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Electric cars are touted as lower maintenance, but low doesn't mean zero. Here are some tips on electric car maintenance that you need to know.
Category: Car Maintenance Advice
Technology has made things much more convenient, and will continue to do so in the foreseeable future, the future that includes electric cars. Electric Vehicles (EV) are not only a greener option, they are also touted as low maintenance and easy to use, with a powertrain that is pretty much non-serviceable - just like an electrical appliance.
Electric cars still have to undergo regular maintenance. However, the scope of servicing and interval differ from conventional cars. Got an intention to drive an electric car in Singapore? Here are 5 essential tips for electric car maintenance.
1. Tyres - rotation, balance and pressure
Until the day we get hovering cars, like what you see in sci-fi films, you'll still have to deal with tyres. Whether its an EV, a hybrid car or a conventional ICE car, you'll require these round things wrapped with rubber for it to move.
Ensuring even tyre wear is one of the prerequisite for consistent and safe tyre performance. Electric vehicles are inherently heavier due to their massive battery packs, and this can result in premature tyre wear. Hence, one should pay extra attention to maximising tyre life.
This means that you should keep a keen eye on the tyre pressure as well as sticking to the tyre rotation interval in order to enjoy optimal fuel consumption and a tyre tread life.
2. Brakes - fluid and pads
Yes, electric cars have regenerative braking to help with slowing down. In fact some cars are even programmed to allow 'one-pedal driving' with extremely effective regenerative braking.
Even so, brakes are still an important part on electric cars. While their usage may be greatly reduced when compared to Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) vehicles, the brakes will still wear out eventually and need to be replaced. Likewise, brake fluid is still required for the brakes to work, and should be checked regularly to ensure safety.
Well, there's a good news though - you'll probably have to change the brake pads less often as compared to an ICE vehicle.
3. Cooling system - coolant and ventilation systems
While there isn't an engine, the powertrain of an electric car still uses coolant to keep the powertrain's temperature in check.
Batteries don't fancy operating in high temperature conditions and yet, ironically, they generate plenty of heat. In order to ensure the lifespan and performance of batteries, an effective cooling system is required.
Thus, you'll still find coolants and ventilation systems in electric cars, and these need to be in perfect working condition in order to ensure the normal operation of the electric car.
4. Miscellaneous components - air-con, wiper blades and suspension
Well, this shouldn't come as a surprise - electric cars are still cars. Powertrain aside, they still feature several other serviceable components.
This includes consumables such as wiper blades, light bulbs, as well as other systems such as the air-con and suspension that need to be checked and maintained from time to time.
5. Extra care for the battery - cooling, charging and discharging
The motor of an electric car is usually a lifetime, unserviceable component - it is expected to last throughout the lifespan of the car. However, the battery can often deteriorate or even fail before other components gives up.
In order to ensure the lifespan of the battery, there are several extra precautions that you need to take note of. We mentioned that batteries dislike high temperature, so you should avoid excessive temperature by choosing to park in sheltered areas or in the shade.
Batteries also dislike being kept in an extremely high or low state of charge, a rule of thumb that applies to most lithium-ion batteries, is to keep them between 20% to 80%. Quick charging will also increase wear on the battery, so you should go for a slower charge rate whenever possible. Lastly, avoid unnecessary hard launches as it will result in increased battery wear.
Keep these tips in mind, and you should be able to maximise your electric car's battery life!
Here are some related articles that might interest you
5 things you can do to make your tyres last longer
The six most common myths when it comes to brakes
Taking care of your car's cooling system
All about maintaining electric car batteries in Singapore
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