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Electric car cold weather charging and driving tips
Electric cars are made for efficient driving during any season. A few simple best practices will help you get the most efficient use from your electric car’s battery.
Check your tire pressure: Tires play a particularly important role in the efficiency and energy budget of an electric car. Be sure to regularly check your tire pressure and keep your tires properly inflated during the cold months. Your tire pressure decreases more easily in cold weather because the air is denser.
Clean your air filters: Check your cabin air filters and replace them if dirty. A clean air filter allows for improved air flow and can reduce how much your car windows fog up, thus reducing the need for you to run your defroster, helping conserve battery power.
Coast and mind the speed limit: Drive at a safe speed and keep a safe following distance to reduce the need for hard or excessive braking. The less frequently you need to use traditional friction braking, which does not regenerate energy, the better. Additionally, like conventional gas cars, electric cars require far more energy to displace air at higher speeds. Driving at lower speeds is a more efficient use of energy.
Cabin pre-heating: Preheat your car while it’s still plugged into a charger. Use an app to begin preheating your car before you hop in, or simply wait to unplug your car until it is heated sufficiently. This reduces the need to run your heating system and tap into your battery supply as much.
Bonus: your car’s seat heaters use less energy than the cabin heating system.
Time your charge just right: Maximize your opportunities to charge your car fully while on the go. Timing your charge to end just before you leave will help warm up the car and make the battery more efficient. Don’t let your electric car charge to full capacity and then have your car simply sit there, as this would accelerate battery capacity loss.
- Keep your car out of the cold: When possible, park your electric car in a garage. Can’t park in a garage? Try to park out in the sun while out and about – it’ll help warm up your interior and your car’s battery.