If you’re the proud owner of an electric vehicle, but it’s your first foray into electric or hybrid, you might be surprised to learn that caring for your car is slightly different from that of an internal combustion engine.
From battery checks to cabling, timings to price points, in this essential guide, we explain everything owners need to consider when it comes to servicing their electric vehicles, also known as EVs.
So, if you’re interested in finding out more about electric vehicle services…Read on!
Do electric cars need servicing?
Like petrol or diesel cars, it’s really important that your electric car is regularly serviced to keep it running for as long as possible.
And although services of electric cars are typically quicker and easier than a standard car service, as there are fewer parts to maintain, this doesn’t mean that services should be avoided.
Hybrid cars should also be serviced, as this type of vehicle combines the essential components of two types of engines: electric and combustion car could encounter general wear and tear, so make sure you plan for health checks of your vehicle.
What can I expect from a car service?
Car services are relatively simple routine appointments that work as a full health check of your electric car. Booking a regular service is essential in making sure your warranty still stands, and that you’re taking the necessary steps to properly care for your car.
Here is a rundown of some of the things to expect from your EV service:
Battery pack check
A technician will check the battery of your electric vehicle to ensure it’s working properly and fully equipped to fulfil its role as an essential component of your electric car.
It’s only natural for your battery to degrade over time, which also means that your battery will reduce quicker than it may have when you initially purchased the vehicle.
To assess the quality of your battery, the technician will perform a leak test to ensure electrolytes don’t escape and moisture isn’t able to enter the battery chamber.
A technician will thoroughly and carefully inspect the high-voltage cables underneath your vehicle to determine whether there are breaks or to spot visible signs of damage.
If this is the case and the technician identifies an issue, the cables need to be replaced.
Testing the brakes of your EV is an integral part of your car’s health check. Technicians will check your brakes are working properly and will also take the opportunity to ensure the brake fluid is topped up too.
Usually, the brake fluid needs replacing every two years or so but be sure to check the recommendations for your make and model as this varies by manufacturer.
Similar to petrol or diesel cars, EVs also rely on a cooling system to stop the vehicle from overheating. During the service, the levels will be monitored and topped up if necessary. The technician will also check for leaks and corrosion.
Air conditioning system
Unlike petrol or diesel vehicle, air conditioning systems found within electric cars are controlled by an electric motor. Therefore, an overall survey of the car’s air conditioning system will be performed to ensure ventilation is working to the best of its ability.
A working air condition system in your EV is essential, as it not only heats and cools the cabin but also assists with demisting the front windscreen and side and rear windshield.
The technician will also look to complete a thorough review of your vehicle’s windscreen wipers, suspension, and much more.
At the end of your service, you can expect a full report which provides a rundown of your car’s essential components, detailing what’s working well or any action that needs to be taken to get your car back on track to full health.
If you’re interested in learning more about how the service of a combustion engine compares to an electric vehicle service. Check out The Ultimate Car Servicing Guide
How long does a service take?
The duration of an electric vehicle service varies from car to car and garage to garage. Depending on the outcome of your appointment and whether further action needs to be taken.
Most services can be completed on the same day, although this is obviously subject to change. The garage will keep you updated on the status of your car’s service, and if things are taking longer than usual.
How much does it cost to service an electric car?
A service for your electric car is less expensive than you might think and is an essential way to keep things running as smoothly as possible.
The price of service cost varies from garage to garage and can be as comprehensive as you need it to be. From small cars to large cars and then by the level of service, prices range from £150 – £400. Generally speaking, the larger the car, the more you can expect to pay.
Prices are also subject to the make and model of your EV, so, it’s advisable to get a quote from your chosen garage before committing to a full service of your vehicle. A good idea is to look for competitive quotes before committing to a particular garage.
If you ring ahead of time, most garages will be happy to provide you with a quote and a breakdown of what’s included in the fee.
If you’ve recently bought your car from a dealership, you might have an initial service covered as part of your contract. If you’re looking for more information on this, it’s best to contact your dealer directly or check the paperwork that you received when you bought the vehicle.
How often should I get a service?
It is a misconception that a vehicle owner should wait until there’s a problem with their electric motor before getting it serviced by a registered professional. Instead, it’s generally advised that electric cars should be serviced every year or 12,000 miles, as a regular review will highlight any action that needs to be taken quickly.
Maintaining your vehicle can also help you to save money in the long run. Because if your car is well maintained, you are less likely to need to spend money on maintenance costs down the line.
In your car’s handbook, you’ll find helpful information regarding service intervals, which state regular times for your car to be serviced. This information is in line with the make and model of your car and is a great starting point if you’re unsure.
If you’re looking to take a long family road trip, or you’ll be driving your car to a business meeting far away, this is also a good time to consider a service. For other useful hints and tips ahead of a long drive, read “Warrantywise’s top 4 tips to prepare your car for a long journey.
Where can I get my electric vehicle serviced near me?
When preparing to book a service for an electric vehicle, it’s important to choose a reputable VAT-registered garage that is fully equipped to carry out a service.
As electric cars carry high voltages and rely on specialised parts, it’s important that the person who services your car has the right skills and knowledge.
If you’re looking for a local garage that offers EV servicing, you can always contact the place where you purchased the vehicle or the manufacturer for detailed guidance and recommendations. Or, failing this, a simple Google search will give you options and also provide trusted reviews of garages in your local area.
Your local garage will also be able to assist with other queries you have relating to the maintenance of your EV, such as booking an MOT. If you’re looking for more information on this read “Does my vehicle need an MOT yet?”
Electric car maintenance vs petrol car maintenance
In most cases, electric car maintenance is a lot less exhaustive than petrol or diesel vehicles as fewer components are required to make the car.
Ultimately, this should also mean fewer repair jobs are needed to keep your electric car running how it should.
Thanks to new technology such as regenerative braking, which captures the kinetic energy and converts it into power that charges your EV, brake repairs are statistically low, as wear and tear to brake pads and rotors is reduced.
If you follow all the advice in your manual to keep your electric car in great condition, this should mean when it comes to booking a service, your EV or hybrid car breezes through!
What are the benefits of getting my electric car serviced?
Asides from confirmation on whether there is a fault with your electric vehicle, you’ll also have peace of mind that everything is working, as it should be.
Services are also a brilliant opportunity to learn more about your car and how to care for it properly. Catching up with a technician post-service is a valuable opportunity to understand more about your electric car.
If you’re thinking of buying an electric car, or you still have additional questions about running and caring for an EV, you can access our handy guide – Thinking About Buying an Electric Car
Alternatively, if you want to find out more about getting EV warranty cover or you want to speak to someone directly, contact us for cover you can be confident in.