8 helpful tips for efficient EV driving

016 Feb 2024

Advice to help you get the most out of your EV – including tips to help prolong battery life, and potentially cut down on costs

Whether you’re a new or seasoned EV driver, renting your first EV or just thinking about making the switch, at some point in your journey, efficiency is likely to be a consideration.

But what do we really mean by efficiency?

Well, lots of things. EV efficiency can be about getting the best range out of your vehicle, which is important to lots of EV drivers. But it could be about using less energy too, or even saving time.

Let’s look at 8 bright ideas that can make you a more efficient EV driver.

1. Keep your tyre pressures spot on

Some aspects of EV efficiency have nothing to do with the motor. For example, underinflated tyres can make a real difference to efficiency – potentially costing you miles on every charge. If your car has a tyre pressure warning function, check your pressures whenever it asks you to. You could even buy a simple tyre pressure gauge and check them at home from time to time.

2. Consider charging below 100%

It may come as a surprise to some EV drivers, but it’s often best not to charge your EV completely. Charging to 100% every time can strain the battery and mean it may lose efficiency more quickly over time.

Here at bp pulse, we recommend the 80/20 rule. Aim to charge your EV battery to about 80% capacity, and look to charge it up again when it gets down to around 20% if you can. That way, you’ll be helping to look after its health.

3. Think smart charging

Does your EV have a smart charging system? Some EVs do. It’s a system that allows you to schedule your charging times, make the most of every kW of energy and be more efficient. If you’re not sure it you have this technology, your manual will tell you.

4. Regenerative braking is ‘free’ energy

Your electric vehicle may also have a regenerative braking system (perhaps with a range of settings). Regenerative braking feeds energy back into the battery every time you use the brakes (or ‘converting kinetic energy into stored energy’, for the more technically-minded). The more you use regenerative braking, the more ‘free’ energy you can put into your EV battery on every journey to extend your cars range before the next charge.

Find out more about public EV charging

We'll keep your electric vehicle moving as you travel around the UK with our network of charging points—so you can plug in, power up, and go.

5. Battery preconditioning helps

This is another clever technology that some EVs have. It’s a system that can heat or cool the battery in extreme temperatures, when batteries work less well. Using it can help your EV battery’s efficiency and mean you charge up faster.

6. Plan ahead with bp pulse

A bit of route planning can make a big difference. It’s one of the ways the bp pulse app can be really helpful. On longer journeys, its built-in route planner can help you plot your way around the bp pulse network and plan your stops in the best way. The app tells you about charger availability and gives you directions to the EV charging station too, which, which is helpful.

7. Consider going off-peak

Whether you charge at home or on-the-go too, consider charging at times that make use of off-peak electricity rates. These times vary between suppliers but are generally during the night. You may be able to save money, and charging off-peak puts less strain on our national grid too. Win-win.

8. Subscribe and save

If you regularly use public EV charging, consider downloading the bp pulse app and becoming a subscriber for £7.85 per month to access our lowest prices for public charging .

Related articles

Maximizing your EV’s battery life in cold weather


Maximizing your EV’s battery life in cold weather

7 top tips to help you get the best from your EV battery as the temperature drops – with considerations including when you charge and how you brake


  1. Pay on average 20% less than contactless rates when using bp pulse network. Savings vary by charger type (Fast = 25%, Rapid = 20%, UFC = 19% less) and not available on [non-participating chargers]( "non-participating chargers"). Rates & average subscriber savings are subject to change. Payment by bp pulse charge card or via bp pulse app is required. Rates & savings vary across bp pulse network.