Every now and then, Mother Nature reminds us of how cold it can get in Colorado. For the Denver area, the weekend of January 13-15 saw below-zero temperatures for over 33 consecutive hours. That same weekend, Chicago saw double-digits below zero and electric vehicle (EV) owners learned how much their cars hated the cold.
Lines grew at Tesla charging stations around the city as drivers pulled up only to discover that the fast-charging stations were crippled by the cold, causing several owners to hitch a ride home and wait to charge their cars until the weather warmed up. At least one Chicagoan hired a tow truck to find a charging station when his Tesla was DOA when he landed at the city’s O’Hare airport.
An EV Reality Check
People are learning—sometimes the hard way—that batteries don’t like being cold.
Batteries rely on chemical reactions to generate electricity and the colder they are, the weaker that reaction becomes. Plus, cold weather can impact the ability of EV batteries to charge.
Speaking to Fox Business News, Mark Bilek of the Chicago Auto Trade Association said, “It’s not plug and go. You have to precondition the battery, meaning that you have to get the battery up to the optimal temperature to accept a fast charge."
The Solution is Right at Home
Relying on commercial charging stations, while the only option for some EV owners, is inconvenient, expensive, and risky, as the Chicago experience shows. But other EV owners rest easily, knowing that the solution is in their own garage.
With a home EV charger, you can juice up your ride while you eat, watch TV, or sleep. When electricity costs are at their lowest. Commercial charging requires a trip to a charging station and waiting, sometimes in line, sometimes while other drivers wait on you impatiently. And that can lead to problems.
Most EV owners tend to be a mellow lot, but as more tightly-wound people hop into the mix, that demographic is changing. EV drivers are even succumbing to road rage and that can manifest itself in ugly ways as a recent shooting at a Colorado Tesla charging station proved. Frankly, we’re a little surprised there weren’t any reported flareups at the Chicago stations.
So if cost and convenience aren’t enough motivation to consider a home EV charging station, maybe self-preservation will be. And when you’re ready to act, Allstar Electrical Services can help you find the home charging solution that’s best for you.
Allstar Electrical Services has installed dozens of EV charging stations in homes, parking garages, and at businesses with multiple EV fleets. We’ve helped Coloradans increase efficiency while adding comfort and convenience to their homes and businesses for over 20 years.
For an estimate on installing a home EV charger or to learn more about the many ways upgraded electric services and emerging technologies can improve your home or business, visit our website or give us a call at 303.399.7420.