If you have just bought your electric car, you must be wondering how its EV Charge Installation actually works. Which particular charging station is most suitable for you, and which specific things do you have to bear in mind when purchasing one. If you’re a self-starter and like to get into the details, you must read this comprehensive guide to get started.
How an Electric Charging Station Work?
Generally, all plug-in vehicles including electric and hybrids come with an EV charger which enable the car to be charged from a charging station.
Simply put, an electric charging station popularly known as EVSE doesn’t basically charge your vehicle. Noticeably, your vehicle also includes an on-board charger which is responsible for transforming household AC to the DC which is secured in its batteries. Before you start, it’s important that you make the model of the vehicle you’re looking to charge. In order to charge your vehicle from a household outlet, you will need a powerful charger that can effectively recharge the batteries between trips.
Things to Consider Before Buying or Installing an Electric Vehicle Charging Station
Not all electric cars are created alike. Many EVs charge quickly than others. Typically, the power requirement ranges from 3.7kW-22kW subject to the type of the built-in charger installed in your vehicle. But, as a general rule of the thumb, an electrical vehicle with at least 3.7kW power can be easily charged at almost any well-equipped vehicle charging station.
Charging Station Standards
Since there’s a huge variety of charging stations available for EV owners, you have to go through the features and specifications for each one of them in order to make a profitable decision. First things first. It’s important to understand that not all ‘Direct Current’ charging stations can successfully charge all EV models. Currently, there are two DC charging stations available on the market namely Combo and CHAdeMO. Apart from these two basic options, AC charging stations can also be used but it generally offers a relatively slower charge to many EV models.
AC Charging Stations
There are basically two types of AC charging stations – Level 1 and Level 2 AC chargers. Level 1 AC charging means you can charge your car from your standard household AC outlet. While this type of charging station supports almost all electric cars, this approach is way too slow in terms of charging performance.
Level 2 20kW AC chargers, on the other hand, expedite charging enormously and that is perhaps the biggest reason why such type of chargers are believed to be the most suitable option for commercial fleets and the perfect substitute to DC service stations.
SAE Combo DC Fast Charging Stations
DC fast charging stations are yet another prominent type that can charge your EV up to 80% in less than 30 minutes.
CHAdeMO DC Charging Stations
CHAdeMO standard is mostly used by Asian-based vehicle manufacturers. Just like Combo, CHAdeMO can charge the 80% battery of your EV in less than 30 minutes. Compatibility is certainly one of the biggest reasons why many people prefer CHAdeMO over Combo as there are far more EVs compatible with CHAdeMO than any other option.
When selecting a charging station for your EV, it is extremely important to confirm that it is manufactured by a reliable producer who has been acknowledged and listed by prominent automobile manufacturers. Make sure your chosen manufacturer has firm market standing or they’re capable of providing on-time assistance in case you need any replacement parts/services in the future.
Extra Features and Accessories
Electric vehicle charging station is an expensive purchase. That is why it’s important that you should know everything before investing your hard-earned money into any product. Always ask the manufacturer about additional features and accessories.
If you want to use your electric vehicle charging station for commercial purposes and want to make it available to third parties, an invoicing feature for the charged electricity is recommended. Depending upon the particular situation, there are a number of possibilities that need your continuous attention to make the most out of your pricey purchase. What sets electric vehicle charging stations apart from other alternates is that you can also integrate your photovoltaic system with your charger in order to enjoy your self-produced electricity for your electric vehicle. The massive increase in individual consumption linked with the current distribution agreements is specifically profitable. Also, you can invest in a smart energy manager to monitor and control your electricity consumption with the help of an app.
Fitting and Installation
No matter how good you are at technical work, the installation of an electric charging station must be done by an experienced and qualified electrician. Before you make use of a household socket to charge your EV, it is critical to examine the sockets and wiring in older infrastructures to ensure that charging can also be done at full power without any difficulty.
Interestingly, not all electricians are proficient enough and know the standards that need to be followed when connecting a charging station to your vehicle. So, make sure you only trust the most reliable one for this job.
The Cost Factor
As mentioned earlier, an electric vehicle charging station is an expensive investment and a basic model can cost you around €600. The price may be higher subject to your selection of model and features. It’s also noticeable that this price is exclusive of fitting/installation charges. All in all, you must consider all the associated costs before you purchase an electric vehicle charging station to charge your car.
Ideally, you should not compromise on any stage just to save a few bucks so that you can enjoy your product for years to come.
Final WordsBuying an electric vehicle charging station is a long-term investment and can be a great way for present-day businesses to earn appreciation from their loyal customers. Apart from that, it’s also a profitable business model. Just make sure you do some research beforehand and purchase a product that best fits your requirements. Even if you’re buying an EV charger for your personal use, make sure it includes all the relevant features to recharge your EV without any trouble.