I've been using powerpole connectors for years and love them. But I just had an experience that has me questioning them.
My bicycle had developed an issue where the power would cut out while riding. I finally worked out that it was a powerpole connector that didn't connect very tightly. I could hold it in my hand (while riding) and manipulate it and hear clicks as the connection came and went, and the power to the motor would come and go with the clicks. Obviously something had happened to the innards of this connector such that it didn't make a reliable connection.
I made a grocery store run this morning (four bags of groceries in a trailer - leaving the store another bicyclist commented to me I had a regular pickup truck) and couldn't get the connector to work at all. Obviously it was time to stop putting off fixing this connector.
I first tried scraping the inside of the powerpole to roughen the surface thinking maybe there's some scorch marks or some such interfering with the connection. That didn't help.
What I just did is to cut out the whole powerpole business and replace it with a completely different kind of connector. I don't know the proper name - but it's this kind that has a rubber body and ribbed posts that stick into holes. Each connector is hermaphroditic rather than "male" and "female". Connectors of this sort are often used on trailer lights and indeed I bought the connector at an auto parts store in the trailer lights section.
Wired it up and took a ride ... not only is the connection robust now, the bike has more power.
This bicycle has an 800watt controller going to an old wilderness energy BD36 motor rated for 35 amps. Theoretically this should be a powerful combination but it had always been slow acceleration and felt like low power. It wouldn't readily go above 15 miles/hr. I didn't mind too much because it's mounted on my Electra Townie and those bikes are so completely laid back that the slow speed just fit the genre.
Now with this new connector the bike feels peppy, decent acceleration and easy to get above 15 miles/hr.
Obviously the new connector doesn't have the scarring from a couple years of zaps that were inside the old powerpole connector. But this kind of connector also would hold itself rigidly together much better than the powerpole connectors do. I'm impressed and am going to think about using this kind of connector more often in the future.