How To Charge an EV on a Road Trip
The cost of charging an EV using a commercial charger ranges from empty to full, between 10 and $30. Remember that charging your vehicle while on the road –that is, using commercial chargers–will cost significantly more than charging at home.
However, fuel costs differ considerably in EVs compared to ICE (internal combustion engine) vehicles. This is due to a variety of aspects:
- Wide range of the cost of electricity Commercial charger rates can be twice or even triple the cost of residential charges. Commercial charger rates may be more than 50% different across the network. As a comparison, gas prices fluctuate by around 10 percent or less.
- Types of Batteries and chargers The charging speed varies depending on the charger type and the charge level in the battery, the temperature, and the state of operation for the charging device. This could make the time needed for charging your battery dramatically as well.
- Pricing Commercial Pricing chargers can only sometimes be directly comparable since various pricing methods exist. They are usually a combination of per unit time, per kWh, and per session costs. These results in charging fees that differ significantly when calculated per-kWh basis (the amount you pay for each $1.
A third factor to think about is the type of charger for the car you drive with. There are many different types of chargers. EV chargers work the same. There are three different levels:
- Level 1 is the slowest type of charger. It can take a day to charge your vehicle thoroughly.
- Level 2 provides a cost as high as 28 miles/hour. Level 2 varies from $1 to $5 per hour. These types of charging stations can be found in retail stores.
- Level 3, also called DCFC or direct current (DCFC) Level 3 chargers, is the most efficient. They can recharge your battery to almost 100% in less than an hour and cost you between $10 and 30 dollars per hour. 2
Tesla has a private system of chargers it refers to as “Superchargers.” The cost of using these chargers on your Tesla is dependent on where you live and other variables. The average is $0.25 per kWh. That means the total charge up to 250 miles will cost you around $22 (unless you bought a Model S or Model X between 2012 and 2016, and in that case, it’s completely free).
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