Post

Getting to Grips with Electric Vehicles and Charging

8th Dec 2020

Getting Started

If you are a new entrant to the emerging world of electric vehicles, it is understandable if you are finding things slightly perplexing.

Most people understand that it is a good thing to do, and it looks like that is the route of travel – especially in light of the Government’s recent announcement heralding the end of the sale of new petrol and diesel cars by 2030. More information can be found by clicking on the below:

https://www.gov.uk/government/news/government-takes-historic-step-towards-net-zero-with-end-of-sale-of-new-petrol-and-diesel-cars-by-2030

But don’t worry, because we at Aspecte are here to help you demystify the whole process. It seems like there is a mountain of information, some of it conflicting, from different manufacturers of both the vehicles and their subsequent chargers.

We will give you advice about the best way to progress and what will work for you in your situation. Aspect Group Services Ltd has been around for over 4 decades and we are relishing the next decade and the changes in EV and renewable energy that are on the horizon. We have worked hard to have a good range of options for you and we are here to help guide you along on this journey.

Types

In terms of EV’s, there are three main groups – which fall into one of the following areas; slow, fast and rapid chargers, with different connectors and rates of power. Getting to grips with these will be fundamental to you the new electric vehicle owner.

All three of the categories of charging will top up your electric or plug-in hybrid electric vehicle (PHEV) with power – it’s just the way they do it that is different. A lot of that difference is the time it takes to recharge your vehicle.

How do the chargers actually work?

Electric car batteries must be charged using direct current (DC). So, if for example, you are using a home socket (3 pin plug) to charge your vehicle it will be drawing alternating current (AC). Your electric vehicle or PHEV has an in built convertor which changes the AC to DC to allow the battery to take the charge required.

How effective the vehicles convertor capacity is to change AC into DC will be a qualifying contributing factor in what the charging speed of your vehicle will be. These are things that we at Aspecte can help you with.

All fast chargers which are between 7kW (kilowatt) and 22kW and will draw an AC current from the grid (or if you are interested in hearing about our Solar / PV options maybe from your own renewable energy source!) and then rely purely on the cars convertor to turn it into DC. In very general terms a fast AC charger can charge a small electric vehicle in roughly 3 hours (to 80% of the battery capacity).

To help overcome the potential bumps in the road created by the conversion of AC to DC charging service providers have built and installed rapid chargers. There are a couple of variations on rapid charging.

Firstly, rapid AC uses more power than normal at the level of 43kW, however sticks to the same method – AC is converted into DC by the vehicles convertor.

Secondly, rapid DC these chargers deliver DC current straight to the car – not having to engage the cars converter allowing the vehicle to charge at higher rates of power. Unsurprisingly rapid DC chargers tend to come out on the more costly side of things, but they are enjoying an increase in popularity – a count was completed in May 2020 and there were 2,100 rapid charging locations across the UK.

Options

While we are going through charging options it is worth giving a ‘nod’ to Tesla’s supercharger network… it is pretty cool it’s a DC rapid charging network which works at an eye-watering 120kW

Below is a rough breakdown of the basic charging speeds available:

Slow ACFast ACRapid ACRapid DCTesla Supercharger
3kW7-22kW43kW50kW+120kW

No matter which charger you hook up to, your car will automatically limit the power it will accept to its maximum capacity – so it won’t harm your vehicle’s battery.

No matter what you need and what support is required we at Aspecte are here to help you.

Please don’t hesitate to get in touch by phone 01953 664 550 or via email enquiries@aspectgroupservices.co.uk

Get a quote for your EV Charging Install for your Home or Business today!



[simple-social-share]