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Charging an Electric Vehicle

Electric Car ChargingWhile an electric car frees you from visiting the gas pumps on a regular basis it still needs fuel to run. Battery powered electric vehicles all require charging after running, the question is how long does it take to get the car ready to run again?

Most of the electric cars available today take anywhere from 6 to 16 hours (the average being around 8 hours) to go from empty to full charge from a standard 110 volt home outlet. This isn't an issue in most cases since you bring the car home, plug it in at night and you don't need it again until the morning when it is fully charged.

"Fast charging" is the holy grail of electric cars and we often see articles where someone at a college or research & development lab has achieved a blindly quick charge time for a battery and people assume that this is the breakthrough that will allow the charging of an electric car in minutes from a standard outlet.

Articles and discussions like this ignore the physics of electricity and battery charging. This article from Matter Network does an excellent job of explaining why fast charging is more of a myth than a reality in the near term. The way power comes into our homes and even the electric grid as a whole would need a major overhaul to make fast charging reasonable with today's battery technology.

For the time being just plan your mileage and charge times around the approximately 8 hour charge window when considering an electric vehicle purchase.

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