Thinking about going electric? Just got an electric vehicle? Here’s Renewable Rayna to layout EV charging basics.
Not only is it more affordable, more environmentally friendly and allows you access to the latest technologies for vehicles when driving electric, but it is simple to charge up and “refuel.” Even if you do not know a lot about electricity, you most likely charge your mobile phone or computer sometimes. All you do is plug your device in and go about your day.
EV charging is similar.
Check out the introduction to the various kinds of chargers below to learn more about how and where to charge an EV.
Most plug-in electric vehicles (also known as electric cars or EVs) drivers do more than 80% of their charging at home because residential charging is easy and inexpensive.
The relatively simple level 1 Electric Vehicle Charger or the somewhat more advanced level 2 charger can be used for home charging. Level 2 charging is quicker and can be more convenient but requires special equipment that is more costly to install than Level 1.
Level 1 Charging
Charging via a 120-volt (V) AC plug is offered through Level 1 chargers. Level 1 adds around 2 to 5 miles per hour of charging time to a car, making it ideal for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles and even some all-electric vehicles, depending on the circumstances.
Level 1 charging would require no special equipment other than an outlet but will require a dedicated branch circuit. Make sure that the circuit does not supply any appliances, such as refrigerators or lamps, until plugging an EV into any socket. Almost all EVs come with a portable Level 1 cord set for the connector, which has a standard three-prong household plug on one end for the outlet and a standard vehicle J1772 connector.
Level 2 Charging
The Level 2 EV charger provides charging through a 240 V AC plug. Level 2 raises vehicle miles per hour of charging time from somewhere from 10 and 50 miles depending on how the station has been installed, making it suitable and convenient for all EVs compared and Level 1.
Using Level 2 EV chargers requires that users install special charging equipment and have a dedicated 20 to 100-amp electrical circuit. Fortunately, for appliances such as clothes dryers and electric ranges, most houses have 240 V service already. Level 2 residential EV charging pricing differs, but before installation and state or utility incentives, usually range from $500 to $700.
Almost 80% of charging is currently done at home, as mentioned above, but what about the other 20% of the time? There are a variety of public charging stations located at offices, shopping malls, hotels and along major roads throughout the country.
Commercial chargers, which are generally seen and used when on-the-go, are often classified into two primary levels: Level 2 and DC Quick Chargers.
Level 2 (Commercial)
Depending on the type of EV and its on-board charger, most public level 2 stations can add at least 12 to 25 miles of range per hour of charging. Level 2 charging stations, such as at work, restaurants, movie theaters, sporting events or longer shopping trips, are suitable for periods when you will be parked for at least an hour. Charging Level 2 will normally give you enough energy to get around town, and it works up to six times faster than charging Level 1.
All EVs, except Tesla, use the same J1772TM connector for Level 2 Charging. Tesla manufactures adapters that make it possible for their vehicles to charge using connectors J1772 or CHAdeMO.
You will also want a quicker charge on long trips or when you are pressed for time to get where you are going. DC fast charging will offer up to 100 RPH or more, charging some EVs in 20-30 minutes to 80%. DC fast charging will offer 100 RPH or more, charging some EVs in 20-30 minutes to 80 per cent. There are different power levels at DC fast charging stations. Higher power levels, in general, charge EVs faster. To discover its power level, check each DC rapid charging station.
The speed of charging can also depend on the type of charging port your EV has. Notice that not all plug-in vehicles on the road today have a DC port for fast charging. Only at Level 1 or 2 will most plug-in hybrids charge.
As a standard, not all EVs come with DC fast charging capabilities. As an upgrade kit, it is usually available. When selecting a fast charging station, ensure that there is the proper charging port for your EV.
There are three common ports for DC fast charging connectors in North America, each used by different EVs.
How do I find chargers and plan my route?
Electric car charging stations can be found in several different types of common locations from large shopping malls to street corners to courthouses and even in private home driveways. Most of the approximately 100,000 charging stations in the U.S. can be found and mapped using a variety of easy-to-use tools and resources. Renewable Rayna is here to provide a list of resources that you can use to #GetCharged:
PlugShare is a free EV driver’s app for iOS, Android, and web, allowing users to find charging stations, leave reviews, and connect with other plug-in vehicle owners. It has the most accurate and complete public charging map worldwide, with stations from every major network in North America, Europe, and throughout much of the globe.
PlugShare is also home to the largest community of EV drivers in the world. Every day, drivers add more station locations, constantly making the app more comprehensive, powerful and accurate. From within the app, user’s check-in when they charge, sharing tips, comments, and photos of their charging experiences.
The Alternative Fuels Data Center (AFDC) provides a wealth of information and data on alternative and renewable fuels, advanced vehicles, fuel-saving strategies, and emerging transportation technologies. This site features interactive tools, calculators, and mapping applications to aid in the implementation of these fuels, vehicles, and strategies. The AFDC functions as a dynamic online hub, providing information, tools, and resources for transportation decision makers seeking domestic alternatives that diversify energy sources and help businesses make wise economic choices. Find electric vehicle charging stations in the United States and Canada using the link below
Using the ChargeHub Map, you can find every charging station in Canada and the USA with ChargeHub’s live-updated map. You will find stations from the following networks: ChargePoint, Blink (now Car Charging), Tesla, SemaCharge, Sun Country Highway, Electric Circuit, Flo, OPConnect, Greenlots, Aerovironment, and more. Additionally, you can plan custom trips in order to recharge your electric car at the ideal stops.
Open Charge Map is a non-commercial, non-profit, electric vehicle data service hosted and supported by a community of businesses, charities, developers and interested parties around the world. By using Open Charge Map and related apps you are helping to improve the information in the registry by providing peer review, edits, additions, comments, photos and by promoting the service to other users.