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Range anxiety is a very real problem for electric vehicle (EV) owners. While it’s not a problem that affects all EV owners, it’s one that many do experience. But what is range anxiety actually? And how can EV owners overcome range anxiety altogether? Let’s find out.

What is EV range anxiety?

A charging cable is pictured plugged into a Volvo electric vehicle (EV), parked in a parking bay reserved for electric vehicles, in London. Good charging habits can help EV owners overcome EV range anxiety.
An EV charging. | TOLGA AKMEN/AFP via Getty Images

If you’re unfamiliar with the term, range anxiety is the feeling an EV owner experiences when their EV is low on power, and there isn’t a charging station readily available. According to J.D. Power, range anxiety often leaves EV owners worrying over whether or not they’re on the verge of being stranded. 

As for why EV owners experience range anxiety from time to time? J.D. Power reports that a lack of charging stations is to blame. However, a change in routine can result in EV range anxiety too. For example, say an EV owner doesn’t fully charge their EV. Depending on what they plan on doing that day, they may need to charge their EV. And if there isn’t a readily available charging station? They may find themselves experiencing a bout of range anxiety. 

Buying a plug-in hybrid can cure range anxiety

The good news is that there are a few practical ways to overcome range anxiety as an EV owner. One of them is to skip buying an EV and, instead, buy a new plug-in hybrid. According to Charged Future, most plug-in hybrids deliver about 20-40 miles of electric range and approximately 300+ miles of gas range. “Combined, a PHEV is the perfect blend for those looking to use electric range for commuting or around town trips and gas for long trips,” Charged Future added.

There are plenty of new plug-in hybrids on the market today too. In fact, TrueCar recently highlighted its picks for the best plug-in hybrid cars of 2021. Among them were vehicles such as the 2021 Hyundai Ioniq and the 2021 Toyota Prius Prime. 

While the 2021 Hyundai Ioniq Plug-In Hybrid delivers up to 52 mpg combined city/highway and up to 119 MPGe combined city/highway, the 2021 Toyota Prius Prime delivers an EPA-estimated 54 mpg combined city/highway and 133 MPGe combined city/highway.

Cure range anxiety by joining a national charging network


There Is Still 1 Major Reason to Wait to Buy Your First EV

For those who already own an EV, trading it in for a plug-in hybrid might not be an option. The good news is that’s not the only way to cure EV range anxiety. Rather than making a trade, EV owners should also consider joining a national charging network, J.D. Power reports. 

“Charging station networks offer smartphone apps that you can use to find an open station. Set up the smartphone app to automatically pay for charging, and you’ll pull in, connect, charge, and go without swiping a credit card or handing over cash to a clerk.”  

J.D. Power

EV owners can also find EV charging stations near them by using Google Maps. First, enter an address into Google Maps. Next, select ‘Nearby’ below the address that you entered. Then, search ‘EV charging stations.’ Google Maps will then show nearby EV charging stations. 

The benefits of good EV charging habits

Good charging habits can also help EV owners overcome range anxiety. In fact, according to data gathered by J.D. Power, The Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy estimates more than 80% of EV charging happens overnight at home. Therefore, EV owners should get into the routine of charging their EV every night before bed to overcome range anxiety further, says J.D. Power.