Home » Steps To Take When Going On A Long Journey In An Electric Car

Steps To Take When Going On A Long Journey In An Electric Car

So, you’ve decided to take your electric car on a long journey. Whether it’s your first time or you’re a seasoned EV traveller, it’s always exciting, right? Let’s make sure it’s also smooth and stress-free. Electric vehicles (EVs) have come a long way in recent years, and a long trip in one can be just as enjoyable as in a traditional car, if not more so. Here’s how you can prepare to make the most of your electric adventure.

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Planning Your Route

First things first, you need to plan your route. This might seem obvious, but with an electric car, it’s a bit more crucial. Unlike petrol stations, charging stations aren’t yet on every corner. Here’s what to consider:

  1. Map Out Charging Stations – Use apps and websites that specialise in EV routes to find an EV charging station. They will show you all the available charging points along your journey. Plan your stops not just for charging but also to stretch your legs and maybe grab a bite to eat.
  2. Check Charging Speeds – Not all chargers are created equal. Some might take an hour, while others could take just 30 minutes to give you a substantial charge. Fast chargers are your best friends on a long trip.
  3. Backup Options – Always have a Plan B. Sometimes, chargers can be out of order or already occupied. Knowing where the next nearest charging point is can save you a lot of headaches.

Packing Smart

Packing for an EV journey isn’t wildly different from packing for any other road trip, but there are a few extra things to consider:

  • Charging Cables – Make sure you have the right charging cables and adaptors. You might need a Type 2 cable for certain public charging points.
  • Portable Charger – It’s always wise to have a portable charger. This is especially useful if you plan on camping or staying in areas with limited charging infrastructure.
  • Apps and Membership Cards – Many charging stations require a specific app or membership card. Make sure you have these ready and set up in advance.

Efficient Driving

Driving an electric car efficiently can make a significant difference in how far you can go between charges. Here are some tips:

1. Keep it Steady

Avoid rapid acceleration and heavy braking. Gentle driving helps conserve battery life.

2. Use Eco Mode

Most EVs come with an eco-driving mode. This limits the power output and optimises other systems to extend your range.

3. Climate Control

Using air conditioning or heating can drain your battery faster. Try to use these systems sparingly. Pre-conditioning your car while it’s still plugged in can help.

Understanding Your Vehicle

Get to know your car’s capabilities and limitations.

  • Range – Know the realistic range of your vehicle, not just what the manufacturer claims. This can vary depending on driving conditions, load, and weather.
  • Charging Times – Understand how long it takes to charge your car at different types of charging stations.

On the Road

Once you’re on the road, there are a few things to keep in mind to ensure everything goes smoothly.

Check Your Range Regularly

Keep an eye on your battery level and the distance to the next charging station. It’s easy to lose track, especially if you’re enjoying the drive.

Use Regenerative Braking

Many EVs have regenerative braking systems that convert kinetic energy back into stored energy in the battery. Use this feature to maximise your range.

Enjoy the Journey

Part of the fun of travelling in an EV is enjoying the drive itself. Electric cars are quiet, smooth, and offer a unique driving experience. Here are some ideas to make the most of your trip:

  • Scenic Routes – Electric cars are great for enjoying scenic routes. Plan a few detours to take in some beautiful landscapes.
  • Local Stops – Use your charging stops as an opportunity to explore local attractions, try new foods, and meet new people.

Final Checklist

Before you head off, make sure you’ve got everything in order:

  • Charged Up – Start your journey with a full battery.
  • Route Planned – Ensure your route includes plenty of charging points.
  • Essentials Packed – Don’t forget your charging cables, portable charger, apps, and membership cards.
  • Weather Checked – Weather can affect your range. Cold weather, in particular, can reduce battery efficiency.

Troubleshooting

No journey is without its hiccups. Here’s how to handle a few common ones:

  • Charger Not Working – Check the app for any reported issues, and have a backup charging station in mind.
  • Range Anxiety – If you’re worried about running out of charge, slow down and turn off unnecessary systems. Drive to the nearest charging point, even if it means altering your route.
  • Technical Issues – Familiarise yourself with the basics of your car’s troubleshooting guide and keep the manufacturer’s support number handy.

Wrapping Up

Travelling long distances in an electric car can be an enjoyable and satisfying experience. With a bit of planning and preparation, you can make sure your journey is as smooth as possible. Enjoy the drive, the scenery, and the knowledge that you’re travelling in an eco-friendly way.

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