At long last, the electric vehicle is starting to catch on with both large-scale vehicle manufacturers and us, the consumers that purchase and drive automobiles.
Up until relatively recently, the idea of commercially viable electric vehicles was something that wouldn’t have sounded out of place in science fiction, but now, the times they are a changin’!
Instead of your typical combustion engine, electric cars utilize electric motors that draw power from state-of-the-art batteries rather than liquid fuels such as petrol or diesel.
This energy-savvy switch-up keeps harmful emissions to an absolute minimum, helping motorists reduce their carbon footprint without forfeiting their means of mobility.
However, petrol and diesel aren’t the only fossil fuels used in automobiles.
Traditional combustion engines also require regular oil changes to keep the moving parts of their motors lubricated.
Now, we know that electric cars have cut out the liquid fuel from the automobile equation, but do they still require this oil? Let’s find out!
Why Do Standard Engines Need Oil?
Oil is used as a lubricant in traditional combustion engines, and the reason lubricant is necessary is that these contraptions have a lot of moving metal parts that operate at extremely high speeds.
As metal rubbing against metal can cause a lot of friction, which can, in turn, lead to the shedding of microscopic metal flakes, oil must be consistently changed.
Fresh oil purges an engine of these small fibers, whilst also helping to reduce the amount of these fibers coming loose.
But, as we’ve already touched upon, electric cars don’t have this kind of engine, so does that mean that, on top of petrol and diesel, they’ve also given oil the boot?
Do Electric Motors Need Oil As A Lubricant?
I’ve got some fantastic news — electric vehicles don’t need any oil to keep their motors working in a silky smooth manner!
Electric motors simply do not require this kind of lubrication, which is yet another green triumph for the EV.
But this indifference to oil isn’t only great for the planet, it’s also great for us, as it’s one less thing we have to worry about when it comes to vehicle maintenance.
Why Don’t Electric Cars Need Oil?
Electric cars are built with entirely different engine architecture. These nifty motors are completely sealed off, so you couldn’t add any lubricant if you wanted to.
They’re kitted out with all the lubrication they’ll ever need when they’re created, and once they’re in position in the EV, they’re ready for action indefinitely — pretty neat, right?
They don’t have any air intakes, exhausts, or even any pistons.
They have decidedly fewer moving parts than traditional engines, so the constant changing of oil simply isn’t necessary.
But this doesn’t mean we can shirk on EV maintenance too much, as there are still a few fluids that require attention at certain intervals.
What About EV Reduction Gearboxes?
Ev reduction gearboxes do utilize a little bit of oil to keep shifting nice and smooth, so if you have an EV with stick, then you can’t completely avoid it altogether.
However, it’s not like the oil in traditional cars that needs changing frequently to optimize performance and stave off degradation.
This oil may need changing at some point in the vehicle’s lifetime, but that’ll be it.
What Fluids Should You Keep An Eye On If You Own An Electric Car?
There are three primary fluids to replenish in an electric car:
Ev motors may not need lubrication, and they rarely get all that hot either, but I can’t say the same for the batteries that power them.
Batteries generate a lot of heat. It’s just one of those inescapable facts of life, and they don’t very much care for this heat.
Heat can be terribly damaging to a battery, which is why there’s so much of a focus on overcharge-reducing technologies this day and age.
But batteries don’t just get hot while charging, they also get hot when discharging, so a liquid coolant is essential for optimizing their service life in our electric cars.
Keeping on top of coolant levels will ensure that your battery lives a long, green life, saving you money on replacements, and reducing the strain on the environment.
Here’s something that really hasn’t changed from the gas guzzling vehicles of yesteryear… brake fluids.
This substance is what’s known as a hydraulic liquid.
It helps to increase pressure in the braking system of a vehicle, thereby galvanizing the stopping power of the brakes.
Brake fluid is even more essential in EVs than it is in traditional vehicles, as electric cars are often fitted with regenerative braking systems, a genius creation that utilizes the action of braking to top up battery power.
For any EV regenerative braking system to function, brake fluid is nonnegotiable.
To ensure a smooth, safe ride, it should be replaced every 25,000 miles at the very least.
Here’s another fluid inherited from standard vehicles.
Wiper fluid, as I’m sure you’re aware, is the liquid that sprays onto your windshield when you need to clean it using your wipers.
It helps to break down, dislodge, and clear out dirt and debris on your windshield to improve vision.
This stuff isn’t essential to core EV functionality, so it doesn’t need to be replaced at certain intervals. You can simply replenish it when supplies run low.
What Other Maintenance Can You Forget About With An Electric Car?
Not only can you kiss goodbye to constant oil changes when you’re the driver of an electric car, you can also say farewell to spark plug problems and timing belt tantrums, as EVs do not have these components.
Do electric cars use oil? No, not really, and certainly not in the same way that traditional vehicles do.
This is just one more reason why electric cars are a fantastic investment.
Not only are they helping to keep global warming under control, they’re nowhere near as high maintenance as the fume spewers we all grew up with.