Whether you are new to electric vehicles or an experienced and confident EV driver, this blog provides the solutions to some of your EV charging problems.
You may think there are many uncertainties to driving an electric vehicle, particularly involving the public charging experience. Do not let this put you off driving one! We have put together a series of common EV public and general charging problems with the all-important solutions that will help when charging your EV.
General EV charging problems
My EV is not charging – what do I do?
There are several reasons why your vehicle might not be charging. Resolving the issue starts with getting to the root of the problem, which will help ensure this is prevented in the future.
The issue could be as simple as the battery is already ‘full’ (generally, rapid chargers charge to 80%) and so a charge is not necessary.
Using an extension cable to charge your car might be causing the problem, given that the current provided by rapid and home charging points is more than the extension cable can cope with. Remove the need for the extension cable by positioning your car closer to the charger.
Is your vehicle compatible with the charge point connector? If not, you will not be able to charge. There are two types of connector: CHAdeMO and CCS. If your car is only equipped for a CCS connector, you will not be able to charge with a CHAdeMO connector, and vice versa.
The problem might not be within your control – if the charging station is not working, there may be an internal malfunction. If this is the case, contact the charge point operator (CPO). CPOs usually offer a 24/7 customer service helpline, and they may be able to start a charge for you or redirect you to another available charger.
Mer UK has a 24/7 customer helpline. If you experience difficulty with a Mer UK charger, contact our 24/7 helpline with the socket identification number. Both are located on our chargers.
The range of my EV is poor – how can I improve it?
Range figures for a single charge depends on the vehicle. Whilst most new vehicles have a range of 80-250 miles, many family models can cover 110-180 miles, whilst some premium EV models cover 250-300+ miles.
Many factors affect your EV’s range. Driving at a high speed with significant acceleration, using the air conditioning or heating features, or even the outside temperature may affect your range.
The first stage in improving your EV’s range is protecting the health of the battery. Charging to 80% and not below 20% will preserve the battery’s health, meaning it will hold more energy and therefore the range for a single charge will improve.
There are other behavioural ways of improving your EV’s range. Regenerative breaking will help prevent range reduction, and when driving in winter months, try preheating your car and checking the air pressure of your tiers to decrease the rolling resistance. We recently considered how the cold weather affects your vehicle’s performance, and offered tips for combatting these issues.
Can I charge my EV in the rain?
You can charge your electric vehicle in any weather. Though your EV’s performance may be compromised in poor weather, most charging points are built to be protected from rain and other weathers.
My EV has run out of power mid-journey – what do I do?
Most EVs work in a similar way to a vehicle with an internal combustion engine (ICE). It will tell you when your battery is running low, and some also prompt regenerative breaking and reduce your maximum speed to maintain the remaining power. It is advised you prevent the battery running below 20% to preserve the battery in the long-term.
If you find yourself without any power on the road and without access to a charger, call for road assistance. To prevent future breakdowns, plan for your journey (especially long distances) and charge your car in enough time; see below for more advice on this…
The charging cable is stuck – how do I release it?
Resolving this issue depends on where the cable gets stuck. If your cable is stuck in the charge point, you should contact the helpline of the charge point operator
If the cable is stuck in your car, you can try to lock and unlock your car. Most cars also have a manual release.
Public EV charging problems
As of June 2022, there were 32,663 public charging points in the UK. If you are out and about and need to charge your EV, the growing public charging system is at your disposable.
I do not have time to charge my car – what do I do?
Time is a key factor in getting the most out of the EV experience. Charging your vehicle in enough time before you travel will ensure it is ready for the journey, with the added benefit of a cheaper charge due to the lower demand for electricity of your charge overnight.
Sometimes, however, time is of the essence. You may have run out of time before work, or the charge has taken longer than anticipated.
Rapid charging is the ideal solution to quick, on-demand charging, as the charging speed makes a huge difference. You can charge your battery to 80% in just 20-40 minutes with 50kWh-350kWh chargers, which can be found on major routes, retail parks and hubs.
If you do not have access to a rapid charger, planning your route in advance and noting where you will be able to charge during the journey is your next option. Get as much charge into the vehicle as you have time for before you set off and depart with the confidence that there are charging opportunities on-route for a top-up if necessary.
I cannot find a charger – what do I do?
Zap Map, the electric charge point app, will enable you to see the nearest public chargers to your location, including Mer UK chargers.
To find a Mer UK charger, you can also visit our Driver Portal to find a public charger nearest to your location. You can filter your search by charging speed and connector type.
Find out more about Mer’s public electric vehicle charging network and register as a customer:
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