In today’s world, we are constantly ensuring that we are fully charged, from our phones to our laptops, even our power banks to charge the previous two devices and, for some of us, our electric vehicles. When it comes to classic cars of course, for many the thought of EV hasn’t really crossed their minds. But with classic car electric conversions becoming more and more popular, there are tips to help you get the most from your cars battery pack. You see the internal combustion engine may be gone, but that doesn’t mean the EV system doesn’t require maintenance. It is not on the same mechanical level of course but some basic maintenance principles remain the same.
Throughout the years, many of us have at some point experienced battery degradation, in our smartphones at least. However, electric cars can be a touch more expensive and the losses in capacity can have noticeable impacts. As such, finding ways to increase the longevity of our electric cars and ensuring that we are not caught out by a low battery is important.
It is not just calendar aging that ages a battery, there is also a number of other factors for the degradation in electric car batteries. From the state of the battery charge, all the way through to extreme temperatures which can also have a dramatic impact on the battery life. Here is a selection of tips and tricks to ensure that you not only maintain a healthy car battery, but also so that you never run out of charge on your electric car.
Whilst this might seem like a bit of an obvious point, one of the best charging tips is what has been recommended by the car manufacturer themselves. This is because each manufacturers guide is tailored to specifically to their car and what they believe is best for it.
For instance, when a car is not in use many automakers recommend that users keep their cars plugged in allow charging stations to provide power to run battery cooling or heating systems. This is because, the car will otherwise have to draw power from the battery pack to run these systems. Other electric car manufacturers, such as Nissan, recommend leaving it unplugged to allow the car to enter what they call a “deep sleep” mode.
Reduce rapid charge
If you need to charge your car quickly then rapid charge is great, especially if you are only stopping briefly between the tasks you are trying to complete that day or if you are on a long drive. However, consistent use of rapid charge overtime slowly degrades the battery faster in comparison to a slower charge. Opting to charge your car using a dedicated home charge, such as an overnight charge, is much better for the health of the battery.
Keep the charge below 100%
Although it is a habit many of us have charging our electric items till they have reached 100%, the case is a little different with electric cars. With lithium batteries, it is best to charge them to about 80%, instead of letting them fully charge.
Similar to combustion engine cars, taking your motor on regular, short drives is good for the overall health of the vehicle. If your car has been sat on your drive for quite some time now, consider taking it for a short run sometime soon to keep everything moving.
Convenient charging station locations
When finding a place to charge your electric car, the most obvious choice is going to a petrol station which has designated electrical vehicle charging stations available for customers. However, in recent times, there has been an increase in Destination Charging. What this entails is the ability to charge your car at a charging station, whilst you go to a shopping centre, town centre or even leisure centre.
The innovative approach is a win-win solution for both parties involved. For the consumer, it allows them to complete two tasks at once, charging their car, whilst completing a task they wanted to achieve. For the shopping centre, car park or leisure centre, it can help to increase the footfall as the convenience of the electrical vehicle charging stations is a very appealing factor to consumers. Additionally, it can even encourage more regular visits from electric vehicle drivers due to the convenience of the charging stations.
Stay in the shade
On days when the sun is shining, try to find a shade place to park your electric vehicle whilst you are going about your day. If you own a classic, its probably something you do out of habit as there’s nothing worse than getting into an old car that’s been baking in the sun. This approach will not only keep the interior of the car cool, but it will also help to prevent the thermal management system under the hood from running the entire time. If it does it can unfortunately drain your batteries trying to keep the temperatures down for optimal efficiency. In addition to this, it will also help to ensure that the battery does not overheat whilst you are away, nor does it drain your battery charge.
Take time in warmer weather
When it is hot outside, take a little bit more time to put your battery on charge. This is because lithium batteries do not heat, and so they tend to drain the car battery a bit more on days when it is hot outside.
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