One of the tools of the trade, for EV owners, is a map to show you where you can get a charge for your battery if you’re heading out of your local neighbourhood and looking to extend your driving range.
I’ve prepared myself this way. I have three apps on my iPhone – PlugShare, ChargePoint and greenlots – and I set myself up for accounts on each of these tools.
PlugShare provides a very comprehensive database of public charging locations around the world. They are not restricted to any particular network. Some are public and some are home chargers or outlets that owners are willing to share with the EV community. PlugShares’ mapping feature shows you where to find the station and I find its real benefits come from the members who add pictures, comments and tips about the locations. I’d suggest this app as a “must have” for any EV driver.
ChargePoint’s app also has a map but it is restricted to those chargers on the ChargePoint network. You will find some locations apply a fee for charging, like at the GO train station parking lots in the GTA. But many are no charge even though you need to activate the charger. Activation can be easily accomplished by using a ChargePoint card that you can carry on your key chain or a credit card with an RFID chip.
Greenlots is similar to ChargePoint in that it manages chargers on the greenlots network. Get the mobile app and the key fob and you’ll be ready to go when you arrive at the charger. I had a bit of a challenge recently when I stopped at a greenlots location. I contacted the company right there from my phone, got an immediate response and we got everything working just fine.
The ChargePoint and greenlots apps are helpful as they provide real-time charging status so you can see if a charger is available for use, and once you’re plugged in, you can monitor just what’s happening to your car. This is a great feature as you park, plug in and head out to enjoy the local scenery while your car charges.
Have you used any of these? What other tools would you suggest? Let us know at: http://evlife.ca/contact-us