How much does it cost to charge an electric vehicle?

The cost to charge your EV is calculated based on ‘per unit’ of power consumption (i.e. per kilowatt-hour) or cost to fully charge the battery. We will look at both here.

And they are usually with a normal rate and an off-peak rate. So will consider both in calculating cost of charging.

So let’s start with normal rates.

Normal charging rates

Across the United States, the average cost to charge an EV throughout the day with a Level 1/Level 2 home charger is $0.15 per kWh and a Level 2 public charger is $0.2 to $0.25 per kWh. While a Level 3 public charger costs $0.4 to $0.6 per kWh.

Now considering your EV has a 90kWh battery then, at usual rate of electricity the total cost to fully charge the battery (from null to 100%) comes to around,

  • $13 charging with Level 2 home charger,
  • $20 with a Level 2 public charger,
  • $40 with Level 3 public charger.

However, the unit price varies with different regions and it changes with time. Say, at time of writing the unit cost of electricity in Nebraska and Louisiana is among the lowest in USA coming to $0.0937 to $0.0985 per kWh, while charging in Hawaii costs $0.44 per kWh, the highest one.

Off-peak charging rates

Now, remember these are the average costs of charging throughout the day. But if you charge at specific off-peak hours then charging cost can come down to almost 50% to 20% to that of usual cost. i.e. off-peak charging rates come to 50%-80% cheaper than that of the normal rates.

So, the unit price of charging during off-peak hours with a Home charger comes to around $0.03 to $0.075 per kWh, at Level 2 public charger comes to $0.05 to $0.125 per kWh. While at a Level 3 public charger it comes$0.1 to $0.25 per kWh.

Now considering your EV with the same 90kWh battery then at off-peak rate of electricity, the total cost to fully charge the battery (from null to 100%) comes to around,

  • $2.6 to $6.5 charging with Level 2 home charger,
  • $4 to $10 with a Level 2 public charger,
  • $8 to $20 with Level 3 public charger.

Time-based cost of charging at Public charger

However, some public chargers cost based on how long you use a charging stall. Which means based on the time it takes to complete a charing session i.e. per minute or hour basis.

Normally per-hour charging cost for a level 2 public charger ranges from $1 to $5, while for a Level 3 charger ranges from $10 to $30 depending on location and charging network.

Cost of Charging EV at Home charger VS Public charger

Remember, the exact cost of charging with a home charger and a public charger also varies. Normally public charging cost is coming to around 2x to 3x that of home charging.

Because, home charging cost is simply what a utility provider charges you for electricity, but with a public charger it’s different. Those are run as a business and by EV charging networks, so it includes their cost of electricity, operations, and profits which makes it more expensive than home chargers.

And public chargers are more robust and rugged than home chargers because those are going to be used by the myriad public, in all different (maybe in all rough) ways. So those have to be sturdy. So the cost of a public EVSE unit itself is very high. Which again adds up to the cost of using it.

Calculate EV charging cost by Yourself

So the simple formula to calculate the total cost of charging, multiply the kWh consumed in charging your EV by the unit price at that time.

Total Cost of charging = Total kWh consumed * Unit price

Formula to calculate cost of EV charging

You can use this formula to calculate daily, weekly or monthly costs to charge your EV by looking at historical charging stats of your EV.

Certain EVs provide these stats in the vehicle dashboard or in the owner’s account. While there are also some third-party apps providing this feature among others.

Other Charging Costs – Using Public Charger

Apart from this direct cost of charging there are other costs as well that certain public chargers may charge at certain times, like parking fees, Idle fees, Congestion fees and subscription or membership fees.

Parking fees may be time-based or session-based fixed fees.

Idle fees are based on time depending on how long your EV remains in parking after completing the charging session.

Congestion fees are extra costs incurred if you go to charge your EV which is already at a certain State of Charge, mostly 80% and above.

However, these extra costs are totally subject to the individual charging network or station policies. Idle fees and congestion fees are mostly there to make charging accessible to more users when the charging site is busy.

Note: The cost details provided here are based on the rate at the time of writing. As this cost varies regularly, please visit the respective portal of the charging network or electricity utility provider to get accurate cost details for the particular location and time.

So now I hope you have thorough clarity about the cost of charging an electric vehicle.

See you in the next article then!

Steve
Steve

An engineer turned entrepreneur, being a Tech-enthusiast I am passionate about helping people understand and embrace the potential of technology in an insightful manner. At EV Chargers Guide, I help EV owners to navigate the Electric Revolution by providing in-depth guides to overcome their EV charging challenges and helping to make the Best choice selecting Charging Equipment for their EVs.

1 Comment
  1. Actually I got free supercharging with my Tesla.. I normally charge by weekend. Cost free driving with a S3XY car…oh no I got just Y not all. it’s really fascinating and cool.. 😉

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