10 Tips for Prolonging Your EV’s Battery Life

All responsible electric vehicle (EV) drivers will tell you that following EV battery charging best practices is crucial to prolonging your EV battery life and maintaining its efficiency. After all, an EV battery can cost anywhere between $4,000–$20,000, which makes up a large fraction of the overall vehicle price. 

In this guide, we’ll delve into the lifespan of electric car batteries and provide you with 10 valuable tips to help you get the most out of your EV battery.

If you’re new to using public charging stations, here are some unspoken rules you need to follow!

What Is the Lifespan of Electric Car Batteries?

Electric car batteries, commonly known as lithium-ion batteries, have made tremendous progress in recent years. They are designed to be durable and long-lasting. 

On average, these batteries can last between 8 to 15 years (about 100,000 to 200,000 miles), with most EV warranties starting at 8 years. Projected battery improvements suggest that future EV batteries will outlast an electric car’s lifespan.

An EV battery’s overall durability depends on various factors, such as: 

  • Usage
  • Environmental conditions
  • Maintenance

To ensure you’re following the EV charging best practices, always refer to your specific model’s manufacturing guidelines. This can help extend its lifespan to maximize your EV’s efficiency and longevity.

Let’s explore these 10 EV charging dos and don’ts that apply to most electric vehicles.

1. Don’t Charge Your Battery Past 80%

Avoid charging your battery to 100% and letting it drop below 20%. This can lead to faster battery degradation and affect your battery’s net charge capacity (the amount of energy your EV can use to move).

So what is the best way to charge an EV?

Keep your battery in the 20%–80% range for long-term health. Lower volt charging helps preserve your battery life but takes longer to charge. Rely on your private level 1 charger to charge overnight. If needed, use a level 2 or level 3 fast charging station to supplement your charge on the go.

You might also be wondering, “Should I run my EV battery down before charging?”

In short, no. Like gas-powered cars, electric vehicles should never “run on fumes” as it can reduce your EV battery lifespan.

2. Allow Your Battery to Cool Down Before Charging

Temperature affects your EV battery life and efficiency. In general, an EV battery performs better when warm but charges better when cool. Lower charge voltage and cooler temperatures preserve lithium-ion batteries specifically.

If you’ve been driving for an extended period, it’s good practice to allow your battery to cool down for a few minutes before charging it. Charging a hot battery can lead to increased wear and reduced overall battery life.

Having said that…

3. Avoid Driving in Extreme Temperatures

Extreme temperatures, whether excessively hot or cold, can adversely affect your EV’s battery efficiency and, as a result, your car’s range. High heat can accelerate battery degradation, while extreme cold can reduce your battery’s capacity temporarily. 

Modern EVs devote some energy to regulate their EV battery’s temperature, heating or cooling off the battery to stay within an optimal temperature range. If possible, park your EV in a garage or a shaded area to minimize exposure to harsh weather conditions.

4. Use Air Conditioning and Heating Sparingly

Air conditioning and heating systems are power-hungry components in any vehicle, and EVs are no exception. Use these features sparingly and efficiently. Consider preconditioning your car while it’s still charging to minimize the impact on your battery when driving.

5. Turn Off Unnecessary Features and Accessories

Features like headlights, the radio, and heated seats can consume valuable energy. Be mindful of your power usage and turn off these features when they are not in use to conserve battery life.

6. Keep Your EV Tires Properly Inflated

Proper tire maintenance is essential for all vehicles, but it’s particularly important for EVs. Underinflated tires can increase rolling resistance, making your EV work harder and draining the battery more quickly. Regularly check and maintain the correct tire pressure to optimize fuel efficiency and range.

7. Keep Your EV Battery Software Up to Date

EVs often rely on software updates as much as they do hardware updates. These software updates often include improvements to battery management, which can enhance both performance and longevity. 

Make it a habit to keep your EV’s software up to date. Smart cars will usually require over-the-air updates or automatic updates done through your car’s app when connected to WiFi.

8. Have Your EV Serviced Regularly

Besides software updates, you should also check your hardware. Regular maintenance is crucial to identify and address potential problems with your EV battery before they become serious issues. A well-maintained vehicle is more likely to have a longer battery life.

9. Use Regenerative Braking

Regenerative braking is a fantastic feature in many electric vehicles. It captures energy when you brake, converting it back into electricity to recharge the battery. By utilizing regenerative braking, you not only extend your battery life but also increase your EV’s overall efficiency.

Regenerative braking benefits include increased EV range as well as less maintenance since they reduce wear and tear on your braking system.

10. Avoid Sudden Accelerations and Decelerations

Your EV’s batteries are most efficient when driven at a constant speed. Sudden accelerations and decelerations require extra energy, which can reduce the overall lifespan of your battery. Smooth and gradual driving not only conserves battery power but also promotes a safer driving experience.

Which Charging Station Is the Best?

Extending your EV battery lifespan is not only cost-effective but necessary for continued performance improvement. Maintaining proper battery temperature when driving and charging is one of the main factors in prolonging battery life. Software updates and using regenerative braking can also improve EV range.

Your choice of EV charging stations can also affect your battery life. Using a level 1 charger for your regular charging needs helps maintain your battery capacity. If you’re on the go, use a reliable level 2 or level 3 fast charger to get a quick boost.
ChargeSmart EV is dedicated to providing reliable EV charging stations that help you get to where you want to go. Download the ChargeSmart EV app to locate ChargeSmart EV charging stations and other public chargers near you!