Christmas and the holidays are quickly approaching. For many of us that means loading into the car to go visit our parents or grandparents in another town, city or even province.
Hitting the road during the harsh Canadian winter can be nerve-wracking on the best of days. When you are driving an electric vehicle, whether it is your first winter or your fifth, anxiety can impact your drive. Which is why we have a few tips to help with everything from road trip prep to range anxiety.
1. Plan Your Trip
No don’t role your eyes, this is important. We don’t mean what you are taking and when you are leaving, though that is important too. When you plan your trip figure out what route you are taking and where the charging stations are along the way.
This will help you plan when and where you are going to stop. We would also recommend looking into what is happening in the area during your stop. Charging up your vehicle on a road trip, whether short or long, is a great excuse to explore a new town you may have driven past hundreds of times before.
2. Know how to use your vehicle’s features
Electric vehicles come with a whole host of different features that make driving it fun and easy. We want to make sure you know how to access information like your range and the find a charging station feature – which is available in many, if not all, EVs.
Being able to find and access these features in your vehicle will help ease your anxiety. As a backup, apps like the FordPass app can tell you how much range your vehicle has and can also help you find a nearby charging station.
3. Precondition Your Vehicle
We talked about this in our last blog post “Prepare Your EV for Winter”. Preconditioning your vehicle warms up the battery, so it keeps a better charge, and helps maximize the car’s driving range.
It is a simple process, simply turn your vehicle, and the heat, on around 30 minutes before you head out, while the car is still plugged in. This is just like warming up your traditional internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicle.
4. Drive smart
Driving in winter can be tough. You deal with snow and ice and slush, not to mention changing temperatures and conditions as you go. This is why we recommend driving smart, slow and smooth during the winter months.
Reduce the rate at which you accelerate and brake to give your EV's battery a break. Avoid sudden and quick braking to avoid potentially slipping and sliding, and to give those behind you time to react.
5. Get winter tires
If you haven’t swapped your summer tires out yet for winter ones, this is your friendly reminder to do so before you head out on a road trip.
Winter tires will reduce your risk of slipping and sliding on snowy roads, help improve traction, and your braking speed. Not to mention you will be able to capitalize on car insurance discounts.
As Canadians we know that winter brings along a number of adjustments, and not just when driving. Know that your EV is more than up to the task, and is ready to take you where you need to go this winter and holiday season.
The team at Lacombe Quick Lane is here and ready to help you prepare for your road trip to see the family this holiday. From new winter tires, brake replacements, fluid flushes and beyond, our team knows electric vehicles and understands the different maintenance requirements for different vehicles. We believe there is a standard of excellence every driver deserves when trusting a shop to look over and service their vehicle.