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Charging & Rates

Plug-in electric cars need to have their batteries charged to operate effectively. To charge these batteries, they need to be plugged in to a source of electricity, just like a light or an appliance. There are three “levels” of charging that have been designated by the industry for most passenger plug-in electric vehicles:
  • Level 1- Connects to a standard 120 volt outlet. This is the typical outlet you find in most homes and businesses.

  • Level 2- Connects to a typical household service at 240 volts, similar to an electric dryer or cooking range and oven. A plug-in vehicle recharging at Level 2 will recharge faster than one plugged into Level 1, but may require some upgrading or added wiring in your home. Auto dealers will be working with their customers to help consider which charging level is best for you.

  • Level 3- Also known as fast charge capability, specifications and standards for this level is also being considered. This level would require special wiring to supply the large energy requirements. Level 3 is not expected to be used in most residential installations.

Special Equipment

Special Plug
A specific plug, referred to as a J1772 connector, will be required for all Level 1 and 2 charging for electric vehicles. The auto dealer will help provide one to you. The good news is that the connector is the same for all plug-in passenger vehicles using Level 1 and 2 charging.
Charging Plug and Station
If you’re interested in wiring your home for a charging station, your auto dealer will be able to provide you with the information you need. In many cases the dealer may help you arrange for a licensed electrician to inspect the wiring in your home and in many cases even install the new equipment for you.

Time to Recharge
The amount of time required to recharge your car can vary significantly and depend on the model vehicle, the size battery and the amount of energy needed at the time the car is plugged in. A typical full recharge for a Volt or a Leaf may take eight hours or more if plugged in to a 120 volt Level 1 supply and four to six hours if plugged into a 240 volt, Level 2 supply.


Cost to Recharge
Say the average residential rate for electricity is 14 cents per kilowatt-hour. The cost to provide eight hours of charging at Level 1 is about $1.68. The cost for six hours of Level 2 charging will be about $2.78. Either way, it’s a good deal compared to the cost of a gallon of gasoline at $3 or more! BGE offers an EV rate to support the efficient charging of plug-in vehicles at home. These will provide a price incentive if you charge in the non-peak times when costs are lower.


Rate Options

BGE residential customers have different Rate Options for charging their Electric Vehicle.  Since it may increase the energy usage on your monthly bill, consider a Time of Use (TOU) electric rate. 

Currently, there are three rate options for Standard Offer Service residential service: 

  • Schedule R- Residential Service is the same rate for every hour of the day, updated seasonally.
  • Schedule RL- Residential Optional Time of Use has a rate that varies with the time of day and updates seasonally.
  • Schedule EV- Residential Time of Use rate that varies with time of day, updates seasonally. EV Rate applies to the energy usage for the entire residence during a billing period with a Smart Meter that has lower Non-Peak rates for EV charging during off-peak hours and higher Peak rates during Peak hours. For more information on Rate Options, go to Rates & Tariffs, then click on Residential Pilot Electric Vehicle Time-of-Use, then Schedule EV and Rider Index, and Rider 1 Standard Offer Service.
If you purchase or lease an Electric Vehicle, please complete the Register Your Vehicle Form. To enroll in the EV Rate option, please send a message to

Where to Recharge
A limited number of public recharging stations are located across the BGE service area, with many more planned.

 Content Editor

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