Electric Vehicle Charging Stations

"Choosing The Right evCharger"
Choosing the correct evCharger is important for a successful and efficient deployment.

Benefits | EV Drivers | Host Site | Charging Levels | Sun Country Highway

The Benefits of Hosting an evCharger

Charging Station hosts are typically forward-looking environmentally responsible businesses that want to attract and retain repeat customers. There are many business models supporting the installation of electric vehicle charging infrastructure. The simpliest of which is providing evChargers as an amenity and enticement for attracting more customers to existing businesses. While vehicles are being charged, drivers spend their time shopping, eating, golfing, working-out, etc. Or in the case of hotels, motels and B&Bs, travellers stay and charge overnight. Communities that install evChargers also attract travellers from out-of-town, increasing eco-tourism and stimulating their local economy. The small amount of electricity consumed is recovered from increased revenue to the local businesses and community. Instead of transportation dollars leaving communities in the form of liquid fuel expense and resulting in additional expense from local air pollution and healtcare costs, transportation dollars remain in the communities utilizing local utilities and power distribution, local electrical installation contractors and local evCharger host businesses. Potential hosts would be wise to learn about their EV driving patron's needs in order to provide the most appropriate services that are most required at their location.

Electric Vehicle Drivers

EV Drivers seek out and frequently visit evCharger hosts. These drivers would prefer to drive a little further to patronize a business that offers evCharging over closer busineses that do not. They are also often repeat customers who establish a routine of shopping at stores and malls, eating at restaurants and staying at hotels and B&Bs that support their preferred mode of transportation. Many EV drivers see themselves as pioneers that are blazing the path towards a more sustainable future and they go out of their way to reward those who are doing the same.

Find out more about electric vehicle drivers and how they can add value to business and community while promoting sustainability.

evCharger Host Sites

Even at this early stage, there are already thousands of evCharger hosts making it possible to travel from coast-to-coast in a clean, efficient EV. However, these represent only a tiny fraction of what is needed. There is a tremendous opportunity for a dramatic increase in evCharger deployments to address the serious lack of infrastructure for plug-in vehicles. Especially along well traveled routes, including outside city limits, to enable travel to cottages and national parks and to increase redunancy -- allowing more than one vehicle to charge at a time -- many more evChargers are needed. As more people make the transition from fuel burning vehicles to more efficient EVs and PHEVs, the demand for charging stations will continue to increase.

Common locations for evChargers include hotels, motels, B&Bs, restaurants, shopping malls, stores, theatres, golf clubs, resorts, parking structures, municipal and office buildings, rest stops and RV parks. In fact, any place that a driver might stop for 30 minutes or more could be a good location for an evCharger.

evChargers are posted online on finder maps, trip planners, phone apps and vehicle navigation systems. Some examples include: Sun Country Highway | PlugShare | CAA | Others

Become an evCharger host: 416-788-PHEV (7438)

Levels of EV Charging

Level-1 | Level-2 | Level-3
The following is a description of the various levels of EV charging and some of the scenarios in which each may be appropriate. Keep in mind that the best solution may be some combination of units offering a variety of charging level/rate options.

Level-1 Charging:

Level-1 is the most commonly available method of electric vehicle charging. All that is required is a standard wall socket. All EVs come with a cordset enabling them to recharge from this common source. While this may be the slowest option and in some cases impractical, depending on the scenario, it could also be the most appropriate option for recharging plug-in vehicles. For exapmple, an EV owner may only make relatively short trips and recharge nightly at home. Trickle charging via a wall socket may be all that is needed. It may also potentially be an appropriate solution for predictable at-work charging. For example, workers with assigned parking spaces who spend an extended period of time at the office each day, may be able to replenish their vehicles' charge sufficiently, for the journey home each night. Ideally the business would also consider installing solar panels to offset any increased daytime energy demand. Another scenario where a trickle charge might be sufficient, is long-term parking at an airport, as an example. The charge rate is typically limited to the less than 15A available from a standard 110/120V receptacle.

Level-2 Charging:

Level-2 is a commonly available method of faster electric vehicle charging. In North America it's based on 208/240V AC from 20 to 80A and adhering to the SAE J1772 standard. All electric vehicles available for sale should therefore be compatible with these charging stations. The fastest rate of charge is often determined by the maximum acceptance rate of the vehicle's onboard charging hardware. The vehicle and the evCharger negotiate the fastest applicable charge rate. evChargers delivering 32A or less are typical for home charging. But owners of vehicles with large batteries or who often need a quick turnaround might choose to install much faster, up to 80A units (assuming their vehicles can accept the faster rate). These units vary in size, style and features, including optional usage monitoring and payment systems. Many are designed to be either wall or pedestal mounted. For public charging, the appropriate Level-2 unit should be determined by key factors including the location and typical usage scenario. The answers to a few simple questions could help to make selection of the appropriate evChargers straight forward:

  • What is the duration of the typical visit? - Long: Multiple slower Level-2 units may be sufficient. - Short: Fewer high power Level-2 units may be more appropriate.
  • Is the location near major Highways/Interstates/Motorways? - Yes: More likely to attract travelers, so multiple higher power Level-2 or even one or more Level-3 may be most appropriate.

Level-3 Charging:

Level-3 charging, often referred to as DC Fast (DCFC), DC Quick or DC Rapid Charging, requires the least time for recharging compatible vehicles. DCFC offers the greatest benefit in the first 20-30 minutes of charging a low battery, during which as much as 80% charge can be restored to the vehicle. In North America it can require 400V or more and up to 300A or more. There are 3 different "standards": The SAE J1772 combined charging standard (CCS); The Japanese CHAdeMO standard; The Tesla Supercharger Standard. Each is compatible only with the vehicles that support that standard. For example, Nissan Leafs equipped with the DCFC option can use CHAdeMO stations, BMW i3s with the DCFC option can use CCS stations and Tesla Model Ses that are equipped with supercharging can use Tesla's Superchargers. The fastest rate of charge is negotiated between the vehicle and the station, with the direct current (DC) bypassing the vehicle's onboard charging hardware. DC Fast evChargers can come in dual cable multi-standard configurations to support CCS and CHAdeMO. Tesla Motors may or may not choose to license the use of their proprietary technology to third parties. For public charging, the same questions in the Level-2 section apply, with a few adjustments and additions:

  • What is the duration of the typical visit? - Short: Multiple high power Level-2 units may be sufficient. - Very Short: Fewer Level-3 units may be more appropriate.
  • Is the location near major Highways/Interstates/Motorways? - Yes: More likely to attract travelers, so several high power Level-2 or Level-3 units may be most appropriate.
  • Can the site provide/provision the needed amount of back-end power to supply Level-3 charging?
  • Based on usage patterns, would a larger number of high power Level-2 evChargers be more appropriate than a smaller number of Level-3 units? For example:
    • will drivers typically arrive with a low charge -- maximizing the effectiveness of high speed Level-3 charging, and
    • will drivers typically remain within proximity of vehicles while charging -- allowing them to immediately free up the unit once a sufficent charge is achieved?

Plug-in Electric Vehicle evChargers

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