How To Save Money On Charging Electric Cars

by IndianAuto Team | 04/11/2018
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When you decide to purchase an electric vehicle, you probably consider environmental impact the most important factor. Nonetheless, do you know that electric cars can save you some cash on fuel costs?

Earlier this year, the government set the goal of having 30% of vehicles run on electricity by 2030. To meet the objective of the government and demands from the consumer, many car manufacturers start to roll out new models of electric cars or plug-in hybrid electric ones. As more and more people actually consider purchasing an electric car or a plug-in hybrid, the interest in electric car charging and possibly saving some money on charging increases.

There is a thing about charging that not a lot of people are aware of: not all charging outlets are the same. Charging a car in many ways is not very different from charging a phone. If you are vigilant, you may realise that with some outlets, your phone takes only 2 hours to go from zero power to fully charged, and with some outlets, you wait for more than 4 hours until the phone reaches the 100% mark. The ideal scenario would be having a great outlet that maximises the efficiency of charging your car, and thereby increasing the fuel efficiency of the car and saving some money on charging.

charging electric car in India

There are several ways in which you can save your money on charging electric cars

1. Know your batteries

Car batteries can be one of the followings: lead-acid battery, lithium-ion battery, or nickel metal hydride. Though the act of charging is basically the same for all kinds of battery: plugging in an electric socket, letting the electric current run through the battery, and thus creating an accumulation of electrons at the negative end of the battery; there are still a few different things you have to keep in mind with each type of battery so that you can prolong the battery life and save money on charging.

1.1. Lithium-Ion Battery

Most electric cars nowadays use this kind of battery. With lithium-ion battery, you need to pay attention to two things to achieve the most efficient charging and maintain a long battery life.

The first thing is that you have to keep the battery as cool as possible. Overheating lithium-ion battery greatly affects its longevity. You should choose to park and charge in the shades or in a well-ventilated garage as much as possible. Charging in strong sunlight is strongly recommended against as the battery can heat up quickly.

The second thing is that you should keep the battery in the 30% - 80% range and avoid fully charge or fully drain the battery if possible. Maintaining lithium-ion battery at this level actually prolongs its lifespan.

lithium-ion battery

You should avoid overheating lithium-ion battery in your EV

1.2. Lead-Acid Battery

Like lithium-ion battery, you would want to avoid overheating lead-acid battery. Fully draining lead-acid battery is not good for its longevity but you should charge it to 100% as much as possible. Another thing to keep in mind about this kind of battery is that fast charging is to be avoided as it affects the battery in a negative way.

lead-acid battery

Like with lithium-ion battery, you shouldn't let the lead-acid battery in your EV become too hot

1.3. Nickel Metal Hydride Battery

With nickel metal hydride battery, it is recommended that you fully charge and fully drain the battery at least once every three months. The lifespan of this kind of battery will be shortened if it is overheated so you should keep it as cool as possible.

car-battery

The first step to saving money on charging an electric vehicle is to know what kind of battery your car uses

2. Know which power source you can use

To save money on charging an electric car, you need to know what power sources, both public and private, that you can use and then find out how much it costs to charge. After that, you should make a plan to charge at the cheapest power source as many times as you can. Charging at unknown power sources is the last resort option that you need to avoid at all costs if you want to be economical. There are some free public charging stations in big cities like New Delhi and it is best if you can utilise the free resource.

electric-vehicle-charging-station

Do some investigation to know which power source has the best charging price

3. Keep your car at top condition

It is common sense that your electric vehicle loses its efficiency when it is in poor condition and is not serviced regularly. An electric vehicle that is regularly serviced has more efficient engine which uses less energy to operate. So if you want to save some bucks on charging electric cars, it is highly recommended that you service your car regularly to keep it at top condition, so the electrical system is able to convert as much energy as possible to run the car.

electric-car-servicing

Regular servicing your electric vehicle allows the car to run with more efficiency and less energy waste

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