As friends and family learn that you have purchased an electric car, they are sure to be inquiring about how long it takes to charge. But as you might have learned or be learning right now, several factors play a significant role in charging your environmentally friendly vehicle. From the type of car, the battery configuration, and the charging source, there are many factors to consider when charging your electric vehicle (EV). But once you settle on your home charging station, you will be able to get into a fairly stable routine to ensure that your EV is always ready to take you where you need to go.
The Three Most Common Types Of Charging Stations
As you cruise around town or the country, you will encounter three types of charging stations, including:
- Rapid Chargers are the fastest way to get your EV back on the road. You can find some at service stations, larger grocery stores or shopping malls, and even in some municipal parking facilities. These chargers can get you to a full charge in as little as 30 minutes. But the most common rapid chargers offer a standard 50kW charging point and get the job done in about an hour. Your vehicle will dictate the total charge time needed. The most popular name associated with rapid charging is the Tesla Supercharger Network.
- Fast Chargers are usually going to deliver about 7kW to 22kW and need 4-6 hours to provide a full charge at the low end and 2-3 hours at the top end rate.
- Slow Chargers offer 3kW to 6kW and require 6-12 hours to charge the battery on the low end and 8ish to get you topped off at the higher rate.
All of these terms and rates apply to what you will find when you are using public or pay-per-charge stations. However, most EV owners prefer to have a home charger as well.
Having a charger at your house offers the most convenience and flexibility for you. In addition, they are relatively cost-effective. You should check with your local utility providers as many offer rebates for a home charger installation or a one-time credit. For your home charging station, you will have two options:
- Level 1- These chargers are very basic and allow you to plug into a traditional 120V outlet. It is, however, recommended that the outlet is on a dedicated circuit to protect your vehicle’s batteries. For a full charge on the average EV, you will need to have the car plugged in for roughly 20 hours. These chargers are great for someone who does not drive every day or only takes very short trips around town, or has a short commute to work.
- Level 2- A Level 2 charger needs a dedicated 240V circuit, much like the one used for a clothes dryer. These chargers are sold separately from the vehicle but can often be added to your initial purchase. The benefit to these often Smart chargers is that they function at a rate around 3 to 7 times faster than a Level 1 unit, depending on your make and model of EV.
Your vehicle’s specifications and the distance you drive on a regular basis will help you decide which charging station is best to meet your needs. If you decide that a Level 2 charger is your best option, call (915) 328-4229 to schedule your installation with the pros at Secure Electrical Contractors. Our team has years of experience installing electrical upgrades, and all of our work is backed by a full warranty and customer satisfaction guarantee.