Electric cars are becoming increasingly popular as people become more environmentally conscious, and the cars become increasingly available. But does owning an electric car save you money in the long run? And what about the cost of charging your car? Will at-home electric car charging raise your electric bill?
Does an Electric Car Raise Your Electric Bill?
Yes, if you charge your EV at home (as most EV owners do), you’ll notice a moderate spike in your monthly home electricity bill. But if the point is spending less on fueling your car, truck, or SUV, then an EV is the right choice. That’s because electric vehicles cost less to fuel per mile than internal combustion (ICE) vehicles.
Here’s the math: If you drive a thousand miles each month (most Americans do, on average) in a plug-in sedan, you can keep over a hundred dollars in your pocket every month (depending on current gas prices)—more if you drive a crossover or truck.
EVs also cost less to maintain. Studies estimate that EV owners pay $4,600 less for maintenance over the life of the car, truck, or SUV. Why? Because EVs have half the components built into a fossil-fuel vehicle. Their simpler motors and drivetrains mean you never need an oil change or need to switch out spark plugs, fuel filters, or timing belts. You never have to fix pricey oil leaks. Even brake pads last longer due to EVs’ regenerative braking feature.
What’s the Average Cost to Charge an Electric Car?
The actual cost to charge your EV at home will depend on the electricity rate in your area, whether you take advantage of off-peak rates, the type of vehicle you’re charging, and how much you drive each month. That being said, the average cost to charge an electric vehicle is $50-100 per month.
Cost shouldn’t be your only consideration when choosing a charging method. For many drivers, convenience is just as valuable. With a Level 2 charger (240V) installed in your garage, you can fully charge most EVs in about three hours. This is three times faster than charging with a Level 1 (120V) plug, where most EV owners need to charge their cars overnight to get a full “tank.”
Charging your EV during off-peak electricity hours is another way to keep your electricity bill as low as possible—it’s like getting the electrons on sale. Does the gas station give you a discount if you buy gas after rush hour? No, they don’t, so why not take advantage of the break your utility offers?
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So, Are Electric Cars Worth It?
Determining the “worth” of owning an electric car can be a very personal decision. However, if you’re on the fence and not sure if an electric car is worth it to you, check out the pros and cons of owning an electric car below. They may help you in your next car purchase choice.
Pros of Electric Cars
As more car manufacturers enter the EV market, technology is evolving quickly due to increased competition and prices are coming down due to economies of scale. We’ve discussed several benefits of EV ownership; here are just a few more pros of driving an electric car:
You’ll no longer be at the mercy of gas stations and fluctuating gas prices.
EVs are more environmentally friendly than combustion engine vehicles. They produce zero tailpipe emissions (they have no tailpipe!), so there will be no exhaust fumes to worry about.
They’re much quieter than gas-fueled cars.
Cons of Electric Cars
Despite the many advantages of EVs, skepticism about plug-in vehicles still lingers for many people. These are the most cited arguments against electric cars:
In some regions, the cost to charge EVs can be high. Charging during off-peak hours is one simple way to mitigate higher-than-typical charging costs.
Recharge time requirements make them less quick to fuel than traditional gas cars. This will continue to improve as battery and charger technology advances.
The cost of replacing an EV battery pack can be staggering, but many EV manufacturers make extended battery warranties standard.
Range anxiety. This will be reduced over time as charging stations are added across the country. Currently, the federal government and the nation’s electric utilities are both planning to add networks of charging stations along the nation’s freeway system.
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Upgrading Your Electrical System
If you have or are thinking of purchasing an electric vehicle and need to upgrade your home’s electrical system with a Level 2 charger, your local Mr. Electric can help. We can check your current system, recommend upgrades, and handle all the installation for faster, more efficient EV charging. To get started, schedule an appointment online or call (844) 866-1367 today.