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Beginners Guide to Maintaining an EV



Beginners Guide to Maintaining an EV

Electric vehicles are fundamentally different from cars with engines and need to be maintained accordingly. Understanding how to care for your EV is crucial to optimise its performance and longevity.

Whether you’re new to driving or it’s just your first time owning an EV – here’s what you need to know about maintenance.

Do EVs need an MOT?

UK law states that all cars over 3 years old must have an annual MOT to be certified as roadworthy. This includes EVs, hybrids and any vehicle driving on public roads.

The test is slightly different for electric cars in that there is no emissions testing. However, the fundamentals are the same. Checks are carried out around the tyres, brakes, steering, seatbelts, lights, windscreen and general vehicle safety.

If yours is due for renewal soon, book your MOT online as far in advance as possible to avoid running over your expiry date. 

How to look after the battery

One of the most important components of an EV is the battery. This supplies energy to the electric motor that powers the car. It’s by far the most expensive part to replace, so looking after it should be a priority for any owner.

Batteries degrade over time, that’s inevitable. But you can maximise the lifespan and performance of your battery with a few simple steps:

  • Keep your battery charge at healthy levels: Having your charge below 20% and above 90% for extended periods can be harmful to the battery. Keep the charge between these two figures as much as possible and avoid charging to full capacity unless you specifically need the charge for a long trip.
  • Use rapid and ultra-rapid charging sparingly: Slower charging methods are more beneficial for battery health so try to use these wherever possible. Home charging should be your primary method when you need to top up, but rapid charging is useful for long trips.
  • Exercise the battery regularly: Battery health is best preserved with regular, short trips. Don’t leave your EV stationary for more than a few weeks because this can lead to premature battery degradation.

What other maintenance is recommended?

Other EV maintenance needs are similar to traditional cars for the most part.

Keep an eye on the tyres, brakes, electrics and fluid levels regularly. Many of these inspections and tasks are best done by a trained technician, although you should watch out for any warning signs.

You can rotate your tyres periodically to avoid unequal, excessive wear if you wish. Keep pressures at the recommended levels and ensure that there is a sufficient tread to maintain your traction on the road.

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