For many drivers, buying a used electric car is a leap into the unknown. Although electric cars have become increasingly popular over the past decade, many people don’t know what to look for in a used electric vehicle. In this guide, prepared by the automotive experts at carVertical, you’ll learn how to effortlessly buy a used electric car.
Are electric cars worth buying?
With fuel prices on the rise, buying an electric car can save you money in the long run. Although electricity is not free, it is estimated that electric vehicle drivers can save up to $1,000 annually. However, new electric cars are still more expensive than conventional cars, so buying a used car is an attractive option.
Surprisingly, used electric cars are often in better condition than conventional cars, as they have fewer moving parts. There is nothing worse than buying a used car and then spending a lot of money on repairs.
However, older electric cars have one major drawback – battery capacity that reduces range. As technologies improve, new electric cars can drive longer than their predecessors. This means that people who choose a used car may need to charge the car more often.
How long do electric car batteries last?
Whether it’s a gasoline car or an electric car, the battery eventually starts to deteriorate and you can’t do anything about it. Changes in temperature, frequent charging, and high mileage are all factors that reduce battery capacity.
Most car manufacturers guarantee batteries for eight years or 160,000 kilometers. If the car has already crossed this mark, there is a possibility that its battery performance will be worse compared to a new car.
Battery health also depends on the climate. Lithium-ion batteries in electric cars do not perform well in hot weather. A used car from southern Spain may have a lower battery capacity, while a car from Holland or Germany may provide the driver with a much better battery capacity.
Auto experts advise checking the electric car battery health report before shaking hands with the seller. Replacing a car battery is expensive, so it is best to make sure that it is not dead.
The local charging infrastructure should be considered before purchasing an electric vehicle. Homeowners can charge electric cars in the garage or driveway, while people who live in apartments have fewer options.
Most cities do not have proper charging infrastructure, so finding a station can be a hassle. Filling the tank takes only a few minutes, while charging an electric car can take up to half a day.
Drivers who live or work far from charging stations can waste a lot of time waiting for a vehicle to be charged. Some companies are already offering portable electric car charging stations to owners who can’t charge their cars at home. However, the batteries only charge to a certain level, so these chargers are not a viable option at this time.
Importance of checking vehicle history
Every car is different. Two identical cars of the same model, made in the same year, can be in completely different conditions. Factors that buyers should consider include driving style, accidents, and mileage.
Not all drivers are honest and ready to reveal all the secrets of their cars. If the car gets into an accident, it reduces its value. Most people do not want to invest in a car that has had a bad accident as it may not be safe to drive and may cause mechanical problems in the future.
A few companies like carVertical offer an easy way to check a vehicle’s history before you buy it. After entering the vehicle’s VIN number, potential buyers can check if the vehicle has had any accidents, make sure the mileage has not been falsified, check if the vehicle was stolen and review its registration history. By checking the vehicle’s VIN number, the buyer can also gain leverage when negotiating the price.
Other things to consider when buying a used electric car
brakes. When an electric vehicle isn’t accelerating, it uses regenerative braking to slow the vehicle, reducing brake use. However, if the brakes are worn, it may mean that the vehicle has been used extensively and needs a thorough inspection.
Software updates. Electric vehicles, like all other systems, are regularly updated with software. Developers fix known bugs and introduce new features to improve vehicle performance. However, people often delay updates, so it is not uncommon for an electric vehicle to run on an older version of the software. This may mean that the owner has not taken care of his vehicle properly and you may have problems in the future.
Car Maintenance. Not all mechanics are trained to work with electric vehicles, so finding a reliable repairman can be difficult. Electric car experts recommend contacting official dealers, as they use original parts and can guarantee their work. Before buying a used electric car, drivers can check that all repairs have been done at a reputable auto repair shop.
lack of choice. While there are thousands of different models of petrol and diesel cars, the market for electric cars is very different. The situation is slowly improving, manufacturers are moving towards electric cars, and the number of models is constantly growing. However, the market for used electric vehicles is very limited, so finding a 5-10 year old SUV or family car can be challenging.
Buying your first electric car
As with any used vehicle, there are a few things to consider when buying an electric vehicle. However, if the car has a tidy history and a healthy battery, it is better to choose an electric motor. Although many drivers are still skeptical about buying a used electric car, there is no need to worry.
The electric vehicle must be taken to a mechanic for thorough examination prior to purchase. If all is well, it’s time to get used to quiet driving and free parking!