Electric Vehicle FAQs

EV Charging FAQs

To find out how long it takes to charge an EV, click here.
To find out how much it costs to charge an EV, click here.
There are different ways to charge an electric car; for instance, EV drivers could use one of the thousands of public charge points in the UK, install a home charger or use a cable that can be plugged into a domestic three-pin socket at home.
AC power is cheap, quick and more accessible as it comes directly from the grid, so it works as a cost-effective installation solution.
Due to the conversion process, DC power is financially costlier; however, it facilitates a much faster charge to the vehicle. The vehicle battery is directly charged with a corresponding speed directly proportional to the power supplied by the DC charger.
It depends on the battery size vs the power supply, and the vehicles converter input/output capability.

For example:
A Nissan Leaf with a 40kW battery and a built-in power converter of 6.6 kW, using a 7kW AC charger will take just over 6 hours to charge.

The calculation is 40kW / 6.6kW = 6.1hours

EV battery size / charger power = result in hours

To convert this calculation to hours and minutes, it becomes 6 hours and 6 minutes by calculating 0.1 x 60 = 6 minutes. Therefore, the total time is theoretically for 6 hours and 6 minutes. In reality, charge times will vary as there is a taper off on most batteries from around 80% State of Charge (SOC).

Most EV (electric vehicle) drivers would therefore normally only recharge their vehicle on a public network charger while the battery power is between 20% to 80% for convenience.
There are fewer restrictions with any car on the amount of DC power they can take. The majority of fully electric vehicles can take up to 50kW, but only a certain number of vehicles can currently accept more than 50kW. Examples of these include Tesla Model S,3,X, and Y, Jaguar I-Pace and an Audi E-Tron.

For example, an Audi E-Tron requires a CSS connector with DC power. It has a battery capacity of 95kW, and the DC power it can take is 150kW.

95kW / 50kW (if it's a 50kW charger) = 1.9 (1 hour 54 minutes).

95kW / 150kW (if it's a 150kW charger or above) = 0.63 (38 minutes).

These calculations are made on the assumption that the charging rate is continuous. In reality, many factors can affect the speed of charge. State of Charge (SOC) and outside temperature are both good examples. Tapering off will occur at different points throughout the charge but are impossible to predict so we can only put forward the suggestion above assuming perfect charging conditions and optimal results.
EVs use a variety of plugs and connectors so it is important that EV drivers know which one is compatible with their vehicle.

Type 2:
New EVs and plug-in vehicles that are sold in the UK feature type 2 sockets and sometimes include a Type 2 cable. Some home chargers feature a Type 2 connector too.

This is a European rapid charging connector and stands for Combined Charging System. This connector is widely available at public charging stations.

This is a Japanese connector which is also widely supplied at public charging stations. Most stations with CCS also provide CHAdeMO and vice versa.
Many public chargers require an app, but they are all obliged to offer a pay-as-you-go service.

To find the nearest charge point, EV drivers can use charging point platforms such as Zap-Map or PlugShare where they can specify the connector they need. More information about the charge point can be found by clicking on the icon on the map. Charging rates are usually expressed in kW.

Some networks require a subscription account and offer the option of using an RFID or QR code as a method of payment.
Each of our charging connectors is listed on Zap-Map. EV drivers can search for nearby chargers by entering their postcode. More information about each charger can be found by clicking on the icon.

There are other charge point platforms such as PlugShare. These websites can be used to plan journeys in Europe too. Google Maps also have a feature where EV drivers can search and locate charging points.
All fast chargers, rated between 7kW and 22kW, draw AC power, so the inbuilt converter in EVs and PHEVs turn AC to DC. Fast chargers can fully recharge a small EV in three to four hours.
There are two kinds of rapid chargers. Rapid AC chargers can be up to 43kW, whereas Rapid DC chargers provide DC current straight to the car, and DC chargers can have speeds up to 350kW.
Type 2 connectors are the most common for fast chargers, while all rapid AC chargers use a Type 2.

DC rapid charging can be used with certain vehicles and this depends on the vehicles maximum charging capacity, and which connectors it accepts. This information can be found in the vehicles car manual or brochure.
There are EV chargers located across the UK. There are journey planning websites that can be helpful when planning a long journey, for example, zap-map and wattsup are commonly used websites.
EV chargers should not be used to charge anything other than EVs. High power is used by EV chargers; therefore, it is not safe to use any other equipment to charge.
An EV driver should notify the operator as soon as possible. The contact details are usually on the charger, on signage or online. In most cases, network operators can resolve the issue remotely
If an EV driver feels that a driver has been using the charger for an excessive period of time than you should contact the network operator. The contact details can usually be found on the charger, signage or online.
The main difference between an EV and an ICE vehicle is that an electric motor has replaced the engine.

The energy is stored on an onboard battery which is capable of driving for a specific range of miles.

Most EVs have regenerative braking; the car brakes when drivers come off the throttle, and the energy created is converted into electricity which is stored in the battery.
A plug-in hybrid is a cross between a fully electric vehicle and a regular hybrid, as PHEVs have both an ICE (Internal Combustion Engine) and an electric drivetrain.

The battery needs charging through a connector, and the ICE can take over the vehicle when the battery runs out.
This depends on if your vehicle is fully electric or a plug-in hybrid. Driving range for fully electric vehicles varies depending on the manufacturer and model.
EVs tend to be more expensive to buy than the equivalent petrol and diesel cars, however, they are cheaper in the long run, and they have several cash saving benefits.

EVs have less moving parts and fewer items that are likely to wear out over time. When the warranty runs out there will still be parts that need replacing and this is much cheaper than the conventional counterpart vehicles. EVs have no cambelts or oil filters which can be costly to replace.
The main advantage is that electricity is much cheaper than petrol or diesel so the running costs will be far less.

Air quality is improved in city centres as EVs do not have high emissions, and EV drivers do not have to pay VED (Vehicle Excise Duty) tax.

EVs are currently exempt from other taxes such as the London Congestion Charge, T-Charge and the forthcoming Ultra Low Emissions Zone.

In addition, EVs do not produce a lot of noise, which for some motorists makes them more enjoyable to drive.
Fuel, tax and servicing costs are usually cheaper than petrol and diesel cars, however, insurance for EVs is generally more expensive. One of the reasons for this is because their repair costs are higher and because there are not enough technicians trained in the UK to do the work.

Increasingly there are more specialised EV insurance companies starting to operate. The EV specialists recognise the increased number of safety features built into the technologies and often this can result in significantly cheaper policies than their traditional counterparts.
Yes, an electric vehicle can be driven safely in the rain
Vehicles in Category 1 emit less than 50g/km of CO2 and can travel at least 70 miles without producing any CO2. No current PHEVs can travel 70 miles under electric power, therefore they are all EVs.
The Office of Low Emissions Vehicles Electric Vehicle Home Charging scheme can cover 75% of the cost of a wallbox, up to £500, as long as they meet the conditions.
For most providers, it normally takes one week. In most instances, the cost is included in the purchase price.
There are seven different categories that the government has set, and the category the EV falls into depends on how much carbon dioxide (CO2) it produces, and how far it travels without any emissions.

The grant is administered by the Office of Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV). There are many factors other than emissions that OLEV take into consideration when deciding which vehicles are eligible, such as safety features, warranty and top speed.

The Plug-in Car Grant cuts £2,500 off the price of a new EV that costs less than £35,000. Any EV over £35,000 is not eligible for the Plug-in Car Grant.

It is not the owner of the vehicle that has to deal with the process of applying. The dealership that sells the car handles the process. The dealership should make it clear to the customer how much they have saved, by informing the customer what the price was before, and how much it is after.
The governments also give up to £500 towards the cost of installing a home charging wallbox. It has to be an officially proved unit, and the customer must have off-street parking. In addition, the customer must be a registered keeper of an eligible car or have one on order.

Furthermore, with sub/km CO2 emissions, any vehicle that is eligible for the Plug-In-Car grant will also be exempt from the London Congestion Charge.
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