Electric Vehicle CHARGERS

IMPORTANT CONSIDERATIONS

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EV charging ports/compatible plugs differ by EV manufacturer. The primary types are J1772, CCS, NACS (Tesla) and CHAdeMO. While plug adapters can be purchased, you should refer to your vehicle owner's manual before purchasing a charger. Many automotive manufacturers are providing NACS (Tesla charging) adapters to their EV owners who’ve purchased vehicles with CCS technology. Most of these manufacturers will transition their charging format to NACS, beginning in 2025.

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Some chargers are Wi-Fi enabled, most of these come with a downloadable phone app that allows you to conveniently program and remotely control your charging to take advantage of off-peak cost savings.

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Level Two (240v) chargers must be professionally installed. The age of your home, your electrical panel capacity (and where it is located), can affect the final cost of putting an electric vehicle charger in your home. The cost of parts and labor can vary widely, typically ranging from $1,200 to $2,500. It’s best to get a few quotes from certified electricians. Some states also require homeowners to get a permit, which can add to the cost.

Chargers by Type

There are three major categories of chargers, based on the amount of power the charger can provide.

 

Electric Vehicle Connector Types


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Common Questions

 

Do I need a Level 2 (240 V) charger?

Level 2 chargers use higher voltage and amperage, thereby supplying power faster. Level 2 chargers typically charge an EV four to five times faster than a Level 1 cable, but they generally cost between $500 and $1,000 and require wiring to a 240 V circuit.

 

Most vehicles don’t need to be fully charged each night. In fact, while a full charge is needed for long trips, it's best for the life of your EV's battery to keep your charge level between 20%-80%.

What Level 2 charger amperage do I need?

Charging speed isn’t entirely dependent on the amperage of the charger. Electric vehicle batteries have maximum charging amperage limits. Many older BEVs and PHEVs can only accept a maximum of 32 amps while charging on a Level 2 charger. While plugging into a higher-amperage charger won’t harm your vehicle, it simply won’t charge any faster. When you make the decision to buy a L2 charger, make sure you aren't buying more amps than you need! Look in your vehicle’s manual to determine its maximum charging amperage.

Can your home or business’ electrical panel support Level 2 chargers?

Your home or business might require an electrical service panel upgrade to support a Level 2 charger. Most homes built before the ‘80s have electrical panels of 100 amps (or less). Many new homes have 300-amp or 400-amp service, using two panels. Generally, a 200-amp panel is required to support Level 2 EV charger. To determine your amperage, on the inside of the service panel door a label should indicate the total amperage supported. Open your panel and look inside of the door. There should be a label that indicates the total amperage the panel supports.

 

An electrician will include an “amperage cushion” when calculating your panel’s capacity (generally 125% of the charger amperage) to comply with building codes. Even if you have a 200-amp panel, you still might need a panel upgrade:

  • 30-amp charger: Requires a 40-amp circuit
  • 40-amp charger: Requires 50-amp circuit
  • 50-amp charger: Requires a 70-amp circuit

Finally, even if your panel can support the amperage requirements of a Level 2 home charger, you must also have sufficient circuit breaker space. While breakers can be “piggy-backed”, with a tandem breaker installed in the space of one circuit breaker, the general rule of thumb is that there should be two available circuit breakers for a Level 2 EV charger.

How do I know when to charge?

Most Level 2 chargers use about 7.2 kW of electricity. For comparison, the average electric water heater uses 4.5 kW, and a typical electric furnace uses around 100 kW. The average EV driver in the U.S. uses 408 kWh to charge their car at home each month (assuming 38.4 average daily miles). EV charging will increase your electric bill, but you can minimize that increase by charging at the right time. Many utilities have time-of-use (TOU) electric rate plans that offer a significantly lower off-peak rate at night. And don’t forget that while your electric bill may go up, you’re still saving money since you’re no longer paying for gas.

 

Another good reason to charge overnight is to avoid adding stress to the electrical grid. While vehicle electrification is good for the environment, charging at peak times can strain the grid. Avoid charging in the afternoon and early evening, when electric demand is at its peak.

How do I use a DC Fast Charger?

Public DC fast chargers (DCFCs) are great for long-distance trips. In the time it takes to grab a bite to eat or check out a local attraction, you can top off your vehicle’s charge and be ready to get back on the road. Charging at public DCFCs is typically more expensive than charging at home, and it’s better for your EV’s battery to avoid using DCFCs exclusively. But occasional DCFC use can be convenient and easy, and more and more of these chargers are being built across the nation’s travel corridors.

Do I need a charging app?

Yes, you will need a charging app. Apps can be in your watch, car or on your cell phone. There are many EV charging apps in your app store each offering different services and even discounts.

 

Most EV manufacturers offer apps specific to the vehicle model or their fleet of manufactured vehicles. You don’t want to miss out on their Wi-Fi capability, which can pair with a smartphone app to conveniently program and remotely control your charging, allowing you to take advantage of off-peak cost savings and participate in managed charging programs.

 

Apps help you navigate to public charging stations, give you location rates, types of chargers- Level 2 or Level 3 DCFC, travel tips, local amenities and photos and reviews and keep a record of your charging history.

To Pay at public chargers you can use a credit or debit card, Apple Pay, Google Pay, PayPal or add a card to your cell phone’s app profile to pay for the electricity loaded into your EV. Some EV Charger companies offer cards to swipe at their locations when traveling.

 

Pricing for charging is available in the app or on the charger screen. Rates vary depending on location, your plan, the maximum power your vehicle can take and per minute locations.

 

Some chargers have Wi-Fi capability, which can pair with a smartphone app to conveniently program and remotely control your charging, allowing you to take advantage of off-peak cost savings and participate in managed charging programs.

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Find A Charging Station

Use our interactive map to find chargers in Delaware and across the US.

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