As an electric vehicle owner, your home charger is your lifeline. Getting to a public charging station isn’t always feasible. You may not live within driving distance of an EV station or find that all the spots are taken once you arrive. Powering up at a public charger is also inconvenient and time-consuming. At home, however, you can easily attend to your other responsibilities while charging your car in the garage. The convenience and accessibility of an at-home charger have drawn countless homeowners to install their own charging stations right in their garages.
If you’re researching how to get a home EV charger, it’s crucial to grasp the functioning of this device. Getting familiar with the inner mechanisms of an EV charger will empower you to select the right one for your specific needs. If you’ve ever wondered, “How do EV charging stations work?” – look no further. We have all the answers you’re seeking.
Our comprehensive guide covers everything you need to know, from the different types of home chargers available to the various components that make up a charger. By the end of this guide, you’ll have a thorough understanding of how this device operates, equipping you to make an informed decision and enjoy the convenience of charging your electric vehicle at home.
Still have questions about EV charging? Want a free quote? Call Photon Brothers!
Our team of certified experts is ready to guide you through the installation process, ensuring a smooth transition to a sustainable driving lifestyle. We install industry-leading Tesla EV chargers, which can charge many different types of electric vehicles– so not to worry if you don’t have a Tesla. Click to schedule your FREE estimate today!
Types of EV Chargers
To better understand how EV chargers work, it’s helpful to familiarize yourself with the types of chargers available to electric vehicle owners. EV chargers are divided into three main categories: Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3, also called DC fast power supply. Here’s a closer look at each type.
A Level 1 charger is the most basic type of charger that the vehicle manufacturer supplies at the time of purchase. It is intended for use in homes with standard 120-volt AC outlets. The typical power output of a Level 1 charger is 1 kilowatt. For battery electric vehicles (BEVs), a Level 1 charger takes 40 – 50+ hours on average to charge an empty battery to 80 percent. For plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs), an L1 charger takes about 5 – 6 hours to charge 80 percent from empty.
A Level 2 charger offers AC charging at a much higher rate than a Level 1 charger. It is intended for use in homes and offices with 240-volt residential and 208-volt commercial outlets. The typical power output of a Level 2 charger is 7 – 19 kilowatts. On average, an L2 charger takes 4 – 10 hours to charge a BEV from empty to 80 percent. For a PHEV, the average charging time is 1 – 2 hours.
DC Fast Power Supply (Level 3)
Direct current (DC) fast power supply chargers are ideal for high-traffic charging stations, such as those located outside supermarkets, movie theaters, or on the highway. With a power output of 50 – 350 kilowatts, DC chargers are the fastest and most powerful type of charging equipment. They can bring an empty BEV battery to 80 percent in just 20 minutes to an hour. However, it’s worth noting that PHEVs are typically not compatible with DC chargers.
Components of a Charger
Once you’ve discovered how to get a home EV charger, it’s important to understand the inner workings of this device. Each component of your EV charger has a specific purpose. Here’s an overview of each part and what its main goal is.
A charging cable gathers power from an assigned power source and safely transfers it to your electric vehicle. There are four different modes of cables, each of which corresponds to a specific type of charging. Mode 1 cables are designed to charge scooters, e‑bikes, and other light electric vehicles. Mode 2 cables are the most common types of charging cables that EV owners receive with their vehicles. They typically correspond to Level 1 charging stations or at-home stations. Mode 3 cables are generally found at Level 2 charging stations, and Mode 4 cables are typically present at high-power Level 3 stations.
Most electric vehicle manufacturers offer mobile apps that allow you to track various metrics. For example, many apps let you check your car’s battery life to prepare you to charge when necessary. You can also remotely lock or unlock your vehicle through your phone for greater convenience. Many apps even allow you to turn on the heat or air conditioning in advance. This ensures that your car will already be at your preferred temperature once you start driving.
All EV chargers are equipped with safety features to help protect you, your vehicle, and other passengers. While the specific features vary from manufacturer to manufacturer, most chargers have a core set of safety elements in common. These include the following:
- Emergency shut-off switches
- Ground fault protection
- Clear safety labeling
- Advanced monitoring systems
- Cybersecurity technology
- Fire-safe materials
To ensure you know what safety features to expect from your home charger, consult the owner’s manual that came with your charger. It’s crucial to be well-versed in your EV charger’s safety features to know what to expect in an emergency.
Thinking about installing a home EV charger? Call Photon Brothers!
If you still need guidance on how to get a home EV charger, our highly trained pros are here to help with honest, upfront, and knowledgeable estimates. Call Photon Brothers at (720) 370‑3344 (Colorado) or (805) 351‑3371 (California) or click below to request a FREE estimate online today!