Electric cars have become more popular and less expensive in recent years. The primary reasons people are switching from gas-powered cars to electric cars are ease of maintenance and environmental benefits.
Electric cars may soon become commonplace. However, due to the limited range of electric cars, E.V. owners will face various challenges in storing and managing their cars, given the high cost of charging and limited charging infrastructure.
The only concern electric car owners have is the time taken for charging their cars. However, not only are electric cars improving but so is their charging facility.
The charging issue may be faced by the new electric car owners, but those who already have charging stations at their apartments and houses do not have to be concerned.
You can also charge your electric car in an apartment or house. Install an E.V. charging station, plug in your car overnight to take advantage of lower rates, and wake up to a fully charged car for a few pennies.
There are two primary issues to consider when charging an electric automobile at an apartment. First, be prepared to handle any problems that your electric car may have.
For example, what happens if the car draws too much power and the fuse blows? Secondly, to maximize an apartment’s charging potential, you’ll need to install a dedicated circuit.
Here’s what you need to know about charging an electric car in an apartment.
How Many Types of Apartment Chargers Are There?
As discussed above, most electric car owners have a plug-in charging system installed at their place. Statistics show that most electric car owners charge their cars at home 80% of the time.
Electric car charging at an apartment is the most cost-effective option to charge your E.V.s, whether you live in an apartment or a family-owned house.
However, there are various charge levels from which you can select the one that best meets your needs. Let’s have a look at them!
Level 1 Chargers
The first category is the Level 1 Chargers. These are plugged in the standard socket chargers that most home appliances use. They run on 120 volts and provide 1.3 to 2.4 kW of power. This can take you 3-5 miles per hour.
A complete charge will require at least 24 hours. They take more time to charge, so they are considered the slowest charging level. This type of charger comes with almost every electric car, which means that every electric car owner has access to this charging level.
You can make a charger outlet in your garage. Due to their less charging capability, they are rarely seen in public places.
Level 2 Chargers
If you can’t afford to wait until 24 hours to get your vehicle fully charged, opt for Level 2 Chargers. A special outlet is required for these types of chargers.
They run on 240 volts, provide 3 to 19 kW of power, and power large appliances such as washing machines, air conditioners, and dryers.
A complete charge will require 8 hours or less, depending on your electric car. Moreover, it provides 2 sockets which can be used simultaneously.
This type of charger is commonly seen in public areas like parking lots, supermarkets, shopping malls, and other locations. Most workplaces also offer these charging outlets where employees can charge their vehicles for longer durations.
However, it requires some cost which is not the case with L1 Chargers. If you are at a public charging station, it may cost you around $0.3 per kWh.
In contrast, if you install this charging infrastructure at your place, you can save some extra bucks as a complete charge will cost you around $8 to $10.
Level 3 Chargers
Lastly, there are Level 3 Chargers, known as Direct Current Fast Chargers (DCFC). They are the fastest of all three, with a power output of 350kW. You can get your car’s battery fully charged in 60-80 minutes.
Moreover, these chargers are used for commercial and industrial sites due to their extremely high cost and charging capability.
There are 15000 DCFCs in the U.S. currently, and this number is expected to increase due to the high demand for electric cars. However, DCFCs are twice as expensive as L2 Chargers. For a full charge, they may cost you around $15 to $30.
Now, it will be easier for you to select a charger that meets your requirements. Electric car drivers prefer L2 chargers because of their optimal cost and high charging capacity.
They provide you with a smart charging model that allows you to view your charging history as well as upcoming charging schedules.
How To Charge an Electric Car in an Apartment Using Solar Power?
If you have an electric car and you’re always concerned that the battery isn’t as charged as you need it to be, solar power might be your solution. This will not only lower your carbon footprint but will also be a step towards affordable energy.
You have two options: install solar panels or solar batteries at your apartment. The reason installing solar panels is not a good idea is that you need your automobile to charge during the day.
However, most companies require employees to work throughout the day, which necessitates the use of a vehicle.
Moreover, solar panels operate with sunlight, but what good will they be if your electric car isn’t there? You won’t be able to charge your automobile at night because solar panels require sunlight to generate electricity.
Instead of using solar panels, you can go for solar batteries as you won’t have to park your car at an apartment to get it charged. You can simply charge the battery during the day. Once you are back home, you can charge the battery even without sunlight.
However, you’ll need a number of batteries to fully charge your car as the average capacity of solar batteries is around 14kWh. In contrast, electric car batteries come with a capacity of around 50 to 100 kWh.
Fast Charging with Wall box
Electric car owners have a lot of choices when it comes to charging their cars. However, many find it inconvenient to put a charger into a socket to charge their cars.
A wall box is preferred over a domestic charging socket to avoid this hassle. Here’s why:
Loss of energy takes place whenever there’s an exchange of electricity. The same happens while charging your electric cars. This heat loss is due to the resistance provided by these electrical components (converters and cables).
However, completely charging your car with a domestic charger requires more than 24 hours. The heat loss will be 2 to 3 times more compared to a charger that can charge your car within 10 hours.
Due to the increase in energy loss, the efficiency drops with a rise in electricity costs. But that’s not the case with a wall box. With a 22kW charger connected to the wall box, your car will charge around 13 kWh for 100 kilometers.
However, if you charge the same car using a domestic cable, it will require 18 kWh for 100 kilometers. Moreover, this difference will increase with the Kms.
If you want to charge your car to ensure you don’t run late for an event, a wall box is the best option for you. If you have a 60-kWh battery, it will take about 25 hours to fully charge it using a household charger.
However, if you have a wall box with a moderate charging capacity, your vehicle can be charged within 6 to 8 hours.
A higher quality of 22 kWh capacity charger will take around 3 hours. Domestic chargers should be charged with less capacity as there can be safety issues otherwise.
How to Get an Electric Car Charger at an Apartment?
It’s clear that electric cars have numerous advantages. Most drivers in the U.S. are thinking about buying electric cars, but due to the lack of charging stations, many have rejected the idea. You do not have to worry anymore, because you can install a charger at your place.
The charger can be installed by a professional technician familiar with electric vehicles and their charging. They may advise you on the dos and don’ts of using the charger.
You must choose the type of charger that meets your needs. Tethered Cable and Universal Charger are the two types of chargers.
The Tethered Cable Charger comes with a Level 1 or 2 charger cable. On the other hand, a Universal charger does not have a wire.
Furthermore, installing a conventional charger takes around 2 to 3 hours, but this can vary depending on the charger you are getting installed.
Before you call an expert for installation, make sure your distribution board is clear and has a good Wi-Fi set up so they can connect your charger with the Wi-Fi.
You might wonder what the need to connect it with the Wi-Fi is. The answer to that is to get a report of your energy usage and access the smart features.
FAQS on Charging an Electric Car in an Apartment
Can I Charge My Electric Car with an Apartment Socket?
Yes, you can charge your electric car with a domestic socket. Most electric cars get a portable charger at the time of purchase. You can use a 3-pin charger in your home socket of 120 volts.
However, this is a slow charging method as it takes around 24 hours to fully charge your electric car. But you may use it as an emergency backup, as most manufacturers recommend doing so.
How Can You Charge an Electric Car Faster at Apartment?
By updating your system to three-phase, you can charge your car in less than three and a half hours using the latest wall box chargers. A charger that permits charging at 6kWh, for example, can charge a 40kWh Nissan Leaf in almost 7 hours. If you replace your charger with 22 kWh, you can reduce the charging hours to three.
Why Should You Have a Charging Station Set Up at Your Apartment?
Even if you want to purchase an electric vehicle in the future, you must include a charging station in your plans. Manufacturers are working on expanding the number of charging stations, but this will take time.
To minimize such disruptions, it’s important to have a charging set up at your apartment. This will save you time finding a charging station and extra bucks in the long run.
More and more people are becoming aware of the dangers of fossil fuels and their impact on the environment. The electric car market has been growing steadily in recent years, and it’s anticipated that electric cars will make up a large percentage of the auto market in the future. This development has led more and more people to invest in charging stations for electric cars.
Having said that, installing an apartment charging electric car system can save you from rushing to the public charging station when you run out of charge. You can get your electric car charged at any time of the day.
There is no restriction on what level charger you should use. However, a Level 2 Charger is preferred because it delivers ease of use, reliability, and significant cost savings. We hope our comprehensive guide has answered your most pressing questions about charging electric cars in apartments.
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- Cost Of Running Electric Car Vs Petrol In UK
- Can You Tow an Electric Car If It Breaks Down?
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My name is Matthew, staying in Seattle, Washington. Electric Vehicles (Electric Cars & Electric bikes) caught my attention for the last few years and my love for electric cars and bikes is everlasting. I spend many of my weekends traveling to various places all over various cities with my electric vehicle (e-bike and electric car). Here I am sharing my expertise, experience, and invaluable information about electric cars and electric bikes. Check out more.