Weather. It can affect our mood, our days, our health, even our technology. But did you know it can affect our car batteries? Most notably, Electric Vehicle (EV) Batteries. Hot or cold weather both can affect your vehicle in different ways. Although EV batteries are becoming less susceptible to the weather as they develop, like any vehicle, it can still cause some effects that may leave you feeling gloomy.
With the colder months approaching and the anticipated temperature drop, EVs aren’t the biggest fans of the cold months. But don’t let the weather dissuade you from owning an EV as there always ways to counter the cold.
Precondition the vehicle
If you precondition the cabin and battery whilst still charging your vehicle, it’ll allow you to get the most range possible out of the vehicle before you set off on your journey. This is because the cabin and battery will already be up to prime temperature. Many EVs have application features that will take care of this for you, and as EVs develop in general, undoubtedly this will become a standard feature.
Use Eco Mode
Although Eco mode will make your driving a little slower, using it will squeeze in some extra miles. Using Eco mode in the winter will also give you an advantage when you lack traction, due to the reduced urgency and torque available from the car.
Try to use regenerative braking
Regenerative braking will store energy during braking and take it back to the battery. Energy that has been recuperated can be used for accelerating the vehicle, therefore reusing the energy that would have been lost.
Keep it warm
Parking your vehicle in the direct sunlight or inside a garage will help keep your vehicle’s cabin and battery naturally warm, thus saving battery power and range miles.
Looking ahead to next summer when the temperatures rise, EVs don’t particularly like it, and it can have several effects on an EV. When it’s just too hot to handle, here’s how to enjoy your EV all summer long!
Leave your vehicle plugged in
Even when your vehicle is stationary and unplugged, an EV will continue to perform processes that will sap its energy. When it’s hot, these processes will work harder than usual to keep the battery cool, and it could drain a vehicle of its energy overnight. Leaving the vehicle plugged in will prevent this loss of extra power.
Precondition the vehicle
The greatest loss of power and drain on the battery comes from running the air conditioning. For EVs with the latest technology, you can pre-cool the cabin whilst plugged in and take advantage of the cooling seats function. For those without these features, run the air conditioning on low and open the windows. In temperatures of 35⁰C, with the air conditioning running, driving range can decrease by up to 17%. Making your EV feel like a fridge can cost you valuable miles in range!
Keep your cool behind the wheel
Sudden acceleration and heavy braking can be bad for any vehicle, but particularly EVs. Wear and tear will occur when we drive too fast and have to slam on the brakes, make sudden movements, screech tires, or just accelerate too fast. Whether you must leave 10 minutes earlier, or skip the morning coffee stop, avoiding the speed/brake cycle can add years to the lifespan of your battery. When slowing the vehicle down, try not to brake and just take your foot off the gas and let the vehicle slow down on its own. Just by doing this you could save up to 100 miles in range.
Seek the shade
Understandably, when its busy, any spot will do, but finding one in the shade, under a tree or the shadow of a building or sign will help keep your vehicle cool naturally. If left sitting in the sun all day, you’ll want to run the air conditioning as high and as cold as possible just to tolerate it, but this will affect your battery’s performance. Using a sun-blocking windshield cover can also help.