This post includes EV conversion checklist infographic: The essential steps and components
The list below gives an idea about the scale of an EV conversion project. Note that more steps than the listed eight may be needed depending upon the selection of the base car.
A good design on paper will bring to light even the most minute detail. It should entail all mechanical, electrical and electronic blue prints. From the selection of motor (DC/AC), a suitable car body to an electric vacuum pump for brakes, all should be reflected in the design.
Engine removal requires substantial skill. In certain cases ramp as well as a garage hoist might be needed. To make room and reduce weight, not only the engine needs to be removed, but also the auxiliary components like engine cooling system and fuel tank.
Electrical motor DC or AC have their own unique advantages and disadvantages. Most modern cars use an AC drive for their ability to retain torque at high RPM and the ability to recover energy through regenerative braking system.
The controller varies the amount of current across the electric motor and can even control voltage based on feedback from the driver. It is the brain of an EV and can be programmed. If it wasn’t for the limited availability of motor specific controllers, most scrap yard motors could have been used in EV conversions.
Efficient Battery Packs take up less space, have less weight and can be cooled effectively. Lithium Ion batteries despite their numerous advantages are not as sturdy as lead acid and have to be treated with care.
Battery Management System
Modern battery management systems not only manage the normal/ flash charging of the cells but can also provide information on individual cells regarding their life, state of charge and temperature.
Electrical Safety Switches
Electrical safety is important particularly as batteries are flammable and high voltage is dangerous. Isolation switches and safety devices such as contactors, emergency stop buttons and fuses should be tested thoroughly.
Fire Safety and Water Proofing
It is important that the battery pack can cope with vibrations expected in a car. Moisture should not be permitted in the battery compartment as well as near electrical connectors and joints. At the same time provision for cell gas venting should be made. Adding a Fire extinguisher can prove handy.