PEV drivers find charging to be easy and convenient, since most charging occurs at home, at night. Filling up your “tank” while sleeping is a great perk, but taking advantage of off-peak electricity rates can also lower your fuel cost. Paying $0.10 per kW is the equivalent of driving on gasoline that costs less than $1 per gallon. If you have a busy life and need to “top off” at work or while running errands, there are public and workplace options for charging your car as well.
There are three basic levels to charge any PEV, and since the adoption of a standard connector (J1172), every new PEV can be charged using any charging equipment with the standard connector. How long it takes to charge at each level depends on how far you have driven and the size of the battery. Charging speed is also governed by the size of the on-board charger and power lever of the charging equipment.
Level 1: 120-volt
Level 1 charging uses a standard 120-volt plug. Every new PEV comes with portable charging equipment that allows them to plug in to any 120-volt outlet. Level 1 charging provides about 3-5 miles of range per hour of charge. From empty, a full size battery electric vehicle will takes about 17 hours to recharge. Level 1 charging is ideal for Plug-in Electric Vehicles that have a smaller batter than a full battery electric vehicle.
Level 2: 240-volt
Level 2 requires charging equipment to be purchased and installed and provides about 10-20 miles of range per hour of charge. From empty, a full size battery electric car takes about 4-7 hours to recharge.
DC Fast Charging: 440-volt
DC fast charging provides up to an 80% charge in about 30 minutes.
Source: PEV Charging: Where and When?
Buying and Installing Charging Equipment
If you choose to charge your PEV with a Level 2 (240-Volt) charger, the PEV Resource Center offers many resources for learning about the different chargers you can buy and the process for installing the charger at your residence.
Cost to Charge Your Car
Driving on electricity is cheaper than driving on gasoline. Charging at $0.10 a kWh is like spending a $1/gallon on gasoline. Your local utility can provide information about the best rates for charging a PEV. The PEV Resource Center offers many resources for learning what electricity rate is best and how much it will cost you to drive your PEV on electricity.
Find Public Charging Stations
There are about 1000 public charging stations available to PEV drivers with many more coming. The PEV Resource Center can help you find those stations whether you are sitting at your computer or on your Smart Phone.