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    how long do batteries last in electric cars

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    Electric Car Battery Life, Cost of Replacement, Recycling & Leasing

    Learn about electric car batteries: how they work & how they're different to what's in your phone, to range, reliability & what happens when they wear out

    All about electric car batteries

    Learn about electric car batteries, how they work and how they're recycled.

    How do electric car batteries work?

    Where internal combustion engined cars get energy from burning petrol or diesel, an electric vehicle gets its power directly from a big pack of batteries.

    These are much like a scaled up version of the lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery in your mobile phone - EVs don't use a single battery like a phone, they use instead a pack which is comprised of thousands of individual Li-ion cells working together. When the car's charging up, electricity is used to make chemical changes inside its batteries. When it's on the road, these changes are reversed to produce electricity.

    Electric car battery technology

    EV batteries undergo cycles of 'discharge' that occur when driving and 'charge' when the car's plugged in. Repeating this process over time affects the amount of charge the battery can hold. This decreases the range and time needed between each journey to charge. Most manufacturers have a five to eight-year warranty on their battery. However, the current prediction is that an electric car battery will last from 10 – 20 years before they need to be replaced.

    How a battery and the car's electric motor work together is surprisingly simple – the battery connects to one or more electric motors, which drive the wheels. When you press the accelerator the car instantly feeds power to the motor, which gradually consumes the energy stored in the batteries.

    Electric motors also work as generators, so when you take your foot off the throttle the car begins to slow down by converting its forward motion back into electricity – this happens more strongly if you hit the brakes. This regenerative braking recovers energy that would otherwise be lost, storing it in the battery again and so improving the car's range.

    Electric car battery lithium-ion

    A Lithium-ion (Li-ion) battery is a type of rechargeable battery used in electric vehicles and a number of portable electronics. They have a higher energy density than typical lead-acid or nickel-cadmium rechargeable batteries. This means that battery manufacturers can save space, reducing the overall size of the battery pack.

    Lithium is also the lightest of all metals. However, lithium-ion (Li-ion) batteries contain no lithium metal, they contain ions. For those wondering what an ion is, an ion is a an atom or molecule with an electric charge caused by the loss or gain of one or more electrons.

    Lithium-ion batteries are also safer than many alternatives and battery manufacturers have to ensure that safety measures are in place to protect consumers in the unlikely event of a battery failure. For instance, manufacturers equip electric vehicles with charging safeguards to protect the batteries during repeated rapid charging sessions in a short period of time.

    Battery capacity explained

    Can't see the infographic image? Read it here

    Electric car battery life

    Once an EV battery loses its capacity to power a vehicle, it can be used to power a home or building by contributing to a battery storage system. A battery energy storage system stores energy from batteries that can be used at a later time.

    If you power your home with renewable energy such as wind or solar, you can also pair it with an EV battery. You can store it up to use throughout the night when wind and sunlight are reduced. Or even during the day alongside solar or wind energy. This method of generating energy can help you save on bills and reduce the amount of energy you use from the grid.

    The battery on an electric car is a proven technology that will last for many years. In fact, EV manufacturers guarantee it. Nissan warrants that its electric car batteries will last eight years or 100,000 miles, for example and Tesla offers a similar guarantee.

    This might seem remarkable when the battery in your mobile phone begins to wear out after only a couple of years, but during that time it might be fully charged and discharged hundreds of times. Each of these so-called charge cycles counts against the life of the battery: after perhaps 500 full cycles, a lithium-ion phone battery begins to lose a significant part of the capacity it had when new.

    Source : www.edfenergy.com

    Electric Car Battery Life: Everything You Need to Know

    While an electric car battery will likely lose its ability to fully charge over time, it will most likely not die all at once.

    Electric Car Battery Life: Everything You Need to Know

    Regardless of the simplicity of electric cars, many buyers are concerned that the electric car battery life will only make it to a maximum of 65,000 miles before needing to be replaced.

    BY HEARST AUTOS RESEARCH

    APR 13, 2020

    T3 MAGAZINEGETTY IMAGES

    An electric car's mechanisms tend to be much simpler than those of a standard-powered vehicle. A few examples listed by My EV include the following:

    An electric motor has fewer moving parts than a gasoline engine.

    An electric car is fitted with a single-speed transmission.

    Unlike conventional automobiles, electric cars are not equipped with many of the usual parts that eventually break and need to be replaced or repaired.

    Regardless of the simplicity of electric cars, many buyers are concerned that the electric car battery life will only make it to a maximum of 65,000 miles before needing to be replaced. However, while an electric car battery will likely lose its ability to fully charge over time, it will most likely not die all at once.

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    Battery Basics

    According to My EV, standard gasoline-powered cars are equipped with lead-acid batteries, while electric cars use lithium-ion battery packs that are similar to the batteries used in laptops and cell phones. The following are a few benefits of electric cars' lithium-ion batteries:

    They provide a greater energy density compared to rechargeable nickel-metal hydride batteries.

    They tend to hold their charge longer, even when not in use.

    They're usually made up of many individual cells that are connected rather than one massive unit.

    The term kilowatt-hour (or kWh) is often used when discussing an electric car's battery capacity. When it comes to kilowatt-hour, the more a battery has, the better. Purchasing a car with a higher kilowatt-hour rating is like buying a vehicle with a bigger gas tank. The larger the tank or kilowatt-hour capacity, the more miles you can drive without needing to stop.

    While a battery's kilowatt-hour help to determine the distance you can travel on one charge, it's important to remember that an electric car's management system prevents the vehicle from doing either one of the following:

    Fully charging Fully discharging

    According to My EV, this practice helps to preserve the battery's usable life and efficiency.

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    The Environmental Protection Agency reviews electric cars based on their energy efficiency and their operating distance after a full charge. However, if you purchase an electric car and it's not getting the estimated mileage for its model, this doesn't necessarily mean there's an issue with its battery.

    Battery Life Expectancy

    Every battery in an electric car sold in the U.S. comes with a warranty that lasts for a minimum of eight years or up to 100,000 miles, says CarFax. For example, Kia offers a battery pack warranty for 10 years or 100,000 miles, while Hyundai provides a lifetime coverage of its electric cars' batteries.

    This standard warranty is excellent, but remember to take a look at the fine print. Some manufacturers only cover the battery if it completely dies and cannot hold a charge, which does not happen often. Brands like BMW, Chevrolet, Tesla, Volkswagen, and Nissan will cover a battery pack if its capacity drops to a certain percentage, usually 60 to 70 percent.

    One major point to remember about a car's expected battery is that heat and lithium-ion do not pair well together. Cars that are located in hotter climates will typically experience a faster battery depletion. This is why most electric vehicles are equipped with a liquid-cooled battery pack.

    Another thing that can diminish batteries' lifespan is using Level 3 fast-charging stations. These stations can charge the battery up to 80% in 30 minutes, but they can also overheat the battery. Carfax warns that this can affect the battery's long-term performance and longevity.

    Safety and Maintenance of an Electric Car

    Electric cars sold in the United States are required to pass the same safety testing and standards as those of conventional cars. In addition to these standard safety practices, according to The Office of Energy Efficiency & Renewable Energy, electric cars also have specific standards they must meet such as:

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    Limiting chemical spills from their batteries

    Secure placement of the batteries in the event of an accident

    Keeping the chassis a healthy distance from the high-voltage system to avoid electric shock

    In terms of ride quality and stability, an electric car offers a smoother ride and is less likely to roll over than conventional cars due to their lower center of gravity.

    As far as maintenance goes, all-electric vehicles are much easier to keep up with than conventional vehicles because they have less fluids to change, such as oil and transmission fluid. They also have fewer moving components.

    Electric cars are equipped with advanced batteries that will eventually deplete, but as mentioned previously, these are usually covered by eight-year/100,000-mile warranties. States that have followed the emissions warranty coverage periods of California offer 10-year minimum coverage, while Nissan provides additional coverage for five years or 60,000 miles.

    Source : www.caranddriver.com

    How Long Should An Electric Car’s Battery Last?

    An electric car's battery is the vehicle’s most critical – and expensive – component. Fortunately it should be able to go the distance.

    EV 101

    HOW LONG SHOULD AN ELECTRIC CAR’S BATTERY LAST?

    BYCEYHAN CAGATAY, EDITOR

    IT’S THE VEHICLE’S MOST CRITICAL – AND EXPENSIVE – COMPONENT. FORTUNATELY, IT SHOULD BE ABLE TO GO THE DISTANCE.

    In many ways an electric car is mechanically simpler than a conventionally powered vehicle. There are far less moving parts in an electric motor than a gasoline engine, an electric car uses only a single-speed transmission, and EVs avoid over two-dozen common automotive components that will eventually fail and need replacing.

    Yet one area of concern that keeps coming up in consumer surveys regards an electric car’s battery life. In a recent study conducted by Cox Automotive, 46 percent of those considering an electric car fear the battery pack would only last for 65,000 miles or less. To be sure, replacing an electric vehicle’s battery is an expensive proposition. For example, a new battery pack for a Chevrolet Bolt EV is reportedly priced well in excess of $15,000, and that’s not including the cost of labor.

    However, while an electric car’s battery pack will eventually lose its ability to hold a full charge, rest assured that it’s not likely to fail altogether, but rather lose its capacity gradually over time. At that, we’ve yet to see reports of older battery-driven vehicles headed to the junkyard because their power cells were depleted. Nissan reports having to swap out only a relative handful of batteries in its Leaf EV, despite selling many thousands of units over the last eight years in production.

    BATTERY BASICS

    The lithium-ion battery packs used in electric cars are similar to those used in cell phones and laptop computers, only they’re much larger. They’re far different than the heavy lead-acid batteries used in conventional cars and have a higher energy density than rechargeable nickel-metal hydride batteries. They’re also less prone than other battery types to lose their charge when not being used. EV battery packs generally contain a series of connected individual cells, perhaps several hundred of them depending on the model, instead of a single massive unit.

    An electric car’s battery capacity is expressed in terms of kilowatt-hours, which is abbreviated as kWh. More is better here. Choosing an EV with a higher kWh rating is like buying a car that comes with a larger gas tank in that you’ll be able to drive for more miles before needing a “fill up.” At that, be aware that an electric car’s management system prevents the battery from either becoming 100 percent fully charged or 100 percent discharged to preserve its efficiency and extend its usable life.

    The Environmental Protection Agency rates electric cars according to their energy efficiency and estimates each model’s average operating range on a full charge. However, as they say, your mileage may vary. If you own an electric car and find that you’re not getting anywhere near the estimated range, that doesn’t necessarily mean the car’s battery pack is becoming seriously depleted.

    For starters, driving at higher sustained speeds will tend to use more battery power than will stop-and-go around town use. That’s counter-intuitive for many people as it’s the opposite of how a gas-engine car works, which uses less fuel while cruising at highway speeds than in traffic. Also, it takes more power to propel a car that’s a full load of passengers and cargo than one that’s occupied by only the driver.

    Importantly, extreme temperatures, especially bitter cold, can hamper both a battery’s performance and its ability to accept a charge. Using the heater or air conditioning also draws battery power at a greater than average clip. A study conducted by the AAA found that when the ambient temperature dips to or below 20°F and the vehicle’s heater is in use, the average electric car’s operating range drops by 41 percent. When the mercury hits 95°F and air conditioning is in use, an owner can expect the range to fall by an average of 17 percent.

    BATTERY LONGEVITY

    Though some electric car buyers take out extended warranties to salve any fears of excess battery depletion, it’s not particularly necessary. At that, the batteries in all electric cars sold in the U.S. are covered under warranty for at least 8 years or 100,000 miles. Kia covers the battery packs in its electric cars for 10 years/100,000 miles, while Hyundai goes a step further by bumping it up to lifetime coverage.

    Be aware, however, that some automakers only cover the battery pack against a complete loss of its ability to hold a charge, which would be extremely rare. Others, including BMW, Chevrolet, Nissan, Tesla (Model 3) and Volkswagen will replace the pack if it falls to a specified capacity percentage while under warranty, which is usually 60-70 percent.

    But how long would it be before an electric car loses its ability to hold a full charge? As mentioned above, while an electric vehicle’s battery pack will tend to degrade slightly with each charge and discharge cycle, it’s an extremely gradual process. For example, according to data compiled by the organization Plug In America, the battery pack in a Tesla Model S will only lose around five percent of its original capacity over the first 50,000 miles, with the rate of depletion actually slowing down from there. In a recent Tesla discussion thread on Reddit, most of those owning a Model S reported losing only a few percentage points of the car’s initial battery capacity after several years of use.

    Source : www.myev.com

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