As an EV owner, you know that keeping your vehicle charged is crucial. Still, there is this bit of a mystery surrounding the workings of EVs that many owners often want to demystify. Also, newbies want some answers when they ask questions like what is an EV charger. Fortunately, we’re here to clarify the process and make it as easy as plugging in a toaster. From understanding the different types of charging stations to finding the perfect EV Plug and Charge system, this guide will help you become an expert on EV charging quickly. So, put the pedal to the metal, and let’s get started on our journey to EV charging mastery.
II. Different Types of Plug and Charge?
Charging an electric vehicle often requires selecting from a variety of charging cables and plugs available in the market. It’s important to understand the differences between them in order to ensure that you have the right equipment for your EV and the charging stations you plan to use.
- The Mode 2 charging cable. This type of cable is typically used for slow or overnight charging and is often provided with the EV when purchased. It includes a control box that regulates the charging process and protects the vehicle and the electrical system.
- Mode 3 charging cable. This type of cable is used for faster charging and is typically purchased separately. It includes a control box that regulates the charging process and provides protection for the vehicle and the electrical system.
- Type 1 plug, also known as the SAE J1772, is commonly used in North America and is compatible with most EV models. The Type 2 plug, also known as the IEC 62196, is commonly used in Europe and is compatible with most EV models. Both Type 1 and Type 2 plugs have a standardized shape and size to ensure compatibility with different EV models and charging stations.
- Combination plugs, as the name suggests, combine the functionality of both Type 1 and Type 2 plugs. This allows the EV to charge at any charging station, regardless of the type of plug available.
- The CHAdeMO plug is commonly used in Japan and is compatible with most EV models. This type of plug is designed for fast charging and can charge an EV from 0-80% in just 30 minutes.
- The CEE plug is commonly used in Europe and is also compatible with most EV models. This plug is designed for fast charging and can charge an EV in a shorter time than slow charging.
III. Why Do You Need A Plug and Charge for Your Electric Vehicle?
A Plug and Charge system is an essential piece of equipment for any electric vehicle (EV) owner. It allows for a seamless and secure charging experience without the need to manually input payment or identification information.
When you plug in your EV at a charging station, the Plug and Charge system automatically identifies your vehicle and billing information, allowing for a smooth and efficient charging process. This eliminates the need for RFID cards, credit cards, or other forms of payment and identification, saving you time and hassle.
Additionally, Plug and Charge systems also enhance the security of the charging process. As the system identifies the vehicle and owner, it can prevent unauthorized use and potential fraud, giving you peace of mind.
Furthermore, the Plug and Charge system also enables the tracking of energy consumption and billing, which can help you to better manage your EV charging costs. It also allows for easy access to a range of charging networks and tariffs, allowing you to choose the most cost-effective charging options.
In short, a Plug and Charge ensures you can enjoy the benefits of owning an electric vehicle without the hassle of manual billing and identification processes.
IV. How does EV charging work?
Knowing what EV charging is one thing but how it works is another thing which must be put into consideration. The workings of an EV charging system involves the storage of electric power in batteries from an electric source. Usually, a charging station is the source from where the EV’s battery can plug in and get some “juice.”
During the charging process, the EVSE sends electrical energy to the EV’s onboard charger, which converts the energy into a form that can be stored in the battery. The battery then stores the energy as it is sent from the onboard charger. The EV’s onboard computer typically monitors the charging process, which displays the charging status and estimated time until the battery is fully charged.
It’s essential to check your vehicle’s specifications to ensure that you use the appropriate charging station.
V. How long does it take to charge an EV?
Several factors often determine the time required in any EV charging sessions and this time can vary significantly.
Such factors include the type of charging station used, for instance, using a portable electric car charger, the EV’s battery capacity, and the battery’s current state of charge.
For instance, when considering the charging station types available you’ll find three levels of charging stations. Level 1 being the slowest with a charging time of 12 hours for a small battery while level 3 DC charger is the fastest with a charging time of 30 minutes to achieve 80% charge for the same battery. Level 2 charger has a mid-range time of 4 hours to fully charge the same battery. The reason for these variations is the power supplied to these chargers where level 1 uses 120V, and level 2 and 3 chargers use 240V and 480V DC respectively.
For a larger battery EV, it would take longer to charge. A case in point, it can take about 8 hours and 45 minutes to fully charge a larger battery respectively.
It’s important to note that not all EVs can be charged using all types of charging stations. It’s essential to check your vehicle’s specifications to ensure that you use the appropriate charging station.
VI. What to Consider When Buying an EV Plug and Charge for Your Electric Car?
When buying an EV Plug and Charge system for your electric car, it is best to always get it from reliable EV charger manufacturers. However, there are several other factors to consider to ensure that you are getting the best product for your needs.
- Plug-in or Hardwired – The first thing to consider is whether to go for a plug-in or hardwired system. A plug-in system is easy to install and can be moved to different locations, while a hardwired system is more permanent and is typically installed by a professional electrician.
- Smart or Dumb – Another important consideration is if you should go for a smart or dumb system. A smart system allows you to monitor and control your charging via a smartphone app or web portal, while a dumb system does not have that feature.
- Cost – The cost of the EV Plug and Charge system is also an important factor to consider. While a higher-priced option may come with more features, it may not be necessary for your needs. Make sure to research and compare different options to find the best balance of features and cost for you.
- Cable Length – Cable length is another important factor to consider, as it will determine how far away from the charging station you can park your EV. A longer cable will give you more flexibility in where you can park, while a shorter cable may limit your options.
- Power Delivery – Power delivery is also an important factor to consider. The system should be able to deliver the power that your EV requires for optimal charging.
- Certification of Safety with a 3-Year Warranty – Finally, it is crucial to ensure that the EV Plug and Charge system you choose is certified for safety and comes with a 3-year warranty at the minimum. This will give you peace of mind knowing that the product has been tested and approved for safety and that you are protected against any defects.
VII. MOST RECOMMENDED UNIVERSAL EV PLUG AND CHARGE BRAND
There are several options available on the market when it comes to universal EV Plug and Charge systems. However, some brands stand out for quality, features, and customer satisfaction. Here are some of the most recommended top EV charger companies and suppliers of universal EV Plug and Charge brands:
EV-TOP EV Charger: This brand offers a range of plug-in and hardwired EV chargers compatible with most EV models. They have various features, such as smart charging, energy monitoring, and weatherproof design. The EV-TOP EV charger is also one of the most affordable options in the market, making it a great value for money.
JuiceBox Smart EV Charger: JuiceBox is a well-known brand in the EV charging industry, and its smart EV charger is one of the most popular options on the market. The JuiceBox charger is a plug-in system that can be controlled and monitored via a smartphone app. It also features customizable charging schedules, energy monitoring, and a weatherproof design.
Siemens VersiCharge Home Charger: The brand offers a range of plug-in and hardwired EV chargers compatible with most EV models. The Siemens VersiCharge Home Charger is a smart charging system that can be controlled and monitored via a smartphone app. It also features customizable charging schedules and energy monitoring.
Pulser Plus Level 2 EV Charger: This compact and portable Level 2 EV charger is compatible with most EV models. The Pulser Plus Level 2 EV Charger is a plug-in system that is easy to install and can be moved to different locations. It also features customizable charging schedules and energy monitoring.
In conclusion, electric vehicles (EVs) are becoming an increasingly popular mode of transportation, and with that comes the need for efficient and reliable EV charging systems.
We’ve provided you with a comprehensive understanding of EV charging, from the different types of plugs and charging cables, the time it takes to charge an EV, and what to consider when buying an EV Plug and Charge system. With the information provided in this guide, you can confidently plan your next EV journey and say goodbye to “range anxiety.” Remember, understanding the different types of charging stations, maximizing your charging efficiency, and having the appropriate equipment is key to enjoying the benefits of owning an EV. Happy EV charging!