Tips for EVs during the winter months: How to drive and charge?

Tips for driving and charging an EV during the cold winter months

It is not an unknown phenomenon, batteries performing worse in cold temperatures. This applies to your Smartphone and therefore also to your EV. The driving range of your electric car can be greatly affected by the cold. Worse, if you completely neglect certain focal points, it can even be pernicious for the battery.  

The main reasons for reduced driving range in cold weather are related to several factors. The chemical process of lithium-ion batteries, where the ions move slower in cold conditions, causes the battery to perform worse. In addition, heating the inside of the car and the battery itself absorbs a lot of the driving range. At temperatures of -6.7° C, battery performance can even drop by as much as 20% (Norwegian Automobile Federation).  

It is therefore strongly recommended to keep some points of interest in mind during the winter months. Here are four very important points for you to keep in mind.

Parking your EV inside

If you have a garage, it is always best to have your car parked in the garage. Keeping the car at a moderate temperature allows the battery to hold its charge better and longer. Charging is then also faster. In case of snowfall, an enclosure would also help. In fierce, cold winds, it may even help to shelter the electric car from icy winds by parking it behind a wall, for example.

Laadstations in de parking
Temperatuur regelen in de wagen

Warming up in the morning before departure

Let the electric car warm up first thing in the morning for   15 to 30 minutes before driving off with it. This improves battery performance when it is cold outside..  Tip: leave your EV still plugged in when heating up This will prevent you from using the battery to warm up the car. If you want to leave immediately without warming up, give the car at least a minute to get going when you turn on the ignition.

Leaving the battery sufficiently charged

Don't let the car's battery get too low. Many EVs reserve 15-20% for warming up the battery in cold weather. If your battery level then drops below 20%, it becomes difficult for the car to sufficiently warm up the battery. Rule of thumb: The car performs best when the battery is at 50% and functions best between 20% and 80%. For more info on your EV's battery life, read more here  alles over.

Batterijniveau van de EV

Heating the car in other ways

The driving range of the car also drops at lower temperatures. To conserve the driving range, it is also advisable, if you have it, to use seat and/or steering wheel heating rather than heating the whole interior with the Airco. This causes much less energy loss, saving the driving range.