Electric Vehicle Ownership FAQ

Road to EV ownership

Welcome to our electric vehicle ownership FAQ section! Owning an electric vehicle can be a little intimidating, especially if you’re new to the game. But don’t worry, because EVs come with a ton of great benefits, like lower operating costs, environmental friendliness, and an incredibly smooth driving experience. We’ve put together this section to answer some of the most common questions about owning an electric vehicle, so you can make an informed decision about whether it’s the right choice for you.

Question: How can I tell when it’s necessary to recharge my electric vehicle?

Answer: While gas cars and electric cars both have a gauge that displays remaining fuel and estimated travel distance, the way they function is fundamentally different. With electric vehicles, the distance they can travel on a single charge is determined by the amount of electricity consumed per mile, measured in miles per kilowatt. This is crucial knowledge for anyone looking to switch to electric.

On a full charge, most electric cars can travel between 114 to 516 miles, depending on the make and model. However, factors such as speed, hills, and weather can impact the rate of electricity consumption and reduce the vehicle’s driving range.

Fortunately, for most drivers, their daily commute is only around 50 miles, which is well within the range of most electric vehicles. Plus, electric car owners can easily charge their vehicles at home overnight, eliminating the need to worry about finding a charging station on the road, except for longer trips.

Question: How often do I need to recharge? Do I have to do it daily?

Answer: For those who own an electric vehicle, daily driving distance is typically around 50 miles. Fortunately, modern electric vehicles are capable of traveling up to 200 to 400 miles on a single charge, making them more than adequate for a regular day’s worth of driving.

If you have a level 2 EV charger at home, you can easily charge your electric vehicle overnight while you sleep and wake up to a fully charged battery. This eliminates the need to charge your car daily unless you plan on taking a long road trip exceeding your vehicle’s range of roughly 200 to 400 miles, depending on your EV model.

It’s possible that your apartment complex may not allow you to charge your car at home, especially if you live in an apartment. However, if there’s an electric outlet near your parking space, you can still recharge your battery at a slower rate. If you can’t charge your car at home, you’ll need to depend on DC fast and level 2 chargers while on the road.

All in all, electric vehicles are a practical and convenient option for daily commuters traveling less than 50 miles each day. With the increasing range of EV batteries, the need for frequent charging will become even less of a concern.

Question: How do I locate EV charging stations in unfamiliar areas? Can I charge my vehicle at home?

Answer:  For the EV driver on the go, finding a charging station can be a challenge. Thankfully, many electric vehicles come with a built-in trip planner to help navigate unfamiliar territory. This useful feature displays the nearest Level 2 or DC fast EV charger available, ensuring that you can recharge your vehicle when you need to. However, it’s essential to keep in mind that most electric vehicle charging is typically done at home. So while on-the-go charging is a great option, it’s not a substitute for regularly charging your EV at home.

Question: How can I determine if my electric vehicle has enough charge to reach my destination without needing to recharge?

Answer: Electric vehicle owners can take advantage of their vehicle’s built-in charging planner to make their travels more efficient. With this feature, drivers can simply input their desired destination, and the vehicle’s navigation system will determine the maximum distance that can be traveled on a single charge. If the destination is outside of the vehicle’s range, the planner will calculate the necessary charging stops and guide the driver to their final destination. This technology is just one of the many ways that electric vehicles are revolutionizing the way we travel.

Question: “Is it more expensive to purchase an electric vehicle compared to a gas-powered car?”

Answer: While electric vehicles may have a higher upfront cost, they prove to be more cost-effective in the long run compared to gasoline-powered cars. The price of electricity is considerably cheaper and more consistent than gasoline, making it a more stable option. Depending on your location and the electric vehicle model, driving an EV can save you around 50% on transportation costs when compared to gasoline vehicles.

In terms of maintenance, electric vehicles are significantly cheaper to maintain than gas-powered vehicles. Generally, EVs cost approximately half as much to maintain as gasoline vehicles. It’s important to note that luxury and premium EVs may be more expensive to maintain, but overall, electric vehicles require less maintenance.

Insurance costs for electric and gas-powered vehicles are similar. If an EV gets into an accident, the repair costs are comparable to those of gas vehicles, with the exception of Tesla vehicles. According to Road & Track’s Mack Hogan, “The average repair cost for a non-Tesla EV is just $269 higher than the industry average, according to collision repair software company Mitchell. But if your Tesla gets in a crash, it’ll cost $1347 more than average to repair…”.

To further illustrate the cost savings of owning an EV, InsideEVs.com has published an article using actual data from an EV ride-sharing service. Additionally, Electric Driver has compiled information on electricity costs, maintenance, and insurance costs by EV model and location to assist in estimating ownership expenses and potential savings.

Question: Can I buy the electric vehicle, or do I have to lease it?

Answer: If you’re considering an electric vehicle (EV) purchase, you’ll be pleased to know that most manufacturers provide the option to buy or lease their cars. To stay up-to-date on the latest deals and promotions, be sure to check out each manufacturer’s website for more information

Question: What happens when my electric vehicle battery dies? How do I replace it?

Answer: Electric vehicle batteries typically come with a warranty from the manufacturer for a minimum of eight years or 100,000 miles, whichever comes first. However, the lifespan of these batteries can vary based on several factors, such as the frequency of charging and discharging cycles and exposure to extreme temperatures.

Not all batteries are created equal, and the quality of the battery can often be determined by the length and scope of the manufacturer’s warranty. With proper care and maintenance, electric vehicle batteries can last anywhere from 100,000 to 200,000 miles, depending on the make and model of the EV. As the battery ages, its ability to hold a charge will gradually diminish until it ultimately needs to be replaced. Keep in mind that the battery is the most expensive component of an EV, and the manufacturer can provide you with details and pricing for replacement when the time comes.

Question: How often do I have to get an oil change with an electric vehicle? 

Answer: Electric cars don’t need oil changes, saving drivers time and money. But, like any vehicle, they require maintenance to keep them running smoothly. Here are some key maintenance needs for electric cars:

  • Tire maintenance is crucial for safety and longevity, just as it is for traditional cars.
  • Replacing cabin air filters can improve air quality and reduce the risk of illness for passengers.
  • Regenerative braking can reduce wear on brakes, but regular maintenance is still necessary for all cars.
  • Certain models of electric cars require cooling system maintenance to ensure the battery operates effectively.

Overall, electric cars require less maintenance than traditional cars, but each manufacturer has their own specific requirements and schedules for maintenance.

Question: How do I own an EV if I don’t own a home or live in an apartment complex without charging?

Answer: For an apartment without a charger, charging your vehicle can be quite the challenge. But fear not, as there are various options available to you, such as public chargers. You’ll come across public chargers at many workplaces, as well as popular destinations like shopping centers, restaurants, and along major freeways. By conducting proper research on nearby locations, you can take care of your EV charging needs with ease while living in an apartment. Our charging map and article on owning an EV and living in an apartment can prove to be extremely helpful in finding compatible charging based on your EV model. So, go ahead and charge your electric vehicle without any worries, even if you reside in an apartment without a charging station.

Question: Is merging into traffic with an electric vehicle easy, or are they too slow?

Answer: Electric cars have an edge when it comes to merging into traffic. Thanks to the instant torque of their electric motors, they can accelerate more quickly and smoothly than traditional gas-powered cars. Some models even come with lane assist and rear cameras, which can help drivers feel safer and more confident while merging onto the highway. It’s just one of the many benefits of driving an electric car.

Question: Can electric vehicles survive a front collision without an engine to absorb the impact?

Answer: Electric vehicles are proving to be just as safe, if not safer, than their gasoline-powered counterparts in front-end collisions. This is thanks to a variety of safety features designed specifically for EVs. During a collision, the crumple zone in EVs absorbs energy, minimizing the force that the car’s occupants experience. Additionally, airbags, seatbelts, and reinforced passenger compartments also contribute to the overall safety of EVs.

Another advantage of EVs is their weight. Due to the weight of their batteries, they are generally heavier than gasoline-powered cars, which can be beneficial in a collision. This extra weight gives the car more stability and makes it less likely to be pushed around during a crash.

It’s worth noting that EVs have performed well in crash tests, which is a testament to the safety features included in their design. If you’re interested in learning more about the safety ratings of EVs, you can visit the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration (NHTSA) or Electric Driver, which uses NHTSA crash test information.

Question: Can I take my electric vehicle to my regular mechanic to get serviced?

Answer: When it comes to servicing electric vehicles, the dealership remains the top choice. The upside is that electric vehicles have fewer components in motion, which translates to less upkeep. In fact, with less maintenance needs and more affordable repair procedures, you’ll save both time and money on maintenance costs.

Question: Are Hybrid and electric vehicles the same?

Answer: When it comes to electric vehicles, there are two main types: the hybrid and the battery-electric vehicle. The former, also known as a HEV or PHEV, uses both gas and electric motors to run, while the latter solely relies on electricity. A PHEV can use either gasoline or electricity as a fuel source, while an HEV utilizes both an electric and gas motor.

Question: Do you have Hybrids on this site

Answer: Currently, our focus is exclusively on battery electric vehicles. Hybrid models have served as a transitional technology between traditional gas-powered cars and EVs. Several states, such as California, have implemented new regulations that will prohibit the sale of new gas-powered vehicles in the coming years. The automotive industry is also shifting towards electric, making battery electric vehicles the preferred option for EVs.

For those curious about the world of electric vehicles, we highly recommend perusing our FAQ for answers to common questions. Additionally, our needs-based search feature can assist in finding the right electric vehicle to suit your lifestyle.

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