Help your electric battery keep the cold at bay

Published by on 01.22.2020 - 3 min

Extreme winter temperatures can negatively impact the performance of your electric car’s battery. Follow our advice to maximise your battery’s life - even if it’s minus 20°C - by taking advantage of all the features your car offers.

Why are electric car batteries less efficient in extremely cold temperatures?

In order for your electric car battery to function properly, a constant temperature must be maintained. During winter, the cold diminishes the battery’s performance in terms of both range and charging capacity.

In winter conditions, the use of the heating system inside the vehicle also impacts the range of your electric car. Fortunately, there are smart solutions for limiting energy consumption in your electric vehicle, despite the cold weather, and it is even possible to improve the performance of your car during the winter.

Battery range: small efforts that make a big difference

Inside indicator of charge for ZOE

How can you protect your car battery in very cold temperatures? To begin with, it is strongly recommended

to use temperature pre-conditioning. Available for ZOE and Kangoo Z.E., this feature lets you program the heating system from your smartphone or hands-free card before starting your journey. You’ll never have to get into a freezing cold car again! The ability to be able to preheat your electric vehicle is a real bonus: by the time you open the car door, the cabin will already be at a comfortable temperature and, even better, you won’t be decreasing your vehicle’s range. If pre-conditioning is initiated while the car is connected to a power supply, the energy necessary to heat the interior will come directly from the electricity grid. The range of your vehicle is thus unaffected, allowing you to drive with peace of mind.

Here’s another tip for increasing the range of your electric car in cold weather: after making sure to recharge your battery to 100% before hitting the road, opt for the “Eco” driving mode, which automatically optimizes your energy consumption by regulating heating, acceleration, cruising speed, and braking. This feature will allow you to gain up to 10% more range. It’s especially useful on longer trips.

Adopt a smooth driving style in cold weather

To get the most of your electric car in wintertime, choosing the right driving style is essential. How you drive can have a negative impact on your energy consumption. If you tend to make frequent use of ZOE’s capacity for rapid acceleration, you may see your energy consumption increasing. With the arrival of snow, ice and fog, winter is therefore the perfect time to try out an eco-driving style. The more you avoid sudden stops and starts, the more you will save your battery’s energy. Anticipation will always be your best friend when it comes to a smooth ride and will also reduce your vehicle’s energy consumption.

Regenerative braking is the final link in optimizing your vehicle’s energy consumption. No matter the season, whether it be mid-winter or the peak of summer, this feature allows you to minimize the electricity consumption of your car by storing energy when braking and during periods of significant deceleration.

This system for recovering energy during braking, developed by Renault, converts kinetic energy into electricity, and can recover up to 20% of your electric car’s range!

At the end of your trip, if possible, it is also recommended that you park your electric vehicle in a garage or other enclosed space to protect it from changes in temperature. This will help improve the performance of your electric car in the wintertime.


Copyrights: CG Eyedream, Adobe Stock