Maintaining an electric car yourself: What is possible on your own

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In everyday life, drivers use a simplified image of the automobile as a technology. An internal combustion car burns fuel and thus creates movement. An electric car creates movement from electromagnetism powered by a battery. How complex the technology has become can only be seen by looking at the details. For example, people usually only know about “exhaust gas recirculation” if it has already caused problems, because it does not appear in the simplified view.

Likewise, the view “There is a battery that supplies a motor with power” does not reveal why the maintenance of an electric car comes so close to the cost of a gasoline vehicle. There is a lack of complex cooling circuits, for example, that regulate the temperature of the battery and thus ensure its longer life. Therefore, here is an overview of electric car maintenance, which not only includes the “What?” contains, but also the “why?” the lower maintenance costs – with a little digression for do-it-yourselfers.

The studies include the total cost of ownership of new cars over the first five years. This time is about maintenance and wear parts. However, the average car in Germany is almost ten years old. This is where repairs come into play, with combustion engines typically the corroded (because hot) exhaust system or a worn clutch. This does not apply to the electric car. The fear of the battery aging in use can also be omitted, because the majority of cars show that this is moderate and that the warranty conditions (mostly 100,000 to 160,000 km, currently with a tendency to significantly more) are exceeded. In contrast, we know less about the calendar aging of the battery. The guarantees are typically six to eight years. Even Toyota / Lexus with their 1 million kilometer guarantee is limited here to ten years.

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