Along with the increase in popularity of electric vehicles is the infrastructure to support them, with EV charger technology playing a pivotal role. Whether you currently own an electric vehicle or are considering switching to one, mastering the basics of EV charging technology is essential.
Types of EV Chargers
There are a variety of EV chargers on the market that have distinct features and charging speeds. The most common forms available today are Level 1, Level 2 and DC fast chargers.
Level 1 Chargers
These charging stations receive power from a standard household outlet, and they are suitable for charging your vehicle overnight. Level 1 chargers are the slowest, providing between 2 to 5 miles of charge per hour. While these solutions are convenient for at-home use, they are not practical for meeting daily fast-charging needs.
Level 2 Chargers
Level 2 chargers offer a faster charging experience, as they operate on 240 volts of power. This technology provides as much as 60 miles of charge per hour. They are ideal for meeting daily fast-charging needs and can be found in both homes and businesses.
DC Fast Chargers
High-powered DC fast chargers can provide a substantial amount of charge in a brief period — as much as 80% in as few as 20 to 30 minutes. This charger type, seen only along highways and in other public places, is critical for those who must travel long distances.
Tips for Charging Smart
Now that you know about the different charging types available, you must optimize the charging process to enhance efficiency and reduce costs. This involves observing the following smart charging practices.
Charge During Off-Peak Hours
Many utility companies charge less for electricity during off-peak hours, which occur late at night or early in the morning. If you are charging your vehicle at home, off-peak times are the best for cutting energy costs. Not only will energy costs decrease, but charging speeds will increase because the demand for energy is much lower.
Use Smart Charging Apps
Smart charging apps are essential if you are charging your vehicle at home because they can provide real-time data on costs and charging status. They may also allow you to schedule and remotely control charging sessions.
Plan When You Will Charge Your Vehicle on Public Networks
If you are traveling long distances or do not have a charging station at home, you will need to use public charging networks. Maximize costs by planning your charging sessions when demand is lowest. Many public networks have smart features that can alert you about price drops.
Optimize Battery Charging Levels
Avoid charging your vehicle battery to 100%, as doing so can cause it to degrade. Only charge enough to sufficiently meet your daily needs.
Following these tips can ensure an enjoyable journey with your electric vehicle. Whether you are a long-time electrical vehicle owner or about to buy your first EV, contact Design Electric to have an EV charger installed at your home in the Flint, MI area or to receive more smart charging advice.