Here are answers to the questions we are most often asked. If you can't find the question you are looking for, please let us know.
Frequently Asked Questions
Are Electric Vehicles Safe?
All electric vehicle manufacturers must meet stringent federal safety standards. In apition, manufacturers have a strong incentive to produce safe and reliable vehicles, as their reputation and the future viability of the electric vehicle industry depend on the quality of the cars they produce. Manufacturers have spent years developing the new technologies that make these vehicles possible.
Can I charge my vehicle at home or at work?
Yes, provided that the electrical system in the home or workplace has sufficient capacity to supply the vehicle at the voltage and rate of recharging that it requires. A small vehicle may only require a conventional 110 volt outlet, already available in most home garages. Larger vehicles may need a 220/240 volt outlet (like those used for home clothes dryers) with adequate amperage rating.
How long does it take to charge?
A fully battery-dependent electric car that is completely empty (and remember, usually you wont be pulling up empty!) typically takes 12 to 16 hours to charge on a Level 1 charger (120v)and 4 to 6 hours on a Level 2 charger( 240v). A DC quick-charger (480v) will only charge an EV battery to 80% to prolong battery life and this will take 20 to 30 minutes.
Is home charging safe?
Electric vehicle re-charging standards are currently being developed by industry and the relevant professional standards associations. Ontario’s Building Code and Electrical Safety Code already provide for the safe integration of EV recharging capacity in homes and other buildings.
What are the batteries made out of?
EV batteries are made out of lithium-ion materials, the same material as smartphone and laptop batteries.
What Makes Electric Cars Different?
An Electric Car (also called an Electric Vehicle or EV or BEV) runs on electricity instead of using diesel, gas or natural gas. Instead of a fuel tank and an internal combustion engine (ICE), there is an electric motor that runs off a large battery pack which is 'fueled' by locally made electricity.
What's the difference between an Electric Car and a Hybrid?
Electric Cars (EV or BEV) and Hybrids (HEV) have a lot in common. They both have battery packs, electric motors and regenerative braking. The difference lies in how the batteries are charged. An Electric Car charges its battery from the electricity grid using a plug and socket, whereas a hybrid has a gas engine which turns a generator that charges the battery. The gas engine is also used at higher speeds to drive the car. Plug-in hybrids (PHEV) get the best of both worlds. They can be plugged-in to take advantage of grid electricity for the start of the journey before switching over to the hybrid gas engine when the battery is low.
What’s the lifespan of an Electric Car battery?
EV batteries are serviceable for 12 to 15 years. At the end of the car’s life, the battery may still have value as emerging companies are looking at how to transition used EV batteries to store energy for emergency back-up power.
Will charging my Electric Car make the power grid breakdown?
Ontario has an abundance of electricity that will allow for the widespread adoption of electric cars. However, there may be problems at the neighbourhood level if older transformers become overloaded from too many electric cars charging. This can easily be avoided by informing your electricity provider that you’ve installed an electric car charger at your home, allowing the utility to monitor and learn about the impact of EVs on the grid..
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