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Insights | Jun 18, 2024

Be a better EV charger! Elevating the electric vehicle experience for everyone

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Be a better EV charger!

Elevating the electric vehicle experience for everyone

Whether you are already part of the growing electric vehicle (EV) community, or you are considering purchasing or leasing an EV, it is helpful to know that shared experiences and first-hand accounts are the most effective ways to pave the way for a more robust and sustainable future.

From practical advice on charging infrastructure to maintenance and day-to-day use, EV communities are a valuable resource, helping to ensure a better EV experience for everyone. So, whether you are a seasoned EV driver, or you are considering making the transition, here are some simple ways to be a better EV charger.

Be a good ambassador – lead by example.

Be prepared to answer some questions: The first-hand account of a like-minded EV driver holds a lot of weight when someone has questions or is considering making the switch. Fortunately, EV enthusiasts come from a myriad of backgrounds including, tech enthusiasts, environmentalists, and everyday commuters. This diversity in the EV community ensures a depth of perspective, advice, and camaraderie.

Of course, there are so many questions, so much jargon and a lot to know. From charging best practices to reliability, range anxiety, apps and roaming as well as navigating cold weather climates – the opinions and facts can be challenging to decipher.  Your experiences matter, plus if you aren’t sure about a question, you can always direct someone to the many online EV communities or an EV 101 forum.

Consider the local amenities: When you are at a public charger, often there are adjacent shops. By using your charge time to grab a cup of coffee, a snack or do some shopping, you are being a good patron because in many cases, EV charging stations are paid for by the site owners. Using the nearby amenities increases the likelihood of more chargers being put in the ground.

Try not to overstay your welcome: Be considerate of the next driver. If you have left your vehicle at a charger to take advantage of an adjacent restaurant or shopping mall,  remember to return promptly once your charge is complete. Or if your vehicle can be unplugged without the fob, consider leaving a note for the next user indicating that it’s ok to unplug your vehicle if your session is complete. Remember, we’re all part of the same community, and ensuring that the station can be used efficiently by everyone is paramount.

There are hangtags and windshield slips to promote respectful dialogue between EV owners. Some read: “Feel free to unplug” and others “Please do not unplug” and even “Please be considerate” signs for those gas vehicle drivers who sometimes use EV charging spaces as parking spots.

Simple tips to make charging better for everyone.

Unplug and move on: If you have achieved adequate range, unplug, and move on. EV charging spots are functional spaces. If you aren’t charging, you are blocking the function from others in need. When possible, charge and go.

Also, when fast charging, note that your vehicle likely reduces the amount of energy it will take on dramatically around 80%, so consider whether you need to charge beyond that number if people are waiting.

Don’t abuse EV parking privileges: We address this in our  EV charging 101 article. Charging stations are not parking spots. In fact, some stations are programmed to charge a premium when your charge is complete. If in doubt, check your FLO app for pricing and any overstay fees.

Leave no trace behind: Leave the charger and the space nearby as you would like to find it. Please remove your garbage. If there is damage, report it using the number on the charging station in question or through your FLO app.  Finally, if the charging station does not have a cable management system (CMS), please ensure that you rewind and replace the cable onto the holder to reduce both the risk of damage to the cable as well as trip and fall hazards.

Be a better EV charger: If you are at a public charger and someone approaches you needing an emergency charge, consider allowing the interruption and ask that they pay it forward. You never know what a quick top up can do for someone needing to get to a destination.

Plan your charge: With thousands of public charging stations from coast-to-coast, it is a good idea to plan your charge.
The  FLO trip planner feature simplifies EV travel, enabling drivers to plan their journey with efficiency and accuracy, factoring in vehicle make and range, passenger count, luggage, and personalized stops, all while pinpointing essential charging stations along the way. Once a journey is planned, drivers can use their preferred map app to navigate their trip via Apple CarPlay or Android Auto.

You can view the entire FLO network as well as roaming   networks and see real-time status of available EV chargers. Martin Brière, FLO’s Chief Network and Experience Officer, says, “Before visiting any public charger, we encourage drivers to check charger status on the FLO app, which has up-to-date information on each public charger on the FLO network.”

With a little planning and forward thinking, you can take nearly any road trip you want. Visit our blog for tips on planning a road trip.

The industry has been working hard to refine the EV charging  journey, and over the past 15 years, FLO has led the charge with our commitment to creating a more inclusive and user-friendly network – one that encourages everyone to embrace electric mobility. We are thrilled to be part of the EV community and thank you for doing your part to encourage everyone to be a better EV charger.

If you have any suggestions on how we might improve the EV charging experience, we’d love to hear from you! Please click here.

For more information about EV charging and the etiquette around it, please see the article on EV Charging 101. For more information about FLO, please visit FLO.com.