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Electric Car Batteries - Everything You Need to Know
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Soon, the car in front of you might always be an electric car. A survey done by AAA reveals that one out of every 5 Americans is considering to buy an electric vehicle. The motivating factor here is the drive to a clean and green earth – more people are now concerned about the effect of fossil fuels on the environment. But again, other reasons driving up the sales of electric cars include lower operating costs and low maintenance requirements. 


Electricity is way too affordable than gasoline or diesel- it's estimated that driving an electric car can save you more than $ 1000 in gasoline money every year end. Electric vehicles run on energy stored in a battery pack. This battery is charged upon depletion, from a wall socket or charging unit (akin to gas stations) along the roads. 


Types of Electric Car Batteries


Lithium-ion batteries are the most common type. These batteries have a high power to weight ratio- 40. This enables the cars to a have a more extended driving range in a single charge. Then also, lithium-ion batteries don’t self-discharge the way other batteries heat up in high performance.


Nickel-metal hydride batteries are mostly used in hybrid electric vehicles. These vehicles convert fuel to electrical energy. They don’t need charging, so they don’t fall under the definition of electric cars. Nickle-metal hydride batteries have a high performance and a longer life cycle compared to all other cells.

Lead-acid batteries are used in electric cars to supplement the lithium-ion battery packs. Lead acid batteries are super sturdy and reliable, but with a much shorter life cycle. They also give a lower performance in cold temperatures.


The Inside of an Electric Car Battery


Different batteries have different shapes, chemistry, and size. Usually, an electric car battery consists of cells arranged in a parallel series to make up the total voltage of the pack. The different cells in the battery are welded to form a complete electrical circuit for current to flow. Many manufacturers like to group cells in separate stacks that also include cooling systems and temperature and voltage production monitors. The stacks also contain a fuse to limit the current of the circuit in case of a short circuit situation.


Inside the battery are also relays for controlling the supply of the electrical energy to the output terminals. There are two relays, in this case, one for the positive and the other for the negative terminals that power the electric motor.


How it All Works


In place of a combustion engine, electric cars have an electric motor that turns the wheels. The vehicles use a DC controller for delivering electrical energy from the battery pack to the electric motor. The controller regulates the voltage supplied to the wheels; it can be zero at stoppage or reduced when slowing down in traffic. Upon depletion, the battery pack is plugged in and recharged. In essence, how far and fast an E-Car goes relies on the state and efficiency of the traction battery pack.

Usually, the DC controller is a simple on/off switch linked to the accelerator pedal. Pressing down on the pedal turns the witch on, and it goes off when you take your foot off the pedal.


When it comes to voltage, low voltage batteries are preferable to high voltage batteries in electric cars.

Lower voltage batteries conserve energy and thus increase the driving range. The more amp hours the cell has, the longer it can power your car. However big amp hour batteries tend to be heavier.

The difference between DC and AC electric cars is the number of voltages the motor requires to run. A DC motor runs between 96 and 192 V. The AC motor runs at 240 V. DC installations are less costly.



Electric cars run on nothing but electrical energy. Drivers can juice up their vehicles anywhere; at charging stations along the road or at home. An overnight charge on a 120 V standard wall outlet can give you 40 miles of driving range. This is level 1 charging, and it doesn’t require you to install new wiring or plugs 

Level 2 charging uses a 240V outlet. With this, you will have to install new wiring in your garage, plus a plug similar to those used for your clothes dryer. An overnight charging here would give you a driving range of about 100 miles.


The other way to reenergize the electric car vehicles is DC fast charging. This taps on high powered electrical lines, providing swift, direct current. You only need to charge for ten minutes for a 40-mile range of drive time. DC fast charging can just be done at public charging stations. You can use an application for managing your mileage.

Factors that affect an Electric Car’s Battery Life include extreme temperatures, overcharging, low voltage and deep discharges. 

If your regular car battery is running low then you might want to consider investing in a car battery maintainer. Our friends at drifted.com have written a guide to cut through the jargon and to help you figure out which is the right battery maintainer for you.

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