Find out how and where to charge an electric vehicle at home, at work, on road trips and around town.
EV Charging 101
One of the great things about an electric vehicle (EV) is that fueling up is as easy as plugging in. Though the vast majority of charging takes place at home, there are over 2,000 public places to charge an electric vehicle in B.C., including well over 100 fast-charging stations.
There are four simple but important things you need to do before using public charging stations.
- Know which plug types you can use. This is really easy. See the descriptions below.
- Use an app/website to find public charging stations: for example, PlugShare, or BC Hydro EV.
- Sign up for a service network account. This will let you activate charging stations using a smartphone app or an RFID card.
- Know about charging station etiquette.
Know your plugs
Charging stations have a few types of plugs depending on the manufacturer and power level they are supplying. You’ll need to know what type of port you have, and therefore which connections can plug into your vehicle.
While that may sound complicated, charging is actually quite easy. Essentially, charging stations are either made by Telsa for Tesla vehicles, or are public stations with multiple connections to accommodate everyone else. Tesla vehicles can use public stations too, so long as they have the proper adapters.
These ports give EVs access to 3 different levels of charging which are known in the industry as level 1, level 2 and Level 3, or Direct Current Fast Charging (DCFC).