The invasion of electric cars was a predicted one, but no one expected it to be as fast as a Tesla Roadster. The number of EVs on the road is increasing day by day. Owning an EV has many advantages over a normal passenger car. Maintaining a car for its smooth running is one of the biggest hurdles faced by a car owner. But, unlike an IC engine/ hybrid car, it is remarkably easy and less expensive to maintain an EV thanks to lesser moving parts, reduced number of fluids and extended brake wear intervals. In this article, I’ll be guiding you through some tips to maintain an EV.
1. BATTERY SYSTEM REPLACEMENT:
The Battery is what powers the EV. Now, on an average, an electric car battery can run for 160,000 kilometers. So, you have miles to go before replacing one. This is probably the only area where you’ll have to shed some amount. The following step will help you to get a little more out from your battery:
- Try not to charge your EV fully. Charge until it reaches 80% and leaves room for your car’s regenerative braking.
- Do not drain your battery. Lithium-ion prefers partial cycle rather than running down.
- In short, do not overcharge nor drain it out. Keep your charge at the intermediate levels.
2. TIRE CONDITIONS:
Tires are very important for the smooth running of electric cars. EVs weigh about 20-30% more than a normal passenger car. Electric cars deliver very high torque, and consequently, it will give more stress to the car’s tires during acceleration. Try to avoid rapid acceleration from standstill and keep track of your tire pressure. Maintaining good tire pressure will aid in a smooth ride and longer tire lifespan. Make sure the pressure is not below or above the recommended value so as not to ruin the tires. Ensure your EV’s wheels are aligned every 6 months. Proper wheel alignment is bound to make the tires last much longer
3. COOLANT SYSTEMS:
Every EVs has a thermal management system. The performance of Lithium-Ion battery cells is greatly impacted by their temperature, they suffer from the Goldilocks effect, they do not perform well when too cold or too hot, which can lead to permanent and extreme damage of the cells or accelerated degradation. So in addition to cooling, heating of the cells may also be required at lower ambient temperatures to prevent damage during fast charging when the cells are too cold; this is because the internal resistance of the cells rises when they are cold. Typically, a flooded dielectric cooling system will be primarily cooling by extracting heat from the surfaces of the cells. Tab cooling is best achieved by a water-based coolant or an organic refrigerant circulated through a cold plate system built into the battery pack by a pump. The coolant can be used to remove heat from the pack and to also provide heating of the pack for fast charging at low temperatures. So, it is essential to check on the coolant levels and keep it topped up from time to time.
4. FLUID CHECK:
Apart from the coolant, the only other fluids that are present in an EV are the brake fluids and the windshield wiper fluid. Because of the retardation of the electric motor and specific braking system on EVs, there is significantly less degradation. You can get away with not changing it up to two years, depending on the make and model of your electric vehicle. Windshield wiper fluid is to be added more often, with taking into account temperature changes which come with different seasons. Choose between summer and winter blends according to the external temperature in order to avoid fluid freezing in the winter.
5. BRAKE WEAR:
Brake wear is very less when compared to an ICE vehicle. An EV employs regenerative braking system, a method of braking in which energy is extracted from the parts braked, to be stored and reused. Thus not only it limits the wear on your EVs vehicle pads and rotors but also charge its battery and will give you enough juice until the next charging station.
6. REGULAR SERVICING:
An EV does not require muffler, spark plug, and wires, motor oil, transmission oil, radiator fluids, pistons, etc., thus servicing an EV won’t take up much time and will not cost you much unlike an ICE car. The only problem is that for the first few years one will have to take the car directly to the dealership as not many mechanics in town has the technical knowledge or skills to service an EV. But with more and more EV rolling out, this won’t pose as a problem anymore.
Proper care should be given to your car to ensure its longevity and smoothness of the ride. The above tips will help you to maintain your EV in the best possible manner. Contrary to the common belief, maintaining an EV is fairly easy and an inexpensive process. Unlike an ICE car, EVs do not pollute the environment and won’t bring in much trouble to the owner. Many automobile manufacturers are coming up with latest technology and improved batteries in their EVs at a much considerable rate. In India, Mahindra has put an all out dominance in the EV sector. The company currently has 2 EVs, the e-Verito and the e2O Plus. Mahindra recently announced the release of its new EV, the e-KUV100 NXT, thus showing its strong conviction that EVs are the future of the Indian auto industry. Owning an EV will not only save you money but will also provide you with a peaceful and relaxed drive.