Public Charge Points
Public Charging Points
Charging on Long Journeys
At Drive Green, we know that a modern electric vehicle will go as far as you want to go. Whether you’re driving from John O’Groats to Land’s End or England to Mongolia, it’s all been done before.
“We find that you rarely need to use public chargers. You wake up in the morning with a full battery and go about your day without even considering range”
When you want to go further than the cars range you can use the huge network of public car charge points. You should always be able to find a charger on your route. There are over 13,000 connections available at over 4500 locations. And that’s just the ones on ZapMap!
How do they work?
Public chargepoints are very simple to use, and there are many apps and tools available to make the process easy.
Chargepoints come in all shapes and sizes, but really, they are all just a big version of your charger at home. You simply drive up, log in to the charger, and plug in, then you can recharge in around 30 minutes.
Polar, Charge Your Car (CYC,) and Ecotricity operate the majority of chargepoints in the UK. Members of the Polar network can also connect to CYC chargers. This means you only really need to subscribe to two networks (Ecotricity and Polar) to use the majority of chargers in the UK.
Signing up to Polar and Ecotricity is a very simple process. It only takes about five minutes and we will make sure you are all set up before you leave Drive Green with your new electric car.
How do I find a charge point?
There are many apps or websites you can use to find a charge point. At Drive Green, we use ZapMap most of the time as it shows chargers from all the major networks.
When you buy a car from Drive Green, we will show you how ZapMap works and explain any other apps that may be useful for you.
Here at Drive Green, we like to keep on top of updates with the public charging network, and we will keep our customers regularly informed. If you would like to find out more about charging out and about, get in contact with us and we will be happy to discuss this with you.
How do you plan a long journey?
When making a long-distance journey you may want to consider checking when/where to recharge. You can do this by using ZapMap, Ecotricity or another suitable app.
With Rapid Charging, you can gain an 80% charge in the time it takes to have a toilet break and have a coffee
We find that most long journeys, whether for work or pleasure tend to involve some motorway driving. The Ecotricity charging network covers almost the entire motorway network so we tend to use Ecotricity when planning a longer trip.
As an example, if you needed to drive from Bristol to Nottingham you could check the Ecotricity website before you leave to see which charge point is the best place for a rest and recharge.
You can see that there is a rapid charger at the Hopwood Park services on the M42.
It will take about 1 hour and 45 minutes to get to Hopwood (80 miles,) by which time you will be ready to stop for a coffee, rest, and recharge. Thirty minutes later you can jump back in the car and head off on the remainder of your journey (60 miles.)
At Drive Green, we tend to find that by the time we have had a toilet break and a coffee, the car is recharged and ready to go (around 30 minutes.)
How to Use a Public Charger
With an RFID Card
The UKs largest public charging network, Polar Plus, provides an RFID card for identifying yourself to a chargepoint. Using the RFID card is a simple process.
- Apply for a card/subscribe to Polar Plus
You can subscribe to Polar Plus and apply for a card at: www.polar-network.com/join
2. Locate a charger
You can use an app such as ‘ZapMap’ or ‘Polar Instant’ to locate a charger near you or on route.
3. Start charging
When you arrive at the charger, present your RFID card to the charger and it will recognize your account. Follow the simple instructions on the charger to connect your vehicle and charging will begin.
4. Unplug and drive away
When you have finished charging, simply unplug and drive away. Most chargers will require you to present your RFID card again to stop charging before you can unplug and leave
With an App
Useful Charging Apps Info:
Demo Video: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=YmdAdAe7XoM
About Polar Plus subscription (Including Charge Your Car): https://polar-network.com
Get a Polar Plus subscription and card: https://polar-network.com/join
Download Polar Instant App: https://www.polarinstant.com/download
On Journey Charging Costs
Polar Plus is £7.85 a month with unlimited free charging, and most of their chargepoints are included (you also get your first 3 months free and can cancel at any time)
Polar Instant is no subscription fee and pay as you go. It’s £1.20 admin fee for each charge. Some chargers also charge a small per kW fee on top of that. You have to top up a minimum of £20
Ecotricity has no subscription fee. There is a fee of 30p per kWh provided. However if you are an Ecotricity home energy customer this is reduced to just 15p per kWh
If you have any questions about driving long distances in your EV, please get in contact with us and we will be happy to help you out.
Range of Popular EV’s
If you consider the range of your EV and the typical daily journey length you will see that most the time public charging will not be necessary, except for special long journeys.
|Nissan e-NV200 – 24kWH||76|
|Kangoo Z-E – 22kWh||68|
|BMW i3 – 60Ah||81|
|Nissan Leaf – 24kWh||84|
|Kia Soul EV – 27kWh||96|
|Renault Zoe – 22kWh||86|
|Nissan Leaf – 30kWh||107|
|BMW i3 – 94Ah||135|
|Renault Zoe – 41kWh||150|
|Tesla Model X – 100kWh||270|
|Tesla Model S – 75kWh||220|
|Tesla Model S – 100kWh||310|