There is a tremendous increase in demand for electric vehicles globally, especially in the United States of America.
According to the United States Department of Energy, over 600,000 electric cars and plug-in hybrid units were sold in 2021 by different automakers, compared to the 308,000 sold in 2020.
This means more individuals are interested in electric cars and want to ditch their vehicles with internal combustion engines to promote green technology.
However, it is essential to charge your electric car properly; charging the battery every night can harm your vehicle.
We will examine why you should avoid charging your electric vehicle overnight daily.
1. Reducing Charging Cycles Affects the Battery Life
Even though battery technology has significantly improved and is likely to improve in the future, electric vehicles use the same lithium-ion-based batteries like your phone and laptops and will break down over time.
It is important to note that each cycle of electric vehicle charging causes harm to the battery in the long run. It would be best if you didn’t charge too often each night.
For example, car lithium-ion batteries have incorporated buffer that prevents them from reaching 100% charge. The automaker added this to avoid charging cycles that cause damage.
You should allow the battery capacity to be around 10-20% before you recharge to 80%.
You can charge at home or use rapid charging stations to charge your electric vehicles.
Using fast charging stations can cause irreparable damage to your battery, and your battery must not be charged at the rapid charging stations every time.
Try to maintain your battery between 30-80% capacity as much as possible.
2. Charging Once Per Week May Be Sufficient
Based on the report from the United States Department of Transportation Federal Highway Administration in 2019, the average mileage of a driver is about 275 miles every week.
Many electric cars can be driven for an entire week without charging, and this distance is around two-thirds of most electric vehicles’ range.
For instance, Tesla Model S can travel 400 miles on a single charge, and the Audi e-Tron S model can travel 372 miles. On a full charge, most electric vehicles can travel 200 and 300 miles.
You can charge the electric car once every week to ensure a healthy battery for a more extended period.
3. Increasing Number of EV Charging Stations
Recently, the number of electric vehicle charging stations has increased. Based on the United States Department of Energy report, there are more than 48,000 charging stations in the United States.
For instance, California has the highest number of charging stations, with New York with 2,942 charging stations and Texas having 2,748 charging stations.
The charging station expenses vary by state, and the average cost is 18 cents per kWh. The average price for a full charge is between $15-20.
It is faster to charge in public places and relieves you from charging at home overnight.
Higher-mileage drivers are advised against excessive charging at the rapid electric charging stations. Slow charging is the best option compared to charging at rapid charging stations.
Impact of Frequent Charging on Your Electric Vehicle Battery
Frequent charging of your electric vehicle battery can cause it to deteriorate. There is no need to charge your battery every night, as the range you need for regular commutes does not require charging daily.
One factor we must consider you is battery degradation, which is more common in older models of electric cars.
According to a study from Select Car Leasing, some models are renowned for having lower degradation rates than others.
For instance, models such as the 2017 Audi A3 Sportback e-Tron, 2019 Tesla Model 3 and Model X, 2019 Nissan Leaf, and 2019 BMW i3 had less than 1% degradation in the last year.
On the other hand, the 2019 Chevrolet Bolt EV did not show any sign of degradation in a year. Unfortunately, models like the 2019 Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV have a degradation rate of 4.1%, while the 2019 Kia Niro PHEV has a degradation rate of 3.5%.
Related: How Fast Are Electric Car Batteries Improving? (Explained)
Protecting Your Tesla Battery
Batteries in electric vehicles degrade over time naturally and can lose up to 2% of their capacity annually based on several factors. These include charging habits, temperature, and driving methods.
It is crucial to note that the lithium-ion cells in the battery packs of most electric vehicles should not be at a low and full state of charge for a more extended period.
If you want a long-lasting battery, do not charge beyond 80% most time. In most cases, Tesla batteries will slow down charging once it reaches the 80% charge mark.
One notable factor about Tesla is that its active technology tends to evolve. Tesla provides the best tips on how to charge your battery for effectiveness.
You can use the superchargers provided by Tesla if you do not want to charge at home. Charging at a supercharger prevents you from installing an electric car charger at home and ensures you get a full charge in less than an hour.
You may need to avoid using a supercharger too often, as it could lead to battery degradation in your electric vehicle.
Slower home charging enables you to retain range while the battery maintains output capability and power over time.
Related: 5 Problems With Lithium-Ion Batteries In Electric Cars (Known Issues)
Tips From Tesla for a Healthy Battery
Tesla owners are advised to slow charge their cars when not driving. Here are some of the crucial battery charging tips you should know as a Tesla owner:
- Ensure your battery does not exceed 90% or below 20% capacity.
- Set your regenerative braking to “Standard” for proper maximization of energy you receive when decelerating.
- Use rapid chargers only when necessary and use the slow charging option.
- Park your vehicle in a warm space like a garage.
- Ensure proper maintenance of car tire pressures.
- Eliminate unwanted cargo as the higher the weight on your vehicle, the higher the energy it will consume to move the car.
- Raise the air suspension to “low” or “very low” mode when driving at highway speeds. Install aero wheel covers if you drive the Model 3 vehicles.
Related: Tips For Charging A Tesla Faster (Ranked 1-4)