Electric vehicles are becoming more popular in Canada. In British Columbia, driving with electricity can be up to 70-80% cheaper than driving with gasoline.
Electric vehicles also offer many benefits to society, including decreased gasoline use, less air pollution, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions.
Electric vehicles offer a smooth and quiet ride. Visit www.emotivebc.ca to learn more about the electric vehicle experience.
There are three different types of electric vehicles in B.C., two of which plug in. This website refers to “electric vehicles” as any car or truck that is capable of obtaining electricity from an external plug outlet. Some electric vehicles use only electricity, while others can use both electricity and gasoline. The three types of electric vehicles are:
Battery electric vehicles run solely on electricity. They are charged by plugging into an electrical outlet or electric vehicle charger. These vehicles use zero gasoline, and have no emissions or tailpipe. Depending on the make and model, a fully charged electric vehicle can travel anywhere from 150 to 600+ kilometers before recharging.
Plug-in hybrid electric vehicles have both an electric drivetrain and an internal combustion engine drivetrain. A plug-in hybrid electric vehicle can run on electricity only, gasoline only, or a combination of the two. They can be charged with electricity by plugging into an electric outlet charger and they can be fueled with gasoline at the pump. Depending on the make and model, a plug-in electric hybrid vehicle with a full battery can travel for the first 20 to 80 kilometers on electricity and then run on a full tank of gasoline for 500 to 900+ kilometers.
Fuel cell electric vehicles have an electric motor and battery, but instead of plugging in, the battery is charged by converting hydrogen to electricity on-board. They are refuelled at public hydrogen stations, similar to pumping gas.
There are a number of resources that provide lists of makes and models available in Canada and these lists continue to evolve. Some sources of information about EVs include:
Electric vehicles can be charged at a variety of locations such as public chargers located throughout the province, but most electric vehicle charging is done at home.
Like a cell phone, you plug in your electric vehicle when you want to charge it. While there are well over 2,000 public charging stations in B.C., most electric vehicle owners prefer to charge at home overnight because it is easy, convenient, and usually the cheapest option.
It is possible to charge an electric vehicle in an apartment and townhouse. In fact, there are several options for charging. When determining what type of charging you require you will have to consider several factors: the type of charger you will require, if your strata has an EV charging policy in place, current electrical capacity, what kind of access is necessary to the chargers, location to install the charger, and how much you’re willing to spend.
There are two main ways to charge at home:
An electric vehicle can be plugged into a standard outlet using the cordset charger that comes with the purchase of the electric vehicle. Level 1 chargers should be plugged into a normal three-pronged outlet that has a dedicated electrical connection or circuit that is used only for charging and is not shared with other devices. Level 1 charging is relatively slow and is often referred to as trickle charging. For most vehicles you will gain 8-10km of range per hour of charging. A Level 1 charger can satisfy a variety of driving needs and is best suited for those who plan to charge every night, or park their car for long periods.
Level 2 charging stations are very common in public places but can also be installed for home use. These stations are more powerful than Level 1, and can give 20-40km of range per hour of charging. The charging equipment, also known as EVSE (electric vehicle supply equipment), can come as both a hardwired unit as well as plug in. Plug in units can be either a traditional wall unit or, a cordset and will require a 240V outlet similar to a dryer or oven. These stations are most useful for shared charging situations or drivers who frequently travel long distances. Level 2 charging is typically more expensive to install than Level 1 charging.
There are many different types of Level 2 chargers on the market that vary by size, charging speed, sophistication, and portability.
The main types of Level 2 chargers are:
Networked chargers and third party load management services can be used to share a power supply between multiple chargers. This can help provide more charging opportunities for residents without having to increase the building’s electrical capacity. For a 40 Amp circuit being shared between four chargers, this may mean when all chargers are occupied 10 Amps of current is being provided to each unit, or it may alternate the full power between the units until the vehicles are fully charged or unplugged. Most drivers would not notice the reduction of the charging speeds if they are primarily being used overnight.
Level 3 charging is also known as DC fast charging (DFCF), and can charge most EVs from 10% to 80% in under an hour. These types of chargers are found in public settings, often along highway routes and in busy locations. Charging times will vary depending on the battery size and its level of charge. Due to the fast nature of Level 3 chargers, they are ideal for road trips, or for EV owners who do not have access to charging at home.
Growing sales of EVs means there is more demand for places to charge. It is most convenient and cost effective to charge at home overnight, which means that strata councils will increasingly face requests for EV charging in parking stalls.
Getting ahead of the curve by installing EV charging now can benefit your strata by:
In BC where most of our electricity comes from hydroelectricity and is 96% clean, switching to an electric vehicle can have significant environmental benefits. Thanks to this low emissions power source, an EV in BC will produce 85-90% fewer emissions over its lifetime versus a gas vehicle. The lack of tailpipe emissions from EVs results in improved localized air quality and public health.
EVs are ultra-efficient at converting energy into motion, converting about 90% of the energy they take in, while traditional gas vehicles are only around 35% efficient.
You can learn more about the environmental benefits of EVs at the following sites:
Please note that the information on this website is intended only to be used as a starting point and is not a substitute for getting legal or other professional advice. For more details, refer to our
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