EV charging is easy. At some chargers, all one has to do is simply lift the charger from the charging station and plug into the EV (takes 10 seconds… or less). No need for a card to activate charging, as with this free charger below. Push the button to start.
One can normally activate a charger that requires a card for activation by phone app as well — or call the number on the station before a card arrives. A friend only uses her cell app to activate stations. I like my card.
Once you are signed up and have an account, is very customer friendly. The fastest way (for me) is to pull out the card, swipe it in front of the charging station to unlock the charger, and the charger is released to plug in. (In no time at all.)
Many of the leading grocers have handy EV charging spots. ChargePoint is a primary charging station company that one finds in many parking lots, etc. ChargePoint is easy and free 95% (where I live) of the time — but not always. I’d say nearly 99% of the chargers I use are free — even the fast charger.
I still do not have a CHAdeMO DC fast charging card, as I don’t seem to need it. In another place, I would — possibly with a charge such as 10 cents a minute or 60 cents or so for half an hour. The stations I frequent, though, are free and very user friend. The screen says “ready,” I touch it, two signs pop up, and I touch the charging sign applicable to my EV. The fast charger then unlocks and I can plug in and charge.
Signing up for ChargePoint takes only a few moments. In a few easy steps, one can set up an account to get or activate cards. In the ChargePoint Cards section, select the option to have a new card mailed to your address. If you have a ChargePoint account and just need to activate your ChargePoint cards: log in, go to “My Account,” and click on “Manage ChargePoint Cards.” Next, select “Activate More Cards,” then follow the steps to enter the serial numbers on your ChargePoint cards.
Kyle breaks down the simplicity of charging a Tesla in “Charging In Public: Tesla vs Other EVs.” From that, here’s a breakdown of various levels and types of EV charging:
- Level 1 — Home charging @ 110v delivering ~1.1 kW speeds.
- Level 2 — Typical Level 2 chargers utilize the J1772 or Mennekes adapters for public and private chargers delivering up to 7.2 kW speeds, with most being 6.6 kW.
- Level 3 — Also known as “DC fast charging,” these CHAdeMO or SAE Combo chargers deliver charging speeds up to 50 kW in 30 minute sessions and have been designed to fill up current-gen EVs capable of “fast charging” in a relatively short amount of time.
- Level 4 — This new charging tier is defined by the Tesla Superchargers which offer consistent speeds up to 135 kW today with a near-term goal of 150 kW speeds.
For more on various EV charging matters, CleanTechnica & EV Obsession director Zach Shahan interviews Schneider Electric’s Pierre Sacre, NAM EV Solutions Director, on the sidelines of Formula E in Long Beach, California, in the following video:
All images by Cynthia Shahan
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