Don’t ignore your EV’s 'other battery'

LONDON: Many electric car drivers remain unaware their EV has a crucial 12-volt battery that is essential to running their car, reveals British breakdown service provider Start Rescue.

A faulty or flat 12-volt battery is the leading reason for an EV breakdown, rather than unfounded worries about the main battery’s range. Start Rescue’s research shows 23.7% of EV call-outs are due to the car not starting with the key, which is less than the 29.7% figure for petrol and diesel cars for the same issue.

“EVs are very reliable but, like all cars, it has a 12-volt battery that needs to be looked after,” said Start Rescue managing director Lee Puffett.

“Overall, EVs are less likely to require a breakdown call-out than ICE (internal combustion engine) vehicles, but EVs need to be driven to avoid the 12-volt battery going flat over time.”

Alongside the large high voltage battery that powers an EV’s motor, the 12-volt system is vital for door locks, ignition, air conditioning, safety equipment, and running crucial controls for the electric drivetrain.

The 12-volt battery in an EV is simple to maintain and Start Rescue advises drivers to use their EV regularly as the best way to look after both of its batteries – especially the 12-volt battery for all of the important systems that make it work.

“Charging up the car regularly will top up the 12-volt battery as it charges differently to an ICE car," said Puffett.

"Pre-conditioning the car’s cabin temperature while it’s on charge is a big help, and you can also use a ‘trickle’ charger if you know the car will be parked up for longer periods, such as when you go on holiday.”

Because the 12-volt battery is so important for EVs to function, Start Rescue advises any EV driver to read the vehicle’s manual to learn how to maintain the 12-volt battery’s charge. You can also ask a dealer for advice.

Launched in 2009, Start Rescue provides breakdown and recovery service that now serves over two million UK customers.
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