How Can I Charge My Electric Vehicle Quickly at Home?
If you’re considering the purchase of an electric vehicle (EV), or you recently purchased one, one of your next steps might be to look into ways to have a quick, convenient means to charge it at home. While public EV charging stations are more prevalent than ever, we’re glad to say so are EVs. So when public charging stations aren’t readily available, or if the basic slow-charger that comes supplied with most battery electric vehicles (BEVs) doesn’t meet your needs, a great option to consider is the installation of a Level 2 EV charging station at your home.
A Level 2 charging station will provide the ultimate in reliability and convenience for charging your battery electric vehicle, regardless of what additional systems may be part of its design.
What Is a Level 2 EV Charging Station?
A Level 2 EV charging station is a 220 volt, permanently installed, electrical appliance built specifically for charging your battery electric vehicle. The charging station is typically mounted on a wall inside the garage, or immediately adjacent in a carport area. Per National Electrical Code (NEC), a Level 2 EV charger requires a dedicated electrical circuit run from your home’s electrical panel to the charger.
Level 2 EV Charging Station Benefits:
- Much faster charging time than Level 1 chargers
- Higher mileage range per hour (RPH) of charging time than Level 1 chargers
- Greater variety of charging features and options
- An investment in increased home equity
The Difference Between a Level 1 Charger and Level 2 EV Charging Station
When you purchase your BEV, you’ll likely be supplied with a 120 volt, Level 1 charging cable that can be plugged into a standard electrical outlet. As alluded to above, it can take a pretty long time to get a full charge if you’re using a Level 1 charger. In fact, in some cases it can take up to 24 hours to get a full charge into a BEV whose battery is nearly exhausted.
In comparison, Level 2 charging stations get the job done about four to five times faster than a Level 1 charger. Generally speaking, as this field is rapidly expanding and changing, with most moderately priced BEVs you can expect approximately 25 miles of range per hour of charging with a Level 2 charging station, which comes out to around 4 to 6 hours to obtain a full charge.
Level 2 chargers are great for giving your battery electric vehicle a full charge overnight, or during a busy day working and/or lounging around the house!
Level 3 Chargers & Beyond
It’s worth noting that Level 3 and Level 4 charging stations are also manufactured, but these higher voltage (440 volts), DC current, commercial chargers are not available for home use. Level 3 chargers are commonly installed for applications such as company or municipal fleets, transportation services, and other commercial applications. Level 4 chargers are relatively new to the industry and are very expensive. Enough said!
Choosing the Right Level 2 EV Charging Station for Your Vehicle
The most important thing about the Level 2 EV charging station you choose is that it’s accurately matched with your vehicle. Regardless of whether your EV dealership or your trusted electrician supplies the charging station, we recommend that you take the time to educate yourself on the details and make sure you are purchasing a charger that is 100% the correct fit for your car and your needs. In the Denver-Boulder area, you can trust the advice and recommendations of our staff Master Electrician at Save Home Heat Company. We’ll make sure that all of the electrical ratings on your new EV charging station accurately match the needs of your car.
EV Charging Station Factors to Consider:
Where Will You Install Your Level 2 EV Charging Station?
A Level 2 EV charging station is permanently installed on your property, so it’s worth taking time to carefully think thru where it will be located. The majority of homeowners locate charging stations in a convenient spot on a wall in their garage. However, if you don’t have a garage, have a larger property where you park in multiple locations, and/or have a well sheltered carport, we recommend consulting an expert on the best location for your circumstances. It’s also wise to consider and obtain input on the charging cable length that will work best for you, if options are available.
How Often Do You Travel?
If you have a far commute or make regular weekend trips, these factors affect how much battery life you will use up on a regular basis. Without diving too deep into electrical details, a higher kilowatt (kw) rated charging station will allow you to charge your BEV quicker, which could be a great feature if you’re home for only short periods of time between trips. We recommend taking the time to learn about all your charging station power rating options before pulling the purchasing trigger – and always make sure you’re considering only chargers that are the exact right fit for your vehicle. Your EV dealership should be able to provide the technical support you require, and our team is glad to assist homeowners in the Denver-Boulder area, if needed.
Environmental Factors in Denver-Boulder
Extremes in temperature – cold and hot – can affect the efficiency and driving range of your battery electric vehicle, as well as the performance of your EV charger, itself. In the Denver-Boulder area, we experience relatively moderate temperatures year-round, which doesn’t normally affect charging time or battery duration, but there are definitely more intense periods when we should keep this mind, even driving around our own neighborhoods. If your home is at a higher elevation or in a location that experiences much colder (or hotter) temperatures, be aware that your EV may charge more slowly during those extremes times; and don’t count on getting the same mileage per charge that you get under milder temperatures.
Advanced EV Charger Features
Tesla, among many other manufacturers, is helping to lead the way in developing smart charging systems, which are designed to work more efficiently and offer a wider variety of performance options. Some of these options include customizable power ranges, multiple vehicle charging capabilities, and Wi-Fi connectivity.
Level 2 EV Charging Station Installation Safety
Since a Level 2 EV charging station requires its own independent electrical circuit, installed in strict adherence to all manufacturer and NEC electrical component, wiring, and installation requirements, it is crucial that your charging station is installed by a highly qualified electrician. At Save Home Heat Company, each EV charging station installation is overseen by our Master Electrician and performed by our staff of highly skilled, experienced electricians.
Electrical, Green Living
To learn more about having a Level 2 EV charging station installed at your home in the Denver-Boulder area, and for a free, low-pressure install quote, please contact our friendly, helpful team today.