Whether you’re considering purchasing your first electric car or if you simply want to learn more about the electric car you already own, this article is going to increase your knowledge of electric cars and how it relates to your home and charging it!
It is important to note that there are different types of charging. The charging cord that comes with every electric car has a typical three-prong plug that inserts into any correctly grounded wall socket and has a connector to insert into the car’s charging port on the other end, as well as a box of electronic circuitry between those two ends. This is level 1, or 120-volt charging; it is the slowest charging type.
The majority of in-home and public charging ports function at 240 volts (level 2), with cables still plugging into the standard port on the vehicle. A charging station installed at home will necessitate the same wiring as a clothes dryer and will be at least twice as fast as a level 1 charging system.
There is also DC fast charging, sometimes incorrectly dubbed level 3 charging. DC fast charging uses direct current rather than the typical household alternating current, making a very highly powered charging station. Due to the sizable higher utility cost of installing dedicated high power lines, the only practical DC fast charging stations are public and most commonly found along highways. Not every electric car has the ability to fast charge, and there are different ports for each vehicle, so it is important to be aware of the abilities and needs of your vehicle.
For many electric car drivers, home charging is far more convenient, efficient, and cost effective. Whether you decide to stick with your level 1 charger or install an in home level 2 is all up to you! If you make the decision to install your own home charging station, it should at minimum be installed on a dedicated 40-amp circuit. If you want to leave some wiggle room for the future, 50-60 amps is a better bet. Determing if your new home has the capacity to charge an electric car is outside the scope of a normal home inspection. Level 1 charging should not be an issue with any home since it involves utilizing a normal 3-prong outlet that is likely already there. Level-2 will need an eletrician to install the 240 if not already there and the DC charging will need professionally installed.
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