How Long Does It Take to Charge an Electric Car?

Charging an Electric Car

The time it takes can vary from 30 minutes to 30 hours, depending on various factors:

  • Level of charge (1, 2 or 3) — the source of power will determine the speed of charge.
  • Battery size — the bigger the battery capacity, the longer time it will take to charge.
  • Battery state — if the battery is empty, it will take longer to recharge.
  • Charging rate of vehicle — you will only be able to charge based on the maximum charge rate. For instance, if the vehicle has a maximum charge rate of 20kW and the charging station has 40kW, the speed will be 20kW.
  • Environmental factors — freezing temperatures can slow down charging. Cold temperatures can also reduce the vehicle’s efficiency and drivers might see a reduction in range.  

Charging on Road Trips

The fear of being stranded during a long road trip is a major roadblock to large-scale EV adoption. However, there are private and public efforts to add more charging stations. Private companies such as Electrify America, EVgo and ChargePoint continue to expand their charger networks. 

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, there are about 21,876 charging stations with 65,003 individual charging outlets across the United States. Roughly 80% of EV drivers charge at home and use their EV locally. If traveling a long distance, many opt to use their gasoline-powered car. A round trip that might take eight hours in a gas-powered vehicle can easily take over 10 hours in an EV when you factor in charging time. There is also the possibility of having to wait for an available charging station. However, automakers continue to add more range to their cars, and the charging infrastructure continues to expand.

Find a free charging station near you using our interactive Charging Station Map.