Electric Vehicle Charging Station – Among the many efforts underway to stem the coming wave of climate-related disasters is the increasing use of electric vehicles (EVs). While gas-powered vehicles are still the overwhelming majority of vehicles on the road, EV technology is improving rapidly and consumers are taking them seriously as an alternative to older, more polluting options. However, as more drivers switch to electric vehicles, multi-family homes and associations with parking facilities must accommodate these drivers’ needs for electric vehicle charging stations (EVCS) to accommodate these vehicles. In fact, EV charging stations are quickly becoming a much-demanded amenity, if not an outright necessity. “There’s not a topic in every building that’s more debated than electric charging stations,” says Marty Moran, vice president at The Building Group, a management company based in
Perhaps the most immediate question when it comes to EV charging relates to existing versus building or under construction properties. According to Matt Resnick, director of project management for AKAM Management, with offices in New York and Florida, “New buildings should definitely consider offering this as an amenity—the best time to plan and install electric vehicle charging stations is during initial construction.”
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Electric Vehicle Charging Station
As for existing buildings, “There are a number of factors that we take into account when a building informs us of its interest in EVCS,” says Resnick. “First, we take into account how many parking spaces there are now, the ownership or rental model of the garage, and whether there is available and sufficient power on site to operate the charging ports.”
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If the garage is leased to an operator, Resnick says, “The third-party vendor may be willing to administer user fees, with a potential share of revenue going to the association. They may accept all major credit cards or have their own special debit cards that users don’t reload if it is necessary.
“In our experience, the costs can be borne by individual owners, associations or shared,” says Moran. The cost of ‘refuelling’ can be charged directly to the user, or in some cases can be charged via the association on monthly expenses. “In a case where users pay an external provider, the association gets a percentage of the profit.”
The decisive factor in the supply of charging stations in existing garage facilities is the demand from the residents. How many people need it? According to Resnick, AKAM manages more than 300 properties where the purchase of electric cars is increasing. In turn, more garages and properties are considering adding this as a feature, and many have already started to do so. In terms of demand, despite the coronavirus pandemic, electric car purchases increased by more than 30% in 2020. Research firm Blastpoint expects a 71% increase for 2021, despite significantly less car use with people working from home and limiting travel. Blastpoint’s report speculates that shorter driving times increased the appeal of electric vehicles, which have more limited range than hybrid or traditional motor vehicles.
As more people buy electric cars, pressure is put on buildings to provide the infrastructure to support the change. “For most boards,” says Resnick, “the question is where to put the units. Based on the current incentives, we recommend that our customers install EV chargers based on future expected demand, rather than current demand.
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Level 2 is the type most often installed in condominium garages and public spaces. They load faster than level 1, but are not as fast as
Level 3, which is direct current and what you might see on a Tesla charging station or similarly sized charging facility.
Fred Silver, vice president of CalStart, an EV industry nonprofit, has made significant contributions to the development of electric vehicles, consulting with charging station providers nationally and around the world, and explains that the installation of EVCS in private single-family homes is a relatively simple undertaking: “The units are easily installed in existing garage spaces or outside the individual property. This makes the choice of EVs and associated charging stations an easy choice for HOAs composed of single-family homes. In communities that have parking facilities – especially if parking spaces are not allocated to specific owners – or in buildings with indoor garages, the logistics become more complicated.”
“The main issue is the cost of bringing the electrical service to that specific location,” Silver continues. “It generally involves cutting concrete, which can be quite expensive. The further the parking lot is from the power source, the more it costs.” Cutting concrete and laying pipes where electrical wires run to the charger near a particular parking lot can run into the thousands of dollars. According to Silver, it can be as much as $15,000 per charger.
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The logistics of how to account for the electricity used by EVCSs also remain a challenge. If the building decides to absorb the cost, the stations can be billed on a per-use basis – the same way a third-party vendor would handle it. Another option is for users to sign up and pay a fixed monthly rate. Some months the user may come out ahead in a fixed fee arrangement, but the expectation is that it will balance out over time. A fixed rate scheme is best if the stations are not accessible to all but building residents. It is also important to remember that adding stations to the parking garage may require rearranging parking spaces in the garage. Either way, there may be a small revenue opportunity for a building that installs EVCSs.
Production of electric cars will only increase as people look for cleaner, more fuel-efficient vehicles. Even if your building does not have a parking facility, your board may be able to work with the owners of the facility you use to provide that benefit to your residents. Smartboards is looking at the future of electric cars and plans to take advantage of the much sought after charging station facility.
Green options to get the most out of your roof From a coat of paint to a Community Garden EV charging comes in three levels. Level 1 uses 120 volts of power and takes all day (and night) for an electric car. Level 2 uses 240 volts and charges an electric car in a few hours. Level 3 (DC Fast Charging, Tesla Supercharging) gets the job done in less than an hour at public charging stations.
We have been burning our cars with gasoline for over a hundred years. There are a few variants to choose from: regular, mid-grade or premium petrol or diesel. However, the refueling process is relatively simple, everyone understands how it is done, and it is completed in about five minutes.
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But with electric vehicles, refueling — the charging process — isn’t as simple or as quick. There are a number of reasons for this, such as the fact that each electric vehicle can accept different amounts of power. Different types of plugs are also used, but most importantly, there are different levels of EV charging that determine how long it takes to charge an EV.
Charging levels and charging times apply to electric cars and plug-in hybrids, but not to traditional hybrids. Hybrids are charged by regeneration or by the engine, not by an external charger.
There are three levels of EV charging; Level 1, Level 2 and Level 3. Level 3 is divided into DC Fast Charge and (Tesla) Supercharge. The higher the charge level, the faster the charging process will be as more power is delivered to the vehicle. It is important to note that different EVs charge at different rates at each level because each EV can accept different power levels from the EVSE, industry-known electric vehicle delivery equipment, charger.
When an electric vehicle is connected, there is a communication process before the charger is turned on. Basically, the car asks the charger how much power it can supply, and then the car shouts out the maximum power the station can supply, and the car can accept.
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The car always decides how much power it receives, so there is no need to worry about connecting a charging station that can supply more power than your electric car can handle. The car
Level 1 charging uses a regular 120-volt outlet. Any electric vehicle or plug-in hybrid can be charged at level 1 by connecting the charging equipment to a regular socket. Level 1 is the slowest way to charge an electric car. It adds between 3 and 5 kilometers per hour.
Level 1 charging works well for plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs) because they have smaller batteries, currently less than 25 kWh. Because EVs have much larger batteries, Level 1 charging is too slow for most everyday charging unless cycling is required to drive very far on a daily basis. Most BEV owners find that Level 2 charging is a better fit for their daily charging needs.
Level 2 charging is the most used level for daily charging of electric cars. Level 2 charging equipment can be installed in the home, workplace as well as in public places such as shopping areas, train stations and other destinations. Level 2 charge can be refilled between 12
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