Living an eco-friendly lifestyle has become more and more popular in recent years, as people make efforts to reduce their impact on the environment. This has manifested itself in many ways, including efforts to decrease single-use plastic dependence, initiatives to finance more renewable energy technologies, and general commitments from individuals and businesses to reduce their carbon footprint.
One of the most significant efforts towards a more sustainable and eco-friendly world has been the advancement of electric vehicles. While they have been on the road for many years, their continued popularity and increased accessibility have made switching to an electric car more effortless than ever. And with gas prices continuing to fluctuate at an unpredictable rate, making the change to electric likely seems very attractive to many people.
Before you get rid of your gas guzzler, however, there are a few things you should know about electric vehicles so you can make an informed decision on your future form of transportation.
How an Electric Vehicle is Different
Although it may be easy just to say electric vehicles are different because they don’t use gasoline, there’s much more that makes them unique. For decades, traditional vehicles functioned using an internal combustion engine, which uses a combination of fuel, air, and a spark to create a series of small explosions. The heat and expanded gas from these explosions push a series of pistons which then causes your car to move.
Electric vehicles function with just an electric motor and a battery pack to give them power, eliminating the need for nearly everything a regular car uses to run. Because there is no combustion, there are no fumes, which means driving in your electric vehicle doesn’t contribute to air pollution. EVs do all of this without sacrificing function as well, driving exactly like other cars with the added benefit of not running as loudly in many cases.
Types of EVs
When searching for your future electric vehicle, it’s essential to first consider what kind of EV will be right for you. While they may share some similarities, each type of EV has enough differences to make them unique, all of which you should consider based on your personal preferences and lifestyle choices.
Traditional EVs are what people usually think of when they think of an electric vehicle, otherwise known as a battery electric vehicle (BEV). These cars run strictly on electricity, so when the battery dies, it needs to be plugged into a power source for the car to run again.
Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEV) use a combination of gasoline and electricity to run. These cars will use the battery first and then run on gasoline once the battery dies, ensuring a minimal environmental impact.
Fuel cell electric vehicles (FCEVs) are rare compared to other electric vehicles, as few carmakers create them. FCEVs are powered using a combination of hydrogen and oxygen in fuel cells to produce electricity. Due to their rarity, finding charging stations for them can be difficult.
Most electric vehicles use a lithium-ion battery for power, and they all work the same way no matter what make or model you buy. EVs hold hundreds of lithium-ion cells to make up the entire battery, providing enough power for a vehicle to travel about as far as the most fuel-efficient cars on the market.
Because you’ll no longer have to rely on gas, you’ll also no longer have to go to the gas station. Now you’ll need to find a public charging station for your vehicle or have one installed in your home for convenient charging at any time. Public charging stations may not be as ubiquitous as gas stations, but with the considerable range of most electric vehicles, you should be able to travel hundreds of miles without worrying about your battery dying.
Roni Davis is a writer, blogger, and legal assistant operating out of the greater Philadelphia area. She writes for Cousin Benny, a Philadelphia car accident lawyer.