As electric mobility is gaining importance worldwidecharging an electric vehicle (EV) is becoming a daily activity for many households.
However, while recharging an electric vehicle at home offers great flexibility and convenience, it is very different from refueling a gas-powered car at the pump and, like any new experience, can be daunting at first.
In this article, we’ll walk you through every step of the home charging process so you can charge with confidence.
If you don’t want to read the whole article, you can click on the links below to go directly to the charging tutorials.
At a fundamental level, charging an EV works much the same as any electronic device with a battery – an EV needs to be plugged into a power source from which it can draw power. electricity to recharge its battery.
The easiest way to charge an EV is to plug it into a standard wall socket: this requires no special equipment other than a charging cable which is usually included with the car. However, it’s the slowest way to charge and only adds about 4 miles of range per hour. It’s also the least secure because there’s no protection for your charger. overload of the electrical circuit of your house and causing damage to your network.
A safera faster and more convenient alternative is a dedicated home charger.
The principle remains the same, except that a charging station is installed by an electrician and can support larger EV charging loads. As such, it can deliver much higher power and achieve faster charging speeds than a household outlet.
Although using a dedicated home charging station is around 3 to 7 times faster than charging with your usual outlet, charging on the go at Level 3 DC fast charging stations is even faster. Some of these fast chargers can charge your car in as little as 15 minutes (depending on the charger output power and your car battery).
However, getting that kind of speed in your home just isn’t possible, because your home’s power supply can’t deliver the high power required for Level 3 fast charging.
Why charge my electric car at home?
Home charging is the preferred way to charge for 64% of electric vehicle driversand it’s easy to see why.
For one thing, home charging is the most convenient: instead of having to go out of your way to find a public charger, you can just plug in your car every time you get home from work and charge it up while you’re not. don’t use it.
Home charging is also usually cheaper than public charging because you avoid the extra fees that public charging operators add to offer the service.
There’s no doubt about it, home charging is one of the most convenient ways to charge your EV.
Should I buy a home EV charging station?
You might be wondering then, should I buy a charging station to charge my car at home?
In a nutshell, the answer is no, but there are some things to consider.
while you box charge your car by simply plugging it into a power outlet at home, the safety, speed and convenience of a home charger are worth considering.
So, although the purchase and installation of a charging station has a price, this expense could be worth it for its efficiency and ease of use on a daily basis.
Nevertheless, there may be situations where you cannot install a home charger, either due to lack of space, lack of proper wiring around your parking space, or not having enough room parking to start.
That doesn’t mean you can’t get an electric car though, as there are plenty of options for load it elsewhere.
Charging at home without a home charging station for EVs
Charging your electric vehicle at home without a charging station is as easy as plugging the cable that came with your car into a standard outlet.
However, this way of charging tends to be extremely slow and offers no protection against potentially dangerous electrical overloads.
To give you an idea of the charging speed, a standard 2.3kW household outlet would take approximately 24 hours to charge an average electric vehicle with a 50 kWh battery (like a standard Tesla Model 3 range) to 80%.
Additionally, since electric vehicle charging is a very energy-intensive activity, it can easily overwhelm your home’s electrical circuit if not managed properly.
Charging your car without a charging station can put a strain on your home’s energy supply and, if you’re not careful, even pose a fire hazard.
Charging at home with a home charging station for EVs
Home charging stations are specially designed to handle energy-intensive loads and offer more control.
Having an EV charging station at home unlocks much greater power and charging speed. On average, it would take a dedicated EV home charger between 3 and 7 hours to charge an average EV.
It’s a noticeable difference. Even a “slow” domestic charging station is likely to charge your EV overnight, whereas charging via the standard socket will take at least 3 times longer.
The 5 steps to charging an electric car at home
Although the specifics can vary between charging stations, brands and even car models, it generally requires the following steps:
- Get the charging cable
- Connecting the cable in the car
- Connecting the cable to the home charging station
- Starting the charging session
- End charging session
1. Get the charging cable
Once you’ve parked your car, the charging cable is the first thing to look for. While many home charging stations have a built-in cable, others may require you to plug in your own.
In these cases, you can usually use the charging cable provided by the manufacturer of your electric vehicle (it is usually stored in the trunk of your car).
Note appendix good to know: cables and connectors change depending on where you live.
2. Plug the cable into the car
The next step is to connect your car to the charger with the cable.
To do this, you need to locate your car’s power outlet – this is often in the same place where a fuel cap would be for a gasoline-powered vehicle, in other words, on either side.
Some manufacturers place the charging port in other locations, such as under the badge next to the front trunk.
3. Connect the cable to the home charging station
If the cable is not already connected to the charging station, the next step is to plug the cable into the charger. Typically, the charging station’s socket will be easily visible, but you may need to lift a protective cap before you can plug in the cable.
4. Start the charging session
Once you have connected the car to the charging station, the next step is to start the charging session.
Basically, this can take two forms, depending on whether your charging station is open or closed.
With an open terminal, charging starts as soon as the cable is connected, and no authentication is required. This is the case with many home chargers installed in private driveways or garages that are not accessible to the public.
In the case of a closed charging station, the user must authenticate himself, generally using an RFID card or key fob, or via a charging app.
Once the terminal recognizes the user and authorizes the process, the charging session will begin.
Usually, once the charging session has started, the colored LEDs on the charging station will change color or flash in a given pattern.
5. End the charging session
When your car is charged to the desired level, it’s time to end the charging session.
During the charging session, the connector is usually locked to the vehicle. This is a safety measure to prevent theft or receiving high voltage. So, to disconnect the cable, you will first need to end the charging session.
Much like starting, this is done either through an app or by swiping your key fob or RFID card.
When charging is complete, the colored LEDs will change (or stop flashing).
The last thing to do is to disconnect the cable from the car and bring it back to the charging station (if integrated) or, in the case of detachable cables, disconnect it from both the vehicle and the charger and from put it back in your car.
You are now loaded and ready to hit the road again!
While home charging is by no means rocket science, it may be unfamiliar to many new EV drivers, so hopefully the steps above will provide some helpful insight.
If you’re considering the switch to e-mobility, you probably have a lot more questions about EV charging, check out our detailed guide to charging electric vehicles for a comprehensive overview of all things EV charging for new EV drivers.