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How long does an electric vehicle battery last?

It's understandable that electric vehicle (EV) battery life can be a concern for drivers. There’s even a term for it: ‘range anxiety’. The fear your EV will lose all power before you reach your destination, leaving you stranded by the side of the highway.

Let’s calm that stress by looking at the ever-impressive lifespan of EV batteries, explore your ranges, give you charging options and highlight the support BCAA offers EV owners.

If you’re considering becoming an EV owner, your first stop should be our EV buyer’s guide. For even more resources, including an EV driving costs calculator, get in the know at

Otherwise, here’s everything you need to know about what powers your EV:

The life of an EV Battery

Your EV battery’s lifespan depends on several factors, including how many times you charge it. After you keep charging and recharging it, over and over, any battery will gradually lose its capacity, whether it’s in your laptop, phone or EV. The average lifespan of an EV battery ranges from 10-20 years (approximately 200,000-400,000 kilometres) before the battery really degrades. Compare that with regular car batteries that last three-to-four years.

Meantime, advancements in battery technology are constantly improving longevity. Tesla’s recent impact report found that Tesla’s Model S and Model X EVs lose just 12% of their maximum capacity after the cars were driven for 200,000 miles or 321,869 km.

The cost to replace your EV battery

Replacing your EV battery can be a big expense, costing anywhere from $5,000 USD ($6,500 CAD) to $20,000 USD ($28,000 (CAD). The good news: if you’re looking for an older EV, their batteries are reliable and long-lasting, according to a recent study by Recurrent Motors Inc., a Seattle battery analysis company. Their study found the majority of EVs driven over 160,000 kilometres still have at least 90% of their original range.

Finding a replacement battery is becoming easier, too. EV manufacturers and dealers typically offer replacement batteries, and there are companies that refurbish and recycle EV batteries, like Moment Energy in Coquitlam, RecycLiCo in Richmond, and

Cirba Solutions which takes in EV batteries at its battery recycling facility in Trail.

Electric vehicle low battery dashboard warning

How far your EV will go on a full charge

Newer model EVs often have longer ranges, ranging from approximately 300km to 500km on a single charge. Older EVs may have a lower range due to them being produced prior to advancements in battery technology. See for yourself: BC Hydro made a list of 15+ EV models available in BC that includes their minimum and maximum ranges.

Temperature is another crucial factor affecting your EV range. Extreme cold (like you get in northern BC) can reduce your EV range by increasing the energy demand for heating, while blazing hot afternoons (like we get all over BC) decrease your range by robbing your battery’s power.

To help maximize your EV battery range, we recommend you:

  • Avoid aggressive driving that puts a real strain on your engine
  • Maintain proper tire pressure - low tire pressure makes your EV work too hard to get where it’s going
  • Decrease your use of the heater and AC. If you have them, use heated and cooled seats to save battery strain
  • Cool the person, not the car. Keep your AC on low, open the window, and add a hand-sized personal fan to your dashboard
  • Drive early on a summer morning to avoid overworking your battery in the heat of day
  • Charge your battery slowly at night with a Level 2 charger instead of draining the power grid in the hot sunshine
  • Park in the shade
  • Don’t bring everything with you. A jam-packed EV means your battery has to work harder to power it along
  • 80/20: To truly maximize your range, remember the 80/20 rule which means don’t charge your battery past 80% and don’t let the charge drop below 20%
  • Regenerative braking helps top up your battery while you’re driving

Where to charge your EV Battery

Charging your EV is getting easier each year. There are more than 20,000 EV charging stations across Canada, over 3,800 public EV charging stations in BC and six main charging networks:

If you’re planning your road trip with BCAA’s trip planning tool Trip Tik, you can find locations of charging stations all along your route. Need to do a quick search for a charging station? Check out BC Hydro’s EV network map of their 70 fast charging stations in BC (plus how much they cost). You’ll also find thousands of charging stations on Flo’s EV charging station map, and on Plugshare and Plug In BC.

Find your level

There are three levels of EV chargers:

  • Level 1 charging uses a standard household plug outlet. This charges your EV at a much slower speed than a Level 2 or Level 3 charger but is ideal for overnight charging.
  • Level 2 chargers give you faster charging times and are often found at office buildings and residential garages.
  • Level 3 chargers, also known as DC fast chargers, give you rapid charges and are found on BC’s major highways. Heads up: swift-charging your battery at a Level 3 station can cause your battery to overheat which can negatively impact performance and longevity.

Family unloading from electric SUV while man plugs in charging cable

Home is where the charge is

If you install a home charging station, you can conveniently charge your vehicle overnight and wake up to a full battery that’s ready to go. The typical EV plug installed in homes and garages is a Level 2 charger.  There are upfront costs for the charger and installation (a 240V charging station will cost you $1,500-$2,000) but the long-term savings and convenience could make it a worthy investment.

Where to put your EV battery to rest

If your EV battery is at the end of its life, here’s a searchable map of all the places you can recycle batteries in BC.

How BCAA helps EV owners

Should you run into car trouble on a road trip, here’s how the power of BCAA Membership can help you:

  • If your EV battery runs out of charge, in some areas, our all-electric EV Roadside Assistance trucks can power you up.
  • If an EV Roadside Assistance truck is not available, we’ll tow you to the nearest charging station within the towing distance limits of your Membership plan.
  • If you need engine or mechanical repair, we’ll tow you to your preferred shop within the towing distance limits of your Membership plan.

BCAA Road Assist is not an on-demand service and tow costs can add up. It’s always best to plan ahead. Not a BCAA Member? Become a Member today at, starting at less than $8 per month, and save over $1,500 per year on everyday essentials, experiences, travel, dining, insurance and more!

Plus, there are benefits to getting extra insurance on your EV. In addition to ICBC Autoplan, consider BCAA Optional Car Insurance to save 5% with BC’s Most Trusted Insurance Brand* through our Eco-Friendly Vehicle Discount. BCAA Members can also save up to an additional 20%. Learn more at

Join the EV revolution

Thinking about becoming an EV owner? Check our EV buyer’s guide. We’ve also collected loads of EV resources—like our EV driving costs calculator—at

Ready to head on a BC EV road trip? Check out our EV road trip guide to travelling around BC. And if you’re looking to take an EV for a test drive, why not search out one of Evo’s fully-electric Kia Niros in the Vancouver fleet. Book up to 30 minutes in advance in the Evo App. Happy EV cruising!


*BCAA, in association with CAA, was ranked the #1 Most Trusted Insurance Brand in Canada by the 2023 Gustavson Brand Trust Index.