Tips for Extending Li-ion Battery Life
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Tips for Extending Li-ion Battery Life

Like most things, lithium-ion batteries do need a little TLC. You don’t need to go crazy, but there are some steps you can take to extend the life of the li-ion batteries in your electric vehicles.

Keep Batteries Charged Up

First off, if you still have your dad saying that you need to fully drain a battery before recharging it, let him know that his advice is as old-fashioned as his haircut.

With lithium-ion batteries, you can totally run them only part way down and then charge them back up again — actually, that might even be beneficial for them. There’s something called depth of discharge (DoD), which is basically how much of the battery’s capacity you use up before charging up again. The less that you discharge li-ion batteries, the more charge-recharge cycles you can get out of them. A partial discharge and then a partial charge (or a lower DoD level) actually reduces the stress on the battery and prolongs its life.

Don’t Run Your Battery Dry

If you always charge your battery to full and then run it til it’s dead, you won’t get as much life out of your li-ion battery. Instead, try to use only half of the battery’s charge at a time (or even less).

Being a bit conservative with how you use your battery can lead to nearly exponential leaps in battery longevity. World of Engineering had a great Twitter thread about li-ion battery care, including how much depth of discharge levels can impact the number of discharge/charge cycles you can get out of your battery.

Basically, don’t habitually run your EV til it’s dead before charging it back up.

Try To Keep Your EV Out of Hot Temps

Yep, batteries don’t do well in extreme temperatures, so keeping them at room temperature is a good plan. While it’s easier to keep your laptop, e-bike, e-scooter, or other smaller battery-powered items indoors and away from the heat, that’s a bit harder to accomplish with a full-on motorcycle or car.

If you live in a mild climate or you have a garage, your vehicle will probably be okay. But if you live in a place like Satan’s buttcrack (aka Florida), you’d be better off if you buy an EV that has an active coolant system. Just remember that you may need to keep the vehicle plugged in to keep that liquid-coolant system or refrigerated battery running.

These are all just educated suggestions, of course, thanks to some engineers on Twitter. If you live in a hot climate, then you live in a hot climate. If you want to have fun with your zippy EV, then mash that pedal and run that battery out! (Just don’t strand yourself in the middle of nowhere.) These are all simply general tips to help you get the most out of your vehicle’s battery. It’s up to you how you get the most out of owning an EV.


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