As the demand for electric vehicles (EVs) continues to increase, people are becoming more interested in the cutting-edge technologies behind them. One of the key components that enable an EV to operate is its battery, which needs to be recharged whenever it’s low or depleted. If you’re planning to buy an EV, it’s essential to know how to properly charge your battery. Let’s take a look at the different types of EV charging to determine which one is right for your vehicle.
What Are the Different Types of EV Charging?
EV charging comes in three levels: Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3. Generally, the higher the charging level, the more power will be delivered to your EV, which leads to a faster charging process. However, you’ll want to be careful about taking your vehicle straight to a Level 3 charging station. Note that different EV batteries are designed to accept different levels of power, so you have to find out the right charging level for your vehicle.
Once your EV is plugged in, a communication process will occur before the charging equipment is energized. During this process, your EV will ask the charger how much power it’s able to deliver and decide whether it’s going to accept or decline the charge. This ensures that your vehicle won’t receive too much power, which can be harmful to its battery.
Level 1 Charging (120 Volts)
Level 1 charging means plugging your EV into a regular 120-volt outlet, which can be found in homes, workplaces, and public areas. All EVs or plug-in hybrid vehicles can use this type of charging equipment. However, it’s the slowest type of charging, adding only 3 to 5 miles of range per hour. Level 1 charging may be sufficient for plug-in hybrid vehicles with small batteries, but it isn’t fast enough to recharge the larger batteries in EVs on a daily basis.
Level 2 Charging (208 to 240 Volts)
A Level 2 charger can replenish an EV’s battery at a rate of 12 to 80 miles of range per hour. It can be up to 10 times faster than a Level 1 charger, depending on your vehicle’s maximum charge rate and the charger’s power output. That’s enough to keep an EV charged for daily driving, which is why most EV owners have Level 2 charging equipment installed in their homes. Even if your vehicle has a nearly empty battery, it can reach a full charge overnight with this type of charging.
It’s possible for a Level 2 charger to generate up to 80 amps of power, but you need to invest in costly equipment to achieve this. In most cases, you’ll be fine with just a 40 amp charger that’s able to deliver 9.6 kW to your EV. Alternatively, you can opt for a slightly faster 48 amp charger rated at 11.5 kW. However, you have to make sure that it’s installed with a heavier gauge wire and hardwired. Therefore, you may end up spending a lot more on a 48 amp charger that offers only marginally faster charging than a 40 amp unit.
Level 3 Charging (400 to 900 Volts)
Also known as DC fast chargers or superchargers, Level 3 chargers deliver the fastest kind of EV charging available in the world today. With a charging speed of 3 to 20 miles of range per minute, they’re capable of recharging your EV to 80% in as little as 20 minutes.
Level 3 charging is much faster than Level 1 and Level 2 charging because it runs on direct current (DC) instead of alternating current (AC). However, this also means that it requires a much higher voltage supply that’s often unavailable in residential areas. This is why DC fast chargers are typically only found in public locations. Aside from a high voltage requirement, they come with a hefty price tag, which can be up to tens of thousands of dollars. The installation fees alone may cost more than the price of your EV.
Does Every EV Use the Same Connector?
Except for Tesla models, every EV uses the J1772 connector or J-plug for Level 1 and Level 2 charging. For Level 3 charging, there are currently three standards being used, which are Tesla’s proprietary plug, the Asian-standard CHAdeMO for Nissan and Mitsubishi models, and the Combined Charging System or Combo plug for vehicles from all other manufacturers.
What Is the Kia EV Lineup for 2023?
If you’re thinking of purchasing a new vehicle, it’s a good idea to get a Kia EV or plug-in hybrid vehicle. For the 2023 model year, Kia has a great selection of electrified models for you to choose from, including the EV6, Niro EV, and the Niro, Sportage, and Sorento plug-in hybrid vehicles. These offer impressive driving ranges, fast charging times, a comfortable and upscale cabin, and plenty of tech and safety features. They’re also competitively priced, making them excellent value propositions. If you prefer to get a used vehicle, you can look at the previous models of these Kias.
The EV6 is especially worth your consideration. As the first dedicated all-electric vehicle from Kia, it embodies the brand’s most advanced electrification technologies. In addition to a stylish exterior and well-appointed cabin, the crossover also features a lively powertrain that delivers up to 320 horsepower and provides an impressive maximum driving range of 310 miles. Additionally, it comes with a performance-oriented GT model that can sprint from zero to 60 mph in an incredible 3.4 seconds. Besides the EV6, you’ll soon see two other SUV models in Kia’s EV lineup: the EV5 and EV9.
Test-Drive a Kia EV or Plug-In Hybrid Vehicle at Huffines Kia McKinney
If you’re shopping for an EV in McKinney, Texas, visit us at Huffines Kia McKinney to check out our awesome selection of Kia EVs and plug-in hybrid vehicles. Whether you need a vehicle for daily commuting or hauling your family, our dealership can provide you with an electrified model that ticks all your boxes. We also offer fantastic special deals that can help you save money on your car purchase. Contact us today to schedule a test drive.