Are you considering purchasing a Chevy Bolt or Bolt EUV but aren’t sure what it takes to maintain an electric vehicle (EV)? You’ve probably heard that EVs require much less servicing than traditional gas-powered vehicles. While that’s true, there are still some key points to be aware of to ensure your EV runs smoothly. Our auto experts at Huffines Chevrolet Plano have put together a handy guide to EV maintenance so you know what to expect.
How EV Maintenance Differs From Gas-Powered Vehicle Maintenance
The main reason for the big difference in the level of maintenance that vehicles with an internal combustion engine require compared with EVs has to do with their design. Gas-powered vehicles contain two dozen mechanical components that you won’t find in an EV, including parts such as drive belts and spark plugs. In addition, EV owners avoid engine oil changes, transmission servicing, and regular filter replacements.
However, certain EV parts use the same equipment as gas-powered vehicles and, therefore, require maintenance. You’ll need to rotate your tires every six months, change your windshield wipers every year, and replace the cabin air filter every three years. These tasks will cost you significantly less than the average cost of maintaining a gas vehicle. Some sources suggest EV owners pay as little as one-third of the average cost of maintaining a gas-powered car.
Over the longer term, you’ll need to monitor the condition of your tires so you know when they need replacing. The tires on EVs are exposed to just as much friction as those on cars with internal combustion engines, so their life spans are about the same. One way to determine whether the tread on your tires is too worn is to perform a coin test.
You’ll probably need to check your EV’s brakes less often than you would the brakes in a gas-powered vehicle. That’s because many EVs use regenerative braking to slow down your vehicle. Regenerative braking uses the vehicle’s power to recharge the battery when you brake, which slows down your vehicle without applying the brake pads as firmly. However, there’ll be times when you will use your brake pads. You should still have your brake system inspected on a regular basis, perhaps once a year.
Maintaining Your EV’s Battery
The most expensive part of an EV by a considerable margin is its battery pack. EV manufacturers usually provide a long warranty for the battery since they’re built to last a decade or more. For instance, Chevy equips its new Bolt EUV with an eight-year, 100,000-mile battery pack warranty. The warranty may cover things such as periodic coolant flushes, which are needed to keep the battery’s thermal cooling system functioning properly.
EV battery packs generally don’t require maintenance over the course of their lifetime. That said, following some important guidelines can help lengthen your battery’s life. The first is to avoid allowing your battery to run extremely low on charge. Most EV experts recommend you aim to charge your battery when it has about 10% of its charge left. This doesn’t just help lower the risk of running out of power — it can also help preserve your battery’s ability to retain a charge for longer.
For similar reasons, avoiding charging your battery to a full charge is a good idea. EV battery experts suggest the optimal charge should take your battery to around 90% capacity. Repeatedly charging it above this amount can lead to a phenomenon referred to as “overcharging,” which can deplete the battery’s ability to retain its charge over time.
Another point you shouldn’t forget is that EVs have a standard 12-volt car battery to power the electronics. This battery will need inspecting from time to time and may require replacing as your vehicle gets older.
Maintaining Your EV at Home
Carrying out some simple maintenance steps at home can help your EV perform to the best of its abilities. These tasks include checking your tire pressure every month, topping up the pressure when necessary, and washing the underside of your vehicle with water every six months to remove corrosive materials. You should also check the connections of your EV’s 12-volt battery every six months and clean them if necessary.
One benefit of following these easy maintenance steps is that it allows you to inspect your vehicle. If you see anything that looks damaged on your EV, make a service appointment at a local auto service center so a professional EV technician can take a closer look.
Why Choose Huffines Chevrolet Plano for Your EV Maintenance
If you’re searching for a reliable EV service center in Plano, stop by our Chevy dealership. At Huffines Chevrolet Plano, our team of auto technicians has the modern equipment and parts necessary to maintain your EV to a high standard. Whether your tires need rotating or your brake fluid needs replacing, we can take care of it for you.
Some parts of an EV are sealed so that maintenance can only be conducted by a trained professional. For example, the lithium-ion battery that powers your EV is sealed for safety reasons. Our technicians know how to safely maintain your battery when the time comes to flush its thermal cooling system.
You can relax in our comfortable waiting area while you wait for our service team to complete the maintenance tasks. Feel free to grab a coffee or browse a magazine, and we’ll have you back on the road in no time.
The two main takeaways from our EV maintenance guide are that EVs require much less maintenance than gas-powered cars, but the maintenance they do require is important. If you have any questions about how to look after your EV, don’t hesitate to contact us today. Our service experts are happy to advise you on how often to replace your brake pads or when it’s time for a new set of tires. We look forward to helping you with your EV maintenance needs.