What happens when an electric car runs out of charge?
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Electric cars have boomed in popularity in recent years. The eco-friendly alternative to petrol cars is attractive to motorists for a multitude of reasons, as many fuel-based cars are likely to be phased out in the coming decades for eco-friendly alternatives.
As well as this, electric car drivers have a range of benefits not afford to many fuel car drivers, including discounts on congestion charges, lower running costs, low or no road tax, and free parking in some areas.
But the issue of so-called ‘range-anxiety’ – how far an electric car will be able to travel until it runs out, and if there are chargers available when needed – has made some motorists hesitant to make the switch.
There are some 15,000 charging points for electric cars in the UK – in comparison to some 8,000 petrol stations.
So, it’s unlikely your electric car will run out whether you’re doing a long or short distance journey. But Express.co.uk takes a look at what this means for you.
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How far can electric cars go?
This depends on the electric car you have and the size of the battery, as well as how you drive.
Smaller city cars have an average range of 100 to 150 miles on a single charge.
Larger, more expensive models can do in excess of 300 miles per charge.
What happens if an electric car runs out of charge?
The obvious answer is that the car will stop running.
However, like petrol cars, your electric vehicle will warn you well in advance that you need to stop and charge, usually when there’s about 20 percent battery left.
Many electric cars will also consistently run a measure of how many miles are left at any given time – so you’re not running on estimates of how long you have left like many petrol and diesel vehicles.
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What should I do if I’m caught out?
If your electric car does run out of charge, it will switch into failsafe mode, giving you enough time to pull over.
Unlike fuel-run cars, you cannot head to the nearest petrol station on foot and buy fuel to take away, meaning you will need to call for roadside assistance.
When assistance arrives, your car may be given a quick booster charge there and then – giving you enough power to get to a charging point – or it will be towed to a charging station.
How long does it take to charge an electric car?
This also depends on the model you own – but many do not take long to charge at all.
A lot of electric cars have rapid charging – meaning they can reach 80 percent charge in around 30 to 40 minutes.
Rapid charge points are typically found at motorway service stations and can also be free for certain drivers but are generally seen as one of the more expensive options.
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