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Don't be a Charging Idiot! Unwritten rules of EV Charging

There are unwritten rules for just about everything, charging your electric vehicle is no exception. You don't have to look like a newbie, because we've covered all the unspoken rules of EV charging here!

If you're new to electric vehicles, you may be wondering what the etiquette for charging is. Should you park in EV parking if you don't need a charge? Can you leave your car plugged in overnight at a charger? We've got answers to all your charging questions!

  • Blocking Chargers Although spots may be labeled as EV Parking, it doesn't mean you should park there if you don't need a charge or leave your car there when it is done charging! If you're not actively charging, do no park at the chargers. Even if it looks like there are chargers open, they might not be working properly and you might be blocking the only working charger.

  • Treat Chargers Like Your Grandma's Fine China The more a charger is cared for, the better it will work. Be careful with charging equipment and put things back appropriately when you're done. Be mindful of how you're treating the handle, the cord, and any electronic components.

  • Don't Charge Too Long This can be a hard habit to learn after always filling your gas tank to full, but when you're charging an EV at a public charging station, you should only get the charge you need and move on. Charging at the top of your battery capacity takes a long time, because as your battery gets closer to 100%, the car has to charge more slowly to protect the battery. So, get the charge you need to make it the distance you are traveling and move on!

  • Charge at the Right Speed Know what the max charging speed for your vehicle is and only charge on the appropriate charger. Just like you don't put a high octane in a vehicle that doesn't use high octane, you shouldn't charge a car with slower max charging on a high speed charger. If you are unsure of the max charging rate for your vehicle, check your owners manual or a quick Google search should tell you!

  • Leave it Better Than You Found It There aren't always trash cans or facilities close to charging stations, but that's not an excuse to leave trash on the ground at a charger. Always take your trash with you if there is no trash can or if the trash can is overflowing. Even better, clean up any trash you do see near the charger to encourage other businesses to want to put chargers in!

  • Keep it Between the Lines Park within the lines to allow for all chargers to be used. If you pull in and don't park properly you might be blocking someone from being able to get a charge. Also be sure you are using the charger intended for the spot you are parked in.

  • Check In Use apps like PlugShare or @RateYourCharge on Twitter to communicate with other EV owners and help track when chargers are working properly or not. If there are chargers that aren't working, you should also check in for those chargers so stations get the appropriate score they deserve.

  • Report Broken Chargers If chargers are not working, log onto the app for the company and let them know there are chargers that at not working. The more a broken charger is reported, the better the chance someone will come out to fix it!

  • Leave Room for Trailers If there are open chargers, consider who may come up to charge after you. Leave end chargers open for people towing trailers or with large EVs. Sometimes pulling up behind the charger might be best for them, so sometimes leaving one that can be reached from the back side of the station is the best to leave open. It's the considerate thing to do!

If you follow these tips, you'll look like a charging pro! What unwritten rules of charging have you seen broken? Or what questions do you have about charging?

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