Special Features of Hybrid Vehicles

February 27, 2017

A commuter city like Cleveland has a lot of cars on the road, and that can mean a lot of pollution in the sky.  It’s not uncommon for someone to drive from Akron to somewhere far away, like Strongsville or Solon for work, releasing carbon dioxide along the way.  Hybrid cars have gained popularity over the years as a means to curb the effects of pollution on our environment.

Hybrids are a unique solution to the over-consumption of petroleum and the large amount of carbon dioxide and other harmful gases that are released into the atmosphere every day (nearly 40 billion tons a year!) So what special features do hybrids have that make them more environmentally-friendly?

Hybrids contain two kinds of engines: an internal combustion engine (ICE) propulsion system and an electric propulsion system. By implementing two power sources, a hybrid vehicle uses less fuel which means less waste is produced. Electricity is a significantly cleaner energy source, especially when the batteries of most electric vehicles are made of nickel or lithium, materials that are far less toxic to the environment than traditional lead batteries.

Hybrids also have regenerative brakes which help recharge the battery as you drive the vehicle. In a traditional vehicle, the energy generated as a vehicle brakes is wasted as heat energy. Regenerative brakes turn this wasted kinetic energy into electric energy that is stored in the battery. This means every time you drive your vehicle, you work to recharge the battery, reusing the energy needed to power the car. Hybrids also utilize an electrical generator inside their ICEs to help recharge the battery or directly power the electric motor. This is another way that hybrids work to reuse the energy they have already utilized. Of course, if these features aren’t working properly, you will end up losing more energy than you save!

A start-stop system helps the environment by stopping the ICE when it begins to idle. Once the car is ready to start moving again, the system restarts the engine. This helps prevent energy from being wasted when the vehicle doesn’t need it, as well as prevent some of the nasty emissions from being released.

As different energy sources are being explored, we can expect to see hybrids become more sophisticated and efficient as technology grows. Be sure to have your hybrid serviced at Cleveland Hybrid, providing the highest quality hybrid service in Northeast Ohio!