HOW TO CHARGE

The lowdown on charging up

You’ll do most of your vehicle charging at home, but sometimes you’ll need a power-up on the road. Luckily, options are becoming more flexible for both!

Charging times vary based on the vehicle and voltage of the charging station.

Level 1 – 120 volts

Charging a vehicle at Level 1 means plugging in to a standard 120-volt outlet. Most electric vehicles can be charged at Level 1, although it takes significantly longer (15-50 hours) than other charging options.

Level 2 – 240 volts

Using 240-volt service, a dead battery can be fully charged in approximately two to eight hours. Some models can charge completely in as little as 30 minutes. The installation of a 240-volt charger at home may qualify you for a $50 per kilowatt (kW) rebate along with the money-saving off-peak rate.

Direct Current (DC) Quick Charging

This option is typically only available for public charging, and stations are usually found along major transportation corridors. On average, the DC charger can add 40 miles of range for every 10 minutes of charging.

Charging at home

Preparing for your electric vehicle is easy. Installing a Level 2 home charger is much like installing the wiring for a clothes dryer or other heavy appliance. Most homeowners hire an electrician for this and it can usually be done in a few hours.

Charging on the go

Public charging options are increasingly available in Minnesota and North Dakota. According to www.plugshare.com, a national online charging station locator, there are dozens of public charging options throughout both states, with more popping up all the time.

Electric vehicles come standard with an interactive screen that will help you find a charge point near you.

When charging at home isn’t an option, many EV drivers have found they can easily plug in and spend their charge time grabbing a meal, hitting the local stores for some shopping or getting work done in a local library or coffee shop. You’re away from home – make the most of the new environment around you!

Charging in the winter

All vehicles, electric or otherwise, will experience some level of decreased performance in the winter months. On the coldest days, when drivers are blasting their heaters, EVs may lose up to 40 percent of their standard charge range. However, that loss can be shortened up to 20 percent by keeping your vehicle in a warm garage.

A few tips and tricks will also keep your charge strong, like clearing the weight of snow and ice from the top of your car and keeping your speed below 65 mph.

Remember – even with a worst-case 50 percent reduction in range, a Chevy Bolt can still travel at least 120 miles on a single charge!