According to a recent study 97% of short range EV drivers (read: everything but a Tesla) do all of their charging at home or work, where available. So why is there a huge push among non-EV drivers for a larger public network?
Public networks are expensive to build out especially when comes to getting access to power. Depending on the situation a single install can cost upwards of $100K. Even when the right conditions are met many times only a few chargers can be installed before it becomes prohibitively expensive. And yet, despite all of this many still want a public charging network. But why?
The Truth About Public Chargers
The non-EV driving public desperately wants a huge public charging network built out, mostly because that's what they know. Gas stations have been around for longer than most of you reading this piece have been alive. We have grown accustomed to having to drive down to the local station when we need fuel, so we automatically assume this is the right way to go. This, however, is not necessary with an EV.
Public charging companies have done a terrible job of actually educating the market about EVs and how they charge. After all, why should they, when they reap the benefits of this misinformation. In fact, they have done little to actually help the EV market. Typically offering up expensive and wasteful solutions that don't make much sense. Many who have used a public charger know that more than a few of them are in various states of disrepair.
Every single station has been, for years, mediocre to terrible. The stations are often broken due to software or hardware problems, and remain out of service for weeks. Competition among electric car drivers for these public charging stations is fierce and intensifying. It’s practically impossible for me to find an open charging station during the day.
Think of how often you don't actually use the local gas station. Odds are pretty good you consistently use a few that are close to your house. In reality, you're not really using the entire network of gas stations, just one or two. If you drive an EV you can simplify this even more by putting a charging station right in your garage and "fill up" at night. Sounds like a better scenario than hunting around for a free station, especially when you consider the average charge time is 2-4 hours.
Why are we so hell-bent on furthering this public charging nightmare? This terrible existence has a very easy remedy, in-home charging. For most homeowners this is a simple as adding a 240V dryer plug in your garage. At most putting a charging station plug in at your home should only run $1K-$2K, which in all honesty is a small price to pay to avoid the public charging nightmare.
Getting EV Charging isn't Easy For Everyone
Most people in a single-family home with a garage or carport have very little to worry about when it comes to in-home charging, but if you live in a multi-family situation things aren't always so simple. Often times the public charging entities come in with a one charger fits all solution that is hugely expensive and causes more problems than its worth. As detailed numerous times on this blog, multi-family charging is not straightforward, but going with the wrong solution hurts the entire EV industry. Many people we encounter who have had a bad experience are one step away from giving up on EVs altogether.
It's important to remember in a multi-family building that power is a shared and finite resource, and in many situations adding more than one or two chargers simply is not do-able without a massive infrastructure upgrade in the tens of thousands of dollars. However...
This problem is why EverCharge exists in the first place.
We are not the only solution for multi-family housing, like apartments and condos, but we are the only one that can install 10x more chargers for far less money than anyone else. Our chargers allow everyone in a multi-family building to have their own charger, installed in their private space, for their personal use.
97% of EV drivers are already not interested in public charging, so why force multi-family dwellers into this scenario? We believe that owning an EV should be a hassle-free experience, not one wrought with headaches and annoyances. We need to make sure that everyone gets the ultimate experience when owning an EV and a public charging network doesn't cut it.
EverCharge provides hardware and software EV charging solutions for fleets and multi-unit homes. Their turnkey offerings are designed to utilize existing infrastructure to scale EV charging at the lowest cost. EverCharge’s load balancing SmartPower technology maximizes the number of electric vehicles that can charge at any given time and eliminates barriers such as data connectivity. EverCharge was founded in 2013 and is headquartered in Palo Alto. For more information, please visit EverCharge.com.