For most EV owners, the easiest way to charge electric cars will be from home.
***Editor's Note: This content and related video focus on charging mainly from the European perspective. Not all info applies to EV owners in the U.S.
The simplest, but also the slowest way to charge your car from home, is to plug into the same socket you use to charge your mobile phone. Most electric vehicles are supplied with a cable that allows you to use a maximum 3kW domestic socket, though be warned that charging like this takes a lot longer for your car than it does your phone.
A wallbox charger is a far more popular option. It’s a box that’s connected to your mains electricity and is usually fitted in your garage or outside your house. They come in all sorts of shapes, sizes and budgets.
Wall boxes typically start at 7kW and go up to 22kW, so it’s worth noting that the more powerful the wallbox, the quicker the charge. They’re often described as being ‘smart’ too. Most electric cars offer an app that lets you schedule the car’s charging remotely, but a smart wallbox charger is able to communicate with your car, the charging operator and your utility company, to help optimize charging. Whether that’s balancing the local grid capacity or ensuring that you only use electricity during off-peak times, smart wallboxes save money.
If you’re renting or you live in an apartment, things can be a bit trickier. Speak to your landlord or the building developer about requesting a charge point, as it’s likely this sort of infrastructure will not only add convenience but also value to the property. You can also speak to your local council or authorities, who may have policies or grants in place to support the installation of residential charge points.