Solar power can help make EVs the cleanest running vehicles in the world. Concerned about the fossil fuels used to create the electricity that fuels your EV? You’re not alone. Some drivers are worried the source of their power may not be very clean.
We know that EVs are 2-3X as efficient as gas-powered vehicles and have no tail pipe emissions, but just how efficient they are or aren’t is dependent on the power source. Some of EVs’ efficiency dims when fossil fuels have to be used to power them, though they are, as Forbes reports, still better for the environment than ICEV, regardless of the source of power.
But, when clean energy is used to power EVs, transportation is the greenest it can be. Thus, eliminating even more waste and greenhouse gases from the atmosphere. The cleaner the power source, the better, and each location is different.
How Do I Know If I’m Using Clean Energy?
According to Forbes, Washington State has passed the Clean Energy Transformation Act, committing itself to entirely clean energy by 2045. EV manufacturers have partnered with Puget Sound Energy and Seattle City Light to bring more EVs to Washington to utilize its clean energy.
Iowa and Texas turbines collect wind energy; in fact, more wind energy comes from Iowa than any other state. Other states however may use energy that isn’t so clean, such as West Virginia, which uses almost entirely coal. If you don’t live in a state with programs to take advantage of clean energy, there is another option. Solar energy has the advantage of being a viable source of energy for just about anyone, anywhere, and solar panels in Pennsylvania can be purchased by individual drivers to power their EVs.
Solar energy is an excellent fuel choice for EV charging. There are many reasons to utilize solar panels to create energy for your home and for your EV, such as the option to adopt a fully clean energy source, but the most obvious reason is that it’s a whole lot less expensive. Charging with residential-rate electricity is easy, but solar power is much more efficient.
So, how much does it really cost to charge with solar power?
If a public EV charger costs anywhere between $0.28 to $0.69 per kWh, depending on location, and residential charging is between $0.10 to $0.40 per kWh, cheaper at night, solar is more consistently $0.11 per kWh, at any time of day.
Most solar panels are guaranteed for 25 years, and while the initial investment of solar panel is not inexpensive, compared to 25 years of paying for power, it’s an efficient choice. In fact, Electrek claims an approximate savings of $16,250 in 25 years.
Before buying anything, figure out how many KWh you’re going to need every day, whether you’re going to use solar power to power your entire home, and its square footage, plus how many EVs you plan to charge with the panels. Solar Reviews lists the amount of kWh needed by many popular EVs. In general, drivers need between 10 and 17 kWh for the day.
To power the average EV enough to get to work and back for most people would require around 12 solar panels. Most solar panel systems contain 25 to 30 panels, making solar panels a more realistic choice than they may appear at a glance. The average system will create more than enough to power to fuel a driver’s entire day.
Other pieces of equipment you’ll need are string or micro inverters to convert DC charge into AC for your EV, and of course, a Level Two charger!
Looking for a powerful home charger? The new Blink HQ 150 is a home option, easy to install, which can make charging a breeze. It offers 32 amp charging on a standard 240 AC circuit. Simply plug in the 25 ft cable to your EV and start charging immediately at around 25 miles per hour, enabling drivers to charge their cars faster than ever.
Development Planning at Home
Utilizing solar power for your EV charging is the least expensive and greenest choice in the long run but will require drivers to plan ahead. Think of what you need, create a plan, and execute on it. A greener future is built by the decisions we make today!