How to Charge an Electric Car at Home

By Nidhi Nangia. Updated: March 13, 2017
How to Charge an Electric Car at Home

More and more people are giving preference to electric cars over gas or fuel run vehicles. There are several advantages of electric cars, such as no emissions, no gas, petrol or diesel, enhanced driving safety, increased performance and low maintenance. But when you think about purchasing an electric vehicle or EV, the first question that comes to your mind is how to charge an electric car at home. Basically, there are three options to doing that at home. Read this oneHOWTO article to find complete details.

You may also be interested in: Should I Buy A Hybrid Vehicle

Option 1: Using a 120 volt electric home system

The first option is to charge it through a 120 volt electric home system for which you will not require to install any special tool or hardware. An electric car comes with a special cord for charging the vehicle. You can directly plug this cord in a typical three prong outlet on the wall, and let it charge. Every home has this socket, it is safe and does not require any special hardware. However, one drawback is that charging your electric car through this normal electrical outlet is a very slow process, and may not be suitable if you take your car everyday to the office or you prefer to go for frequent trips. Typically, an electric car takes around 8-12 hours to get a full charge.

Option 2: Professionally installed 240 volt charging system

This is the better and faster option preferred by most EV owners. This charging system runs at 30 amps and 240 volts, due to which it reduces the charging time to as much as 50%. To get this option, you will need to call a professional to your home, who will install a special 240 volt charging system for you. Safety of the system will also be tested by a local authority near you. The installer will request a permit for installation, which he will get only after approval of the process by the authority. This system can be wall mounted in any part of your home, such as your car port, garage etc. Your car will get charged within 4 to 6 hours, and ready to go.

The good thing about this option is that, in many countries, the Government has help schemes to encourage electric car purchase, so make sure you look into any schemes that may benefit you.

Option 3: Fast charging system with 500 volts

This is an exceptionally fast system of charging your electric vehicle. Instead of homes, this charging system is mostly installed in places where very fast EV charging is required, such as at malls, rest stops, gas stations etc. However, you can get it installed in your home as well. It runs at 500 volt and 100 amp, and charges a car in maximum 30 minutes. Before getting this charging system, make sure that your car’s model is compatible with it.

How to Charge an Electric Car at Home - Option 3: Fast charging system with 500 volts

Which option to choose

Everyone has easy access to option 1, as every home has a three point charging socket. It may be a suitable option for those who use their vehicle sparingly, and take it only for infrequent, short trips. But if you want to use your electric car for everyday use, then it is worth upgrading to option 2. It will recharge your vehicle overnight, making it ready to be used again in the morning. Going for option 3 will require a number of electrical upgrades in your home, including improvement in your batteries and chargers. It may prove to be too costly, unless you have a strong need to charge your vehicle within half an hour. This is why option 2 is the most preferred option for electric car owners.

How much does it cost to charge your EV?

The cost of getting a full charge for your electric car is largely dependent on the vehicle model you have got. But it costs much less than getting a full tank with a similar petrol or diesel model. You may reduce your cost even more by opting for an economical plan from your electric company. Some companies charge less during night hours, which means that you will pay less if you charge your vehicle overnight. Take a look at the pros of a hybrid vehicle if you're still not sure about 100% electric cars.

If you want to read similar articles to How to Charge an Electric Car at Home, we recommend you visit our Cars category.

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