The cold doesn’t help to keep our car in good condition, whether it’s fuel or electric. Just as some components need to be considered and checked, ‘zero emissions’ vehicles need to optimize charging and thus save energy.
The first thing to know is that the cold increases the internal resistance of the battery cells, which slows down the electrochemical process that occurs during charging. In addition, cell wear is greater in the cold, so manufacturers reduce the charging speed at subzero temperatures to protect it.
Another criterion is the use of a battery management system that keeps it in an ideal temperature range, even at night when the car is not in use. Likewise, it should be added that, at low temperatures, consumption increases due to heating and, therefore, the distance of the vehicle decreases.
For this reason, Juice Technology, a global producer of charging solutions, focuses on seven tips to improve vehicle battery charging in cold winter temperatures:
Charge the car when you get home while the battery is still warm. The charging process is slower the colder the battery is, or, in other words, a hot battery absorbs electricity faster than a cold one. So, if you charge when you get home if the battery has not cooled down, it will take less time to charge to full power.
Charge the car overnight. Remember that if the night is very cold (especially if the car is parked outside), you will need more power until the battery reaches the proper temperature. Therefore, if you have a choice, it is good to schedule charging your car comfortably with alternating current throughout the night if you have a charging device at home or in the garage of your building. This way, the battery will maintain a good temperature, and you will reduce the loss of autonomy.
Take advantage of the energy from your charging station. Preheat the car while it is connected to the charging station because it takes energy directly from the network through the station and not directly from the battery.
Planning the departure time: This way, the car will be fully charged when you start driving, preventing the battery from cooling down and needing more energy until it reaches the proper temperature.
Plan your route, including the necessary charging stops. Before a vehicle stops due to a lack of battery, the system will give several warnings and prohibit the maximum permissible speed. However, to avoid surprises, it is good to plan the route, especially for long journeys, including possible charging stops.
Use seat heating while driving. With this system, less energy is invested than using the central heating system, especially if you are traveling alone.
Precondition the battery: If your vehicle offers the feature, precondition the battery before charging via the Hypercharger. Currently, only Tesla, Porsche (with the Taycan), and Daimler (with the EQ series) allow the batteries to be preheated before direct charging so that this charging is as fast as possible.