How to safely charge your electric vehicle in the rain

Do you own an electric vehicle? Find out how you can recharge it safely during wet weather with these five expert tips.

With rising flood alerts and predictions of increasing rainy weather across the UK, electric vehicle (EV) owners are advised to take proactive measures to avoid the increased risks of personal electrocution and vehicle damage associated with owning and charging an EV during this rainy season.

Wesley Walker, a Car Maintenance Expert from CleanMe, discusses five ways you can keep your EV and charging infrastructure safe on rainy days.

1) Avoid charging in waterlogged areas

It’s important to avoid charging your vehicle in areas flooded with water. This can result in a high chance of an electric shock and potentially harm the vehicle’s electrical system. According to the National Weather Service, even just six inches of water can be enough to reach the bottom of most cars, resulting in loss of control.

Charging in these situations could increase the danger and lead to costly repairs and safety risks. If your usual charging location is affected, you should find an alternative location or preferably a sheltered parking facility.

2) Inspect charging equipment for water damage

Exposure of metal components to water can lead to corrosion and harm the electrical insulation, putting the safety and effectiveness of charging cables and stations at risk. So it is essential to inspect your charging equipment for any signs of moisture, corrosion, or damage before use. If uncertain, seek assistance from the owner or manager of charging stations for an inspection.

3)  Follow the manufacturer’s guidelines for wet conditions

Every manufacturer of electric vehicles has its own set of instructions for maintaining and operating their vehicles in different conditions, such as water exposure. For example, Tesla advises against charging in standing water and recommends inspecting the charging cable regularly for wear and tear. Adhering to these guidelines ensures you’re taking all the necessary precautions to protect your vehicle and yourself from harm.

4) Use waterproof covers for outdoor chargers

Outdoor charging stations are particularly vulnerable to floodwater damage. Waterproof or weather-resistant covers can significantly mitigate this risk by preventing water from entering the device. 

Waterproofing your outdoor EV charging stations is more than just a precaution; it’s an essential practice in ensuring the safety and efficiency of your EV charging in any weather, especially during inclement weather conditions like rain and floods.

5) Be prepared for emergencies

In emergencies, being prepared can make a significant difference. It’s recommended to have a plan that includes knowing the locations of all nearby charging stations situated on higher ground and considering the purchase of portable charging options for emergencies. Keeping up-to-date with local weather forecasts and flood alerts enables EV owners to make timely decisions on when and where to charge their vehicles safely.

Stay safe in wet weather

Preparation is key during wet weather conditions. Stay safe by taking necessary precautions to safeguard your investment. With these measures in place, you can enjoy a worry-free experience, even when facing adverse weather conditions, Walker concludes.