full ride this year completed on Sunday. But the pine needles and mud etc inside the motor cover is a concern - I understood it to be a sealed unit. LBS have advised to remove crank arm and motor plate and clean inside on a monthly basis. Also contact spray the area. Just wondering if other manufacturers are having similar issues or is this a design flaw on Specialized's behalf?

I have to say that the Specialized Ride Care Rep was excellent, all mails responded to same day and arranged pick-up and return to LBS
 
Sep 1, 2018
127
59
Newcastle
My motor replaced by Specialized only last week (after 11 rides, 6 of which were aborted due to power failure) and all cables replaced also. Thank goodness it was under warranty and first full ride this year completed on Sunday. But the pine needles and mud etc inside the motor cover is a concern - I understood it to be a sealed unit. LBS have advised to remove crank arm and motor plate and clean inside on a monthly basis. Also contact spray the area. Just wondering if other manufacturers are having similar issues or is this a design flaw on Specialized's behalf?

I have to say that the Specialized Ride Care Rep was excellent, all mails responded to same day and arranged pick-up and return to LBS
A mountain bike by design should not require this level of care, I had a Scott and my wife and son have Cube bikes ridden all weather without any problems
 

DONUT

New Member
Feb 18, 2019
16
8
Hampshire
Hi all, my first post as just joined the forum as was looking for people that have had similar issues to my self with my 2019 turbo levo and have been reading through your comments. I bought the bike in Nov 2018 and after a few rides I was having the following issues:

TCU did not power up so I did the basics and checked connections all ok, next day it decided to work, a few days later had a long bike ride and on return leg the TCU was dead again, did the basic checks but no luck, but then later it powered up and then had TCU error indicating Battery Error, continued cycling and it cleared itself, of note during the issues even though the TCU was dead you could see the battery LED's come on indicating to me that it wasn't making a complete circuit.
On my return to the UK the bike was inspected and tech suspected loose connection, also carried out software update, first ride out motor not engaging even though TCU powered, switched off and on and it worked, later on in ride had TCU error indicating Battery Error, switched off TCU and it wouldn't switch on again.
Back to bike shop and they changed out power cable, not long after had TCU error indicating Motor Error which happened twice, back to shop and tech checked all the connections again.
All error codes were sent to specialized and had to wait 2 weeks for them to reply to the tech suggesting that if any further issues change out the complete wiring harness.
Just the other day the TCU powered up but no drive, switched off and on and it worked, out on long ride today and had another Motor Error, switched off and on and all OK.

Today reading your comments and advice I checked the battery connector for any debris or water ingress and all good, removed motor cover and observed that the outer rubber on motor connector is split, also the cable would appear to be a bit kinked rather than a nice bend on it, please see picture if i manage to load it.

View attachment 11396

On my return to the UK I will be dropping the bike off, will keep you updated as to progress or any further issues.

A bit of a long post but thanks for your time and any advice.
My Motor connector has been confirmed as cracked today by my LBS - new harness on order and apparently this has a modified plug connector..........
 
Sep 1, 2018
127
59
Newcastle
"Motor not found". Believe this is in the user manual @Paul Carruthers so the store should know, however to be fair the manual doesn't go into a lot of detail of what to do next. Here's the advice on our retail troubleshooting doc: -

"Generally, a "Motor Not Found" error means that power is getting from the battery through the motor and to the display unit but data is not. The most common causes for this symptom are usually minor connection issues rather than more complex internal faults. Check all connections thoroughly before replacing expensive components."

Most suspicious would be the small data pins in the battery socket or the spring-loaded pins at the Rosenberger connector that plugs into the battery. These need to be well seated, so any grit in this connector or any damage to the guide fins on the battery socket that prevented the plug fitting fully would cause it.

1 Check battery contacts for damage
2 Check main harness contacts at battery end
3 Check main harness contacts at motor end
4 Check sockets in motor for damage
5 Check TCU connections at motor and in top tube

If all of these are fine, then we'd recommend the retailer change cables/components until the issue is resolved - this is the point at which we'd work with the retailer to diagnose further should it be necessary.
Still waiting on motor and harness, there is obviously a supply issue?
 

All Mountain Coaching

E*POWAH Elite
Oct 3, 2018
1,332
980
GB
LBS have advised to remove crank arm and motor plate and clean inside on a monthly basis. Also contact spray the area. Just wondering if other manufacturers are having similar issues or is this a design flaw on Specialized's behalf?

I posted the cable issues on Facebook and someone said it was neglect and lack of maintenance. That I should take off the lead and contact spray and then Vaseline.

Really?!

How many other ebike manufacturers recommend opening the motor casing every month to clean and Vaseline the bike.
 
Sep 1, 2018
127
59
Newcastle
I posted the cable issues on Facebook and someone said it was neglect and lack of maintenance. That I should take off the lead and contact spray and then Vaseline.

Really?!

How many other ebike manufacturers recommend opening the motor casing every month to clean and Vaseline the bike.
When mine is repaired , I shan’t use it, just wrap in cotton wool.
Apparently there was a shipping issue but my motor etc is to arrive at the shop tomorrow, fingers crossed ?
 

BBK

Member
Feb 28, 2019
6
3
UK
My Motor connector has been confirmed as cracked today by my LBS - new harness on order and apparently this has a modified plug connector..........

Hi Donut, any reason as to why its cracked, was there an impact between motor cover and connector as its a bit unusual for a connector to crack, but then again my one has a split in the rubber, would be interesting to know what modifications they have made to the connector. (y)
 

Simon_t

New Member
Nov 18, 2018
60
44
Herne Bay, UK
I opened up the non-drive side motor cover about a week after I had the noisy motor replaced on by 2019 Levo (bought 28/10/18, this photo 15/12/19). The work was done at Spesh UK, and as they fitted the foam to prevent debris getting in I wanted to do a quick inspection. There was a very small amount of debris in there, which had come in through the drain hole, but I also noticed the motor connector was split and you could see the wires below - I did report it and said I would monitor it. I also used a thick silicone grease to fill the crack and seal around all the connectors (obviously avoiding the electrical pins). You can also see the cable is kinked as others have reported. I have had maybe 4 occasions when I have had the blue/red LED battery fault code flashing on start up - each time cycling the TCD power switch resolved it, and no problems whilst riding. But it is always a lurking worry that the cable may let me down one day, although I have confidence that Spesh would resolve under warranty.

D39937E5-725B-473F-96A1-054B9BA015BD.jpeg
 

Sep 1, 2018
127
59
Newcastle
I opened up the non-drive side motor cover about a week after I had the noisy motor replaced on by 2019 Levo (bought 28/10/18, this photo 15/12/19). The work was done at Spesh UK, and as they fitted the foam to prevent debris getting in I wanted to do a quick inspection. There was a very small amount of debris in there, which had come in through the drain hole, but I also noticed the motor connector was split and you could see the wires below - I did report it and said I would monitor it. I also used a thick silicone grease to fill the crack and seal around all the connectors (obviously avoiding the electrical pins). You can also see the cable is kinked as others have reported. I have had maybe 4 occasions when I have had the blue/red LED battery fault code flashing on start up - each time cycling the TCD power switch resolved it, and no problems whilst riding. But it is always a lurking worry that the cable may let me down one day, although I have confidence that Spesh would resolve under warranty.

View attachment 11637
don’t wait!
While the warranty’s may be good the initial design and testing must have revealed this issue or has the manufacturer been changed?
 

DONUT

New Member
Feb 18, 2019
16
8
Hampshire
No Bike this weekend then as the new cable did not arrive from Spesh today at the LBS:(. Its on route apparently. In answer to BBKs question about the modded cable - I had a chat with the LBS mechanic tonight as it happens and he said the new cable is definitely modified at the plug end that goes into the motor. If I understood him correctly there is now less outer cable sleeve within the plug which means less tension on the plug itself (which is a right angle connector) Its the outer sleeve that is causing the connecter to effectively explode. I guess only time will tell if the new version solves the issue though.
 

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