Our handful of useful EV Hacks for Electric Cars
Best of EV Hacks – Rising electricity rates at public charging points are causing a few red faces among Electric Car users. With the end of government support for the business energy cap, the future in the short term is anything but a green utopia.
So where are the money-saving tips for those who think that, at the moment, net zero refers to our Bank accounts?
The two-rate tariffs offered by energy companies are the best for EV energy use if you have low household energy during peak hours and can charge your car overnight at home.
It is essential to have a smart meter and an EV home charger to take advantage of lower kWh/rates; these are generally available after midnight or during other off-peak periods.
Off-peak charging current best offer is the Intelligent Octopus Tariff. In my area, they offered a night rate of 6 Hours at £0.075p /kWh; however, there is a hefty £0.60p standing charge and a day rate over the current government cap.
Mobile phone App’s that helps electric vehicle drivers locate charging stations and manage their charging sessions.
Zap-Map for example is a UK-based app that allows users to search for charging stations, filter results by charger type and network, including view station details and ratings, and even plan routes based on available charging stations.
The app also includes features such as real-time availability and pricing information, charging session history and statistics, and the ability to pay for charging sessions directly. They also assist in directing you “Free to Charge” sites.
Bonnet is a US-based subscription app that provides similar functionality but includes features such as discounts for charging and personalised rewards and incentives for using the app.
Take advantage of free parking with your EV. Some councils offer reduced-priced parking permits or free parking spots in town centres to incentivise a better air policy. Check with your local council.
According to the essential Zap-Map app, over 4,000 free-to-use EV charge points exist. It varies considerably depending on where you live.
The chargers are typically found in public car parks and supermarkets like Sainsbury’s, Asda, and Aldi. Most chargers are Pod Point or similar and use a 7-kWh fast charge. They can also be found in hotels and retail parks.
The best way to search is to use the Zap-Map filter and select “free to use”, and an available list in your area will be shown.
Better EV Driving Hacks
Like a conventional car, smooth driving of an EV helps you get more miles out of your electric vehicle (EV) battery. Smooth driving habits can help optimise energy efficiency and extend the range of your EV, allowing you to travel long distances on a single charge. Here are some tips for smooth driving in an EV:
Pre-conditioning the cabin temperature can improve comfort and reduce the load on the battery. You can use the vehicle’s climate control system to set the desired temperature while the vehicle is still plugged into the charge point instead of relying on the battery. Some EVs have a separate heat pump to assist with this.
Understand Your Cars Regenerative Braking
Most EV drivers enjoy the single-pedal driving experience. Some cars have adjustable regenerative braking; getting to know the optimum settings and lifting off early will make your journey more efficient.; motorway driving allows you to coast without power on long downhill stretches.
Keep Your Speed Down, One of the best EV Hacks
With EVs having only one gear, driving faster makes the motor spin faster and consequently uses more energy; gently do it on the accelerator and keep your car in Eco mode, which gets you more miles per charge.
Plan Your Journey
Planning your route before leaving could avoid unnecessary detours to find chargers that will deplete your battery range; apps such as Zap Map and Plugshare can filter out charge points by location.
Electric cars fitted with live navigation systems like Google Maps can also plan charges and stops in advance; another consideration is to look at alternative routes; driving on motorways is not always the most efficient way to get from A to B; slower routes will create more kinetic energy and use less energy, fewer stops.
Move to Scotland
ChargePlace Scotland is Scotland’s national EV charging network, owned by the Scottish Devolved Government, with rates subsidised through local Authorities and other organisations. Rates for public chargers vary from free to use up to £0.70p; the average is around £0.40-50p. cost saving EV Hacks