Driving an electric car has many perks with one of the biggest ones being never having to go to a gas station again and instead “filling up” with cheaper electricity through an electric car charging station right in your garage. You’ll start each day with a full battery, comparable to a full tank of gas. But, do all electric cars use the same charger?
There are three levels of EV charging: Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3. Not all EVs can charge with all three levels.
Level 1 charging is the slowest type of EV charging. Level 1 chargers usually come standard with the purchase or lease of an electric car and are often referred to as a trickle charge. Level 1 chargers plug into a standard household outlet. For some EVs, it can take longer than 24 hours to get a full charge on a Level 1 charger.
Level 2 charging is up to 15 times faster than Level 1 charging and can add a range of 15 to 75 miles per hour of charge. A Level 2 charger can be installed in your home. It is the perfect way to charge overnight and wake up with a full battery. A Level 2 charger uses 240 volts and will more than likely need to be installed by an electrician. Level 2 chargers can also be found at public charging stations.
Level 3 charging is extremely fast and is reserved for public charging stations. Level 3 is usually referred to as DC fast charging. It is also known as rapid charging. A DC fast charger can charge 80% of an EV battery in as quickly as 10 minutes. Since they are so robust, DC fast chargers require intricate and significant electrical improvements.
For the most part, EV chargers are universal. The Level 1 charger and Level 2 charger usually come equipped with a JAE J1772 connector, also known as the J plug, which is universal to most EVs. DC fast chargers have three different types of connectors: the combined charging system or CCS connector, which is a J1772 combo, the CHAdeMO connector, and the Tesla Supercharger connector which is specific to Teslas. Not all EVs can charge with DC fast chargers. Teslas cannot charge with the JAE J1772 connector without an adaptor, which is known as the Tesla Mobile Connector. Teslas can charge with a Tesla Wall Connector EV charger without having to use a Tesla Mobile Connector.
There are three main ways to charge an electric car: home charging, workplace charging, or public charging.
Home charging happens at home and is the most popular form of charging by electric car drivers. EV owners love to be able to charge their cars at home without having to worry about going to a public charging station. Home charging is convenient and safe.
Workplace charging happens at the workplace. Many businesses are seeing the value in providing EV charging for their employees. Charging at the workplace is a good way to add a decent amount of range to your EV during the workday. Since your EV will be staying in one spot for a good amount of time, workplace charging is becoming a preferred method of charging by EV drivers.
Public charging happens in public areas like shopping centers, hotels, and infrastructure set up like today’s gas stations. Public charging stations are sometimes situated along busy roadways and are a great way to recharge and grab a bite to eat or run errands while your car is charging.
It can take anywhere from 10 minutes to more than 24 hours. As described earlier, a Level 1 EV charger can take upwards of 24 hours to charge an EV battery to full, a Level 2 charging station usually takes an overnight charge to get to a full battery, and a DC fast charger can charge 80% of an EV battery in 10 minutes.
How much it costs to charge an electric car depends on if you’re charging at home or a public charging station.
At a public charging station how much you pay depends on if you’re paying a flat rate or a subscription rate and the electricity rates of the location where you are charging.
At a home charging station, it depends on where you live and your electricity rate. Using an average electricity rate of 16 cents per kWh, it would cost about $55 per month to charge an EV at home. This means on average the cost to drive a traditional gas-powered car is more than double what it costs to drive an EV.
If you are looking to get an EV charging station installed in your home know that it doesn’t have to be complicated! WattLogic is a provider of stress- and hassle-free EV charging solutions. Whether you’re looking for a commercial or residential EV charging installation, WattLogic has got you covered. WattLogic offers turnkey packages with project management, electric car charger selection, and rebate management so you can save money on your installation. Use our cost estimator for commercial or home installations to find out just how affordable it can be!
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