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Electric vs. Gas: It's Time We Talk About Maintenance Costs

Electric vs. Gas: It's Time We Talk About Maintenance Costs

An electric vehicle is a long-term commitment and investment, so naturally, you'd want to weigh the pros and the cons before making the big purchase.

In previous blogs, we've already talked about the lifespan of EV batteries, the profitability of a charging station, and car depreciation.

Now, let's discuss the repair and maintenance costs of owning an electric car.

What kind of maintenance do EVs require?

The general rule is that the fewer moving parts your car has, the less maintenance it requires.

Compared to internal combustion engines (ICE), electric vehicles have far fewer moving parts in their drivetrain, hence, less maintenance is required.

This is good news for potential EV owners that are still on the fence about buying an electric vehicle.

Just because you're shelling out money for a unit doesn't mean maintenance costs are just as high.

While not as high maintenance as gas-powered cars, your EV still needs some love.

Just like a gasoline-powered car, manufacturers recommend that you take your electric vehicle to periodic checks to keep its warranty in effect.

There's no cause for concern, as these routine visits only include checking tires, replacing the wiper blades and air filter, refilling the windshield washer fluid, and other basic mechanical check-ups.

Depending on the automaker and model, you might have to have the coolant level of your battery checked, as well as the power inverter and cabin heater.

EVs older than 8 to 10 years old may also need battery replacement, as these kinds of batteries naturally degrade and lose battery life over time.

Battery prices range from anywhere between $5,000 to $10,000, but these prices are expected to decrease as technology and materials become more common.

Is maintaining an electric car cheaper?

Consumer reports based on hundreds of thousands of drivers suggest that the maintenance costs of an electric vehicle compared to a gas-powered car are significantly higher.

On average, EV owners can expect to pay around $4,600 on lifetime regular maintenance and repair costs, as compared to the $9,200 gas cars would need.

That's a cost difference of $4,600!

Electric vehicles require $0.31 per mile on lifetime repairs and maintenance fees, while internal combustion engine vehicles need $0.61

Electric vs. gas: fuel and maintenance

Fuel costs alone will set back ICE vehicle owners around $100 a month or $1,300 per year for 15,000 miles of driving.

Meanwhile, electric cars only cost around $45 a month or $550 a year to charge for the same driving range.

And because EVs are powered by electricity, they don't require oil changes on a regular basis, which is an additional expense for regular car owners.

Some maintenance for EVs and ICE vehicles costs the same, like fixing brakes, changing tires, and ensuring the suspension components are well maintained.

These components include struts and shock absorbers.

EV owners would also want to watch out for the normal wear and tear of the brake pads, as the regenerative braking systems of EVs rely on electric motors to slow down.

This system lessens the usage of brake pads on electric vehicles as compared to gas-powered cars.

As mentioned, fewer moving parts mean lesser expenses on the part of the owner.

Protecting your charger

One cost that should also be considered is maintaining your charger. Always make sure you do your research before buying a portable charger or an in-home charging station, to verify it's not only powerful, but efficient, safe, and affordable. 

For example, the Lectron V-BOX offers best-in-class power, efficiency, cost, and is Energy Star and IP55 rated. I mean, which other EV charger out there provides 48 amps of power, 11.52 kWh, and all for under $450? 

The answer? None. At least none are as reputable as Lectron. 

Lectron even partners with Extend Product Protection, so that you can get the most out of your Lectron charger and keep charging confidently far beyond the 1-year factory warranty.

With the Extend, you can add up to 3 years of protection, so you charge confidently with your Lectron charger for years to come!

FAQs

Is it expensive to maintain an electric car?

Based on real-world data, maintaining an electric car should not be as expensive as maintaining a regular gas-powered car. On average, EV drivers would have to spend about $45 per month or $550 a year for every 15,000 miles driven. Throughout its lifetime, an EV would only need about $4,600 for maintenance costs. Meanwhile, traditional cars need around $100 a month or $1,300 a year after clocking in at 15,000 miles. That's about $9,200 for repairs and maintenance fees throughout its lifetime.

How often does an electric car need to be serviced?

An electric vehicle is recommended to be serviced twice a year for the vehicle system and tire rotations. Regularly having your EV checked will ensure it keeps its warranty. As for the battery pack, it's covered by a separate 8-year warranty.

What are the disadvantages of electric cars?

With relatively newer technology, electric cars still have a limited driving range compared to traditional cars. Another disadvantage is the availability of EV chargers nationwide. Charging stations are still not as widely available as gasoline stations.

Is it cheaper to maintain an electric car or a gas car?

Yes, maintaining an electric car is about half the price of maintaining a gas car.

What is the lifespan of an electric car?

On average, electric cars can last around 200,000 miles or 12 years, which is longer than the lifespan of an average gas car (150,000 miles or 8 years).

What is the average cost of maintaining an electric car?

The average cost to maintain an electric car is around $4,600 throughout its lifetime. In comparison, ICE vehicles cost about $9,200 to maintain.

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