The EV charging infrastructure is snowballing in Australia, and with a good reason. Recent data shows 8688 battery, and plug-in EVs have been sold in the first quarter of 2021, which is more than in any calendar year. It seems like people appreciate their electric cars, and they have their reasons to do so. However, one of the most considerable changes in making the switch from diesel or petrol to an electric vehicle is getting familiar with charging your car. It’s a critical aspect of EV ownership, and it’s essential to understand the key issues. The good news? EV charging is no rocket science, nor is it inconvenient, and now, with Power Shift Charging Solutions, things are made even easier. In other words, you will come to love it.
Imagine you will never have to stop at a service area again, and instead, have an unlimited supply of fuel right at your door or wherever you normally park. For many EV drivers, that’s a reality. All-electric vehicles never need gas, and for short trips, plug-in hybrids might use no gas. Our handy guide to electric vehicle charging aims to make EV charging simple, even for beginners.
The first thing to consider is the different types of EV charging. There are three main types of the charge point. These are rapid, fast, and slow. As the name suggests, different charging units vary in charging speeds. For instance, you can charge your electric vehicle using 120-volt home outlets (Level 1), 208-240 outlets like those used by your dryer (Level 2), or dedicated 480V+ public fast chargers (DC Fast Charging). Charging speed is down to the power output of each charging point.
For example, rapid charges are the fastest way to charge your EV. These can be split even further into two categories: rapid and ultra-rapid. Ultra-rapid EV chargers are DC only and can only output 100kW, potentially charging up to 350kW. However, a great number of Australia’s rapid charging infrastructure consist of rapid charging points, which are typically located at motorway service stations across the state.
Fast Chargers power up to 7kW to 22kW, which means that a typical EV can be fully charged in between 3 to 4 hours. More often than not, EV public charging points available in Australia are 7 kW untethered Type 2 outlets, which are fast chargers.
Slow Chargers provide 3 kW and are most fitted for overnight charging as it takes between 6 to 12 hours to charge a typical electric car with a slow charger. EVs are connected to slow chargers via a Type 2 socket or a 3-pin cable.
All EVs include set inlets, and these require specialist connectors to plug them in. Cables are provided with the vehicle, which allows for slow and fast charging across the country. On the other hand, rapid charging requires connectors that are tethered to the charger. The advantage is that you don’t need to carry any cables around to rapid-charge your EV.
EVs allow charging at different rates. For instance, if your vehicle can only charge at 7kW, then even if you’re using a 22kW charge point, it will only draw a maximum of 7kW.
For most EV enthusiasts, their main charging point will be at their own doorstep. Charging your EV at home is convenient and is a budget-friendly way to recharge your car. Given that most vehicles are usually parked overnight, most EV owners rely on home charging solutions to ensure that their car is ready to use each morning. As well as being massively convenient, home-based overnight charging also has the advantage of being, more often than not, the cheapest time to recharge. The point is, you can benefit from the government subsidies available to support the cost of installing a home charging point for your EV.
Most home EV charging points are either rated 3kW or 7kW. If you opt for a higher-powered charging unit, this could reduce the time it takes to fully charge your EV. However, the cost of installation will probably be much higher. Companies like Power Shift offer fixed prices for fully installed EV charging solutions, meaning no surprises in the final bill.
One important factor to consider is that you’re likely to need a vacant area in your parking space for home-based charging. This can help you dodge potential difficulties that could be caused by trailing cables across public areas. The good news? On-street residential charging units are gradually becoming the norm in some locations..
For employees, charging at the office can be a convenient way to recharge a vehicle whilst parked during working hours. From a CEO’s point of view, having EV charging units at the workplace will become increasingly important as a facility for employees, not to mention you will make the business more attractive to customers. The chance is, they may choose to visit your site and stay for longer while their vehicle charges, giving them more opportunity to engage with the company.
Charging points available for workplaces are relatively similar to home-based charging units. The only dissimilarity is that power ratings tend to be higher, with more 7kW and 22KV points being available. Many companies also offer charging units with a double socket so that they can charge two vehicles at the same time.
There is a large number of public EV charging networks available across the country. Some of these even provide national coverage, whereas others are available to certain regions.
Regional networks often have links to or are operated by these national providers, making it possible to use regional charging units using a national account in most locations.
Public charging points offer ad-hoc access, which means that many EV charging points across Australia are free to use. However, the most effective (rapid chargers) charge some level of tax that is based on a cost per energy consumed basis.
If you’re a proud owner of Tesla, Nissan, or Volkswagen, you can search by charging speed and even the station location you are interested in, if this is currently in use or available.