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EVs / Weather

Started by Art, January 04, 2021, 03:18:46 AM

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0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic. Total views: 9,150


I've recently had some people pose questions about Electric cars to which I have no first-hand experience. I think Carl might know the answer for sure as he lives in a colder climate but we can get pretty frigid here as well.

The question was, How do electric cars fare in very cold weather with regard to battery charging times and length of time running in the cold climate?

I would appreciate any/all answers of reason.  My wife's friend told her that she heard those battery vehicles don't like cold weather very well.

And thus, the questions...


To be fair all cars have reduced range in the cold weather but it's more noticeable in an electric car because of the way it displays remaining range in miles, most petrol or diesel cars just show how much fuel is left in the tank.

When it comes to charging I haven't noticed any slower charge rate in the cold weather and it has been pretty cold here during some of the winters we've had since I got my Leaf. 

The heater does take power out of the battery though and reduces range by a few miles, most electric cars have a heat-pump heater fitted in them these days and that reduces the power consumption considerably.

Lithium Iron batteries are less efficient in the cold that it true but when you drive or charge the car it warms the battery quite quickly, a Lithium Iron battery in use does get warm naturally.

Saying all that I do find I have to charge the car a bit more in the winter, everything in an EV is electric, lights, wipers, heater, demister and they tend to get used more in colder times.

There are also some positives:

Most electric cars have traction control and that can help a lot on snow and ice.

The heaters give almost instant heat, no waiting for the engine to warm up

You can pre-heat or de-ice the car before you get in it using your phone or Alexa as well these days.  (Alexa tell my Leaf to warm up)  :)

Hay! it's the 21st century, time to embrace the new technology.

Sorry for such a long post but this did need addressing.

Thanks for asking Art  :thumbsup:

Now for some entertainment.


Good info and nice video as well.

Thanks, Carl for taking the time to post your experiences.  :thumbsup:


  I didn't post anything here at least,  I do think Data covered the subject very good.  For charging I just connect the car and over night it charges, don't know or care about the time.  My grocery store is pretty close and in the cold weather I'm dressed pretty warm and I won't bother turning on the heater.
The thing with the heater is when you turn it on mileage goes down and when you get home and turn the heater off it goes back up.



You're right! Darn my wandering eyes...I think I caught a glimpse of a previous post of yours near the top of the page.  Sorry about that!

Data, My apologies indeed!!

Nice posting of yours BTW. Thank you both!


Quote from: Art on February 08, 2021, 04:20:57 AM
Data, My apologies indeed!!

It's fine Art, we are all friends here  :)

I would like to add just a little more to this topic if I may.

Over the years of owning an EV and even before I noticed there are quite a lot of "armchair experts" that don't own an EV or have never even driven one but they have strong anti options on the technology.

It's similar to when SSD's came out, many were saying they wouldn't last long and would stick to HDD, we know how that turned out  :)  Sometimes people don't like change or have concerns about the next new big thing, it's true very early adopters of new tech might have a few glitches on the way but that's all part of the journey, I think  :)   

Back on topic, one of the nicer things about owning an EV in the winter is being able to pre-heat the car before you get in, it's not vital but it's nice.

Here is a video of a chap pre-heating and de-icing his Leaf before he gets in. Of course this can all be done from the comfort of a warm house. This guy is showing a full 15 min pre-heat but I normally do it for about 5 mins. 


Since my Leaf is covered with snow this morning I think I'll give the preheat while charging a try, the phone says I have between 80 and 86 percent charge I turned climate control on and it blinked but the car is not plugged in to charge so I'll have to plug it in and turn on the heater I guess.  I'm not sure how all this works but the books are in the car anyways.  The end of the driveway is the real challenge anyways.  Thanks for putting the video in.



Not in defense of but rather a counterpoint to your, " of the nicer things about owning an EV in the winter is being able to pre-heat the car before you get in,...".

Actually, I do that all the time with our ICE vehicle with the Remote starter triggered from inside our home. It soon brings up the internal cabin heat to a toasty 73º F with the fan gently blowing and each heated seat to a comfortable level without toasting the buns so-to-speak. (you say bums, we say buns...tomato, tomatoe...etc.).

I can also turn the vehicle off remotely so the tech isn't just for EV's you see, but point well taken!

As previously mentioned, my former job required me to drive as much as 300 - 400 miles per day, statewide. I could not afford the time to stand idle while waiting for my car or truck to charge and it's certainly could not make such a trip without needing to be charged. Lastly, there were NO car chargers anywhere to be found thus ruling out that entire situation.

Things are changing. EVs are beginning to appear in all sorts of places and getting far better mileage with more charging stations in previously unheard of areas like local grocery stores, shopping centers, etc., where ever people stop to shop for more than 20 or 30 minutes at a time.

Yes, having mentioned all of this, I think the time is rapidly approaching when we will start seeing far more, competitively priced and equipped Electric Vehicles in the city and the suburbs. The future, as they say, is coming!



This video popped up on YouTube and it reminded me of this topic, thought I would post it here.


   Well I recently had a problem with my electric car not going into drive or reverse and I believe it was because of the 12 Volt battery that pulls in a relay so the car will start. The driver of that car did not mention the 12 Volt battery at all and this is what really allows the car to start.
Carl 2