The cold winter not only makes people less active, but also the battery of electric vehicles.
Battery life has become a real mystery
“And in winter, electric vehicle battery life depends on luck,” said a Tesla owner in Beijing.
China, especially the northern part of the country, is experiencing a historic cold. On January 6, the nighttime temperature broke a record when it reached minus 17 degrees Celsius. And for owners of electric cars, the cold winter also brings an obsession for the journey. submit.
According to the owner of the car above, the distance from home to his workplace is 15 km. If the road conditions are good, the car will consume more than 50 km of battery power, otherwise it will consume more than 70 km of battery.
“Of course, charging every four days can still meet my needs,” said the owner. His Tesla Model 3 is an imported version of the rear-wheel drive, long battery life, using Panasonic’s third generation lithium battery.
But the other owners are not feeling very well. A driver of a Model 3 made in China, with an upgraded version of standard battery life and also using a third generation lithium battery, but for the past 2 days, has only traveled about 5km in congestion In nearly 2 hours, the battery was depleted equivalent to a distance of 50 km.
“In other words, you can only run below 100 km if you fully charge. Driving in too cold weather, plus traffic congestion, the vehicle’s power consumption also increases rapidly, reaching 730Wh / km. Even When it is not too cold, the battery life is still reduced.Few days before this cold, when it is not too cold, the battery has 90% left showing the travel distance is 309 km. the display can only go 188 km. Battery life has been reduced by nearly 20%, “the owner said.
So, in the winter, after coming home from work, many car owners in China have taken another negative measure to avoid inclement weather affecting the battery capacity in the battery. That is parking in a parking lot with a public charging pole and charging all night.
“Without plugging in the charger, it will take more than ten kilometers to leave the car overnight. It is too cold, I dare not think,” said a rather young car owner.
He said that after careful calculation, if not recharging at night, the car can run 60km to work in the morning. But that doesn’t take into account influencing conditions like traffic density, or outdoor temperatures, and whether or not to turn on the heating system.
“After buying Tesla, my maths improved a lot,” he laughed at himself.
Meanwhile, an owner of BYD electric car in Shanghai also shared his own experience that when the maximum temperature is below 0 degrees C, turning on the heating and air conditioning system will consume a lot of money. electricity. “Sometimes, the battery capacity of the battery directly halves. When heating and air conditioning is turned on in medium temperature, the power consumption is 17-18%,” said this person.
He said that after experiencing the last wave of extremely low temperatures, he suddenly realized that he was able to … no longer feel cold when the temperature was above 0 degrees Celsius. Sitting in the car, he did not turn on. heating and air conditioning, so the battery life is basically the same as when used in the fall.
“In emergency situations, such as traveling long distances and fear of not having enough battery, wear a warm jacket and do not turn on the air conditioner. Battery life will not decrease directly,” he advises. other car owners.
Battery life has fallen sharply, is it really just a battery issue?
In a recent interview, a dealer director at Tesla said many of his customers have complained that the battery life of the Model 3 with lithium iron phosphate batteries is drastically reduced, even unable to fully charge. .
Some insiders said that after the media and car owners regularly questioned the lithium iron phosphate battery problem, Tesla held a special training for its in-house sales staff to improve. sales ability in explaining the problem to customers.
However, this training doesn’t help with the battery problems Tesla has. And Tesla isn’t the only automaker to have this problem. According to the experience of many electric vehicle owners interviewed, whether it’s a third-generation lithium battery or a lithium iron phosphate battery, used in a Tesla Model 3 or a BYD car, they will have a battery life problem. severely reduced in winter. .
According to industry experts, the problem is that people are afraid of the cold and lithium batteries are also afraid of the cold. The first reason is that both the owner and the passenger have heating needs in the winter, which will use more electricity to heat. .
The second is due to cold lithium in the battery. At low temperatures, the activity of lithium ions is reduced, some even inactivated, which is the reason why many electric vehicle owners experience charger failure in winter. On the other hand, electrolytes become more viscous at low temperatures, and the energy consumed by lithium ions increases during the discharge, which is also the reason why electric vehicle batteries lose energy faster.
Today, electric car manufacturers are gradually switching to lithium iron phosphate batteries with longer life, higher safety and lower cost. But the downside is that lithium iron phosphate batteries have a lower energy density and are more susceptible to low temperature environments, reducing battery life.
In a recent interview, many taxi drivers of electric vehicle companies in China said that while still running on fuel, two or three people will be delivered cars and work in shifts almost 24 consecutive. hours a day. But switching to electric cars, they need to spend more time charging the batteries, with at least 2 times a day.
Electric cars wait in line for charging during inclement weather in China.
In the winter, this situation is even more severe, as it is imperative that vehicles be heated to provide a good customer experience. As a result, battery life is drastically reduced, making many drivers not even dare to take long distance runs.
“Before, I liked long trips, but now I have to count the battery life while picking up passengers, I’m always afraid of not going home for dinner,” many taxi drivers lamented. And obviously, this affects their income.
Currently, battery technology has not had a new breakthrough and battery capacity will remain the main conflict in the field of new energy vehicles for a long time. However, it is predicted that new energy vehicles will eventually become an irreplaceable part of the changing trend of technology. As disruptive technologies emerge, new energy vehicles will become disruptors in the automotive sector.
As for current car owners, the only thing they can do is charge it even more often to relieve concerns about their own battery life.