Some recent research suggests that electric vehicles are less likely to have a fire than conventional vehicles.
In actuality, though, there’s not enough data on the subject to reach any firm conclusions. And one thing we do know when it comes to electric vehicle fires is that they’re extremely dangerous when they do occur.
With that in mind, the more you know about electric vehicle fire risk and how to prevent it, the better. So keep reading to learn more.
Why Do Electric Vehicle Fires Happen?
Electric vehicles run on lithium-ion batteries. These batteries can fail for a number of reasons, including:
- manufacturing defects
- electrical shorts
- stress on the battery (i.e., excessive vibration)
It’s important to note that the electrodes on lithium-ion batteries are placed closely together to give them the power they need to run a motor. But that placement also increases the likelihood of a short, which, in turn, increases the likelihood of fire.
Electric Vehicle Fire Risk Warning Signs
If you notice your electric vehicle battery swell up or become extremely hot to the touch, exit the vehicle right away. The same can be said if you notice discoloration, a burning smell, blistering on the battery, or smoke.
It’s important to exit the vehicle immediately when you notice these signs because fires in lithium-ion batteries are especially dangerous and difficult to put out. This is because the battery’s electrodes are filled with a flammable liquid that can cause thermal runaway, wherein the battery basically boils.
You can visit here to learn more about electric vehicle fire risk and what to do in case it happens to you.
Electric Vehicle Safety Tips
After using your electric vehicle, give it some time to cool down before plugging it in to charge. The battery is still hot immediately after use, and charging increases that heat. If you can detach your battery to charge it, that’s even better.
You should never buy an off-brand replacement battery. Only use the type of battery intended for the vehicle, which you can purchase from the original manufacturer or an authorized re-seller. The same goes for accessories – never use anything off-brand.
Don’t store your electric vehicle in the sunlight. Make sure it’s covered while it’s not being used and keep it in a cool, dry place with good ventilation. Should you ever find a defect in your vehicle, discontinue use until you can have it checked out.
Tech Tips, Tricks, and Advice
Electric vehicle fires have made a few headlines in recent years, and it’s no wonder there’s concern over their safety. But recent data suggests that these fires are probably less likely than a fire in a conventional engine. Nevertheless, you should be prepared to know the warning signs of a fire and how to prevent one.
And for more tips, tricks, and tech advice, have a read through our extensive technology blog.