FAQ

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Combo / CSS

This charging standard is developed by American and European car manufacturers and satisfies more users. When using a quick charger, the plug uses both ports. The one part (with three pins) communicates with the car while the other transports the power. Combo / CCS is currently used by the BMW I3, Hyundai Ioniq, Opel Ampera-e, VW e-Golf and VW e-UP.  There are two variants of the CCS. One is based on SAEJ1772 socket interface (equivalent to IEC Type 1 socket) and the other based on IEC Type 2 socket interface. They are called Combo 1 and Combo 2 respectively. The former is more commonly used in EVs from the U.S. while the latter is more so among EVs from European countries. This charging method theoretically can provide 100 kW, but in real life it delivers about 50 kW on public chargers.

CHAdeMO

CHAdeMO is originally a Japanese charging standard, which Peugeot, Citroen and Kia now use on their electric cars. It is used by Citroen C-Zero, Citroen Berlingo, Kia Soul, Nissan Leaf, Nissan e-NV200, Mitsubishi i-Miev, Peugeot Partner and Peugeot iOn. In addition, Tesla can use this standard with the help of a transition, even though the charging is slower than with Tesla’s own Super Charger. CHAdeMO can charge up to 63 kW.

Type 2

Many electric cars are now supplied with the Type 2 cable and plug. It replaces charging from a regular outlet, if you have installed a charging box at home. Type 2 charging is also a common standard in many publicly available charging stations. Many quick-charging stations also have this plug as a supplement to the quick-charging plugs. It can charge up to 43 kW. Tesla, Renault ZOE and  Mercedes-Benz B-Class are among the car models that can use this standard.

Type 1

This is a type of charging that is not common at fast-charging stations. But many electric cars, including the Kia Soul, use type 1 charging in combination with CHAdeMO for fast charging from public outlets, or normal charging from a charging box at home. Type 1 plug can charge up to 19 kW and is not very fast.

Most electric cars come with a cable for charging from the common electrical outlet as standard. This charging method is relatively slow – around 2.3 kW. It is also not intended to provide high current for a long time, and poor contact and dirt can lead to overload.

You can charge your car with a regular household plug from an outlet at home, or at work. This method is quite slowly at around 2.3 kW. If you have a 40-kWh battery, you can easily calculate that it will take around 14 hours to charge the battery to 80 percent. It is important to mention that to charge an electric car involves a high sustained load over time, and charging a car in a regular electrical outlet can be dangerous due to the danger of overload.

You can mount a wall box at home that makes the charging a lot faster and a lot safer, but it is only when you use a fast-charger that things really speeds up. A fast-charger can charge the battery to 80 percent in half an hour.

What confuses most people is that different electric cars, have different charging plugs. We will explain the difference between the most common charging plugs, but this is not a big deal. The car you buy is equipped with one of the standard charging plugs, and most fast-charging stations now have charging plugs to suit everyone.

For long trips you sometimes need fast charging to reach the destination in a reasonable time. You can use fast-charging stations if your car supports this option. fast charging is the electric car’s response to gas stations. Here the battery on a regular electric car can be filled up to 80 percent of its total capacity in half an hour in the summer time (it takes longer when it’s cold outside). The fast-charging stations are delivering from 50 kW up to 350 KW depending on the type of charger and how much your car is dimensioned to handle.

More and more employers offer charging to employees and guests. High quality charging stations, and non normal electric outlets should be installed. It may be wise to think about how the charging system can expand as demand increases, so the investment in facilitating charging is long-term.

In an apartment block you cannot usually just put up a charging station in the shared garage on your own. In most cases, it makes sense to use an advisor who has a good knowledge of electric car charging, to prepare a development plan for building charging stations. It is important that the plan is prepared by someone who has both solid electro-technical knowledge, and good knowledge of electric car charging. The plan must be so comprehensive that it also says something about any future expansion of the electric intake, in connection with the establishment of load management, and administration systems, although this is not relevant at the time.

Charging your car trough a normal outlet with the Mode2 cable that follows the car, is to be considered as an emergency solution, and is only to be used when other chargers for electric cars are not found nearby. Charging an electric car involves a high sustained load over time, and charging in a regular electrical outlet can be dangerous due to the danger of overload.

For charging at home, the safest and best solution is to install your own home charger. Unlike plugging into a wall outlet, the home charger is a much safer solution that also lets you charge with more power. The charging station has a connector that is dimensioned to deliver high power over time, and it has built-in security features that handles all the risks that can occur when charging an electric car or a plug-in hybrid. A charging station is a safe investment that can be used for many years to come, even though the car is being replaced.

Charging your car trough a normal outlet with the Mode2 cable that follows the car, is to be considered as an emergency solution, and is only to be used when other chargers for electric cars are not found nearby. Charging an electric car involves a high sustained load over time, and charging in a regular electrical outlet can be dangerous due to the danger of overload.

There are several possibilities for charging an electric car at home, outside the home, or when traveling. Either AC charging points for slow charging or DC fast charging points.

When buying an electric car, it is usually supplied with charging cable for AC charging, trough a normal electric household outlet. DC fast charging stations are fitted with a charging cable that you connect to your car to charge it. When charging at home, a charging point with a dedicated power circuit should be mounted.



Do you have access to electric power where the car is going to be parked? In that case, make sure that it is a suitable circuit. An old cicuit divided by multiple loads can quickly be overloaded by an electric car. Charging an electric car involves a high sustained load, and charging in a regular electrical outlet is considered an emergency solution.

If you need an extension cord to reach the wall outlet, you simply do not have a suitable solution. Common extension cables are not designed for such load.

The best solution is to mount a dedicated circuit for your charging point in your parking lot. Then you can install a suitable charger here, such as a charging station with a wired cable.

If you set up your own circuit for electric cars, you will also get a proper installation with a type of earth fault protection device suitable for electric cars.

Check that the battery is mentioned in the warranty terms. For example, the battery warranty on early versions of Nissan Leaf only covered defects for five years. They gave no guarantee of capacity, but this should be changed afterwards. However, it is advisable to clarify, especially if it is a used imported car.

If you buy a car through a dealership, make sure you clarify this, and check if they can give you a status report on the battery.

Check the paint, rust and any collision damage. If the car has been previously damaged, ask for documentation of this and the corrections.

Check for rust on all part of the car, not only the parts you can see easily. Check  that all the outside parts are completely. Also check tires for uneven or irregular wear

Test the brakes several times during test-driving, and check that the car does not pull to one of the sides. Check that the car is steady.

Listen for noise from the powertrain. Check that the air conditioner is working. Check that all switches and buttons work.

Important: Rust and uneven wear on brake discs and pads is a common problem on electric cars. This is because the breaks are not used much due to regenerating. You should check this carefully, so you don’t end up paying for a complete set of new brakes on the car.

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