EV Ownership
What To Expect From EV Ownership
What To Expect From EV Ownership

What To Expect From EV Ownership

Buying an EV is a lifestyle adjustment. Because you are fundamentally changing the way you drive, your life and your habits will change in small but meaningful ways. Some of these ways we've already covered, but here we wanted to focus on the little things that you might not expect.


Forgetting the price of gas!

Admittedly, this is one of our favorites. With a BEV or even some longer range plug-in hybrids, you might just forget about the price of gas. It no longer concerns you. You'll hear people talk about how gas is going up, and it will have no impact on your life. It's a great feeling to be "free".

No more last minute gas runs

It's happened to all of us: you run out to your car in the morning, late for work or school or something important, and your gas tank is almost empty. Now you have to stop somewhere to get gas, and maybe even detour out of your way to do so - making you even more late for that important thing.

If you're able to charge your EV at home, this will never happen. Leaving your house with a full charge every morning means you're unlikely to go searching for a "fill up" anywhere local. It's only on those long trips where you're traveling hundreds of miles will you need to stop for a charge. After owning an EV for a while, the idea of getting gas starts to feel very inconvenient.

Trip Planning

Charging infrastructure is getting better all the time, but we're still in a phase where the availability of plugs may need to determine which route you take to get to where you're going.

Some EVs have excellent software built-in that will calculate your GPS route with charging stops included, automatically calculating how long you'll need to charge and including that estimate into your final arrival time. Other cars haven't quite mastered this yet, and those cars will require you to get familiar with some 3rd party apps that can help you find charging stations along the way. In the latter case, or if you want to follow a custom route that conflicts with what you're car suggests, you'll need to get comfortable with the idea of trip planning. We'll expand on this in our "All About Apps" lesson.

More mindful about energy

When we have less of something, we tend to think about it more. If we're low on cash, we toil over spending. If we're low on time, we make hard decisions on what to do with the time we have. The same can be said about energy in an EV.

In an EV, you may find yourself thinking more about the energy you're using. You'll know that running the heater will reduce range, so maybe you'll tolerate a little extra chill to spend a little less time at the plug. While it's extremely fun to experience all of the instant torque an EV offers, you may find yourself being very gentle on the throttle just to see how far you cant stretch your mileage, almost like a video game high score. The good news is, you don't HAVE to think about this stuff if you don't want to. It's just that with EVs, your relationship with energy usage is more apparent.


Less maintenance

Fully electric BEVs need a lot less maintenance than a traditional gas powered vehicle. A traditional gasoline car has somewhere in the ballpark of two-thousand moving parts. By comparison, an EV has more like twenty moving parts. That's a big difference, and so it's easy to see how an EV is likely to be more reliable over time (keep in mind, however, a plug-in hybrid will have just as many components [if not more] than a traditional gasoline car).

While each BEV will have their own recommendations on when to service items, here are the most common items to expect from the maintenance schedule of an EV:

  • Tires
  • Tire rotations
  • Alignments
  • Brake fluid flush
  • Brake service
  • Cabin air filters
  • Air conditioning service
  • Winter care
  • Windshield wiper blades

It gets better, because regenerative braking doesn't cause wear and tear on your brakes, meaning they'll last a lot longer. These are all items that you'd also have to service on a gas car, but now you can forget about things like oil changes, transmission fluid, oil filters, timing belts, exhaust systems, fuel systems, belts, spark plugs, tune ups... all of it now obsolete.

Battery Longevity / Replacement

You may have heard this as a common pushback against EVs. What if that big, expensive battery fails?

Before we address this point, it's worth pointing out that federal law requires EV automakers to warranty their batteries for at least 8 years / 100,000 miles. Buying a new EV today means that you wouldn't need to worry about an out-of-pocket battery replacement for quite a while. But if you drive a lot, those 100,000 miles might not seem so far away. So how much does a battery cost to replace?

Well, it depends on the size of the battery. The average cost to replace an EV battery in 2021 is about $6,300. That's not a small chunk of change, but keep this in mind: the price of batteries has dropped 89% over the past decade[2], a dramatic decrease that's expected to continue. It's quite possible that by the time you'd ever need to worry about replacing an EV battery, the cost to do so would be much more reasonable than it is today.

Also keep in mind that a total battery failure is unlikely. The bigger concern would be a gradual loss of battery capacity, down to a reduced range that you are not able to tolerate. If this happens, the car still operates, and has retained value. It may not fit your life anymore, but it may be perfectly fine for someone with lower mileage needs.

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