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Common Problems With Electric Cars: Solutions and Tips

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Electric vehicles are gradually gaining ground in the automobile industry. To be honest, things have not always been easy for the EV sector. You have probably heard claims that EVs will always be slow and unable to generate much power; these are mere myths. Top EV manufacturers have produced 100% electric lineups that perform even better than gas-powered cars. Moreover, there are actual problems with these electric cars that require attention. 

More drivers are favoring EVs over gas-powered cars every day. The EV world has faced many challenges to get the recognition it has today. If you want to go from gas-powered to electric vehicles, you have to be aware of the possible problems you may face. 

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problems with electric cars

The Most Common Problems With Electric Cars

EVs feel like a new wave of technological excellence. However, Every engineering product is susceptible to technical challenges. Some common problems with electric cars can be managed. We have described all you need to know in this post. Look them up to get yourself ready for the new wave. 

1. Overwhelming Price tags 

The expensive purchase cost is first on our list of common problems with electric cars. EVs are more expensive because they cost more to build than gasoline-powered ones, mainly because of battery technology. EV batteries must hold a massive charge to provide the minimum range for most owners. This requires expensive raw materials to manufacture.

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Even when discounting battery costs, there is such a massive supply of gas-powered cars, which makes them comparatively cheap. Although EVs may be less expensive to operate than their gasoline counterparts, you must first buy them to enjoy them. And there are very few models that are affordable and still offer a good battery range. Finding an EV offering satisfactory performance is challenging for a sticker price of $30,000. These heavy starting prices force buyers to settle for affordable gas-powered cars.

2. Charging Time

This is the most unavoidable problem with electric cars. You just have to find a way to manage it. A regular electric vehicle can go between 170 and 300 miles on a single charge in temperate weather conditions. This is ideal for driving to work and back for about ten days with no longer trips and regular traffic. However, you cannot rely on your EV battery range if you plan a long road trip,  weekend getaway, or driving vacation. 

Also, when the weather is freezing, EV batteries can last about four hours. Worse still, less than 80% of public charging stations are Level 2. Thus, EV drivers will have to spend about six hours charging after every 4-hour drive or less. 

3. Limited Model Selection

This is a solvable issue but needs to be addressed because a lack of options can hinder many people from buying an electric car.

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Despite the effort invested to develop new EV models, there is still a limited number of EV models compared to gasoline-powered cars. More models of sedans, hatchbacks, and SUVs have been produced over the years. However, utility vehicles like pickup trucks and minivans have not received much attention. People looking for these vehicles are left with very few choices to pick from. 

Major automobile makers seem not to be interested in manufacturing electric utility vehicles. Although they have announced plans, they are not contributing much to bolstering the EV options currently.

4. Production Requires Rare Materials

This is one of the crucial problems with electric cars, as it may hinder future production. Rare earth materials are vital for producing permanent magnets in electric motors. Using these materials to build electric vehicles is challenging as they are rare, and some have environmental implications.

However, they are available in a few countries, raising concerns about supply chain security and geopolitical dependencies. To ensure sustainable EV industry growth, diversifying rare earth sources and developing alternative technologies must be pursued.

5. Environmental Consequences

EVs are expected to be eco-friendly and sustainable. It’s one of the top reasons to buy an EV. However, they are not as ‘green’ as we’d like to believe. Extracting rare earth materials has environmental consequences. The refining process also involves strong acids that produce toxic waste products.

Effective management and mitigation of these impacts should be initiated to minimize the ecological footprint of electric vehicles. Research has to focus on environmentally friendly sourcing and processing methods for rare earth materials. We should also explore alternative materials with similar magnetic properties but less environmental.

6. Difficulty Finding a Technician

Most car owners cannot afford to have their vehicles serviced by a dealer because it is significantly expensive. They prefer going to a qualified independent maintenance and repair shop. 

The EV industry is still developing, with few trained EV repair technicians and fewer capable repair shops. Working on an EV beyond tires, brakes, light bulbs, and audio components is more complex for technicians. Most EV owners rely on their auto dealer for servicing and repairs.

On the bright side, EVs need less maintenance than gasoline-powered cars. However, when an expensive component needs to be replaced, there is not much competition in the EV parts market to help reduce costs. For instance, an EV’s battery pack typically costs above $5,000 and can only be replaced by the dealer. On the other hand, gas-powered cars are cheaper and easier to fix. You can even decide to modify your gas car for an affordable price. 

7. Varying Charging Pricing Structures

Unlike gasoline, which is always priced by the liter, EV charging has different pricing structures. This difference can result in inconsistent pricing and inflated charging costs, creating barriers to adoption due to consumer frustration and negative experiences.

EV Charging can be priced per kWh, per session, per minute, or tied to the vehicle’s charging speed. EV drivers prefer the per-kWh charging structure because it is consistent like the per-liter gas pricing structure. The pricing structure varies in different regions. So, if you’re taking an inter-state trip, you cannot be sure what to expect in the next state.

8. Mediocre Hauling Capacity

Auto manufacturers are reluctant to produce EV versions of pickup trucks and minivans because of their energy density. The energy density of an EV depletes with its battery life. This is why gas-powered pickup trucks typically have a higher towing capacity than their electric counterparts

As gas-powered trucks haul weight, the fuel in the truck combusts and leaves as smoke. This is not the case with electric trucks. When an EV is 100% charged, every bit of its battery mass is useful as it adds value to the system. However, when it’s 50% charged, half of the battery mass becomes dead weight, adding nothing to the system and significantly reducing the mechanical efficiency of the EV. 

Also, when your EV is 1% charged, the EV still hauls the useless 99% of battery mass. This dead-weight situation reduces the hauling capacity of an electric vehicle to a large extent.

9. Complex Fire Situation

Although EVs have lesser chances of catching fire compared to gas-based cars. When they do, it poses a brutal problem since most people don’t know how to handle electrical fires. We have learned to manage the most complex causes of fires in gas-powered vehicles. However, EV fire is relatively new, and we still need to figure out how to manage it. 

The main problem with EV fire is that it can reignite itself even after you successfully quench it. Also, electrical fires cannot be quenched with water. Respondents may even save a burning gas-powered vehicle if action is taken immediately, but such is not the case with electric vehicles. The major struggle will be to ensure nearby structures don’t get burnt.

10. Hazardous Battery Disposal

Disposing of an EV battery is expensive. The acids in EV batteries stay active even after they can no longer be used for EVs, which makes it difficult to dispose of them. When the lithium-ion battery goes entirely out of service, we can’t just dispose of it anyhow. If we do, it will be ecologically harmful or even dangerous for human life. The waste batteries will emit toxic fumes or catch fire without warning.

Their disposal will be something to worry about in the coming years. Hopefully, technological advancement will have found a way to manage the issue by then.

11. Range Anxiety

Range anxiety is not a myth. This problem is notably worse during the winter. The cold significantly reduces the regular battery range, as Li-ion batteries perform poorly in low temperatures. 

A full gas tank travels far longer than the ranges offered in EVs. And even when your tank is empty, you can refill it in minutes. Sadly, charging stations are not as many as gas stations, so drivers are worried that they may have to travel far to find a charging station and then wait through a long charging session. The stress involved in getting your EV charged can cause anxiety. 

Conclusion

The EV industry is growing rapidly, and engineers are working tirelessly to improve the performance and user experience. Soon, we will enjoy longer ranges due to enhanced battery performance and reduced maintenance costs. To adopt innovation, you must be willing and prepared to face and tackle challenges. The common problems with electric cars we explored prepare you for the challenges you may encounter by embracing the new era. 

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