While the environmental aspects of driving an electric vehicle are obvious to most people, there are many benefits other to saying goodbye to your old internal combustion engine vehicle. EVs are better for the environment, require less overall maintenance, and have all sorts of incentives that you can enjoy as an EV driver. These are all worth celebrating, but read on for some of the lesser-known perks of driving an EV.
1. EV’s are extremely quiet.
Sleeping babies, crystal-clear podcasts, and being able to hear the birds outside. Many EV owners find their daily commute to be just a little more peaceful than it was before. Your EV will not be a tomb of complete silence, but you may find yourself surprised by the gentle, whisper-like sounds that your new EV produces in contrast to the rumble of your previous car. The tranquility of driving an EV may come as a surprise to many, but it is a feature that delivers a pleasant new experience to drivers across the board.
2. Tax rebates and Incentives.
Some programs will literally just give you money for purchasing and driving an EV. Here in Oregon, you can make quite a good chunk of your money back in rebates and incentives from your original purchase or lease of an EV. EV drivers in this state can receive up to $7,500 in rebates from the Oregon Clean Vehicle Rebate Program, and up to $1,500 in Oregon Residential Energy Tax Credits (RETC).All Oregonians are eligible to receive up to $2,500 for the purchase or lease of a qualifying EV. It gets even better: Low to moderate income Oregonians can save an extra $2,500 on purchasing or leasing a qualifying new or used EV on top of the standard rebate. You can also receive up to $2,000 in Federal tax credits, and up to $750 in Oregon Residential Energy Tax Credits (RETC) from using a charging station. Now that is a ton of money back. (**Note: While these incentives are current as of posting, they may be unavailable or restricted at any point in time. Consult your tax advisor along with state and federal resources for more information.)
3. EVs are easy to maintain and require much less regular maintenance.
An EV’s powertrain generally requires little to no maintenance, is highly efficient, and doesn’t require a regular oil change every 3-6 months. Electric motors are a dependable technology, with very little fluids and only a few moving parts, which means there will be significantly less damage done to them over time. The regenerative braking system helps to reduce the stress and wear on brakes and takes much of the burden off the normal hydraulic brake system.
Most EVs will likely require only a twice-a-year service check for the vehicle system and tire rotations. These help to maintain optimal battery performance and the EV’s longevity. Efficiencies like this allow drivers to spend less money on maintenance overall.
4. You get to use HOV (carpool) lanes.
HOV access lanes are a huge benefit for EV drivers, even those without passengers. Usually, those lanes are full of ride sharers and carpooling commuters, but EV drivers can drive solo in these lanes in some states, including Oregon, California, Arizona, Colorado, and a few more. (Every state’s HOV rules are a little different, so if you’re not an Oregonian, check your state’s websites for specifics.) It’s also worth mentioning that state HOV lane programs are continuously developing as qualifying EV registrations have continued to grow. Read more about HOV laws in Oregon.
5. Zero emissions.
Absolutely zero. Battery electric vehicles produce no tailpipe emissions, meaning your EV will not pollute the air around it as you drive. Compare this to conventional gasoline-powered cars, which emit about 400 grams of carbon dioxide after every mile of driving, along with small amounts of nitrous oxide and methane. Commuter vehicles are responsible for nearly 60% of all greenhouse gas emissions in the US transportation sector, so trading in a gas-powered car for an EV can make a big difference in the fight against climate change.
The switch over to EV is full of benefits not only for the world, but for you too. Now that you know some of these perks, the change to driving electric can be something exciting and worth looking forward to. Let us know what perks you enjoy while driving your EV!