5 tips to extend the range of your electric car
Range anxiety can be a real issue for electric vehicle drivers, especially drivers new to electric vehicles. For daily commuting it’s not so much of a worry as the average European commute is roughly 30 minutes, but when it comes to longer trips that fear might creep back.
But, good news! It has never been easier to drive electric than it currently is. The range for new EVs is improving each year with many having a range of 300 to 500 km, and there are more public charging facilities than ever before. In Europe alone, there are currently more than 285,000 public charging locations. If you’re off for a road trip with your EV, and want to learn how to extend your range, we have you covered with 5 easy tips:
Tip 1: Be smart about keeping your car cool
Road trips can be hot, so air conditioning is a necessity. But before turning it up to the max, remember, it can reduce your battery range a bit. Keeping the AC turned off might not be an option, as it can lead to some unpleasant and sweaty miles, so let’s look at what you can do:
- If possible, pre-cool your car, while it’s still plugged in, right before leaving for your trip
- Don’t use the coldest setting, try keeping the temperature between 20-23 degrees
- Always try to park in areas that have a lot of shade
Tip 2: Cruise control is your battery's friend
It can be fun to put your foot down on the accelerator and speed up quickly, especially with an EV's quick torque, but this is a sure way to drain your car's battery and may even lead to a speeding fine or two. Keep your speed steady, and make the most of Adaptive Cruise Control (ACC) if your car has it.
Tip 3: Check your tyre pressure
Tyres might seem like a strange area to look at when talking EV range, but having under inflated tyres leads to a higher rolling resistance, and poorer battery economy. Properly inflated tyres can increase your electric vehicle's battery range from 3-5%. That being said, make sure you don’t overinflate your tyres! Overinflating will lower your tyres' life span, and make your vehicle harder to control, increasing the risk of an accident.
Tip 4: Travel light
For a road trip, this might be one of the hardest tips to do! But casting a critical eye on what you’re packing, is one of the easiest ways to increase your range. The extra weight means your car and its battery need to work harder to keep moving. Before your pack for your trip, make sure you first clean your car of any unnecessary items, and only pack what you think you will need.
Tip 5: Parking equals charging
Take a break and recharge yourself and your EV’s battery.
Plan your trip well, and make sure you include time for breaks. It might be tempting to rush the drive to get to your end destination, but for you and your passengers' safety, it’s important to take breaks. As a general rule, you should take a 15 minute break for every two hours of driving. With this in mind, you can plan your route making sure you choose break locations that allow you to get some fresh air, have a bite to eat, and charge your car. A good rule for a road trip with an EV, is that parking always equals charging.