A common selling point for electric vehicles is that you don’t have to make stops for gas. Your “gas station” is in your garage; all you need to do is plug it in and let it charge overnight.
But assuming you live in a place without a charging point, how practical is it to invest in an electric car? Worry less; you can own an electric vehicle (EV) without having a home charger.
What to know about EV charging
Provided you are keen on your battery charge; you don’t have to install a home EV charging system as it is costly and not a necessity. Additionally, when buying an electric vehicle, check its driving range. If the car is for driving from home to the office, then a driving range of 238 miles should be enough for three days without charging.
Some of the pains experienced by different EV owners don’t apply to Tesla EV. For example, Tesla has Supercharger stations, which means they have higher charging times, and it’s rare to find a queue in a fast-charging station. But that doesn’t mean that you must buy a Tesla car. Investing in an electric vehicle with a high driving range, especially if you don’t have a home charger, could save you the struggle of constant charging. A driving range of above 300 miles is an excellent place to start.
That said, here is how to own an electric vehicle without a home charger.
Have a routine that works for you, then find a charging station
If you usually drive 40 miles in a day and your car range is 240 miles, you will need to charge it after two to three days. Therefore, look for a charging station near you, for example, in a parking lot or the supermarket.
Establishing such a routine helps you to never run out of a charge. Note that some stations may require you to pay a charging fee, which shouldn’t be an issue provided the charging system is reliable and necessary.
Don’t rely on one station
Apart from Tesla users, other EV users must make a point of setting up accounts with more than one major charging station company like Blink, EVgo, and ChargePoint. These companies will help you locate charging stations near you and provide the number of currently used spaces. Having more than one station in mind comes in handy when you get to one station and find the spaces are occupied.
Top off the battery
Assume you’re having a busy week and don’t have time to charge during your routine. Imagine how inconvenienced you’ll be when your battery is depleted at a place with no charging point. Avoid this by ensuring that you plug in your car to charge whenever you’re near a charging station. You might be lucky enough to find a DC fast charger that takes less than 20 minutes for your car to be fully charged while you carry on with your activities.
Charge at your workplace
If you don’t have a home charger, you can always charge the car at your workplace. If your employer has Level 1 or Level 2 charging spots, a full day is enough to charge your EV fully. This would also encourage your employer to become eco-friendly. Plus, most businesses are going green, and you’re likely to find they have installed charging spots throughout the parking lots.
For places where you’re neither an employee nor a customer, find a way to communicate with the owner to allow you to charge your EV. You could even agree on a small fee every time you use their charging station.
Different prices for a charge
At times you might be lucky to find a free public charging spot. However, for the most part, you’ll need to pay to charge. Just like a gas station, the prices vary. Some station owners set the prices, but mostly a kilowatt-hour of electricity is based on the city’s utility rates. Note that prices for Level 3 chargers (DC charging stations) are relatively high, but the car will charge faster.
You don’t have to own a home charger to buy an electric vehicle. However, depending on how often you plan to use the car and if you’re comfortable following a routine, you can decide if it’s worth it using charging points outside your home.