It’s much easier to own an electric car than you might think. You won’t have to go to a gas station ever again. There are important things that potential Electric car owners should know about home charging.
We try to provide answers to some of the most important questions regarding charging your electric car at home.
How to Charge Your EV at Home?
Electric cars are becoming more popular, with gas prices rising and new models on the market. They are more efficient than gasoline-powered cars, don’t emit tailpipe emissions, and deliver instant torque and quick acceleration.
Owning an electric car (EV) is a great way to save gas. It’s possible to charge your car at night while you sleep, and it will still work overnight. There are important details about electric car home charging that potential EV owners might not be aware of.
Can my EV be plugged into a standard wall outlet?
Your EV should include a 120-volt charging cord. That is called Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE). One cable’s end fits into the car’s charging port, and the other plugs into a standard grounded outlet, just like other electronic devices in your home.
You can buy a charging cord if your car does not come with one or you require a longer length. They are expensive and can be so much more costly. Unless you purchase an extension cable specifically made for EV charging, you can’t plug your charging cable into an extension cord. If your EV does not come with a charging plug, budget at least $200 and ensure that is long enough to fulfill its purpose.
Level 1 charging is the method of charging your car using a regular 120-volt outlet. This charging method takes a while but can be helpful if you aren’t traveling a lot and can charge your cars every night while you sleep. That is also an option for plug-in hybrid electric cars (PHEVs).
In ideal conditions, Level 1 charging will give you an additional 3-4 miles per hour. If you have a PHEV such as the Jeep Wrangler or Toyota RAV4 Prime you can likely charge it while you sleep. A Tesla Model Y long-range will take several days to fully recharge to its 330-mile range.
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What can I do to upgrade my home for faster electric car charging?
Many EV owners prefer to have a Level-2 charger installed in their homes. That can be done if your home’s electric service can handle a 240-volt outlet. In some cases, however, it is necessary to upgrade the system.
Your electric car will charge much faster if you have a Level 2 charger and a 240-volt outlet. Level 2 chargers are sufficient to charge most modern PHEVs to full capacity in less than two hours. A Level 2 charger can provide up to 44 miles per hour for a Tesla Model Y. You may be able to charge an EV fully in 8 hours depending on the level 2 charger you use.
How do I get a Level 2 charger installed?
It is a good idea to contact a qualified electrician and tell them that you are interested in having an electric car’s 240-volt charger installed. It may be more practical to get a 240-volt outlet. That is a more affordable option. You can also purchase the 240-volt charger you prefer and plug it into your device. Mounting is required for some units, but this can be done by you.
Remember that the cost to install a 240-volt outlet can vary widely. The cost of installing a 240-volt outlet will depend on the distance your garage is from the main electrical service. It may also depend on whether upgrades are required and how much work the contractor needs to do for the connection. Before you make a decision, do your research and get several estimates. Installations can cost as low as $250 but may run up to $2,000 in certain cases.
You have many choices when it comes to buying an EVSE. Some EVSEs can be carried in your car. They look similar to an extension cord but have a box at the end. And they don’t need to be mounted. Some are large-sized charging stations that have digital displays and support for smartphone apps. These stations can be plugged in or hardwired.
An easy Google search will show you that there are many places where you can buy an EVSE. These include Lowes, Home Depot, and Amazon. It’s important to research the market and ensure that you are purchasing a unit from a trusted brand. Numerous automotive dealers and manufacturers can offer recommendations.
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Where should I have my charger installed?
Make sure to determine the location of your 240-volt outlet. Although a garage is the best place, you should also consider where you will park your car after you return home at night. Do you park your car in the same spot every night? If you are buying an EVSE for plugging into an outlet, ensure that the cord is long enough so your car can reach it.
Will the cord reach both EVs if you plan to purchase a second one? You will need to know the exact location of an electric vehicle’s charging port. That is important to consider if you are having your installation done before you take ownership of your car. If you can park your car “normally” without having to go into your garage, it would be a hassle.
You will need to find an outdoor location to install your charger if you don’t own a garage. You need to ensure that the wires are safe and that the charger has the proper weather protection according to the manufacturer. Some units can withstand more elements than others.
When should I charge my EV?
Sometimes, you may not be able to choose the right time to charge your electric vehicle. You will need to charge your EV if you run out of power and still want to drive it. And, you may need to plan because charging takes time. You can still choose when to charge your car, even if you don’t use it all the time.
The electricity rates in different areas vary and the prices at different times of day can be very varied. It’s usually more expensive during peak hours. Peak times occur most often during the weekdays when people are eating dinner and watching television. People are asleep at night, so off-peak hours are often on weekends and holidays.
Find out the details of your electricity plan and charge when it is most convenient for you. Many EVs let you program charging times to get the best rate. Some utilities offer special rate plans for EV owners, as well as dedicated smart meters. Call your local electricity provider to find out what is available in your area.
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Should I invest in solar to charge my EV?
Many electric car owners use solar power for their cars. Solar power is an expensive investment that can take a while to recover. It may be worth it if you have an EV or several EVs.
Get some quotes if you are interested in solar. There are many options available for leasing or buying solar systems. You may find a solar installation that includes a battery backup system. That allows you to store energy and can be used to charge your car at peak times. You can also get a substantial US federal tax credit for solar installation. If you have Level 2 charging solutions and any other EV-related work done simultaneously, the credit will be applied to all parts.