8 Hot Tips for Driving your EV in Summer - We Power Your Car
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8 Hot Tips for Driving your EV in Summer

8 Hot Tips for Driving your EV in Summer

With summer weather reaching peaks of 40 degrees in some areas of the UK, you may be thinking – will the heat impact my EV? The answer, unfortunately, is yes. In fact, electric vehicles can be affected by both extreme heat and also freezing conditions. But don’t sweat it! In this blog, we will share our top tips on how to mitigate the negative effects of the summer heat.

How will extreme heat impact my electric vehicle?

Let’s get into the nitty-gritty and first explain how heat can impact your electric vehicle:

  1. High temperatures can decrease your EV’s range (how far your electric vehicle can travel on a single charge). How? Because as your battery tries to keep itself cool, it eats up more energy. In turn, you won’t travel as far as your EV usually does after a full charging session. If you then add in the use of other gadgets and features that help keep the temperature down (like blasting your air-conditioning), your usual range will decrease even further.
  2. The life source of your electric vehicle is its lithium-ion battery, and when exposed to higher temperatures, it’s at risk of overheating. If your battery gets too hot, it can affect the cells’ chemistry, encouraging premature battery degradation (where your EV will lose some of its charging capacity).

When explaining how to manage your electric vehicle in hot weather, and with the previous effects in mind, it’s best to split our tips into two categories – maintaining range and protecting your EV’s battery.

So, let’s get started!

woman's hand charging electric car in sunshine

How to maintain your electric vehicle’s range in summer:

1. Use Eco-Mode

Most electric vehicles nowadays will have Eco-Mode, a nifty feature that helps to conserve your mileage by reducing the energy spent on other functions that tend to zap your charge behind the scenes, such as air conditioning. Additionally, this crafty feature can help with aggressive accelerating, dulling the accelerator responses and helping conserve precious charge.

2. Take advantage of preconditioning

Preconditioning is a popular feature for warming your electric vehicle’s interior in cold weather (as stated in our blog here); however, it is also beneficial during the summer. If your EV has the preconditioning feature, you can remotely pre-cool your car’s cabin before you enter your vehicle. Not only does this help your range by adjusting your EV to its optimal temperature, so it’s not working harder throughout the day, but it also ensures a more comfortable and sweat-free driving experience. It will even save you time as you can set your EV to precondition ahead of your journey, ensuring no time wasting when it comes to blasting aircon or de-misting your windows – a win-win solution! Tesla is one of the most common electric vehicles with this feature, and you can even set it up remotely via the app, meaning you don’t have to leave the house!

3. Travel light

Electric vehicle batteries are heavy, so when coupled with excess luggage, more energy will be used to transport the additional weight. With this in mind, we recommend packing light during summer drives to best preserve your range.

tesla electric vehicle with hand touching screen

How to look after your battery in summer:

4. Shade is your EV’s best friend

The easiest and most obvious (although potentially most important tip!) is to avoid parking in direct sunlight. Instead, opt to park in a shady spot. Whether this is under a tree, garage, or anywhere for that matter, just as long as your EV is out of the sun for prolonged lengths of time (and legally parked!), it will help to stop your battery from overheating (and will help maximise range too as your EV won’t utilise essential energy on cooling it down!).

5. Only charge to 80%

Industry experts state that keeping your charge between 20%-80% should be the norm in order to conserve good battery health, but it is especially vital during hot temperatures. Just like mobile phones, the longer you charge, the hotter the battery gets, and if you mix this with the sunny weather, it’s a recipe for an unhappy battery (not to mention the increased risk of faster battery degradation).

6. Limit rapid charging

As mentioned previously, if you charge your electric vehicle for long periods, your battery can overheat, and even though rapid charging decreases the length of time needed for charging, the high kW rate will raise the temperature of your EV battery significantly. Therefore, the general rule of thumb is to stick to 7kW fast charging during these hot conditions and avoid rapid charging stations. By this, we mean either utilising a fast public charger or your home electric vehicle charger, as they are usually rated at a maximum of 7.4kW. Want to learn more about the different charging speeds? Read our blog here.

If you find yourself in desperate need of a rapid charger, you can still use one. However, we recommend avoiding charging during the hottest times of the day and only top up your EV (don’t fully charge!).

7. Don’t charge immediately after driving

Your electric vehicle battery will be hot from the previous drive, so it’s best to avoid charging it straight away (especially if your charger is in direct sunlight!). The best time to charge your electric vehicle is overnight or early morning when the temperature drops. Plus, charging will be cheaper since you aren’t topping up during peak times!

8. Keep your charger plugged in at home

Most EVs benefit from thermal management systems, so if your electric vehicle is plugged in to charge, it will regulate your battery’s temperature without draining it. Moreover, keeping your charger plugged in at home helps with the preconditioning feature, as even though you have set your EV to cool, your charge won’t decrease due to the constant flow of electricity from the supply. Although, it might be wise to set your electric vehicle to stop charging once it gets to 80% to support battery health. But don’t fret; your electric car won’t overcharge if left plugged in due to their intelligent and advanced systems, meaning no increase in electricity bill!

Solar Charging

Whilst this is technically not a tip, summer is the best time to take advantage of free solar energy. Not only will charging with a solar electric vehicle charger decrease your electricity bills, but it will also help to save the planet. Some of our best-selling solar EV chargers include the Indra Smart PRO and the VCHRGD Seven, which come solar-ready (you do not have to purchase solar as an additional add-on).

man driving car in sun

Are you looking to get a home EV charger installed? We Power Your Car can sort it for you!

If you are thinking about getting an EV home charger installed, please get in touch with us for helpful and unbiased advice. We install nationwide with quick installation times.

Get a quick and free quote for your smart home charger installation today!

You can browse our exciting range of dedicated EV home charge points here.  Or, if you still don’t know where to start and prefer to speak to someone directly,  call us on 03333 44 96 99, our expert customer service team are always happy to help.

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Standard Installation
Our instant price is fixed if it falls within our standard installation package plus any additions that you have selected (extra cabling for example). This package covers the majority of homes in the UK. Before we undertake your installation we will carry out a digital survey to check that nothing has been missed. After reviewing the survey results some additional work may be required in order to complete your installation safely and to the required standards. If this is the case, we will contact you well before the installation date and advise the cost of any required work. You can then continue with your installation, or alternatively we will refund you in full if you do not want to proceed.

Included in our standard installation is :
• Fitting of a single phase charge point to a brick or plaster wall or other suitable permanent structure
• Up to 10 metres of cable, run and neatly clipped to the wall between the electricity supply meter / distribution board and the charge point.
• Routing of the cable through a drilled hole in a wall up to 500mm (20 inches) thick if this is needed.
• The fitting and testing of electrical connections and protections required for the charge point.
• An additional three way consumer unit, if required
• Installation of a Type A RCBO in an RCBO enclosure
• Up to 3 metres of plastic trunking to conceal interior wiring.
• An O-pen earth protection device if the charge point requires it. (This is NOT an earth rod)
• Up to 4 hours of labour from your installer to complete the work.
• Electrical testing of the whole installation.
• Handover and setup of the charge point and any app that may be needed.

Not included in our standard installation (additional work) :
• Where the installation requires additional cabling over and above the amount you have told us about.
• Upgrade/replacement of the main incoming supply fuse where the local DNO (eg Northern Powergrid) would need to attend site.
• If the charge point is to be mounted on a post/pedestal rather than an existing wall and where you have not selected a post as an extra cost option in your order.
• Installation of a charge point to a three phase supply.
• Where gas and water mains bonding (earthing) is not in place at your property. If this is not in place, additional work would be required before installation of the charge point.
• Any groundwork that has not been selected during the order process.

A Surge Protection Device is not included in our standard installation. 

What else you need to know :
• On the day of installation, please ensure that the area around your consumer unit (fuse box), incoming electricity supply meter and proposed charge point location (including where the cable is expected to be run) is clear and free of obstructions.
• We will need your WiFi password as part of the installation process in order to connect your charge point to the internet. Please have this available for the installer. Details will not be kept.
• The charge point must be on your own designated off road parking.
• The charger will be fixed in line with current guidelines at a height where it cannot be hit by a vehicle.
• Our installers are not able to enter loft spaces; lift floorboards or flooring; take apart any furniture of work above a height of 2m. If you anticipate that any of this may be required, then please contact us and we can discuss in more detail and provide you with a quotation.
• Should there be extreme weather conditions our installers may not be able to continue with you installation if it is not safe to do so (for example flooding). They will always do their best to complete the work where they can.

If you have any questions then please contact our customer service team who will be happy to help. Please also read our terms and conditions.

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