Know Before You Buy
Know Before You Buy
Electric vehicles (EVs) get their power from electricity supplied by the grid, and they use battery energy for all power needs. Below we’ll tell you how EVs work, how they charge, and even where to shop for your new all-electric vehicle.
How EVs work
Using battery technology similar to the battery in your smartphone, but on a much larger scale, EVs convert electricity from the grid into stored energy that is then used to power the electric engine, as well as the rest of the car’s systems, including lights, wipers, air conditioning and entertainment. And EVs have fewer parts than gas-powered cars, meaning fewer things to repair.
How EVs charge
Every new electric vehicle can be recharged from your home’s own standard 120-volt wall outlets, requiring several hours to recharge. For even faster charging, an electrician can help you install a charger in your home that can reduce charging time. And with the NiteFlex rate, you can charge your EV overnight for free!
At charging stations
There are also charging stations that provide fast charging for your EV for a small fee, like gas stations for electric vehicles. You can drive from coast to coast now, and apps like ChargeHub and PlugShare can help you plan your route to find charging stations along the way. Many employers are also providing charging stations at work.
Since making a vehicle purchase decision isn’t an easy task, Cobb EMC created this checklist to help you think through important items to consider if you're planning to go electric. We think you’ll find that an EV can be a great fit for almost any lifestyle.
- Daily driving distance – Think: how many miles do I typically drive each day? Consider commuting miles, errands and any other trips you make daily. About 90 percent of consumers drive 80 miles or less per day. With electric vehicles ranges spanning 100 to 300+ miles on a single charge, an EV can handle the daily demands of most commuters.
- Number of passengers – How many people are in your family? Most electric vehicles on the market are compact cars or sedans with 5-capacity seating. However, there are a few models on the market that can seat seven, with more models being developed. If you have a large family and are concerned about seating capacity, something else you can consider is how often the whole family rides in the same car at the same time. If full family trips aren't a daily occurrence, an EV could still work for you, especially if you have another family car to use for family trips.
- Carrying capacity – How much stuff do you typically carry around with you in your car? Most electric vehicles have standard size trunks, perfect for your weekly grocery run. Some EVs have rear seats that lay down to create extra room for storage. There are some things EVs cannot handle due to their size, like towing a trailer, but these powerful cars can definitely handle that trunk full of baggage on your way to the airport.
- Proximity to charging – Where do you usually park your car? Vehicles spend 75 percent of their time parked at home, 20 percent parked at work or out in the community, and only 5 percent driving from place to place. With all of the idle time that your car spends parked, recharging is easy! Many workplaces now offer free charging to employees, charging infrastructure in the community is expanding daily, and you can charge your EV at home overnight for free with Cobb EMC’s NiteFlex rate.
- Price range – How much would you like to spend on your next car? After federal tax credits and other incentives available, EVs start in the low $20,000 range, competing with many other cars on the market.
Think an electric vehicle will work for you? Take this quiz to find your perfect match.
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