BMW level 2 charger: What is the best BMW charger

BMW level 2 charger

A home charging station exclusively designed for BMW electric, plug-in hybrid vehicles is called the BMW Level 2 Charger. Compared to regular Level 1 charging, it offers up to 7.2 kW of power, enabling quicker EV battery charging.

BMW EV and PHEV users may easily install the BMW Level 2 Charger at home, giving them convenience and flexibility. Moreover, it has smart charging capabilities that let users plan when to charge their devices and check their progress via a smartphone app.

Manufactured to fit logically into your life, the BMW Level 2 charger is the comprehensive initiative for your electric vehicle whether you charge EV at home or your workplace. From fast charging stations to public charging and selecting the right charging plug, you will find all the information in this article below. 

BMW EV Charger 

EV charger

iX (an SUV) with a range of 324 miles and i4 (Sedan) with a range of 301 miles are the BMW models currently available for sale. These compare and compete with other EVs like the Audi e-Tron, Tesla Model 3, and Polestar in most of their features. Both BMW models are considered a symbol of excellence and efficiency.

Charging remains a major topic in EV discussions, owing to the scarcity of public charging stations and the fact that most EVs can only travel a few hundred miles before closing down. That situation, however, is likely to change soon. All 50 US states were given the green light to establish a nationwide EV charging system. According to this plan, people could see one charging station every 50 miles they travel. It will significantly reduce traffic congestion and increase the number of EVs on highways and in cities. Furthermore, this movement supports President Biden’s desire for more Americans to use a more efficient mode of transportation.

All BMW electric vehicles can use three levels of charging, which are also compatible to be charged with a 120v or 240v outlet home charger.

3 Different Levels of BMW Chargers are Available:wall mounted EV chargers

  • Charging at Level 1 (120 volts). A full charge takes 13-16 hours.
  • Charging at Level 2 (240 volts). A full charge takes about 4-5 hours.
  • Level 3 (480 volts) DC quick charging. For an 80 percent charge, it takes 20-30 minutes.

We must consider that various chargers deliver different charging speeds, and each EV comes with an optimal charge power it can accept, so it is quite essential to select the EV that can accept maximum power and charger delivering quick energy to make your charging life less awesome.

The below-mentioned charging levels are available, each with a different voltage and power output.

It’s time to discuss each of them in detail.

Level 1 Charger

black EV charging at home

EV charging with a Level 1, the 120-v charger comes with certain downsides, and the important thing is that it takes longer and only provides a four to five miles range per hour. Overnight charging allows an EV to travel only from 36 to 40 miles. It’s useful for people traveling less than 50 miles a day. Most EV owners are satisfied with this charging level at home because it fully meets their needs.

It is a 120V charger that can charge up to 4 miles per hour and is compatible with electric and plug-in hybrid BMWs.

A standard 120V household outlet is used in the Level 1 charger. BMW includes a free level 1 occasional use charger (OUC) with all their plug-in vehicles. Level 1 charging provides three to five miles of range per hour.

For many electric car owners, the included backup charger allows you to charge your BMW at any 120V power outlet, whether at home or on vacation.

Every electric BMW has a portable, flexible, rapid charger compatible with any 120-volt and 240-volt household outlet. Using this fast charger, you can charge your EV battery for the night, which will be fully charged by the morning.

Level 2 Charger

Level 2 ev charger

Range anxiety has always been a primary concern for those going electric, and getting a level 2 charger can go a long way to reducing your EV charging time.

The available Wallbox BMW Level 2 charger (240 Volt home installed) allows you to charge your all-electric BMW. It can deliver up to 30 miles in an hour once the car is plugged in. It fills from 0 to 100% in as little as 12 hours with a speed of 9.6 kW. Some EV owners also install it at home. It’s ideal for outdoor installation due to its basic and weatherproof design. A cable and plug holder is included for easy cable management when not in use.

Always consider the following two factors that influence Level 2 charging speed when delivering power to a BMW i3:

1. Charger maximum power output: Different chargers can draw varying amounts of electrical current through their 240V electric circuit. More current means more power, which faster charges the battery. Most level 2 chargers provide 3.3-10 kW of charging power to the i3.

2. Maximum power intake of i3: A Level 2 charger can provide up to 7.7 kW of charging power to the 2017 BMW i3. With such power, an empty i3 can be fully charged in just 4.5 hours and has sufficient efficiency to charge the battery each night.

Level 2 charging for home (cost is about $1250).

With a charging speed of up to 30 miles per hour, a level 2 charger is an excellent way to recharge your BMW EV fully while sleeping. It is seven times faster than a level 1 charger (120V). Most of the time, charging at home brings a lot of conveniences to EV owners.

A Level 2 charger can charge up to 80% capacity in 5 hours and seven times quicker than a Level 1 charge. There are over 35,000 Level 2 chargers widely available countrywide.

Features of Level 2 charger

  • You spend less time Using a 240-volt connection for Level 2 charging for your electric car battery.

  • The all-in-one design makes it easy to charge. A mounting bracket simplifies setup and regular charging with quick-release technology and built-in cable management.

  • You can control your charging using a smartphone app, Google Home, Amazon, and Alexa.

  • You can also check the status of your battery by using an app, Google Home, or Amazon Alexa. One can access the system via a smart speaker and view real-time data.

  • The wall-mounted JuiceBox has a stylish and functional design, with dynamic LEDs indicating charging status.

  • In certain cases, you will receive a limited warranty on certain parts and a 3-year warranty from the company’s website.

Level 3 Chargeran ev at level 3 charging station

The fastest and the most powerful mode of charging is the level 3, also known as DC fast charger. It uses AC (alternating current) instead of DC (direct current) against the other two chargers. BMW i3 battery can be charged up to 80% in a short while of 20 minutes, and charging slows down once it is charged up to 80% to protect battery health against overcharging.

BMW provides another advantage to its users as they can get free, fast charging, thanks to BMW’s agreement with EVgo. It is assigned to provide free DC fast charging through its Charge Now Program. The program is for those who purchase or lease a BMW i3. EVgo is the largest public fast-charging network with 800 plus charging locations nationwide.

DC fast charging is something that, in any case, can’t be installed at home because it requires high-transmission supply lines, and fewer residential areas are seen with such a huge supply. Further, its cost is exceedingly high; sometimes, it may cost more than your EV.

But usually, DC fast charger cost is around more than $50,000. Charging by a level 3 fast charger at a public charging station takes only 20 minutes to fill up to 80% of the battery. With such an incredible charging speed, even thinking about installing a fast charger at home looks foolish.

Charging EVs at Home

Of course, the simplest and most useful way to refill EVs is to plug them in at home. According to various surveys, charging at home is the most popular way to charge. The United States Department of Energy claims that about 80% of charging of Electric Vehicles occurs at homes.

BMW Home EV Chargers

The Flexible Fast Charger is good as a portable charging device for your BMW, connecting to 120-volt and even 240-volt.

Buying an all-electric BMW i4, iX, and i7 across the U.S. can be lucrative because the company provides you with a free home charger to install at home. The charger fitting may cost from $500 to $700 if done by some qualified technicians. 

Some organizations like (HOA) Home Owners Association may not allow you to install home chargers owing to their particular reservations. In that case, you should go for public charging stations widely spreading throughout the US.

Choosing a Compatible BMW EV Home Charger

The best home charger for the BMW i3, i4, i7, and iX would be a Chargepoint having 240V (50 amp). The amperage for a Home BMW EV charger should be 16 amps; however, some home chargers are also available with 30 amps or more. All-electric BMW most models are also compatible with all open public charging networks.

What’s the Difference Between Level 1, 2, & 3 Chargers?

Level 1 charger: A 120-volt standard wall outlet (also used in most home appliances) is used in this charger, and it fully charges a battery till morning if you put it on charge at night. It is provided free with EVs, and if you purchase it, it will cost $200. 

It’s not feasible for people to travel more than 45-50 miles a day

Level 2 chargerIt’s a more famous type of charger among EV owners as it charges almost seven times faster than a level 1 charger. It’s also better than the level 3 charger because level 3 is used for quick charging, and most people are afraid of the widespread perception that the constant use of DC fast chargers harms battery health.

So, level 2 chargers are tremendously growing worldwide, and people mostly like to go for them to charge their EVs. Level 2 takes 1 hour for 30 miles of range and can charge i4, iX, and i7 BMW models in just 7 to 8 hours from 0-100%.

Level 3 charger: It is the most expensive EV charger, which costs more than $50,000, and additionally, the Level 3 DC fast charger also needs improved infrastructure and a high power supply. Its home installation almost looks impossible.

Level 3 charger is designed to provide exceedingly quick charging to the EVs and can charge an EV BMW iX and i4 from 0 or 10 to 100% in just a while of 20-30 minutes. It makes the battery ready for up to 90 miles of range in just 10 minutes. These are less common and can only be found at large commercial centers, high public access areas, bus terminals, and airports.

Electric Car Charging Plug Types

EV charging plug

Different charging plugs and cables for electric vehicles have been created worldwide. The BMW home EV charger device includes a typical power cord and can be plugged into a regular wall outlet. However, a “Format 3” public charging cord with a Type 2 plug for charging BMW vehicles is advised at public EV charging stations. This system is now the European standard for electric vehicle charging at public charging.

Still, DC fast charging has no global standard. CCS2, CCS1, CHAdeMO, and GB/T have become the standard in Europe, North America, and Asia.

What Affects Charging Speed

Various factors play a significant role when the charging speed is concerned. The type of vehicle, size of the EV battery, charger power output, and the remaining battery power are the factors that determine how quickly the battery will charge.

Generally, using an alternate current for charging takes longer than charging by direct current. For instance, an iX3 is charged from 0-80% in less than 30 minutes using a high charging power output of 150 kW, while the same takes almost 7 hours to fully charge with a Wallbox giving an output of 11 kW.

How Much Does it Cost to Charge an EV?

 Charging your Electric Vehicles at home via a Wallbox home charger is the cheapest way to charge the EV. If you go to a public charging station, the cost of charging varies depending on the price of electricity, the pricing schedule, and the level of charging used.

Several variables, including the power cost in your location, the size of your EV’s battery, the charging speed, and the time of day you charge your car, determine how much it will cost to charge an EV battery.

An electric car can go between 200 and 250 miles on a full charge that costs, on average, $13.20 in the United States for a 60 kWh battery. However, the expense may differ significantly based on location and the power cost.

If an EV is charged up to 80% using a fast charging station, like a DC fast charger, in roughly 30 to 40 minutes, the cost per kWh may be greater.

In general, the cost of refueling an EV is less than that of a gas-powered vehicle, but there are still several variables to consider. To locate the cheapest alternative for you, it’s a good idea to examine the energy rates in your region and compare the prices of various charging methods.

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