Preserving the battery of your electric car: tips and tricks

Electric vehicle batteries are generally reliable, which is what allows manufacturers to guarantee them sometimes up to 8 years as is the case with Tesla. However, the battery loses storage capacity as it is used. This loss of autonomy occurs more or less quickly depending on the maintenance that is carried to the battery. Having an average lifespan of 5 years, this element is likely to break down well before this period in the event of too much stress. How to preserve the battery of an electric car? Explanations.

Observe the optimal charge level

The degradation of the battery of an electric car is an unavoidable phenomenon, but it will occur more or less late depending on its use. Better use of the car helps to maintain the storage capacity of the battery in good condition and to do this it is important to respect the optimum charge level recommended by the manufacturers. The optimum charge level for an electric vehicle battery is between 20 and 80%. This means that the battery should never be charged beyond 80% and it should not discharge below 20%. Indeed, the maximum charge is not supported by the battery while the complete discharge can leave sequelae on the cells composing it. Recharging the battery beyond 80% and letting it discharge below 20% is not a big deal, as long as you don’t make it a habit. However, it is strictly inadvisable to go below the 5% mark.

Drive the car regularly

Electric vehicle users wishing to preserve the health of their battery will be tempted to limit the use of their vehicle. The life of an electric car battery is expressed in the recharge cycle, many owners believe that they should limit their trips to save on recharge cycles. To function well, however, the battery needs to be used, which implies regular driving. In this sense, the electric car is not suitable for the occasional driver. In fact, when the vehicle is left stationary for too long a period, the battery will empty to the threshold which will endanger it. In the event that the user has no other choice but to leave his vehicle unused, whether during the holidays or for other reasons, it is recommended to charge it up to 60 or 70%. It is also best to choose a covered, cool parking lot to protect the vehicle from extreme temperatures.

Favor short recharges

Heat is an electric vehicle battery’s greatest enemy. Anything that represents a heat source is likely to damage the cells that compose it. To preserve its storage capacity, it is therefore preferable to avoid any source of heat. Long recharging is one of them since it exposes the battery to high temperatures. Instead of recharging the battery all at once, prefer small loads of 40-50%, but more often. In addition, small charges also save on recharging cycle and extend battery life. Indeed, batteries have an average lifespan of 1000 charge cycles; however, one cycle is equivalent to a 100% recharge. By recharging up to 50%, the user does not complete a charge cycle.

Limit DC recharges

DC charging is defined as fast direct current charging accessible from public electric vehicle charging stations. Fast charging involves a high flow of power to fill the battery faster, but also causes a high temperature. Although fast charging is more comfortable in terms of time, too frequent use of DC charging is likely to damage the battery. Thus, it is advisable to favor normal daily recharging. It is quite possible to gain 80% autonomy during the night by using a 7 kW wallbox. The user will also benefit from off-peak hours when the price of electricity is cheaper.

Reduce the use of air conditioning and heating

Heating and air conditioning are essential equipment in regions with extreme temperatures. It is therefore not easy to do without it, yet this equipment draws energy directly from the battery. By limiting the use of heating and air conditioning, the user is able to optimize the range of the car and thus recharge the vehicle less often, which will have an impact on the longevity of the battery. According to studies, when the outside temperature is low and the heating is on, the loss of range of the car is likely to reach 40%. The car will therefore only benefit from half of its range, which will limit the driver in his travels.