When you go car shopping and pick from gas-powered vehicles, you likely pay attention to the estimated miles per gallon listed for fuel economy on the sticker in the window. Electric cars, on the other hand, are a little harder to figure out.
There are many preconceived notions suggesting electric vehicles cost more than vehicles with internal combustion engines (ICE). It’s true that the sticker cost for electric cars at the time of purchase will be higher, however, the math suggests electric vehicles become the cheaper option over time. So, how much does it cost to charge an electric car? The answer varies, based on your utility provider, the region you live in, time of year, and what time of day you plan to charge your vehicle. There is some basic math and information you can use that indicates roughly what you pay, and the final figure will show it’s cheaper to drive an electric car than a fuel-powered vehicle.
The Cost of Installing a Charging Station at Home
There are two significant charges you will incur if you plan to install a home EV charging station: the cost of the equipment and whether you need to hire an electrician for the job.
EvoCharge offers Level 2 chargers that are secure, cost-effective and easy to install at home. The EVSE and iEVSE Home Smart chargers both charge up to 8x faster than Level 1 chargers, with a full vehicle charge from nearly empty taking between three and eight hours. To find out the specific time it will take EvoCharge EVSE units to charge your vehicle, we have an EV Charging Time tool.
The EVSE is a simple-to-use, plug-and-charge solution. All it needs to run is a 240v NEMA 6-50 outlet commonly found in your home’s garage. The iEVSE Home Smart, which also requires a 240v NEMA 6-50 outlet, connects to home Wi-Fi and is controlled by the EvoCharge mobile app.
While 240v NEMA 6-50 outlets are common in newer homes, your home may not have one. If that’s the case, or you want to upgrade your electrical panel to accommodate more volts used at once time, you will want to hire a certified electrician. The cost for an electrician can vary based on your specific needs, but having a certified installer will ensure safe installation and peace of mind.
How Much Does it Cost to Charge an Electric Car?
In addition to the cost of installing a charging station at home, there’s the electricity required to charge your vehicle. AAA, a not-for-profit organization with more than 60 million members, completed a study in 2021 that included a cost comparison between charging an electric car versus fueling a gas-powered vehicle. If an electric car owner drives 15,000 miles per year, it costs an average of $546 to power up. For those driving fuel-powered vehicles the same distance, it would cost $1,255 — a 130% increase. Naturally, electric rates vary and fuel prices are constantly in flux, so the math shifts, but the cost difference is insurmountable.
According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), based on numbers from 2021, the majority of electric vehicles travel 3 to 4 miles per kilowatt-hour of energy. To determine how much it costs to charge an electric car, multiply your vehicle’s kWh/100 miles figure by the rate you pay for electricity or cost per kWh. If you pay different rates (based on time of day, for example) pick the rate for when you are most likely to charge. Based on data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration, the average in the United States is roughly 14 cents per kWh, so an investment of 42 cents should get you roughly nine to 12 miles down the road.
There will also be times you need to charge your EV in public. Whether driving a long distance or if you want to top off while running errands, public charging is a convenient option to take advantage of. Many places, including malls, office complexes and local government centers, offer EV charging stations as an amenity. Do you drive to an office and have EV chargers? That can save you from using as much electricity at home.
Convenient, cost-effective home charging with EvoCharge
Overall, the cost varies, both for purchasing a home car charging station and the price of electricity but, when compared to fuel-powered vehicles, it’s clear there’s savings to be had by driving an EV. Contact us or explore our FAQs to learn more about EvoCharge and the Level 2 charging stations we offer. With our home EV chargers, you can enjoy safe, dependable charging while saving money and reducing dependence on fossil fuels.