Charging electric cars at home: costs, range & charging time

Charge the electric car at home – the most important things in brief

If you want to charge your electric car at home, you have to consider a few factors. In addition to the range, which i.a. can vary depending on the battery size, driving behavior and outside temperature, the following aspects are also important:

Wallbox: In order to be able to charge their electric car, those interested should have a wallbox installed at home by a specialist. Because charging via a conventional Schuko socket is not recommended. This is not designed for a continuous load of this kind. Costs: The costs for charging can be fixed at the current price for one kWh. This is currently around 32 cents (as of 09/2021) and the battery capacity is also a relevant value that influences the cost of a charge. Charging time: Good charging speeds are around two hours or even less than an hour. For a wallbox at home, charging times of between 3.5 and 6 hours are considered a good average.

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How much does it cost to charge an electric car at home?

In order for an electric car to be charged safely and quickly at home, there are a lot of wallbox costs for electric car owners. So z. B. the installation can be carried out by a specialist, we advise against self-installation due to the necessary handling of high-voltage current. Interested parties can apply for wallbox funding from KfW for the purchase and installation and receive a grant of up to 900 euros (status: 09/2021). Buyers should expect around 1,170 euros if they opt for an eligible wallbox with 11 kW including installation.

In our overview, we have placed the running costs in the foreground that arise from operating an electric car with an already installed wallbox. The cost of charging an electric car at home includes, among other things. depending on the capacity of the built-in battery of the electric vehicle.

As an example, we have chosen the NISSAN LEAF e + model, whose battery has a capacity of 62 kWh. One kWh of electricity costs around 32 cents (as of 09/2021). When these factors are multiplied together, you get the cost of a top-up.

Example calculation: Charging costs for NISSAN LEAF e +

Battery capacity of the electric car (kWh) × electricity price per kilowatt hour (euro / kWh)

62 kWh × 0.32 euros / kWh = 19.84 euros

How long does it take to charge an electric car at home?

How long it takes to charge an electric car also depends on the capacity of the battery and how much charging power is supplied via a wallbox. We continue to refer to the NISSAN LEAF e + model for our example. As an example, we assume the power of two different wallbox variants that can be installed in private areas as the energy supplied. First of all, there is a wallbox that offers up to 11 kW and one that, with 22 kW, charges a little more and is therefore faster.

Example calculation: Continuous charging NISSAN LEAF e +

Battery capacity (kWh) / charging power (kW) = charging time (hours)

62 kWh / 11 kW = 5.6 hours

62 kWh / 22 kW = 2.8 hours

However, the results of the charging time are ideal values ​​that cannot be achieved in reality with the NISSAN LEAF e +. The manufacturer states that the maximum AC charging power is only 6.6 kW. Therefore, in reality, the charging time is more likely to be around 10 hours. In the private sector, however, this is still a good value, as most e-car owners charge their vehicle overnight so that it is ready for use again the following day.

If you want to go faster in everyday life, special public quick charging stations offer up to 80 percent charging within an hour. This peak value is achieved with a charging power of up to 50 kW. However, such power cannot be achieved at home with a wallbox (status: 09/2021). Frequent rapid charging is also harmful to the battery and can reduce the service life of the battery. To avoid overvoltage, a quick charge also switches to normal mode at around 80 percent and charges the remaining capacity at a normal pace.

It should also be noted that some factors can change the charging time:

Charging technology: The charging technology influences whether the electric vehicle can also use the charging power of the wallbox or charging station. In Germany, a type 2 alternating current connection is common. It is suitable for single-phase as well as three-phase AC and DC charging processes. The larger the battery, the longer the charging time, the battery capacity of the vehicle; the fuller the battery, the slower the charging rate. If the charge level of the battery is low, the charging rate is faster than after about 80 percent. Charging losses: About 20 percent can be deducted from the charging time as a charging loss. Charging power, i.e. the added energy via a wallbox. The stronger the power supplied, the faster the charging takes place. There are differences in the charging time via a private wallbox compared to a public fast charging station. Outside temperature, both cold and high heat, slow down the charging process.

How long is the range of an electric car?

The range is a relevant aspect that plays a particularly important role when buying an electric car. Finally, it is important not to have to take a break to recharge after a short distance. For the NISSAN LEAF e + model as an example, the manufacturer specifies the power consumption per kWh / 100 km as 18.5 kWh. This value is offset against the battery capacity in order to determine the range.

Example calculation: Range of the NISSAN LEAF e +

Battery capacity (kWh) / energy consumption (kWh / 100 km) = range (km)

62 kWh / (18.5 kWh / 100 km) = 335 km

However, the maximum range is influenced by factors and in practice may differ from the calculation example. The values ​​can therefore be higher or lower in reality. Factors influencing the range are:

Speed: The range is greater if the vehicle is driven smoothly and quietly without frequent braking or acceleration. If you have to slow down or accelerate more than once, this reduces the range. Depending on the model, there is also an ECO mode to maximize the range and save the battery. Driving conditions: If owners of an electric vehicle have to drive uphill frequently, this leads to higher energy consumption, which results in a shorter range. The advantage: When things go downhill, energy can be recovered. Weather and temperature: As with the charging time, one aspect of the range is the temperature and the weather. Cold as well as heat affect the capacity of the battery and can therefore reduce the range as the battery drains faster. If it is cold, for example, energy is also required from the battery to warm the interior via the built-in heater. When it is hot, battery energy is required to operate the air conditioning.

Cost of electric car charging vs. tank filling for internal combustion engine

Electric cars are currently more expensive to buy than vehicles with internal combustion engines. But are electric cars cheaper to consume and are the costs of charging lower than filling a gasoline tank? In order to check this consideration on the basis of an invoice, we compare the costs that the vehicles cause over a distance of 100 km. In the case of an electric vehicle, the power consumption is specified in kilowatt hours, the vehicle that is powered by gasoline or diesel consumes the tank filling in liters.

Simple calculations for everyday electric property.

Simple calculations for everyday electric property.

(detail view photo / Adobe Stock)

Example calculation: Costs of charging an electric car vs. filling a petrol tank

Electric car consumption: The manufacturer specifies the consumption of the NISSAN LEAF e + per 100 km to be 18.5 kWh. This is a combined value. This means that a trip was made that took place in and out of town and therefore, for example, an orientation at 30 or 50 km / h is taken into account, but also includes acceleration phases outside of a city. Therefore, the combined consumption is a good average. The price for 1 kWh is around 32 cents (as of 09/2021). The consumption per 100 liters must be multiplied by the cost per kWh.

Consumption per 100 km (kWh) × price per kWh (euro) = price per 100 km (euro)

18.5 kWh / 100 km × 0.32 euros = 5.92 euros / 100 km

Owners of a NISSAN Leaf e + pay around six euros for a distance of 100 kilometers.

Consumption gasoline engine: We selected the VW Polo Fresh model as a comparison to the NISSAN LEAF e +. The combined consumption per 100 kilometers is given as 4.7 l / 100 km. In our calculation example, we refuel the VW Polo with Super E10. The price for one liter is 1.56 euros (as of 09/2021).

Consumption per 100 km (liter) x price per liter (euro) = price per km (euro)

4.7 l / 100 km × 1.56 euros = 7.33 euros / 100 km

Driving 100 kilometers with a VW Fresh costs almost 7.50 euros and is therefore more expensive than driving 100 kilometers with a NISSAN Leaf e +. Here the costs are less than six euros.

Conclusion: Our example calculation shows that an electric vehicle has a lower consumption compared to a combustion model.

However, the higher costs for the user compared to a gasoline vehicle are primarily associated with the purchase of the electric car and the charging infrastructure at home. This means that new owners of electric cars – if they don't already have one – first have to get a wallbox. In order to ease this financial hurdle, we not only subsidize the purchase but also the installation of a wallbox. There are also electric car subsidies, so that the purchase of a purely electric car or plug-in hybrids is eligible.

Wallbox including installation

All-round carefree service
Wallbox including installation

Receive an offer for a wallbox that fits your electric car, including a professional installation service, within a few minutes. Uncomplicated, free of charge and without obligation.

Get an offer now!

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