Car manufacturers sold almost twice as many electric vehicles in 2014 as they did between 2010 and 2013. We went from 320,000 electric cars on the roads in 2013 to more than 740,000 at the end of 2014. The EV market is currently exploding, and with it the need for electric charging stations.
Public charging stations are popping up everywhere, from Australia to New Jersey. But what about private stations? Most early adopters of electric vehicles were home owners. They had the resources and ability to install private chargers in their garage. Now that the market extends to a larger public, we see more and more EV owners who live in condos or apartment complexes. How can they set up their own charging station?
Providers such as ChargePoint recommend Property Managers to install public chargers in private parking. While this solution can be quick and easy, it is in the long run an expensive and inefficient one. Here’s why.
Public charging stations are not reliable: Let’s take the example of a building with 50 apartments and the same number of parking spaces. The solution offered by public charging providers is to block a few parking spots to install stations on. Property managers then turn these spots into ”community parking for electric vehicles”.
This setup will work well when only a few residents own electric cars. They can share the stations without conflict. But what happens when 10, 20, 30 residents own an electric vehicle? They will have to compete to get a spot, making it stressful and inefficient for everyone.
You may think that the answer to this problem is to add ”community chargers”. But when adding chargers, property managers will face a second, more important problem:
Public charging stations don’t scale: While Level 1 charging stations are enough for hybrid vehicles, electric vehicles usually need Level 2 charging stations. Level 2 chargers use 240 volts and cut the charging time by about one-half compared with 120 volt charging. Level 2 EV chargers require 30-40 amps to operate.
Buildings have a finite amount of power when constructed. Since they weren’t built with EV charging in mind its common for a property to only have 100-150 amps of power available for EV charging.
That’s easy math: A building with 100 amps available will not be able to power more than 3 public chargers. Once available power is used to facilitate more chargers ,the building may have to invest in transformers or bringing in new service to the building Adding new service is prohibitively expensive and requires major building work.
The Solution: Intelligent Charging Stations
EV owners don’t need to charge their car all the time. Some may need to charge it at night, while others only need to charge on the weekends. Yet a traditional charger will block the power it needs to be operational at all times. Whether a car is being charged or not.
The solution is to make charging stations more ”intelligent”. A smart EV charger network can distribute the power between several chargers and manage supply based on usage. Each resident can have their own dedicated charger and receive power when they need it. Property managers can install more chargers without having to upgrade their electric infrastructure immediately.
Where to find Smart EV Charging Stations?
EverCharge is the first provider of smart EV chargers. Our network of charging stations learns from residents’ usage to intelligently distribute power. Using EverCharge, property managers can install up to 12 chargers on just 100 amps. That’s 9 more than what could be done using public chargers. We limit costs while keeping all residents happy.
We now live in a world where sustainable development has become a necessity to slow down climate change. Switching from motor to electric vehicles is one of the most important steps towards this goal. Yet the results of this major change will be tarnished if we are not able to distribute power more efficiently. EverCharge can help make a difference at our humble scale, and we hope you’ll join us.