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How Much Does it Cost to Charge an Electric Car in Canada?

How Much Does it Cost to Charge an Electric Car in Canada?

You may be thinking of investing in an Electric Vehicle (EV) for your next ride, but you probably have some questions.  Not the least of which is probably just how much does it cost to charge an electric car?


Like so many things we write about, there’s no exact answer we can give to that question.  We can give you an idea of how much it might cost to charge an electric car and compare it to the price of filling up the gas tank as well.



First of all, how do you charge your EV?


Well, there are a couple of ways to do it, with varying costs.  Generally, charging at home would be at Level 1, and will take several hours to get from 0-100%.  Odds are you won’t be charging your car from 0% every day, so it won’t always take so long.


Level 1 chargers often come with the vehicle and can be used in a standard 120V outlet at your home.  You can purchase an aftermarket Level 2 charger that can charge your car fully in a fraction of the time a Level 1 charger will take.  You will need an electrician to install it though because it requires a higher voltage outlet (240V).


Level 3 chargers are the fastest, and can get you to full charge in as little as 15 minutes.  You’ll be paying extra for this speed at charging stations, though.  So consider only using this option if you’re out on the road and need to “refuel” quickly.


EV Charger Levels Source Central Hudson


How Much Does it Cost to Charge an Electric Car at Home?


If you live in an area that has the time-of-use method of billing for electricity, you can benefit from charging your car at home during off-peak times (usually overnight).  Take a look at your hydro bill to see the difference in rates between on-, mid-, and off-peak times.  Usually, off-peak is around half the cost of on-peak usage.


In March 2022, average cost to Canadians to charge at home was $277 per year.  This number is by no means set in stone, and depending on where you live in Canada, the time of year, the type of vehicle, the charging system you use, the time of day you charge… this number could go up or down.


How Does it Compare to Gas?


Today, where this writer lives, gas prices are around $1.40/L.  If I were to fill the ~60L tank of my Jeep Wrangler from empty, it would cost me around $84.  Now, I’m not likely to be filling up from completely empty every time, but let’s say I did that every two weeks.  $84 x 26 = $2,184.  One year of filling up my Jeep will cost me nearly 8x more than if I had an EV I charge at home.  That $277/ year electricity bill doesn’t sound too bad to me.


Ev cost comparisons


Again, it’s very difficult to come up with a cut and dry comparison of electricity prices to gas prices.  Gas prices fluctuate every single day, so the comparison I make today will be different a week from now, but I don't think gas will every be cheaper than EV!


The biggest takeaway is that there’s no way to deny that “fueling up” your EV is going to cost much less than buying gas every week.


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