How to extend the life of your EV battery: Tips and best practices
Follow these tips for optimal performance and longevity
Make your EV range last longer
Electric vehicles (EVs) are powered by lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries, which slowly deteriorate over time, resulting in decreased battery capacity and reduced range. To ensure optimal performance and longevity, EV drivers should follow best practices for driving and charging.
The average lifespan of an EV battery is upwards of 10 years, and it’s estimated that they lose one or two per cent of their range per year. By adjusting charging habits and driving behaviour, it’s possible to extend the life and efficiency of both your EV and its battery.
Keep reading to find out how you can get more miles from a single charge:
Check your speed
Like a petrol or diesel vehicle, your EV mileage heavily depends on how you drive. The faster you drive, the more energy your car consumes, and the quicker your charge drains. One of the simplest ways to extend your EV range is to maintain a steady speed, avoiding sudden acceleration and braking. It may seem like a minor change to your driving habits, but it can make a big difference to your range.
Use eco mode
Several electric vehicles now come equipped with an eco-mode designed to prioritise energy conservation. This mode limits power usage in features that consume the most energy, such as the accelerator and air conditioning. The power that would have been used for these features can keep your EV travelling further. Likewise, if your EV has a sports mode, it’s recommended to use this sparingly and switch it off when possible.
The 80/20 rule
The more charge cycles an EV goes through, the quicker the battery capacity drops. To prolong your EV battery’s life, it’s best practice to charge up to 80% and to refrain from letting the battery level drop lower than 20%.
This should be perfectly attainable for daily usage, but if you’re embarking on a long journey, it is crucial to assess whether your battery level corresponds to the distance you must cover. Charging to 100% won’t immediately damage your battery, but it’s best not to make a habit out of it.
Avoid regularly rapid charging
The growing number of rapid chargers has made EV charging significantly more convenient for many drivers. However, it is important to note that excessive use of rapid chargers can have a negative impact on the lifespan of your EV battery.
Due to the constant, high electricity currents, frequent rapid charging can lead to battery degradation, reducing your vehicle’s overall range over time. Limiting rapid charging to situations when it is necessary is best, such as during long car trips or when time is limited for recharging.
Keep tyres inflated
Under-inflated tyres create more resistance between the road and your vehicle, so the battery must work harder to maintain the same level of power.
Aside from decreasing your range, under-inflated tyres can also lead to increased and uneven tread wear over time, costing you more money down the line.
Avoid extreme temperatures
Using your EV’s heating and air conditioning functions drains your battery power at a fast rate. To preserve charge, take advantage of your car’s pre-conditioning function. While your electric car is charging, you can adjust the temperature using the mains electricity instead of draining the car’s battery. This allows you to maximise the use of your car’s battery on the road.
To stay comfortable in the winter, heated seats are a more efficient way to keep warm than the main heating system. In the summer, try opening the window to cool down or try using the car’s fan without the compressor when possible.
As technology evolves, the efficiency of EV batteries and their chargers is improving rapidly. This means that the electric cars of the future will have the capacity to take us to even greater distances with even less hassle. For now, a few small tweaks to your driving and charging habits can greatly improve your EV’s range, which should be sufficient. By following these tips, you can extend the life and efficiency of your EV and its battery, saving you money and reducing your carbon footprint.
For more EV advice and guidance, contact our team of experts who can answer any questions and resolve any queries you may have.