Understanding your High Voltage (HV) Battery: Battery Type and Cooling System
The first High Voltage or HV, direct current batteries used in Hybrids for mass production were Nickel Metal Hydride or NiMH batteries. As Hybrids and EVs evolved Lithium-Ion batteries became the standard allowing for extended range and increased electromotive force more commonly known as voltage. The trade-off of a larger battery is the need to cool the battery and mitigate the increased weight on the front suspension of the vehicle.
Cooling the battery is paramount especially in South Florida and each brand has it's own system ranging from natural cooling used in Nissan Leaf, the use of a blower fan in the Prius and Ford Fusion models, liquid coolant for the Chevy Volt battery which is mounted under the vehicle and the unique design of the BMW i3 which uses a refrigerated, yes the same refrigerant used for the AC system, to keep the battery cool.
A Tesla High Voltage battery for a model S weighs over 1,200 lbs and is located underneath the vehicle below the driver's side door. By contrast the battery of a 2010 Nissan Altima weighs in at just 16lbs. This difference in weight leads to increased stress on the front suspension of the vehicle which in turn requires frequent inspection of the front suspension components for excessive play or damage. Also of note is the need to replace low rolling resistance tires on the Tesla models more often and always in combination with an alignment.
To learn more about your Hybrid or EV schedule an inspection with our ASE Certified team. You've invested in a vehicle with exceptional fuel economy and performance however it is vital that your High Voltage battery is properly cooled and serviced. We offer Hybrid and EV battery service on all makes and models including Tesla, BMW EV and Hybrids, Toyota, Lexus, Audi, Ford, Porsche and more.