The cost of charging an electric vehicle

charging an electric vehicle

Electric vehicles are becoming more and more popular due to their environmentally friendly nature and the ability to save money through driving one. One of the key ways that you save money is of course that you don’t need to add expensive fuel to the car, you just need to charge it. So, we want to look into how much electric vehicle charging really costs.

Electric vehicle charging at home

The first cost of charging your electric vehicle that you need to take into account is charging at home, this is often your main point of charging as you can charge your car overnight, leaving you with a fully charged battery in the morning ready for the day ahead. The first thing you need to consider is the cost of installing your home electric vehicle charger. The cost of your electric car charger and installation will of course vary, depending on the company that you are using. The price of BOXT car chargers, with installation, starts at £495. An OLEV (Office for Low Emission Vehicles) grant will also reduce the cost of your car charger at home, sometimes you can get this grant done for you which will bring down the price.

The EVHS is the electric vehicle home charge scheme, and it is designed to offset some of the cost of the installation, this is of course to encourage more people to use electric vehicles as they are so much more beneficial to the environment. You can find out on the official government website which vehicles are eligible for this scheme and if this handy money saver can help you! You can find out a lot more information and get your questions answered about grants with this informative article from EDF Energy.

The actual cost of charging your car each time at home will of course depend on a number of things. The cost will be added to your electricity bill, so your electricity provider and the rate that you pay will of course affect how much it costs. The efficiency of your charger and how much electricity it uses will also be a determining factor, as of course that goes hand in hand with your electric bill. The type of car and how fast it charges/how much charge it needs will also change the cost of charging your vehicle at home. If your battery needs more charge than a different vehicle, then it is likely to cost you more to charge it. You can input your details and get a quote for how much it should cost you to charge your vehicle at home using Zap Maps home charging calculator.

To give an example in numbers, the average domestic electricity rate is 14p per kWh (Kilowatts hour) and a Nissan Leaf has a 40kWh battery.

14 x 40 = 840 which means that on this rate for a Nissan Leaf it would cost you £8.40 to fully charge the battery, which would give you up to 200+ miles range for this vehicle.

Electric vehicle charging at work

Now that we’ve covered electric vehicle charging at home, you may also be wondering where else you would be regularly charging your car – so we are going to dive into electric vehicle charging at your workplace. Electric vehicle charging at work is becoming more common, especially for firms that offer company cars, because electric and hybrid vehicles can be acquired for company car schemes at a much cheaper price, again, as an incentive to use these environmentally-friendly vehicles.

The cost of charging your electric vehicle at work is a very varied subject and will more than likely differ between all organizations. Essentially, the cost of EV charging at work depends completely on how the company wants to do it. You will find that some firms, probably ones that have plenty of funds available, will offer free charging at work, this is another incentive for people to use electric vehicles and also to take part in company car schemes that offer this type of vehicle. If the company that you are employed by offers free electric charging at the workplace then it is a great opportunity to invest in an electric vehicle as it will greatly reduce the running costs, speaking to your firm about what they offer will of course be the way to find out what you can do.

Some workplaces may use a tariff, this could be a time-based tariff, that is in place to encourage the sharing of the charging spots. So for example, you may be able to use the charging point for only a certain amount of days in the week, allowing other people with electric vehicles to get their chance too.

Another commonly known method that companies use is giving free electric charging for a certain amount of time and then introducing a fee to charge your vehicle. This is so that people are more open to using electric vehicles as they know that they will get the free charging at first, but then the fee after a period of time will allow the firm to offset some of the cost. This is more likely to happen at a company that does not have an endless budget for this type of scheme. As previously stated though, speak to your employer and they should outline how they run electric vehicle charging for you to give you all the information that you need.

Electric vehicle charging in public

Depending on how far you are driving your electric car, there may be many situations where you need to top up your charge whilst you are on the road, or you just want to top it up to keep on top of the charge. This is where you need to know about electric vehicle charging in public places.

The great thing about electric vehicles is that they are favored by the government, so it is often that you receive benefits of owning one, one of these benefits is that you are able to charge your vehicle for free in many public places, this is likely due to the people in charge wanting you to drive an electric vehicle. You will often find charging points in supermarkets, that will allow you to charge your vehicle for free for the duration of your stay. You may not be there for a long time so you may not gain plenty of additional miles, but for no cost at all, you might as well plug it in!

However, not all public charging points are free, some of them will charge for use. The price of the points that charge is dependent on a number of things. One of these things will be what type of charger it is, is it fast charging, slow charging, or a rapid charger, which we will talk about further in this article. Some of these charging points will also charge a type of entry fee for using the charging point, which can often be around £3.50. As it is with charging your vehicle at home, the make and model of your car and the battery size also determine the price that you may be charged, along with how much charge you need to add to your battery. You can use the Zap Map public charging calculator if you know the details of the charging point that you want to use.

If you are unsure about whether or not you need to pay for the public charging point that you require to use, look for instructions initially on the point itself. Failing that, or if you are still unsure of how to use it, you should try and find a member of staff at the establishment, or find some contact details for the provider of the charging point.

Rapid charging points

Another method of charging your electric vehicle whilst on the move is a rapid charging point. A rapid charging point can take your battery from 0 to 80% in a matter of half an hour, hence the name “rapid”. This type of charging point is generally found at motorway service stations, but they are also located in different areas. You can find all the rapid charging points with a simple search, or using Zap Maps who we have mentioned previously.

It is unlikely that you will use rapid charging points in your day-to-day life as an electric vehicle owner but it is important to know that they are there and that you can use them in situations when time is against you and you need that fast charging service.

The only downfall here is of course that this type of charging is more expensive than your typical price. This is because it is essentially a premium service that will give you what you need in a short period of time. The cost of a rapid charging point is typically 30p per kWh, which if you remember back to our typical price at home being 14p, is over double the amount. However, when you compare to the price of filling your car with petrol or diesel, it’s very easy to see that you are still saving lots of money on your method of transport, as well as saving the environment!

Benefits of buying an electric vehicle

So now we’ve run through the various costs and prices of running your electric vehicle, here are some extra benefits if you are entering the world of electric driving:

  • Reduced maintenance costs
  • Less air pollution and more eco friendly parts
  • Less noise pollution from the car