Though some of the latest electric vehicles can run for more than 200 miles on a charge, so-called range anxiety remains a common malady among EV owners. It can be nerve wracking to drive with one eye on the road and another on a vehicle’s state-of-charge gauge, and nobody wants to wind up stranded at the side of the road with a depleted battery.
Fortunately, it’s easy to wring maximum miles out of a charge and even extend an EV’s range far beyond its rated distance. Here’s 10 reasonably simple ways to do it:
Simply put, lead-footed driving will drain your EV’s battery at an accelerated rate. It may be tempting to leverage an EV’s immediate torque for quick launches, but it’s more prudent to take it easy when accelerating from a standing start.
Try to keep your speed under 60 mph whenever possible. You’ll not only avoid getting a speeding ticket, you’ll bolster your battery range in the process. The Department of Energy says you’ll use 14% less energy by reducing your speed by 10 mph. If your EV has an “Eco” mode, engage it for more gentle acceleration; if it has a sport mode that enlivens things, keep it switched off.
Whenever possible, leverage your EV’s energy-recovering regenerative braking function as you come to a stop, and use the brakes only when necessary. Enable your car’s maximum regenerative setting to send extra power back to the vehicle’s batteries while decelerating.
Running an EV’s heater, especially at full blast, puts a big drain on battery power. In the winter, dial down the climate control and instead rely on the heated seats and heated steering wheel (if your vehicle is so equipped) to keep things toasty, which uses far less energy. Also, pre-heat your car while it’s plugged in so you can use the climate control less while driving.
Likewise, operating the air conditioning consumes battery power at a rapid rate. Try running only the fan, and not the compressor whenever possible; driving with the windows open is an obvious alternative. Unfortunately, the latter will take a toll on your vehicle’s aerodynamics at higher speeds and, in turn, reduce its operating range slightly. That’s because the more aerodynamic “drag” that’s placed on a vehicle, the more energy it takes to run it, especially at higher speeds. Still, operating the AC at full chill will drain the battery far quicker than will driving with the windows down. Again, pre-cool the car in summer months while it’s charging to help reduce the need to run the AC once you hit the road.
Sources suggest that over 25% of all vehicles on the road have improperly inflated tires. As with a conventional auto, driving an EV with under-inflated tires will not only increase its energy consumption, but can lead to uneven and/or premature tread wear. Check the air pressure frequently using a simple tire gauge, as it can vary by an average of one PSI (pound per square inch) with every 10-degree (Fahrenheit) change in air temperature. Have the tires properly inflated according to the PSI recommended by the automaker. This information is usually noted on a sticker that’s affixed to the driver’s-side door frame.
As any automotive engineer will tell you, reducing a vehicle’s weight is the easiest way to boost its efficiency. To that end, get the junk out of the trunk, as carrying an additional 100 pounds of cargo can increase a vehicle’s energy consumption by 1-2% percent.
Avoid installing exterior accessories like roof racks and cargo carriers on your EV. Again, the aforementioned aerodynamic drag such items create will cause added energy consumption at higher speeds.
It may take less time to get to a given destination by driving on the highway, but you can help maximize your car’s operating range by instead choosing a route that allows you to drive steadily at lower speeds. Avoid areas known for heavy traffic. Traversing steep grades likewise uses added energy, so avoid hilly or mountainous areas if possible. If your EV has a navigation system that can suggest energy-efficient routes, be sure to use it.
You may not want to keep your car plugged into its charger whenever it’s in the garage. That's because most EV batteries will slowly self-discharge when they’ve finished charging. You may be able to recover a few extra miles of range by timing the charge so the battery pack is at full strength just before you hit the road. This can also be advantageous to the battery’s long-term health, and if your electricity provider offers a lower rate for off-peak use, it can save you a few bucks in the process.
As always, MYEV.com can provide you with other pertinent information about buying and owning electric vehicles, and is the Internet's top free marketplace for buying and selling a used EV.
ABOUT THIS ARTICLE:
2011 Nissan LEAF Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) have a battery instead of a gasoline tank, and an electric motor instead of an internal combustion engine (ICE).
CARFAX One-Owner. Red FWD Single Speed Reducer 80kW AC Synchronous Electric Motor SUPER CLEAN,LOW MILEAGE,GARAGE KEPT BEAUTY! 92/106 Highway/City MPGPrice: $8,949 Mileage: 20,125 Location: NOVATO, CA Above average: $1,225 Total Range: 73 Mi Trim: SL Range 73 Mi Mileage 20,125 Location NOVATO, CA Trim SL Price $8,949 Above average $1,225
2012 Tesla Model S Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) have a battery instead of a gasoline tank, and an electric motor instead of an internal combustion engine (ICE).
This is a pristine Signature Model S with custom sport leather seats and free super charging and performance motor.P85Price: $33,900 Mileage: 96,000 Location: Boulder, CO Below average: $12,350 Total Range: 265 Mi Trim: 85 Range 265 Mi Mileage 96,000 Location Boulder, CO Trim 85 Price $33,900 Below average $12,350
2018 Tesla Model S Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) have a battery instead of a gasoline tank, and an electric motor instead of an internal combustion engine (ICE).
We love this 2018 Tesla Model S 75D ! The following is a list of some of the feathres:Build date is April 2018 so it has the latest & fastest MCU computer & I believe lifetime free internet is grandfathered in if privately purchased. Smart air suspension with GPS memory, Front & rear trunks with 3...Price: $62,500 Mileage: 37,510 Location: Hillsborough, NC Below average: $41,950 Total Range: 259 Mi Trim: 75D Range 259 Mi Mileage 37,510 Location Hillsborough, NC Trim 75D Price $62,500 Below average $41,950
2019 Jaguar I-Pace Battery electric vehicles (BEVs) have a battery instead of a gasoline tank, and an electric motor instead of an internal combustion engine (ICE).
Flow Auto Center is pleased to offer this good-looking 2019 Jaguar I-PACE Narvik Black S with the following features:Priced below KBB Fair Purchase Price! CARFAX One-Owner. Clean CARFAX. 80/72 City/Highway MPG USED CARS RENEWED AND MADE NEARLY NEW! Our Quality Renewal Process (QRP) provides 100,000...Price: $50,999 Mileage: 9,597 Location: Greensboro, NC Below average: $22,586 Total Range: 234 Mi Trim: S AWD Range 234 Mi Mileage 9,597 Location Greensboro, NC Trim S AWD Price $50,999 Below average $22,586
Change Your Location
FREE ONLINE APPRAISAL