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Help me decide whether to get an EV - how long are queues for charging stations on the road?

  • 12-08-2022 11:17am
    #1
    Registered Users Posts: 2


    Most of the time I go between a few locations, and all could have charging points. But Im wondering how worried I should be about going off piste.

    How long is your average wait before you start charging (minimum speed 50kwh)?

    Help me decide whether to get an EV - how long are queues for charging stations on the road? 40 votes

    60 mins or more
    12% 5 votes
    45-60 mins
    2% 1 vote
    30-45 mins
    0% 0 votes
    15-30 mins
    5% 2 votes
    15 mins or less
    20% 8 votes
    No wait
    60% 24 votes


«1

Comments

  • Registered Users Posts: 6,820 ✭✭✭Red Silurian


    Depends on where you are and what charger network you're using

    Small town with 1 fast charge point you could be in a queue with 2 cars ahead of you and each could spend 45mins there

    Motorway service station with 4-6 chargers people would be moving much faster... If you splash out for a Tesla their chargers are rarely clogged



  • Registered Users Posts: 195 ✭✭UID0


    There is so much variability in waiting times. If the only time you need a fast charger is leaving Dublin on a bank holiday Friday, you're going to be queueing, but if you're looking for a charge at 3am on a motorway, you probably won't have to wait.

    Also, some routes are far better supplied with chargers than others, and while chargers remain free in NI, they are going to be busier.

    You need to look at what the routes you drive regularly are and where you can charge on those, and look at what the routes you would drive on a less regular basis, what size car you want (both the physical space and the battery capacity), determine what cars would be suitable for you and then work out if it makes financial sense.

    In 3 years driving exclusively EV, I've never had to wait for a charger because I've never been reliant on a specific charger. If I stopped for food/toilet break and the charger was available and I needed to get charge at some point between there and home, I would charge. If it wasn't available or wasn't working, then I left after my break and charged at the next stop. One of the advantages/disadvantages of small children is that any journey requires more than one stop.

    Having said that, I have stopped where there was a queue of 2 cars waiting for a charger that was in use. That could be a 90 minute or longer wait for a charge.



  • Registered Users Posts: 22,455 ✭✭✭✭ted1


    Charge at home. Many people have never used public chargers



  • Registered Users Posts: 2 charleskinbote


    Thanks for the good points all around. Seems like things are okay provided you avoid trouble: charging at peak times, or failing to charge when you have the opportunity.

    For everyone saying charge at home non stop — how would you spend a week on the west coast?



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  • Registered Users Posts: 20,161 ✭✭✭✭ELM327


    Same as in a petrol car. Fill up as needed.



  • Registered Users Posts: 12,659 ✭✭✭✭mfceiling


    Quite easily. Throw an extension lead out the window and top up every night. Should more than cover you.

    I drive to inch beach from Dublin (Tesla model 3 performance) and do one stop in Birdhill to top up (more to use the toilet and let the dog out). Every night I'm able to charge out the window and that does me for tipping around. If I go into Dingle and the charger is free (upgraded to a 50kw now) I take a charge.

    I've never had range anxiety or anything like it in almost 2 years of driving.



  • Registered Users Posts: 22,455 ✭✭✭✭ted1


    I’d charge at the place I’m staying. If it doesn’t have a charger I’d plug into a 3 pin socket and granny charge



  • Registered Users Posts: 5,779 ✭✭✭eddhorse


    This poll is like asking "How long do you wait to get petrol or diesel?"

    Depends on how many cars are there.

    Bit more planning involved but very doable.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,632 ✭✭✭kanuseeme


    Sometimes it goes well, sometimes it doesn't.

    I for one drive a phev, I charge whenever I want to charge, other times I drive on petrol, suits me. Does not bother me in the slightest if I don't get a charge, I am not expecting it to be available when I want it.

    You can charge with a 3-pin plug, takes time but it's possible.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 9,921 ✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin


    It's a bit of a lottery, on the handful of occasions I've needed to charge, maybe just under half of those times involved a short wait


    There was one disaster where I was waiting an hour, but since you have to pay for most chargers in the Republic now you don't get many freeloaders sitting at chargers forever

    FWIW I find the ESB sites get crowded the most because most of them only have a single charger. If you can use a proper provider that installs multiple chargers, and destination charge as much as you can, then you'll probably be fine


    Having a long range EV also helps, in the year I've owned the ID.4 I've only needed to fast charge once, and even that time I could probably have made it without



  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 35,451 Mod ✭✭✭✭Gumbo


    Over the last year I’ve never once seen a que at public chargers.

    Things have changed since the charging costs have come in. Free loaders are gone and chargers are used by people who genuinely need them.



  • Registered Users Posts: 6,020 ✭✭✭zg3409


    As others have said it depends on luck. If you have a modern EV with home charging you can go at least 150km from home in winter and get back home without relying on public chargers. In summer you can probably go 200km from home and 200km back.

    If going on a long holiday book somewhere with a charger. Many hotels (say 20%) have chargers for overnight use. If booking air BnB there is a filter on app for chargers. You can also book a hotel or accomodation located close to a public charger but there is a risk it might be very busy at peak tourist times.

    You can also plug into any ordinary household outlet using a granny cable. I have done this when visiting friends or relations. Some b and b and hotels allow this and some hotels have sockets in their car parks.

    If you need to charge on the motorway then what I do is charge very early with say 100km range left. If the charger is in use (you can check if in use and how long on the app while driving), I have enough range to not stop and get to the next charger. I can see if the next one is not in use and head there. If it's in use then you can try a third charger further down or if stuck plug into slow AC chargers. I typically won't wait, I don't have the patience and I have backup plans. It is a real downside of EV ownership, the cars are great but there is not half enough chargers particularly around Dublin.

    There are some less well known chargers like easygo, ionity etc that tend to be quiet and better, but there is not that many. It does require a bit of planning. Worst case you arrive somewhere with no range left, a family with screaming kids and the charger won't work or is blocked by an abandoned car. This is what you plan to avoid.

    Fuel savings of 80% is what got me into EVs but long distance trips and having to plan when beyond home range is what I plan to avoid. With planning you should not need to queue ever year to year.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,320 ✭✭✭UsBus


    Not driving electric because my commute is an hour +. Charge points in the west are practically non existent from what I can see. If the number of people starting to change over to electric increases as would be expected, the chances of having to queue will be much greater and I don't see the infrastructure investment keeping pace. I've rarely seen a garage with more than one charge point buried in a forecourt.

    On another note, I've seen a few clips of a guy in the UK driving a Porsche EV. Does a nice bit of traveling so using public rather than home charging. His mind seems to be consumed with it, range checking, charging for 45 mins to get an hour down the road. It's not going to be for me for a long time. Diesel will be here for a long time yet supporting taxis, delivery drivers, trucks, reps, campervans, construction workers etc.

    Maybe when the planning element is taken out of it and every garage has availability, I might consider it.



  • Registered Users Posts: 11,839 ✭✭✭✭KCross


    Not driving electric because my commute is an hour +.

    Its not really about how long you are driving. Its how far that matters and whether that's on the motorway or L/N roads.

    Current EV's could possibly do your journey, return, if that hour isn't all motorway.

    How many km's is your commute?



  • Registered Users Posts: 195 ✭✭UID0


    If your commute is over an hour each way, then you would save a significant amount of money by going EV. If you can charge at home/work then you won't need to go near public charging on a regular basis. Infrastructure is improving, although not at the rate most would like.

    On the guy in the UK driving a Porsche, you have to remember that England alone is over 1.5 times the land area of the island of Ireland, never mind if he's going to Scotland/Wales. Also, if he's charging for 45 minutes to get an hour down the road, he's using the wrong chargers. If he used a 350kW charger, then 100 miles of motorway driving would take less than 25 minutes charging.

    Diesel will be around for a while, but the number of filling stations will reduce. Filling stations in general use fuel to get customers through the door, and then make money by selling food/drink/magazines/etc. As the number of fuel customers reduce, the reduced non-fuel sales will make the business unviable. Petrol/diesel will still be available, but it will be for the most part in unmanned stations in industrial parks. Charging has a different stationary time for the vehicle than refuelling, so will result in different services being required. A garage is not in general an appropriate place for a fast charger, unless it is in a motorway services or close to a major road. Fast chargers are predominantly used by two groups of people - people who don't have access to home/work charging (chargers are better placed in locations where they will naturally spend an appropriate amount of time work better) and people who are travelling long distances (chargers placed close to motorways with somewhere to eat and toilets are best for them). The garage at the edge of a small town in the country doesn't suit either group and won't be financially sustainable.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,320 ✭✭✭UsBus


    75km each way on my daily commute. No motorway, don't think I would call much of it primary roads either. Range would be my biggest concern really.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,551 ✭✭✭Thumper Long


    If you can charge at home I would think any of the modern EVs could do that commute in their sleep



  • Moderators, Society & Culture Moderators Posts: 35,451 Mod ✭✭✭✭Gumbo


    Wow, any modern EV would do that. You would never have to touch a public charger.

    I haven’t public charged in years. And when I did it was opportunist charging as it was free.

    My old 2016 Model S does Belfast and back from north Dublin on one single charge once I leave my house with 100% I don’t have to stop at all. Now caveat, I have to drive at 105-110kmh but in reality you can’t go much faster than that with the traffic.

    The newer EV’s with smaller batteries are even more efficient than that.



  • Registered Users Posts: 20,161 ✭✭✭✭ELM327


    Any EV from the Ioniq28 up in terms of range would do that no bother.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 9,921 ✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin


    I can do that roundtrip twice in an ID.4 and still have spare to pop into town for the shopping. Range isn't the problem, it's lack of chargers

    If you can get a home charger then dealing with public charging will be a concern about 2% of the time


    Use a route planner like below and aim for sites with multiple chargers, takes about 99% of the worries away





  • Registered Users Posts: 2,740 ✭✭✭wassie


    OP - as you have probably gathered your question, whilst well intended, is the wrong question to be asking.

    I do 40,000+km a year for work in an EV all over the country (including the North) on a mix of motorways, national and regional roads.

    A little bit of planning required at times, but once you are familiar with the:

    • charging options
    • charging locations (apps sort this) and
    • your own cars performance

    you will never go back to ICE.

    The most important thing is get educated about EV charging - this eliminates any perceived 'range anxiety'. There are endless youtube videos on this.

    The number of times I've rocked to up to a charger to see peeps standing there in a tizzy with their brand new EV because they don't have a clue of whats going still blows my mind.



  • Registered Users Posts: 11,839 ✭✭✭✭KCross


    As others have said any modern EV from the last 5 years or so will do that return journey without any need for public charging... assuming you can charge at home.

    The key point now, for you, is that you are a high miler and the savings you could potentially make in switching to an EV are substantial. You should do some research because it is likely that a switch to EV (even if it costs you money up front to buy) will save you money over the course of 2-3 years of that commute.

    A rough rule of thumb is that whatever you are spending per year in diesel it will cost you one fifth of that in electricity from home. e.g. If diesel costs you €3500 it will cost you €700 for the same mileage in an EV.... so you have €2800 in your back pocket every year to go against buying an EV.... all depends on your yearly mileage but you sound like you are doing 30k+ km's per year?

    Do the math and decide for yourself whether its worth it... I bet it is.



  • Registered Users Posts: 432 ✭✭browne_rob5


    My sister has a 70k each way motorway commute and currently drives a diesel golf. She went to a financial advisor last week as they are trying to save money and when he made the savings clear to her it black and white it was a no brainer to change to an EV. Looks like she got lucky with an ID.3 cancellation and will be picking it up on Thursday.

    If you asked her a year or 2 ago about changing to EV it would have been the usual comments about range etc. but now they have first hand experience of someone driving an EV from myself they know its not an issue.



  • Registered Users Posts: 1,320 ✭✭✭UsBus


    Appreciate everyone's advice here. Some excellent points to consider. It seems a longer range EV would negate the range anxiety, especially with a home charger. Outside of the work commute, longer journeys really are a rarity. Some research on the figures is needed I think.

    Have many found that their battery integrity has deteriorated much over time..? ie. discharging at a quicker rate requiring more frequent charging.?



  • Registered Users Posts: 2,740 ✭✭✭wassie


    Its a very broad question with a few different aspects.

    The Times published a good article on this very thing today.

    AC slow charging (eg at home) will preserve battery life over frequent high speed DC (public) charging.

    But the best advice is follow the manufacturers guidelines in the owners manual above all else!



  • Registered Users Posts: 9,921 ✭✭✭the_amazing_raisin


    +1 on the education advice, if you can try to go to a public charger with someone who has an EV and get them to show you how it's done


    It's one of those things that's fairly easy once you've seen it done, but is a hassle to figure out the first time you do it by yourself


    Same for the route planning, using something like ABRP you can pick whatever car you're thinking about, put in a few potential routes and it'll figure out the charging stops for you. You can use this to gauge what you'll be in for.

    Word of advice, ABRP doesn't take charger availability into account, so if there's the option of a stop with multiple chargers then I'd personally take that option



  • Registered Users Posts: 20,161 ✭✭✭✭ELM327


    Degradation (noticeable) is not a thing really except for leafs. My ioniq with 135k on the clock has no noticeable degradation. My Tesla S that I sold had ~7% degradation at 200k km when I sold it. In a 400km range car that level of deg isnt noticeable.



  • Registered Users Posts: 12,659 ✭✭✭✭mfceiling



    Mine has lost something like 18kms range in about 20 thousand Kms. Full charge used to show 501kms and now it's around 483. It really is minimal.



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  • Registered Users Posts: 278 ✭✭jordan191


    3 years driving a tesla, never had to queue for a supercharger and tesla charging network has doubled in size and far more locations added recently and with 400-450km range you'll only need to charge on a very long road trip



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