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How To Charge an Electric Car for Free? 4 Different Tricks!

How To Charge an Electric Car for Free? 4 Different Tricks!

If you're looking for how to charge an electric car for free, check the following four options:

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  1. Use the PlugShare app
  2. Use the ChargePoint app
  3. Check the Charging station's providers' websites
  4. Look for Free public charging program

Electric vehicles are great innovations that provide lots of benefits. With electric cars, fewer people are use gasoline, the environment is much cleaner, and many customers enjoy great features that we don't typically see in gasoline cars.

Owning an electric vehicle is much cheaper than owning a gasoline car because you don't have to deal with complicated maintenance, you don't need to buy gasoline, and more. However, dealing with batteries and looking for chargers can be a pain to some inexperienced electric car drivers.

While most electric car charging happens at home, it takes a very long time, and that's why some people look for public fast chargers, but these cost money. Did you know that there are some free electric car chargers in public?

This article provides you with all you need to know to help answer the question of how to charge an electric car for free. Let's read on for more details!

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Is charging free for electric cars?

Before we dive into the details about the charge and an electric car for free, we must clarify a common misconception. There aren't many people who think that charging electric cars is free, and that's not the case.

Every manufacturer has charging stations and systems you can install at your house. However, depending on the system's complexity and the type of your vehicle, these charging stations and systems can be very expensive.

While it's not going to be free to charge your electric car, the good news is that there are many locations where you can find free charging stations and enjoy certain incentives or deals depending on your vehicle type and brand.

Is it free to charge an electric car at Walmart?

Even the larger charging stations that you see at Walmart are not free as, well. These are charging stations provided by a major provider called electrify America in agreement with Walmart.

Typically, it should cost you somewhere between $0.25 to $0.99 to charge your vehicle, depending on your vehicle type and the power you're looking for.

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Where can we charge electric cars for free?

The first thing to consider before looking for a free electric charger is that if your electric car runs out of charge, it will stop completely. Think about it like your gasoline vehicle running out of gas. Therefore, before you get to this point and before your battery runs out of charge, you must find a charging station to help provide the required due sphere vehicle battery to get your vehicle going again.

As you're looking for your charging station, you got to understand that these surgeon stations will not be free unless you do some research and look for how to charge an electric car for free.

Automotive experts understood the concern about finding stations to charge electric vehicles and the hassle people run through when dealing with costs to charge their electric vehicles. So experts put together many studies to help provide the most convenient way for charging electric vehicles without spending a single penny.

Let's take a closer look at some of Kelly blue books recommendations on how to charge an electric car for free:

Using your phone is the easiest and best way to find a station to charge your car without spending money. Many apps in the App Store provide you with locations of available electric car stations, and you can sort them by location to get a better idea about what's closer to you.

1.    Use the PlugShare app

Some more sophisticated apps like the PlugShare app help you find stations. They are completely free and close to you. This app is available on Android, and the apps store, so different phone users can enjoy the same features. The nice thing about this app is that the information is updated in real-time, which means you'll get details about the location and any additional details about the status of this station.

Since this app provides you with real-time information, you will know immediately if the app is occupied or if there are no available apps near you. This way, you don't get stuck with a low battery next to the station where someone else is using it, and he might spend hours until he's done.

2.    Use the ChargePoint app

Another great app is ChargePoint. However, according to experts, it is recommended that you download multiple apps to get an idea of which one works best for you. For example, some apps might crash while others might not operate in certain locations.

Multiple apps prevent these situations from happening, and you always have a working app that helps you find the nearest station to charge your electric car for free.

Also, you might enjoy this app more than the previous one because of the attractive user interface. However, some people might not be happy with complicated apps with many features. In contrast, others are more interested in having a lot of buttons to press until they find their favorite and most convenient station.

3.    Charging stations providers

In addition to the previously mentioned phone apps, you might even investigate the charging station providers like electrify America, which has details about the available stations nearby. Also, these websites might provide you with promotions to help you take advantage of discounts or probably free charging options.

If you decide to go with the premium account, you might get some rewards every time you change your electric car, and then during the day, you will enjoy the rewards and use them to earn more points and some prizes.

For instance, if you look at the EVvgo websites, you'll notice that they will provide about 2000 points for their subscribers as they award, which accounts for about $10. You can then use this amount to charge your cars for free.

4.    Free public charging program

Finally, did you know that certain communities might provide free public charging programs? Check with your local community and see if they have such programs. This way, you can enjoy the free charging without driving long distances.

Remember that these programs might be suitable for certain seasons and sometimes in the year. Typically, the free charging stations in your community would be next to locations like casinos, hotels, or any potential recreation areas.

Best EV Charging Apps

What to consider when using free electric car chargers?

While it's a great idea to look for free electric charging stations, there are a couple of things that you must consider. Let's take a whole look below:

1.    Slow stations

In most scenarios, the available free charging stations are typically level two rate chargers which means they take a long time until you fully charge your vehicle. Therefore, if you think about it conveniently, it might make the most sense to plug your car in your home's slow charger and leave it overnight to charge rather than wait in public until you fully charge your vehicle.

However, there are some scenarios where you might be stuck in a far location, your battery is running low, and you're looking for the closest place to charge your vehicle. In that case, even if the charger is slow, it's better than nothing, and it will get you enough juice to get your battery charged so you can get home.

2.    Long lines

Even if you were OK charging your vehicle slowly, you'd be surprised how many people are looking for these free charging stations. Typically, the line is packed, and it will take more time to wait in the line until you get a chance to charge your car rather than going to a paid or faster charger.

Therefore, if you don't like waiting in lines and would like to get your vehicle charged faster, it might be better to look for a fast charger that is paid nearby rather than wasting your time.

3.    Unfamiliar areas

Also, when looking for a free charging station, you'll be surprised that many of the available stations are in areas you're unfamiliar with. In that case, it might not be the safest way to charge your vehicle if you're planning to stay a long time waiting for your car to charge.

Although most charging stations are typically placed in safer areas, not everybody feels comfortable waiting a long time in those they've never been in.

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How to find a free electric car charger?

If you're still interested in finding out how to charge an electric car for free, you might want to consider the following recommendations by Kelley Blue Book:

1.    Understand the common locations

Typically, communities and municipalities place free charging stations in public areas like malls, parking lots, airports, or probably fast-food chains and grocery stores. This is to encourage people to use cleaner energy and expose the public to more electric vehicles as much as possible.

Therefore, the first place you want to check is in those areas, and you can still use your app to help you filter out the closest train station to your location but consider checking out the biggest mall or, if there is an airport nearby, the first option.

2.    Consider the incentives

Some specific manufacturers like Tesla might not provide free chargers around your area. However, they will provide lots of recharging incentives that you might enjoy. Check out the Tesla website and learn about these incentives.

According to experts, anybody who bought a Tesla after 2017 should have access to a free network of supercharging stations which is a great deal.

3.    Check out the deals

Did you know that some major providers provide certain deals for free charging of specific electric vehicles? Electrify America is a known provider that provides such promotions and deals.

For example, electrify America provided free charging for specific vehicles up to certain mileage or kilowatts. For instance, if you purchased a Ford F-150 lightning or a Hyundai Kona electric SUV, you would enjoy up to 250 kilowatts of free charging from electrifying America. This accounts for about 1000 miles of free charge, which is a huge deal!

You might want to check with your dealership or the location where you got the car from and ask them about any potential deals for free charging stations. If they agree with certain providers, they will provide you with some details, and you can even look online for some information about these deals.

Electric Car Maintenance Basics

Final thoughts

The entire United States is pushing towards driving more electric vehicles than before. The inflation reduction act is a huge push, and the coming ban of gasoline vehicles in California and Washington will make another push over the years.

Owning an electric vehicle saves you money on maintenance and gasoline. However, it does cost some money to charge your vehicle every time you want to use it. One of the best things to know about electric vehicles is that there are many places where you can charge your car for free.

This article walked you through four common locations to help answer how to charge an electric car for free.

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