There are two levels of charging when it comes to your EV. Every EV comes with Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment consisting of a 120-volt charging cable. You can simply hook one end of the cable to your car’s charging port and the other to a typical grounded plug in your garage or other area, not unlike any plugging in a major appliance in your home. This is known as Level 1 charging.
Level 1 charging will add about 3 to 4 miles of range for every hour you charge the vehicle, under ideal situations. That means, depending on your vehicle, it could take as little as around 13 hours to as much as several days to fully charge.
Most EV owners will want the ability to charge their vehicles to full capacity in a shorter period of time. For that reason, they will opt for home EV charging stations to allow for a Level 2 charger. If your home electrical system and current electrical box are already equipped to handle a 240-volt outlet, setting up your new home charging station becomes relatively simple and you can utilize a plug-in Level 2 charger. However, in some cases, a more significant upgrade will be necessary. Keep in mind as well that some chargers are meant to be hard-wired.
The cost to prepare your garage with a 240-volt outlet can vary quite a bit, from a few hundred dollars up to upwards of $1,000 or more, depending primarily on how far your charging station is going to be from your home’s main electrical service. Other costs can pop up if upgrading is needed or there is some other additional work involved.
Just as with the installation of the outlet, the cost of the Level 2 EV charging equipment can vary widely. It all depends on what you want the unit to do. The simplest styles consist primarily of what looks just like a heavy-duty extension cord with a box on one end. These types of units can be stowed away in the trunk and don’t need to be mounted. On the other end of the price scale, you’ll find units that provide a lot of bells and whistles, from digital readouts to mobile apps. Level 2 charging units are widely available at home improvement stores or online.
Here a few equipment options to get your research started. Most are available at home improvement big box stores or online:
|Lectron||NEMA 14-50 Plug J1772 Cable EV Charger Level 2 32-Amp Freestanding Single Electric Car Charger||Plug in to any 240-volt outlet, 21 ft. cord, charges most EVs in 4 to 8 hours||$299.99|
|Lectron||NEMA 14-50 Plug J1772 Cable EV Charger Level 2 40-Amp Freestanding Single Electric Car Charger||Plugs in to any 240-volt outlet, 21 ft. cord, charges most EVs in 4 to 8 hours||$329.99|
|Mustart||Level 2 40 amp Portable Electric Vehicle Charger with NEMA 14-50P||Plugs into any 220-volt or 240-volt outlet, 25 ft. cable, charges 5X faster than a Level 1 charger||$359.00|
|Siemens VersiCharge||Gen. 2 30-Amp Indoor/Outdoor Electric Vehicle Charger||Plug in to any 240-volt outlet, bottom-rear fed, indoor/outdoor, 20 ft. cord, charges most EVs in less than 3.5 hours||$412.00|
|Siemens VersiCharge||Gen. 2 30-Amp Indoor Electric Vehicle Charger||Hard-wired, installation required, 14 ft. cord, charges most EVs in less than 3.5 hours||$487.50|
|JuiceBox 32||Juice 32 Next Generation Smart Electric Vehicle (EV) Charging Station 32 amp Level 2 EVSE||Features WiFi, 25 ft. cable, indoor/outdoor, hardwired installation, Tesla adapter included, smartphone app, charges most EVs in 3.5 hours||$579.00|
|ChargePoint||Home Flex Electric Vehicle Charger up to 50 Amp NEMA 6-50 Plug or Hardwired||Plugs into any 240-volt outlet or hardwired, WiFi enabled, 9X faster than Level 1 charger, flexible amperage settings up to 50 amps, works with Alexa, 23-foot cable||$699.00|
As with any major purchase, it’s a good idea to research brands and read reviews before making a purchase, so you buy your Level 2 charger from a reputable manufacturer.