Many people are looking into ways to lower their carbon footprint. The measures are generally fairly simple, including recycling and being careful how much energy we use. With that in mind, buying an electric car is a good idea.
They are very cost-effective to own and have a very small environmental impact. And there are also a lot of incentives from the government, making it a great value. The actual logistics of how to work with an electric car are what confuses some people. The issue of charging the car at home is going to be your biggest factor.
This article will cover what it takes to install car charging stations at home so you can own an electric vehicle.
What is a Charging Station?
A charging station is essentially an inverter that will convert electricity from your home into power for the battery in your car. It is very much like your smartphone in that it has a battery that needs to be recharged and has a special cord to make sure the electricity is converted.
Instead of plugging your car into an outlet. You install a specialized column to get the power into your car battery as quickly and efficiently as possible. Thanks to the technological advances that will power these cars, there are charging stations all over now. Looking at the Ionity map, you can see how widespread they are now.
There are different types to choose from, so we’ll have to look at those to understand which one you need.
Types of Charging-Stations
Are you looking for the best electric charger for your car that you can use at home? In some areas, you won’t find electric charging stations that easily. Hence, having the charging situation sorted out at home relieves you. We are discussing some charger types below and how feasible they are to use at home. Let’s begin:
1. Level-1 Chargers (Slowest Speed)
The least effective of the charging stations available for electric cars is Level 1, which is simply a plug that looks like many others. It plugs into a three-sprocket plug into the ordinary outlet you’ll find in any home. There is a cost-benefit as it is very cheap to buy, and no installation is involved.
These chargers are mostly available in every part of the world; hence, they are ideal if you purchase an electric car outside the USA, Canada, UK or Australia. The power output of level-1 chargers is 3kW-6kW and takes up to 12 hours to charge. However, some chargers may also charge fully in 8 hours, depending upon the power output.
The issue, however, is that charging is incredibly slow and not suited for the needs of most people at these cars charging stations at home. These chargers are not a good choice if you commute often and need to recharge often.
2. Level-2 Charger (Fast Speed)
A Level 2 charger is similar in how it works to the Level-1 charger. But it is more like a plug that you will find is used for many appliances like a dryer. It runs off of 240V, so it does take less time to charge but still can be slow. For instance, it can take up to 12 hours to charge a typical 200-mile range electric vehicle.
On the other hand, some level-2 chargers can be much faster depending on their power output. Most EV charging stations have fast level-2 chargers. Rapid recharging with a high-power DC (Direct Current) charger is quite attainable. They have a power output of 7kW-22kW which can charge an EV in an average of 5 hours.
A vehicle with a 40kW battery takes 4-6 hours to charge with the 22kW charger fully. However, a 22kW battery will only take one hour, which is mind-blowing. Some households cannot handle such a powerful charger; hence, people have to get a low volt one which is significantly slower.
3. Level-3 Charger (Rapid)
The best home charging station is a Level 3, a fast-charging station but usually reserved for commercial use. It can charge a car in about an hour but costs about $50,000 for a column. It isn’t just the cost that makes it prohibitive for the average car owner. It’s a fact that many electricity providers won’t approve of the large draw in a home setting.
The Level-3 charger, also known as the rapid charger, delivers a high-power direct current and quickly recharges the car. It has a power output of 50kW which can recharge a vehicle in 40 minutes or less. However, such powerful chargers can only be used on vehicles that can handle the power and build for such capabilities.
There is an ultra-rapid charger also, which rarely any car can handle. The future electric cars will be built to recharge faster. However, electric cars these days cannot handle 100 kW output as it can damage the battery.
Which Type of EV Charger is Best for Home?
The electric outlets in our houses are not built to handle high power outputs. Hence, investing in a rapid or fast charger for home use is not great as it can cause a short circuit. A level-1 charger will work fine to charge your car’s battery overnight.
It can also work as a supporting charger to start your car and charge it for small commutes. However, an EV charging station is much more feasible and faster. There are quite a few smart electric vehicle chargers available that have built-in security locks and high power output.
Investing in a charger that covers home charging and works well even when providing limited power output is better.
With the high prevalence of electric cars, developers are constantly working to build solutions for faster recharging. You can use level-1 chargers for home until the recharging issues are sorted. They are slow but safe to use at home. High power output chargers may cause a short circuit which puts your life at stake. Also, level-1 chargers will not spike up your electricity bill significantly. They are cost-effective yet charge your vehicle enough for smaller commutes. It is a great overnight charging solution that you can make use of.