How To Charge An EV Safely & Reliably For Longer Battery Life

Following good EV charging practices and adopting a good smart EV charging solution / operator will help maintain battery health and keeping your EV running in great shape.

As Electric Vehicle (EV) ownership has been on the rise in the last few years, there is greater awareness among EV owners to find ways to enable EVs to ride the long haul. EVs are mainly driven by lithium-ion batteries which typically have a lifecycle of 10-15 years. Besides the usual wear and tear caused by regular use, factors like fast & frequent charging and exposure to extreme heat can impact the battery life of the EV and result in exacerbated value depreciation over time. Hence EV owners can adopt several good practices to ensure that they can retain the natural battery life of EVs.   

1. Avoid parking and charging the vehicle in extreme heat 

Indian summers are known for extreme soaring temperatures, and the wisest thing for an EV owner is not to park the vehicle exposed to extreme heat and temperature. Today, most good EVs come with an automated temperature control system, which drains the battery to keep the temperature. Since such a system requires the vehicle to use its battery, the battery undergoes severe damage in case the vehicle is exposed to extreme temperature for a long time. Similarly, EV users can avoid charging their vehicle in the open for prolonged periods of time during extreme heat to minimise any possible risks from overheating of the battery.  

2. Avoid frequent use of fast charging 

Fast and Rapid DC Charging wherein vehicles can achieve an 80 per cenr charge in 30 min to 1 hour (or less) allow the convenience of a quicker charging. While an attractive feature, prolonged use of fast charging at all times can lead to battery degradation and impact battery life over a period of life. Similarly, charging the EV to the fullest requires frequent charging, which can degrade the battery’s condition and affect its lifespan. Therefore, an EV owner should set a regular charging schedule and use fast charging only during emergencies to complement regular charging of the electric vehicle. 

3. Minimising full discharge or 100 per cent charging

This may seem counter-intuitive but avoiding a full discharge or full (i.e. 100 per cent) charge actually helps retain the EV’s battery health. If either of the above are done frequently, they add to the strain on the lithium-ion batteries and can lead to faster degradation of battery health and reduces its life. A good practice is to charge the EV only up to 80 per cent regularly, with full charge being done only when really required. At the same, if the battery discharges to less than 20 per cent, then the EV battery should be charged.

4. Ensure optimal battery charge state during long parked 

Leaving your EV either fully charged or fully discharged for long periods in parking without use (e.g. when you are away on holiday) can also lead to degradation of battery health. Using an intelligent charger with auto-scheduler can allow you to leave your vehicle on a timed charging when you are away so that the EV battery level can be maintained above a minimum threshold level (at least 20 per cent). This can ensure that your battery charging state is well maintained ensuring good battery health.   

In Conclusion

For an existing or prospective EV owner, it is important to evaluate the right EV OEM and battery quality when purchasing the EV to ensure that you get the right and safest product. At the same time, maintaining the EV battery in good health over time is critical to ensuring that you have a safe EV which does not bring huge costs in refurbishment or servicing during its normal service life. Following good EV charging practices and adopting a good smart EV charging solution / operator will help maintain battery health and keeping your EV running in great shape.  

Disclaimer: The views expressed in the article above are those of the authors' and do not necessarily represent or reflect the views of this publishing house

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electric vehicles EV charging EV Safety


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