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Warrantywise’s guide to electric vehicles – all you need to know!

Do you know your electric vehicles from your combustion engines? If you’re looking to find out more… we’ve got you covered! Here at Warrantywise, we’ve put together a handy guide that dispels the myths surrounding electric cars and gives you all the information you need to spot the key differences. Read on to find out more. 

Can I make long and short journeys using my electric vehicle?

Close-in shot of electric car battery range gauge

For a long time, electric vehicles didn’t have the battery power to sustain lengthy journeys, meaning that family road trips and long distance-meetings were well and truly out of the question. 

But with newer fully electric vehicles, and improved battery life, this is no longer the case!  

The average journey by car in the UK falls just under 100 miles, which means that an electric vehicle will have you covered. 

Whether you’re stuck on a motorway or in local roadworks – if you’re in a jam – comfort-enhancing factors such as air conditioning and heated seats have minimum impact on battery performance.  

Preserving battery life

Although it’s true that an electric car’s battery will inevitably degrade over time, similar to your mobile phone or laptop, there are easy ways to preserve its condition, which will ultimately help your battery last longer.  

The longevity of your battery’s life also rests on how and when you choose to charge your electric vehicle, also known as an EV. Solutions such as rapid charging or fast charging should be used sparingly, as doing so can cause your car’s battery to decline at an accelerated rate. It’s important to note that a quick top-up here and there won’t cause long-term damage but shouldn’t be relied upon as a permanent solution. 

Like petrol or diesel cars, don’t let your car sit in a parking space or on the drive for too long without being used, as this can adversely drain your battery life and have repercussions on overall performance.  

Keeping your car away from extreme temperatures when parked, is a great example of how to preserve battery life and slow down degradation in its tracks. The same principle applies to cars with combustion engines.  

The elements, which cause damage such as rust, can play a huge role in shortening battery life. So, don’t forget to take your car for a quick spin if it’s going to be stationary for long periods of time! 

If you’re looking to make a long car journey, now equipped with the knowledge that your EV is the perfect choice for the job, check out our top tips for planning ahead for a long car journey

Is it easy to charge my electric vehicle at home?

Woman plugging charging gun into the electric gas station on the car parking outdors

In 2022, charging your electric car couldn’t be easier, which is great, as we know how important it is to be able to home charge your vehicle efficiently and economically.  

All fully electric vehicles come with the cables and accessories you need to make the charging process hassle-free without having to visit your local EV charging hub.  

There are two main ways for owners to charge electric vehicles from home.  

  1. Installing a dedicated home charging point – This is by far the most effective way to charge your car. Having this option in place is a quicker and better way to maximise the charge of your vehicle.  
  2. A standard domestic three-pin charging cable which can be directly inserted into the mains electricity of your home.

Both options have their benefits, but a home charging point will deliver three times the power of a standard three-pin charger. You might also find that home charging is a lot more convenient than public charging! 

Is it expensive to charge my EV at home?

Don’t forget that the cost of charging your electric vehicle will be included in your household electricity bill, so it’s important to keep an eye on where energy usage for your home ends and the EV costs begin.  

Before committing to purchasing an electric car, make sure you work out what kind of impact additional power will have on your overall energy bill and running costs. You can do this by contacting your energy provider for more information and discussing options such as off-peak tariffs. 

New compulsory legislation for smart charging

As of 2022, new legislation has been introduced, which means that all new or retrofitted homes and buildings must be able to facilitate charging electric vehicles. The new legislation is targeted at contractors building new homes with over 10 parking spaces and workplaces with over five parking spaces for employees.  

Are there enough charging stations to go around?

The rumour mill has been gathering momentum on the availability and quantity of charging points for EVs in the UK. But the good news is that local councils are currently investing in even more charging points to improve accessibility to on-the-go charging for those with electric cars. In fact, the UK has one of the largest rapid-charging networks in Europe.  

If you’re concerned about locating an EV charging hub on your journey, websites such as Zap-Map are really helpful for planning routes and identifying where charging stations might be. You even have the option to check if pod points are available, leave feedback on your experience, or warn other drivers if points are out of service.

Is an electric vehicle worth the investment? 

Whether you’re looking to buy a Tesla Model S or are interested in a hybrid car from a well-known manufacturer such as Renault or Hyundai, the price point probably has a large bearing on what make and model you decide to buy.  

But you might be surprised to learn that an electric vehicle can offer you long-term savings on fuel costs which will protect you for the future. 

Leasing is a popular option, which will allow you to pay in monthly instalments for your vehicle. This method is super affordable and very popular with people who might want to take the ‘try before they buy’ approach.  

Although, at the moment, a lot of electric cars cost more to purchase than standard petrol or diesel cars, long-term savings can be made through reduced maintenance and petrol costs. 

Are there government schemes available to help with the cost? 

A government grant was recently launched to help households with the cost of a new electric vehicle, with funds of up to £1,500 available. Although the scheme has closed for now, more information is soon going to be released, which details additional help available. 

The government offers the EV charge point grant which took over from the Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme in April 2022. The scheme aims to cover up to 75% of the cost of installing electric vehicle smart charge points at properties across the UK.  

There’s also funding available for workplaces to help with the cost of installing charge points at offices. Find out more information by visiting the Government website.   

Can I still receive breakdown assistance if my car is electric?

Man in vest calling road assistance standing near the broken car on the highway

A lot of EV owners worry about whether their breakdown provider will be able to help them if they are stranded in their electric vehicle and require roadside assistance.  

The good news is that breakdown recovery providers are fully equipped to help all drivers, regardless of whether your car is fully electric, hybrid, or has a combustion engine. The callouts don’t come at an additional cost either, so you can have peace of mind that you’re covered either way. 

Another bit of good news is that most car parts can be covered under a comprehensive warranty plan. Warranty companies also have an extensive list of VAT-registered garages, so if you’re unsure whether your local garage caters for EVs, they will be able to help. If you would like to find out how much a warranty would cost, get an extended EV Warranty quote here. A Warrantywise plan comes with a breakdown cover included as standard.  

Is driving an electric car different from driving a standard petrol or diesel car? 

Electric car plugged outside home

Contrary to popular belief, electric vehicles don’t require new tricks or skills to hit the road, but there are still a few things to be aware of before heading out for the first time.  

Spotting the key differences   

Firstly, electric cars forgo the gears! So, don’t step in expecting to slip from second to third. This is one of the primary distinctions between an electric ‘engine’ and a combustion engine.  

The quietness of an electric car is also a big distinguishable factor. This is because EV’s don’t have a standard combustible engine, which means that the running sound is a lot softer.  

If you’re still undecided on whether an electric car is for you, visit our helpful EV Buying guide to find out more about electric vehicles and their mechanics.

Are electric cars more sustainable?

Electric car charging station signal, sustainable mobility

Have you ever wondered whether driving an electric vehicle is more sustainable? Although scientists are still in the early days of discovering the answer, the future certainly looks bright for EVs and a greener globe! 

Electric vehicles have been directly linked with increasing the air quality in polluted cities through their low emissions and reliance on electricity, as opposed to fossil fuels.  

Electric cars and vans also don’t have conventional tailpipes, which means they aren’t contributing to the high levels of carbon dioxide that are usually emitted from standard combustion engines.  

But that’s not all! Electric cars are also working wonders for noise pollution, thanks to their quiet engines.  

Finally, there is research to suggest that well-maintained lithium batteries from EVs can go on to have a second life by fulfilling another purpose such as energy storage. 

Do I have to pay road tax?

Vehicle tax reminder letter

One of the biggest differences between electric vehicles and combustion engines is that if your vehicle is pure electric or a BEV, you currently don’t have to pay road tax in the UK.  

This is part of the government’s ambitions to incentivise families and individuals to purchase an electric vehicle and should ultimately contribute to the UK’s efforts to reach carbon neutrality by 2050.  

Although, this hasn’t always been the case. Before 2020, it was more expensive to tax electric vehicles, so this news for 2022 comes as a breath of fresh air for the owners and prospective owners of electric vehicles! 

For hybrid vehicles and combustion engines, different rules apply. So, make sure you’re aware of all the key information that applies to your car before hitting the open road.  

Are there any other processes or taxes I should be aware of?

Although you might not have to pay tax on an electric vehicle, it’s really important that all the necessary documentation is up to date. Ensure the correct paperwork is completed, and your car is effectively ‘taxed’ for the following 12 months even if you’re not required to make an actual payment.  

For more details on how to complete this process correctly, visit the government website or your local Post Office branch for more information.

Now you have the full facts on electric vehicles, are you ready to make the switch to an electric car?

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