How do Electric Cars Cope in Adverse Weather?

It may not occur to you to consider what impact the weather has on your car but if you are buying an electric vehicle, it’s something to consider. 

Britain’s weather is known to have a mind of its own, so if it’s pouring down with rain or there’s a mini heatwave, do EVs struggle? 

Yes, electric cars are impacted by all extreme weather. A study conducted by AA shows that electric vehicles performance in cold weather decreases. They clarified that the range was reduced by 41% in -6.7 degrees. This impacted all models of electric vehicles that they tested. 

Hot weather has the same effect due to the heat decreasing the charge of the lithium-ion batteries found in electric vehicles. 


How to Manage Your Battery.

There are many ways to manage your electric vehicle battery to get the maximum life expectancy. 

Use Accessories Wisely – Running the air conditioning, heating or even the entertainment system will use a significant amount of energy. So using them in moderation will contribute to guarantee a great battery life. 

Preconditioning – Preheating or precooling can be done whilst your car is charging. You can do this through the app connected to your car, allowing you to precondition your car to a comfortable temperature before you even enter the vehicle. Doing this beforehand won’t decrease the battery range due to it being plugged in, enabling the car to save range when you’re driving. 

Use Economy Mode – Maximise your vehicle's battery thanks to economy mode. It may reduce acceleration rate and limit some aspects of your car but it’s worth it when you’re driving in bad weather. 

Anticipate braking – This allows for the car to use its regenerative braking system. Sudden hard braking causes the car to use its conventional friction brakes; these don’t recover energy. When you anticipate braking and slow down by reducing acceleration or slowly press on the brakes, this allows for electricity to be generated and stored. 

Stick to the speed limit or below – In extreme weather conditions you should always be careful of your speed. Not only does it keep you safe, but it will also help the battery work at its maximum efficiency.

Check your tyre pressure – Warm or cold weather will affect your tyres. Not having the correct pressure will impact the performance of your electric vehicle, just the same as they would affect performance on petrol and diesel cars. Most newer cars will have a tyre pressure monitoring system which will notify you when they need checking. 


Written by Lois | 3 min read
01 Aug 2022

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