A simple guide to charging an EV

Have you got an EV or are you thinking of getting one? That’s great news – for you, your bank balance, and the planet.

Swapping to an electric car is a bit different. Instead of trips to the fuel station, most charging occurs at home. It’s a bit like your mobile phone. Plug-in overnight and top up if you need to during the day.

Charging can feel stressful at first – but it’s really very simple. There are just three main types:

BASE CHARGING – the main type of charging, carried out when cars are parked for a reasonable amount of time (usually at home or work). There are five main ways to do this:

  • Home charging: when the driver has a charger. Get home, plug-in, go inside, forget it. Currently more than 80% of charging is carried out this way.
  • Community charging: where Co Charger comes in! It connects motorists who can’t charge at home (‘Chargees’) with neighbours who have a charger (‘Hosts’). The app handles all the ”matchmaking’, bookings and payments, meaning everyone can have a home or “near home” charging experience.
  • Workplace charging: If you work somewhere with charge points this can be your main source of charging.
  • Kerbside charging: Lots of public chargers are being introduced near roads in residential areas. Some are free-standing, some built into lamp posts. Some even pop up out of the pavement.
  • Mobile charging: Some companies have mobile vans that can come and charge your car when it’s parked outside your home.

ROUTE CHARGING – if you’re going on a business trip, or visiting friends or relatives, your can “route charge” as you did with your pre-electric car. These types of journeys are usually quite rare – just 3% of charging is this type. Chargers are fast but usually expensive, and different cars can charge at different speeds.

DESTINATION CHARGING – If you’re off to the supermarket or the gym, there may be chargers in the car park, letting you ‘top up’ while you’re out. On longer trips, plugging in while you’re at your destination can save you stopping to charge on the way home.