How much less annual maintenance is there with an EV?


Electric car questions on Quora are pretty common. This one is one that I’ve heard from several people over the past few years. It’s a common misconception that EVs have little or no maintenance. They still have some, just not as much as with a combustion-fueled vehicle.

How much less annual maintenance is there with an EV and does it cost more or less annually?

My Answer: General maintenance costs are less for an EV. The largest expense not paid for an EV is in oil and filter changes. For the most part, the cost of tires, brakes, etc. will be roughly equivalent to that of the EV’s combustion-powered counterpart.

Other costs of maintenance not inherent in an EV include anything to do with the engine. A major maintenance interval for many combustion engines is the timing belt, which happens at about 100,000 miles on most vehicles. This is an $800 to $2,000 cost not included with an EV. To be fair to combustion vehicles, however, many more modern designs are moving back to chains for timing, which eliminates this interval.

Over the life of the vehicle, assuming 10 years of ownership and 120,000 miles of driving, an EV owner can expect to save about $1,500 in oil changes (assuming an average interval of 6,000 miles, the current industry average). Add in another $1,200 (average) for the timing belt.

Savings in terms of overall costs are about $1,500 per year for an EV over its combustion-powered counterpart, on average. That includes fuel and other costs. AAA Study: True Cost of Car Ownership in 2017

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