Perhaps it’s because of their relative freshness on the roads, or how they are only available in the most recent models, there’s something about electric cars and their engines that make them seem a little futuristic. We all dreamt of flying cars like those in Back To The Future Part II when we were younger. While the future isn’t quite what we were promised, electric cars can sometimes feel like science fiction. This image of electric cars as high-tech future vehicles may put you off purchasing one. Petrol and diesel engines have been around for years, whereas high quality electric engines are relatively new. So just how hard is it to repair an electric car?

Difference between electric and combustion engines

You may already know the difference between an electric and combustion engine, but for those who don’t know here’s a quick summary. Electric engines are powered solely through the electric battery, whereas combustion engines work by burning the fuel and using that to power the drivetrain. As a result, combustion engines require many more parts to function, such as the crankshaft and the catalytic converter.

So does that make them easier to repair?

In a nutshell, it does. Electric cars have far fewer parts to them and so require less maintenance to keep them in a healthy condition. While you need to service a regular combustion engine car once every few years, the space between services for an electric car can be much longer in terms of time or miles covered.

Do mechanics need any additional expertise?

Like with any modern car, mechanics will need to learn how to adapt to the market they are working in. The relatively small number of moving parts should in theory make it simple for a mechanic to learn how to fix an electric car, but there is more difficult computer systems found in electric cars, and mechanics and garages have started to specially train teams on the intricacies of EV's. As part of the MOT, these systems need to be working to a high standard, and so any mechanic who deals with newer cars will need to be able to maintain the computer system, as well as the drive system.

What if I want to repair the car myself?

If you feel mechanically minded, then there’s no reason why you shouldn’t feel confident to repair your electric car too. The thing you shouldn’t do, whether it’s an electric car or any other type of repair, is go in without an idea of what you’re doing. Get a manual for your car, or look online for video tutorials to guide you. Electric cars have a huge online presence with many dedicated fans happy to share their advice on how to maintain your vehicle. Identify what needs to be fixed, look online for advice, then proceed. If in doubt, get someone who knows that they’re doing to take a look. Otherwise you could be facing an even bigger repair bill then what you would have faced to begin with.

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