We all remember how it feels to own our first electric car. It’s slick, has no emissions, and drives smoothly with lesser noise than the standard gasoline-powered vehicle. The carbon footprints or gasoline costs are nothing to worry about. All-in-all it’s an irreplaceable experience for the driver with a green thumb.
But like all machines, our electric friend may demand its brand of maintenance. Owning, driving, and maintaining are three different things, and the last one can become a hurdle if not done correctly. Improper procedures can slow down our vehicles or, worse, even disable them.
Whenever we’re lost and don’t know what to do, we ask the professionals. Well then, let’s see what the experts have to say.
Let’s start with the things that we, the owners, can do.
EV Battery Packs
Like how the mitochondria are the powerhouse of the cell, the battery pack is the heart of an electric car. In other words, before anything else, it’s the essential part of the vehicle.
Here are some ways we can do as owners to prolong the life of EV battery packs:
- Never fully charge nor deplete the battery at regular intervals
This sounds like something of a no-brainer to devices like smartphones, but repeatedly doing so can be harmful to an electric car. Battery degradation happens faster to cars whose full battery packs are depleted to their utmost limit. As a precaution, most EV manufacturers set boundaries that prevent a battery pack from fully charging.
We have to pinpoint when our car battery hits 30% accurately to avoid this. This is the minimum battery percentage that our battery has to be before we charge. If the situation is complicated, 10% will do.
Discharging quickly is also detrimental to our car battery, so let’s slow down with the sudden accelerations if we can
- Do not subject our car to extreme temperatures.
Extreme hot or cold can affect the overall performance of the battery over time. Most EV manufacturers consider outfitting cars with auxiliary cooling systems and heating options in unforeseen situations. But sometimes, we find ourselves in a tight situation, such as being stranded in an arid road or isolated by a blizzard. Here are some things owners can do to prevent further damage, whether on the battery or for our car’s overall welfare.
- Regularly change oil
- Use a heavy-duty sunproof cover to protect our car from the searing heat.
- Use the proper coolant for our car.
- Apply car paint that protects our car from UV rays while driving
- Use tire snow socks to prevent further strain during drives
- De-ice frozen handles, locks, and car doors using a lighter
- Use a car cover to protect our car from falling snow
- Apply shaving cream on the car windows, then wipe it off. It acts as a defogger that prevents the windows from becoming blurry.
- Avoid regular use of Quick Charging stations or Fast Chargers
While it would be acceptable to use in emergencies, regularly charging our car via these methods is a sure way to degrade the car battery. A slower charging method like a Level 2 charger is better for our car battery’s health.
At this point, we’ve done our best to maintain our car beside the occasional washing. When it comes to internal software or hardware problems, it’s best to ask a professional for direct help. While the typical EV is easy to maintain on our own, some things require the meticulous hands of a licensed mechanic. One such maintenance procedure is the battery pack and electric motor replacement.
Many EV manufacturers typically offer long-time warranties on the different powertrain pieces of an electric vehicle. If not for unusual accidents, these pieces, by themselves, can last for many years and thousands of miles.
Owning a car may be akin to taking care of a living creature. We can show it some love, drive it around, feed it with electricity and maintain its parts. Proper maintenance and care for our Electric Vehicles will prolong their useful life. It’s good to treasure what we have, which is especially true for electric vehicles.