There’s little arguing that electric vehicles are the cars of the future. In fact, between automakers pledging to transition to all zero-emission lineups and states banning gas-powered cars, it’s looking more and more like EVs will soon be a car owner's only option. With that in mind, it’s becoming imperative to better understand how to operate these green vehicles—particularly, how to charge them. Since most charging is done at home, this means understanding how EV home charging stations work.
Although EV home charging can be as simple as plugging your car’s battery in an outlet, there are a lot of factors to take into consideration, including charging efficiency, installation, and cost.
EV Home Charging
Most electric vehicle owners charge their cars at home. In fact, according to the U.S. Department of Energy, more than 80 percent of EV charging is done at an owner’s residence. This is obviously the most convenient option—you can charge the car when you’re sleeping and it’s ready to go in the morning—and it’s also the cheapest. Single-family homes generally have low and stable electricity rates.
Charging your EV at home certainly isn’t free, but it costs substantially less than paying for gas and is usually cheaper than using a public charging station. The Department of Energy estimates that fully charging an all-electric vehicle with a 100-mile range would cost the equivalent of running air conditioning for six hours. Because they have smaller batteries, plug-in hybrid EVs would cost even less.
When you compare this to the cost of gasoline, you can see how the savings pile up. Over the last year, average national gas prices have fluctuated between $2.88 and $4.25, meaning the average driver spend more than $2,300 a year on fuel.