Do Universal Car Charging Stations Exist?

A man leans against his car, looking at his phone as his electric vehicle charges outside.

The U.S. Department of Energy estimates that about 80% of electric car charging happens at home. Knowing there is such a reliance on residential charging, it’s critical for electric vehicle (EV) manufacturers and charger providers to market convenient home charging solutions their customers can rely on and not be confused by. Put simply, three key pieces of Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) hardware are required to make an electric car charging station work: a connector, a charging cable and a plug. 

To provide universal electric car charging stations, a standard connector, chosen by SAE International, is widespread throughout North America — the J1772.

Who uses J1772?

Commonly known as a J plug, the J1772 is actually a connector that is SAE International’s standard for EV chargers in North America. As a result, the J1772 is the most common connector for Level 1 and 2 electric car chargers in the United States and Canada. SAE International is renowned for setting standards for engineering professionals across the transportation, aerospace, and other industries. All electric cars in the U.S. and Canada can be charged using the J1772 — including Tesla. The majority of Tesla vehicles come with the auto manufacturer’s proprietary Supercharger connector, making it so Tesla drivers use an included adapter to connect to the J1772 connector instead.

Using the J1772 dates to 2001 in California, when the connector was chosen to help set the standard for EV charging throughout The Golden State. Due to its success in California, the connector later became become the standard in the U.S. and Canada

EvoCharge’s EVSE and iEVSE Home Smart EV Charger Level 2 charging stations include a J1772 connector with a NEMA 6-50 plug — a 240v plug that consists of three wires — and a charging cable. With charging speeds up to 8x faster than Level 1 systems, the EVSE and iEVSE Home chargers make it simple for EV owners to rely on convenient home charging. The EVSE is a plug-and-charge solution that is easy to use. The iEVSE Home, a Wi-Fi enabled system, can be operated with the EvoCharge app.

Government Policy’s Effect on Public Charging Stations

While roughly 80% of electric car charging happens at home, the other 20% comes down to charging on the go. There was no federal standard for providing universal car charging stations publicly in the United States until 2022, when President Biden’s administration proposed a plan in June to establish minimum standards as part of its initiative to fund and build a network of half a million electric car charging stations by 2030. In comparison, according to the U.S. Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels Data Center, there are about 53,000 total public charging stations with 138,000 EVSE ports spread across the country. Most of the new stations being funded by the federal government will provide Level 2 charging.

The Biden administration’s proposal is part of bipartisan legislation passed by Congress with $50 trillion meant to help curb the effects of climate change, with a lot of that money earmarked for making public electric car charging stations. The new standards set by the White House will require a unified charging network with similar payment systems, charging speeds and pricing information that is available to track in real time. These standards and the large increase in public charging stations are meant to add convenience for drivers, encouraging Americans to switch from internal combustion engine (ICE) vehicles to electric alternatives.

EvoCharge Universal Electric Car Charging Stations

No matter which electric car you drive or how much you charge your EV at home, rest easy knowing the J1772 connector comes standard. If you would like to know more about the EvoCharge EVSE or iEVSE chargers, view product information, contact us or visit our FAQ. For additional articles, resources and white papers to explore EV charging solutions, visit our Knowledge Center.

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