Apr 4, 2019 - 3min read
If you’re thinking of buying - or have already bought - an electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid, you might be wondering how to charge it and how long the charging process takes. It can be complicated so we've created this short handy guide to get you on your way. Read on for everything you need to know when it comes to charging your EV!
You can either charge:
Studies show that over 80% of EV charging is done at home so let's start with this.
This is the easiest and cheapest way to charge. A full charge at home (getting you more than 200 miles of range) can cost as little as £7.80.
We recommend plugging in when you get home or setting your car to top up overnight so that you leave home the next day on a full battery and reducing the likelihood you'll need to top up during the day.
In theory, you can plug your EV into a standard three-pin electric socket. However, off-street home charging units are faster and safer to use.
Buying an EV charger for home is much like buying a charger for your mobile in that they come in all shapes and sizes. We would recommend, however, buying an untethered charge point as opposed to a tethered one.
Untethered differs from tethered in that the former is just a socket without a cable built into it (this is like when you buy a phone and the three pin plug just has a USB). By buying an untethered unit with a universal socket you are future proofing yourself for when you get a new or additional EV!
Great, you've got the car and the charging point, all you need now is a cable. Since you've got an untethered charger with a universal socket (also known as Type 2), you know that you need a cable with Type 2 at one end and the other end to fit your car - like when you buy a phone charger with a USB at one end and your phone charger at the other. You just need to find out what type of charger your car has. We'd recommend going to this site, picking the car you have and buying a 32A charger that is Type 2 at one end and whatever your vehicle is at the other.
Great, now you've got everything you need to charge at home!
While you will do most of your charging at home, it’s also useful to know how to charge and where to go while out and about. Luckily, there are more than 15,000 public EV charging points across the UK and this number is constantly growing.
These public charging points are run by a number of different operators and while there are a fair few free charging points out there (including at some supermarkets and hotels), many are pay as you go or pay monthly. You can normally pay for these charging points via the app for the charging network you're using at the time.
Before spending anything, however, we’d recommend using Zap Map to find out who operates the charge points you are most likely to use. Some public points, known as rapid chargers, tend to be much faster than charging at home too. Look out for green or purple pins on the Zap Map map to find these. This comes at a cost but still significantly less than a full tank of fuel!
If you’ve already bought an electric car, congratulations and welcome to the green life. If not, what are you waiting for? It’s never been easier to own an EV, so join the green revolution and save some money (and the planet) with your new eco-friendly car!
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