Electric Car Batteries Explained
Electric cars are an important element of lowering carbon emissions and car manufacturers now offer a much bigger choice of electrical vehicles to suit a range of budgets and needs.
While EVs generally cost more to purchase than non-electric vehicles, the government grant of up to £2,500 and the potential future cost savings make EVs a very attractive alternative to combustion engines. Due to having fewer moving parts, electric cars also tend to require less maintenance.
Whether you are thinking about switching to an EV or you already have one, this article answers some of the key questions about using EV batteries.
How do electric car batteries work?
Electric car batteries run off electricity, with a battery pack powering the electric motor to provide the energy to make a car accelerate, rather than using petrol or diesel. The battery pack gets recharged regularly, so that it is ready to be used again.
Some people charge their vehicles at home, while some businesses or councils provide charging units in public spaces. Currently, there is a government initiative called the Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme, which provides grant funding to cover up to 75% of the cost of installing a vehicle charge point at domestic properties. Compared to regular trips to the petrol station, home charging is a much more convenient way of powering your car.
How long does it take for electric car batteries to charge?
How long it takes for the battery to charge will depend on the size it and the speed of the charging point. Typically, it takes around 8 hours for an EV car to charge from empty to full. With a rapid charger, you can add 100 miles of charge in 35 minutes if you do not have time for a full charge.
How long do electric car batteries last?
The length of time that the battery will last vary depending on the type of vehicle. Some EV car batteries will last up to around 250 miles before they need to be recharged again, while other models might last only 150 miles.
Electric car battery life and maintenance
Electric car batteries will usually last between 10 and 20 years, depending on how well they have been maintained. Several manufacturers provide an 8-year warranty on the battery for peace of mind. You can extend the lifespan of the battery by keeping it charged between 50% and 80% as often as you can. This is because the heat that generates when your battery is fully charged will cause damage. Keeping the battery between 50% and 80% charged prevents the battery from heating up.
Will I need to replace my electric car battery?
Whether you need to replace your battery will generally depend on how long you keep your car. If you are likely to change your car every five years, you probably will not have to replace the battery but if you have had it for over 10 years, you probably will. If you think you will keep the car for over 5 years, it is a good idea to buy a car with a battery warranty for longer than five years.