Electric cars offer an energy efficient, less-polluting alternative to conventional gasoline engines, so why aren’t more people buying them? One of the major reasons for the slow acceptance of electric vehicles is that many people still believe a lot of outdated myths or have misconceptions about how these cars work. Here’s a look at some of the most common electric car myths.
You Won’t Go Far
Electric vehicles are widely considered to be low-powered and to have a very minimal range. While that may once have been true, it isn’t necessarily the case anymore. Recent advances in battery capacity means that even all-electric vehicles can handle relatively large distances. The average U.S. worker travels about 40 miles every day, making an electric-only car a viable choice for day to day driving. Hybrids have a gasoline backup that extends their range even further.
Not Really Green
One confusing myth states that electric cars are just as polluting as their gasoline-powered counterparts. While it’s true that an electric vehicle is responsible for some emissions, those are much lower than even the cleanest diesel and gasoline cars. This is because large-scale electricity production is far more efficient than burning the same fuel in a car engine. Transmitting that electricity to the wheels from a battery via an electric motor is about twice as efficient as a conventional engine.
Batteries Are Dangerous
Because most people aren’t used to dealing with electric car batteries, they may think that they’re toxic, environmentally unfriendly or dangerous. In fact, while battery chemicals can be hazardous, they rarely escape into the environment. Newer batteries contain valuable materials and tend to be recycled at a rate of about 99 percent, according to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency. The batteries themselves are well-sealed to prevent leaks and other problems.
Just too Expensive
It’s easy to believe that electric vehicles are too expensive for normal use, but this doesn’t have to be the case. While most of the electric vehicles currently on the market do cost more than their gasoline-powered counterparts, this is because they’re being produced on such a small scale. As production volumes increase, prices come down, a phenomenon buyers have already seen with the hybrid Toyota Prius. Pricing worries also fail to take into account the reduced cost of electricity compared to liquid fuel.
Charging is Inconvenient
Newer batteries charge quickly and effectively if you plug them in overnight, and some cars can even be charged while you’re at work. While there’s currently not much infrastructure available for electric cars, most models can be charged at home via a normal outlet. Charging stations for these cars have also begun to appear, and there are several companies competing to provide services for electric cars. Soon it should be very easy to charge your car, no matter where you go.