Electric vehicles are gaining ground over regular vehicles as we try to combat global warming. Apart from not producing any emissions, these vehicles are also lauded for their cost-effective charging capabilities. Still, many don’t have enough knowledge about the basics of electric vehicle charging. Hence EVs aren’t as popular as they should be.
This includes how charging works and how the car responds to the process. Also included in this knowledge gap are the various kinds of charging points that exist. There also exists a lack of knowhow about concepts such as regenerative braking and its pros.
The following article gives you a brief account of the concept of EV charging.
Charging and your EV
It is rather simple; all that is required is an EV charger plugged to a wall outlet. When the car charger is connected to your EV, the circuit is completed. Then, electric current is supplied to the vehicle which provides charge to the car’s battery pack. The charger is connected to the EV’s on-board charger.
This charger works to convert the alternating current (AC) to direct current (DC). As the battery charges up, the process slows down. This happens in order for the charging system to focus on charging the cells that need to be charged. This prevents over-charging which can lead to the battery becoming damaged and the system overheating.
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Charging while driving
Yes, they do keep on recharging. Electric vehicles tend to use the concept of regenerative braking. This is the process in which you hit the brakes and the energy generated to slow you down is utilized in recharging the car’s battery pack.
It improves your car’s efficiency by quite a bit. Without it; expect the car to consume about 10 to 25pc more energy.
Here’s how electric vehicles are supposed to function: you install a home charger in your garage and you plug your car in through the night. While you sleep, the car will charge up and it will be ready to provide you with hundreds of miles of range in the morning.
However, one could easily run out of battery on the road; in come the charging stations. These are charging setups installed at gas stations or hotels by the owners. You can pay for them or use them for free if you’re a patron, according to the place’s policies.
These setups have faster chargers that charger your car up while you’re eating or relaxing on the side. There are 1000s of these places, but they mostly exist in developed countries.
Time taken to charge at charging stations
There are a number of factors involved here. The first one is that it the type of charger used is a powerful one. This is usually the case and you can hence expect a point at a charging station charge up your battery’s capacity in about half an hour.
Meanwhile, chargers at home can take at least 8 hrs to get the job done.
This number can go all the way up to 16 hrs. But why the difference then? This is because charging station chargers are much more powerful than the (usually) basic charging facility that you’ve equipped your garage with.
Electric vehicle charging outlets
One of the most controversial reasons that people have for not going all-electric is because of the time it takes for fueling. While you do save a lot in fuel costs, it simply takes too much time to fill up the battery.
As a result of this, companies are working hard in order to research and design faster chargers and fast charging batteries. They also tend to include the faster chargers as options when you’re purchasing an EV.
Their selling point is that provide more miles of range per hour. Below are the three types of electric car chargers that you can get:
Level 1 Charging (Basic)
Also, known as the standard electric vehicle charging outlet, it is provided as a basic and necessary offering when you buy an EV. This charger works at 120V and it can give you around 40 miles of range when you leave the car to charge overnight.
Level 2 Charging (Intermediate)
If you’re not satisfied, then a level 2 charger may interest you more. It works at 240V and it is good for providing a maximum of 25 miles of range per hour of charging. This is a more expensive option yet it does provide better value.
DC Fast Charging (Advanced)
Finally, we get to the holy grail of charging today – aka the DC fast charger. It is the most premium option here but it is worth every penny. It usually takes your car from 0-80pc in about 30 minutes. As far as mileage is concerned, it can provide you with 200 miles of range in only 20 mins.