How to Make Your Electric Car's Battery Last Longer

The battery is a crucial part of an electric vehicle (EV), so let's learn how to keep it in good shape for a long time.

How to Make Your Electric Car's Battery Last Longer

If you've just got yourself an electric car or are really thinking about getting one, looking after the battery is super important, kind of like how you change the oil in a regular car. Electric cars need less fixing, and the battery should stay good for a long time, even longer than you have the car. But there are some things you can do to make sure it stays healthy.

Electric cars mostly use big lithium-ion batteries, kind of like the one in your smartphone but much larger. These batteries provide the power needed for the car to run instead of using gasoline. Since changing an EV battery can be very costly if it's not under warranty, it's a good idea to develop good habits and take care of it to make it last longer and travel farther on a single charge.

Avoid Really Hot or Cold Weather for Your Battery

Avoid Really Hot or Cold Weather for Your Battery

The battery in your electric car doesn't like extreme hot or cold temperatures. It's like how we don't feel our best when it's super hot or freezing outside. If you've ever left your phone in a hot or cold car, you've seen how it can affect the battery. Well, it's the same for electric cars. The weather can mess with how the battery works, how fast it charges, and how well the car runs.

Most new electric cars come with things like heat pumps and cooling systems to help with this. But it's still a good idea to charge your car in the shade when it's really hot or cold outside. If you can, park it in a garage during summer and winter. Keeping the battery happy with the right temperature is a smart move.

People who know about electric cars say that the battery can last a long time, like 10 to 20 years without much trouble. But just like your phone's battery gets weaker over time, so does an electric car's. If it gets too hot or cold often, that can speed up the process. For example, Tesla guarantees their batteries for at least eight years or 100,000 miles, and some models even go up to 150,000 miles. But after eight years, it might not charge all the way up to 100%, and the car might not go as far on a single charge, kind of like how an old car doesn't get as many miles per gallon.

Keep your battery between 20% and 80%.

Keep your battery between 20% and 80%.

Like any car, it's important to follow the instructions in the owner's manual to keep your electric vehicle (EV) running well. When it comes to EVs, most carmakers suggest keeping the battery between 20% and 80% charged.

In simple words, try not to let the battery go below 20%, and avoid charging it above 80% unless you really need to or are planning a long trip. Keeping the battery within this range is best because it doesn't make the battery work too hard. If you let it go too low, it can wear out faster, according to the makers.

A good rule to remember is that it's better to recharge it partially, like from 40% to 80%, whenever needed, rather than letting it get very low and then charging it all the way to the top. Although Tesla has said charging to 100% isn't a big issue, battery experts have been talking about the 20/80 rule for a long time. If it helps your expensive battery last longer, it's a good practice to follow.

Keep Your Battery Charged

Keep Your Battery Charged

It's important to avoid letting your electric car's battery completely run out of power. This goes for all types of batteries, whether they're in electric cars, smartphones, or tools. When you let a lithium-ion battery, like the one in your electric car, reach empty, it can harm the battery cells and reduce their overall capacity.

Most electric vehicles will automatically shut down before you reach 0% battery, but sometimes it can still happen. Also, it's not a good idea to leave your electric car parked for extended periods with a completely dead or very low battery. This can lead to the battery slowly losing its charge, which can be harmful.

Here's something interesting: Electric vehicles have a regular 12V auxiliary battery just like traditional cars. This battery can sometimes run out of power too. So, it's a good idea to take care of this smaller battery, just like you do with the big one that makes your car move. And if it ever runs out, you can't use jumper cables on the big battery, but you can jump-start the car using the smaller 12V battery.

Choose Slower Charging Whenever You Can

Choose Slower Charging Whenever You Can

As electric cars get better, we've noticed that they can charge up faster. But it's not always the best idea to charge them super fast.

When you use a fast charger, it makes the battery get really hot and puts more stress on it. So, most car companies suggest that you charge your electric car more slowly at home, especially overnight if you can. Fast chargers are great when you're on a long trip, but it's a good idea to use them sparingly.

KIA says that if you charge your car slowly most of the time, your battery could stay healthier for longer. In fact, they say you might get up to 10% more driving range as the battery gets older.

So, it's okay to use a super-fast charger once in a while, like one that gives you 350kW, but if you want your car's battery to last a long time, go for a slower charger when you have the time.

Drive Safely

Drive Safely

Just like driving aggressively in a regular car can make it use more gas and put stress on the engine, driving an electric car (EV) too aggressively can harm its battery. So, it's a good idea to drive smoothly and gently to take care of the battery, just like you would with a regular engine to keep your car running well.

Even if you don't plan on keeping your electric car for a long time, it's still a good idea to keep the battery healthy. This can help you get the best range and performance, and it can also make the car more attractive to future buyers if you decide to sell it. Many electric cars come with apps that let you check the battery's health, which can be useful for keeping an eye on it and showing potential buyers if you sell the car later on.

To sum it up, it's important to read the owner's manual for your electric car. The manual will have specific instructions on how to take care of the battery, and it's a good idea to follow those guidelines for your particular make and model.

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