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How to charge an electric car?

Connect the charging cable and you’re done. That’s how easy it is to charge your phone. But to charge an electric car, you certainly need extensive expertise and you have to struggle with different connections – or maybe not?

With the help of NRGkick we give you an insight into the world of charging systems and show you why you never have to worry about the technical background with NRGkick … and always charge safely and easily!



HOW MUCH TIME DOES NRGKICK SAVE YOU?

NRGkick always provides the maximum charging power for your electric car. Each electric car itself has a charger installed that determines how fast it can actually charge. We have compared the current most popular electric cars and their charging speeds.

Execution: Model 3 Standard | Battery capacity: 50 kWh | On-board charger: 3-phase, 11 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 21,5 h

Smart Attachment 32A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Time saving: 17 h

4,5 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment 16A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Time saving: 17 h

4,5 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment 16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,7 kW

Time saving: 8 h

13,5 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Time saving: 5 h

16,5 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment Type 2

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Time saving: 17 h

4,5 h

Charging time

Execution: Renault Zoe R135 | Battery capacity: 52 kWh | On-board charger: 3-phase, 22 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 22,5 h

Smart Attachment 32A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 22 kW

Time saving: 20,2 h

2,3 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment 16A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Time saving: 17,9 h

4,6 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment 16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 7,4 kW

Time saving: 15,5 h

7 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Time saving: 5,2 h

17,3 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment Type 2

Phases used: 3

Speed: 22 kW

Time saving: 20,2 h

2,3 h

Charging time

Execution: e-Golf (as of 2018) | Battery capacity: 31,5 kWh | On-board charger: 2-phase, 7,2 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 13,5 h

Smart Attachment 32A 5Pole

Phases used: 2

Speed: 7,2 kW

Time saving: 9,1 h

4,4 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment 16A 5Pole

Phases used: 2

Speed: 7,2 kW

Time saving: 9,1 h

4,4 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment 16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,6 kW

Time saving: 4,8 h

8,7 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Time saving: 3 h

10,5 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment Type 2

Phases used: 2

Speed: 7,2 kW

Time saving: 9,1 h

4,4 h

Charging time

Execution: e-208 | Battery capacity: 54,3 kWh | On-board charger: 3-phase, 11 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 23,5 h

Smart Attachment 32A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Time saving: 18,5 h

5 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment 16A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Time saving: 18,5 h

5 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment 16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,7 kW

Time saving: 8,8 h

14,7 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Time saving: 5,5 h

18 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment Type 2

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Time saving: 18,5 h

5 h

Charging time

Execution: Nissan Leaf e+ | Battery capacity: 62 kWh | On-board charger: 1-phase, 6,6 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 27 h

Smart Attachment 32A 5Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 6,6 kW

Time saving: 17,6 h

9,4 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment 16A 5Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,7 kW

Time saving: 10,3 h

16,7 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment 16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,7 kW

Time saving: 10,3 h

16,7 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Time saving: 6,4 h

20,6 h

Charging time

Smart Attachment Type 2

Phases used: 1

Speed: 6,6 kW

Time saving: 17,6 h

9,4 h

Charging time

Execution: Model 3 Standard | Battery capacity: 50 kWh | On-board charger: 3-phase, 11 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 21,5 h

Smart Attachment
32A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 4,5 h

17 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 4,5 h

17 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,7 kW

Charging time: 13,5 h

8 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Charging time: 16,5 h

5 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
Type 2

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 4,5 h

17 h

Time saving

Execution: Renault Zoe R135 | Battery capacity: 52 kWh | On-board charger: 3-phase, 22 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 22,5 h

Smart Attachment
32A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 22 kW

Charging time: 2,3 h

20,2 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 4,6 h

17,9 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 7,4 kW

Charging time: 7 h

15,5 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Charging time: 17,3 h

5,2 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
Type 2

Phases used: 3

Speed: 22 kW

Charging time: 2,3 h

20,2 h

Time saving

Execution: e-Golf (as of 2018) | Battery capacity: 31,5 kWh | On-board charger: 2-phase, 7,2 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 13,5 h

Smart Attachment
32A 5Pole

Phases used: 2

Speed: 7,2 kW

Charging time: 4,4 h

9,1 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 5Pole

Phases used: 2

Speed: 7,2 kW

Charging time: 4,4 h

9,1 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,6 kW

Charging time: 8,7 h

4,8 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Charging time: 10,5 h

3 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
Type 2

Phases used: 2

Speed: 7,2 kW

Charging time: 4,4 h

9,1 h

Time saving

Execution: e-208 | Battery capacity: 54,3 kWh | On-board charger: 3-phase, 11 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 23,5 h

Smart Attachment
32A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 5 h

18,5 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 5 h

18,5 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,7 kW

Charging time: 14,7 h

8,8 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Charging time: 18 h

5,5 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
Type 2

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 5 h

18,5 h

Time saving

Execution: Nissan Leaf e+ | Battery capacity: 62 kWh | On-board charger: 1-phase, 6,6 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 27 h

Smart Attachment
32A 5Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 6,6 kW

Charging time: 9,4 h

17,6 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 5Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,7 kW

Charging time: 16,7 h

10,3 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,7 kW

Charging time: 16,7 h

10,3 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Charging time: 20,6 h

6,4 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment Type 2

Phases used: 1

Speed: 6,6 kW

Charging time: 9,4 h

17,6 h

Time saving

Execution: Audi e-tron 55 quattro S tronic | Battery capacity: 95 kWh | On-board charger: 3-phase, 22 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 41,3 h

Smart Attachment
32A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 22 kW

Charging time: 4,3 h

37 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 8,6 h

32,7 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 7,4 kW

Charging time: 12,8 h

28,5 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Charging time: 31,6 h

9,7 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment Type 2

Phases used: 3

Speed: 22 kW

Charging time: 4,3 h

37 h

Time saving

Execution: VW ID.3 Pro | Battery capacity: 58 kWh | On-board charger: 3-phase, 11 kW | Charging time with emergency charging cable: 25,2 h

Smart Attachment
32A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 5,3 h

19,9 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 5Pole

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 5,3 h

19,9 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment
16A 3Pole

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3,7 kW

Charging time: 15,7 h

9,5 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment Domestic Plug

Phases used: 1

Speed: 3 kW

Charging time: 19,3 h

5,9 h

Time saving

Smart Attachment Type 2

Phases used: 3

Speed: 11 kW

Charging time: 5,3 h

19,9 h

Time saving

WHAT TYPES OF CONNECTORS ARE THERE ON ELECTRIC VEHICLES?

There are a wide variety of charging ports for electric vehicles on the market, which differ mainly in the type of charging and the maximum charging power. The most relevant connector types are:


TYPE 1

The Type 1 charging plug allows single-phase charging with alternating current at charging powers of up to 7.4 kW. The type 1 plug is hardly represented on  the market anymore, mainly manufacturers from Asia still rely on this type.


TYPE 2

This charging plug is the most widely used in Europe and allows 3-phase charging with powers of up to 22 kW. Most public charging stations have such a connection and are therefore easy to use with NRGkick.


CCS

This is the abbreviation for “combined charging system”. Here, an existing Type 2 connection is extended by two additional contacts, via which direct  current can be charged. CCS connections thereby support charging with alternating current via the Type 2 connection as well as charging with direct current. Due to the additional DC contacts, charging speeds can be achieved that are many times higher than with normal sockets.


CHAdeMO

The CHAdeMO connector was developed in Japan and is an abbreviation for “Charge” and “Move”. Similar to the CCS connection, CHAdeMO supports extremely fast charging with direct current, but charging with alternating current is not possible here.


WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CHARGING STATIONS AND MOBILE CHARGING?

When it comes to charging electric cars, you are spoiled for choice: either you drive to a public charging station with a permanently connected charging cable, you charge your car at a public charging station, you install a wallbox yourself at home or you rely on a mobile charging unit. But where exactly are the differences?


WHAT IS THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN CHARGING STATIONS AND MOBILE CHARGING?

When it comes to charging electric cars, you are spoiled for choice: either you drive to a public charging station with a permanently connected charging cable, you charge your car at a public charging station, you install a wallbox yourself at home or you rely on a mobile charging unit. But where exactly are the differences?

  • Permanent Charging Station

    Charging cables may be permanently integrated in permanent charging stations. After an authorization (e.g. by a customer card) charging can be started.

  • Public Charging Station

    Similar to charging stations, charging public charging stations are publicly accessible but do not have a permanently installed charging cable. As a rule, only Type 2 connections can be found here, which can be used to charge the electric car with an additional charging cable. However, this cable (Type 2 to Type 2) must be carried by the customer and is not included as standard in every car.

  • Private Wallbox

    Wallbox refers to a permanently installed charging station for private end customers at home. Depending on the provider, these are available in different versions – with charging powers of up to 22 kw. Since they are permanently mounted on the wall of the house, they cannot be taken and are only for use at home. In addition, they often impress with low acquisition costs, but often require a separate residual current protection as well as cost-intensive installation, commissionen and maintenance.

  • Mobile Charging Unit

    Mobile charging units are not permanently installed, but are simply plugged into a standard socket and thus put into operation. Mobile units, with up to 22kW, have the same charging capacities as permanently installed wallboxes, but have the additional advantage that they can be unplugged and taken along. They thus offer more flexibility than wallboxes, as they can be easily put into operation at any standard socket. NRGkick also falls into the category of mobile charging units that can be conventiently taken along on trips, transforms any power source into a charging stations and even enables charging at public charging stations.

WHAT TYPES OF CHARGING ARE THERE?

Depending on which charging cable is used to charge your electric car, there are four different modes:

MODE 1

Just like your smartphone’s charging cable, a Mode 1 charging cable has a power connector and a vehicle plug. This mode has been operated with charging powers of up to 16 A.





MODE 2

Similar to Mode-1 are the charging cables of Mode-2 charging. The charging cable used has a power connection (earthed or three-phase socket) on one side and a vehicle connection (e.g. type 2) on the other. In addition, there is a control box (ICCB) in the cable that provides communication between the vehicle and the power grid and performs safety functions. With a Mode 2 cable, you can charge your electric car at any standard AC socket. The charging current here can be between 6 A and a maximum of 32 A.

MODE 3

Mode 3 refers to the connection between a charging station and your electric car. Charging stations – as well as most electric cars – are equipped with a Type 2 connector. So to charge your electric car at a public charging station without a fixed cable, you need a cable with one Type-2 connector each.

MODE 4

This charging method enables fast charging with particularly high charging powers using direct current. Due to the enormous investment costs, this type is not recommended for private users.




WHAT ARE THE DIFFERENCES BETWEEN 1-/2-PHASE AND 3-PHASE CHARGING?

The alternating current that you use to charge your electric car at home consists of 3 phases over which current flows. Whether you can charge your electric car 1-, 2- or 3-phase depends on two factors: the socket used and the charger installed in your electric car (on-board charger).

For power plugs, a distinction is made between Schuko and CEE plugs. Schuko sockets can be found in every household and can draw a maximum of 16 A over one phase with the appropriate fuse protection. CEE plugs are available in several versions: up to a maximum of 16 or up to a maximum of 32 A, each 1- or 3-phase. Depending on the power plug used, the charging current can be passed to your car via 1 or 3 phases.

However, the on-board charger of your electric car ultimately determines the maximum number of phases and the maximum power that can be charged. With a 3-phase on-board charger, a 3-phase power connection can also be used for charging via 3 phases; with a 1-phase on-board charger, this limits the number of phases used and thus also the charging power.

WHAT ARE THE MAXIMUM CHARGING POWERS?

NRGkick makes it possible to use all 3 phases of the 400 V three-phase network. Depending on the smart attachment used, different charging capacities can be achieved:

Smart Attachment 32A 5Pole

3-phase
Up to 22 kW charging power

Smart Attachment 32A 3Pole

1-phase
Up to 7.4 kW charging power

Smart Attachment 16A 5Pole

3-phase
Up to 11 kW charging power

Smart Attachment 16A 3Pole

1-phase
Up to 3.7 kW charging power

Smart Attachment Domestic Plug

1-phase
Up to 3 kW charging power

Smart Attachment Type 2

3-phase
Up to 22 kW charging power