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Charging Explained

EV chargers fall into three categories: rapid, fast, and slow.

With the increasing popularity of electric vehicles, it’s important to understand the different types of chargers available as well as discussing popular places to charge your EV, such as at home and work.

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Rapid EV Chargers

Rapid chargers break down into three more sub-categories:

  • Rapid DC Charger
  • Ultra-rapid DC Charger
  • Tesla Supercharger
Rapid DC Charger

Rapid DC chargers are the most common type of EV charger. They can charge an electric vehicle battery up to 80% in around 30 minutes. These chargers are usually the ones used at service stations. They supply power at 50kW.

Ultra-Rapid DC Charger

Supplying power at over 100kW, ultra-rapid DC chargers are the fastest type of EV charger. Charging times will vary, depending on the battery in your car, but they’re fast! Although not as common as the rapid charger, they are becoming more widespread, appearing in public areas like shopping centres and airports.

Tesla Supercharger

The Tesla Supercharger is a series of charging stations built by Tesla Inc. that can rapidly charge Tesla vehicles. Tesla Superchargers are installed in the United States, Europe, China, and Japan. Drivers receive 400 kWh (~1,000 miles) of credit annually for free by purchasing a new Tesla Model S or X.

Superchargers are designed for long-distance travel and can provide up to 150 kilowatts of power to a vehicle. This can add up to 180 miles of range in as little as 30 minutes. 

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EV Chargers:
Fast & Slow Chargers

Fast Chargers

Most fast chargers are rated at 7 kW or 22 kW (single- or three-phase 32A). The most common fast-charging methods are AC and DC. However, several networks provide 25 kW DC chargers with CCS or CHAdeMO connections. Charging times vary based on the unit’s speed and car model, but a 7 kW charger can refill a 40 kWh battery in 4-6 hours, while a 22 kW charger may do so in 1-2 hours. Fast chargers can be found at places like shopping centres, where you are likely to be parked for more than an hour or two. 

Slow Chargers

Slow chargers for electric automobiles come in various forms and sizes. The most common is the one that plugs into a standard UK three-pin plug at home. They may be used to charge electric cars, vans, trucks, and buses. Although several different types are available, the most popular slow chargers are rated at 3.6 kW (16A).

Charging durations vary depending on the charging unit and the particular car model but are usually around 8+ hours.
Slow chargers are a great option if you can’t access a fast or rapid charger or can charge your electric vehicle overnight. They’re also a good option for businesses that want to provide charging for their employees if they don’t use their cars during the day.

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Where to Charge?


Unsurprisingly, the home is the most popular place for EV owners to recharge. As it works off the domestic electricity rate, it’s the cheapest place to charge, and you can use the slow (standard 3-pin) charging plug.

However, many EV owners install a fast charging unit at home to take advantage of the quicker charging times.


Work is the next most-likely place to charge your EV. As companies provide more and more EVs for their staff, they are also installing chargers in their car parks.

Motorway Services & Petrol Stations

Most motorway service stations and an increasing amount of petrol stations have charging facilities available. These are most suited to the EVs with ultra-rapid charging capability who want a quick top-up.

Leisure/Shopping Facilities

Great places to charge as you’re likely to be parked there for a while, so you can charge up your vehicle as much as you need.

Street Chargers

With local councils investing heavily in public charge points, we expect to see more of these on our high streets and city/town centres.

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Mileage Policy/Reimbursement

Adopting electric vehicles into your business will mean some minor changes to your mileage policy. Your finance team will need to be aware of the Advisory Electricity Rate (AER) set by HMRC every quarter for calculating company car mileage. 

If your employees use their own EVs for company driving, the same rules apply as with petrol or diesel cars. The calculation is based on miles driven, not fuel used, so there’s no difference between petrol, diesel, and electric, as far as HMRC is concerned.

So your employees can still claim 45p per mile up to 10,000 miles and 25p per mile after that.

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