If you are planning to start a Do It Yourself (DIY) electric car conversion project, have you thought of whether the homemade electric car would work in cold climate areas? Do you know how the cold weather would affect the range of the EV and its performance?
The fact is electric cars, especially the battery pack do not like cold weather. I read an article preciously saying low temperature will affect the performance of lead acid batteries by as much as 25 – 30%. Meaning, if you were to drive your DIY electric car in the summer, it might give you around 50 driving miles before it has to be recharged. However, during winter time, the same EV would only give you around 35 miles before you have to recharge the batteries.
So how do you solve this problem?
The solution is actually quite simple. You can overcome this problem by using insulation to keep the battery units warm. The challenge is to find a way to insulate the batteries and at the same time allowing good airflow to remove the hydrogen gas (H2) that forms when charging the batteries.
Another challenge is to make sure you have sufficient insulation to ensure the batteries are still warm, even after an hour or so after the charging has finished. You don’t want the batteries to start to cool because that will affect the power output hence reducing your driving mileage.
What is the best option to insulation the batteries of your homemade electric car?
You can actually use foil-coated foam-rubber sheeting for your battery pack. These insulation sheets are around ¼ of an inch thick and can be applied to both the inside and outside of your battery boxes.
The good news is, these insulation sheets are quite cheap. You can get them from any building supply or hardware store. It is a simple, cheap and effective solution to overcome the cold weather for an electric car.
DIY Electric Car Conversion Guide
Do you want to know how to start your own DIY electric car conversion project? If you do, check out the Convert2EV e-book by Les Oke.
Les Oke and his family are from Canada and they have been living a green lifestyle for more than 15 years. In order to keep their carbon footprint low, the Okes have been using homemade electric cars for transportation.
The Convert2EV manual was written based on Les’ years of experience doing EV conversion projects from his home garage. For more information on Les’ DIY electric car conversion guide, click on the link below.