Electric Vehicle Charging - What You Need to Know!

New Car - New Habits

Congratulations on your new electric vehicle! Whether you purchased a Tesla Model 3, or a Mustang Mach-E, or anything in between, you're in for a big lifestyle change compared to your gasoline powered predecessor. Your vehicle represents a choice - to transition to newer technologies, electric charging infrastructure, and a more sustainable future.

While you may have become accustomed to refuelling your vehicle at convenient gas stations along your commute, you now will have access to different "refuelling" methods. This blog post will cover level 1, level 2, and level 3 ev charging.

The Three Charging Types

Level 1 Charging

Level 1 charging. This is charging with a normal outlet for electric vehicles. This is a slow charging method.

This is the type of ev charging new electric vehicle owners will be the most comfortable completing. Every electric vehicle can be charged using the standard home electrical outlets found in your garage or outside your home. Unfortunately, this method of charging is quite slow. In fact, for large electric vehicles with long-range batteries charging using a standard outlet can take more than 24 hours.

For example, an Audi e-tron with an 82 kW battery would require just over 36 hours of continual charging to raise the battery levels from 20% to 80%. Plug in hybrid owners can fully charge within just a few hours using this method due to the small battery size.

This method of charging is acceptable for owners who have short commutes (less than 50km total), or only plan to drive occasionally. For those who require more daily driving range you may need to supplement with office charging, or DC Fast charging options. We will get into these options below!

Level 2 Charging


Level 2 charger for home or commercial use. Evalence logo in middle.

With increased ev adoption, comes more level 2 chargers! This is the most common method for electric vehicle owners as it provides a balance of fast charging speeds, with affordability for home installation. Home installation costs typically range from about $600-$3,500, depending on the complexity of your home electrical system, floor plan, and charging requirements. Level 2 charging stations require "double-pole" breakers, which enables 220v fast charging from 16-48A for most ev owners. This charging can be 10x faster than level 1 charging, and can allow you to charge your vehicle in just a few hours.

Returning to the Audi e-tron example, it would take just five hours to raise the battery level from 20% to 80%. Electric car owners who commute long distances, and don't have access to a charging system at work will typically require level-2 charging at home. One must consider that charging times will vary greatly depending on the amperage supplied to the home charger. 40A seems to be the standard charger speed, however if your home has limited electrical capacity you may be forced to use a lower amperage.

Level 2 charging can be found in businesses too. This it the type of charger you may see in the parking lot of a hotel, workplace, or any other type of establishment seeking to promote longer residency times for guests. This can be paid, or provided free as an amenity. Be sure to check your local charging networks to find chargers near locations you already frequent.

If you're curious about the cost to install level 2 charging in your home, check out our online instant quote!

Level 3 Charging

Level 3 commercial charger icon with evalence logo in the middle

Level 3 charging is also referred to as DC fast charging! These chargers can recharge a car battery in less than 30 minutes. Chargers range from just a few KW or charging, to several hundred KW of charging capacity. You are unlikely to find these types of chargers in your home, as they require considerably large amounts of power and can cost more than $50,000 to install.

Charging at these stations is almost always paid, but is worth if if you need the convenience! Chargers can be found via charging networks like Plugshare, EVgo, or Chargehub. More gas stations in Canada are converting sections of the parking lot to support electric vehicle charging. They can also be found at popular road-side stops, tourist attractions, and via google maps!

Tips for Opportunistic Charging

When Possible, Charge Whenever Possible.

Just like you would charge your phone at night while you sleep, find opportunities to plug your electric vehicle in when your not using it. Even if you can only find a household outlet, this will still provide you with some range to support your next commute!

Free Charging, Is Good Charging

We love a good deal! Look for opportunities to charge your vehicle for free. One of the most common places to charge your vehicle for free is at the office. Many workplaces have electrified stalls for employee use. even a few kilometres of range per hour adds up throughout the day.

Another opportunity for free charging is keeping tabs on new level 3 ev charging stations. Many operators will provide free charging during the first few weeks after opening. This is done to create a buzz about the charger, and get people to test it out. Just make sure you visit before the owner decides to switch to paid charging!

Don't Forget Your Portable Charger

This one goes without saying. It's always good to keep a portable charger in your vehicle for whenever you might need it!

That's All!

That's all for now folks! Thanks for reading our guide on charging for the new electric vehicle owner! For more information check out our learn page!