Cost of an EV charging station: What you can expect

As the world shifts towards sustainable energy sources, electric vehicles (EVs) have become an increasingly popular choice for drivers seeking to reduce their carbon footprint. However, one of the biggest concerns for those considering purchasing an electric vehicle is the availability and cost of charging stations.

While traditional gas stations are ubiquitous and relatively inexpensive, EV charging stations are still in the process of becoming more widely available. Moreover, they’re often costly to install and operate.

So what can you expect an EV charging station to cost?

Factoring in charger type, installation method, labor costs, and location, you can expect to pay $2790 to $6700 for a level 2 household EV charging station. This is the most frequently used charging station level found throughout U.S. households.

But are they profitable, and how do they compare to public EV charging stations?

Let’s take a look.

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EV charging station levels

Before we outline the cost of an EV charging station, it’s important that we give you a brief overview of the various EV charging station levels available.

EV charger levels

Level 1 chargers

ClipperCreek PCS-15 Level 1 EV Charger
Level 1 EV Charger: ClipperCreek PCS-15.

Level 1 chargers are the most basic type of EV charger. They use 120V AC outlets, which are compatible with the standard outlets found in most American homes.

This level of charging is slow. As such, most EV owners will use level 1 charging as a last resort or as a way to charge their vehicles overnight.

Level 2 Chargers

Level 2 EV Charger: Bosch EL-51254-A
Level 2 EV Charger: Bosch EL-51254-A

Level 2 home charging stations use a 240-volt connection to power your electric vehicle. This makes them quicker and more efficient than their level 1 counterparts.

However, they require a different plug, meaning they cannot be plugged directly into a standard outlet. As such, you’ll need to factor in the price of a dedicated 240V outlet when using this charging level.

Level 3 Chargers

Level 3 DC Fast Charger: Phihong DW Series 30kW Wall-Mount

Level 3 chargers are known as DC fast chargers. These chargers take EV charging to the next level as they require a 400V or high-voltage input.

EV DC fast chargers can usually charge up to 80% of an EVs battery in as little as 20-30 minutes. This puts them on par with gas station EV chargers.

Additional info: Level 3 chargers are mostly made for commercial use. However, options at this level are slowly becoming available for households.

Related Reading: How Long Does It Take To Charge An EV? (120V, 220V & 440V)

Cost of an EV charging station (2023)

Several factors influence the cost of an EV charging station. These include:

  • Charger type.
  • Installation method.
  • Labor.
  • Location.

Charger type

Seen as we’ve already discussed the different charger levels, let’s jump right into the price points:

Charging Station LevelEstimated Charging TimeAverage Cost
Level 18-12 hoursFree-$500
Level 24-6 hours$300-$1,200
Level 3< 1 hour$12,000-$35,000

Installation method

There are two primary types of EV installation methods:

  • Plugged-in: A plugged-in connector requires you to install a 240-volt wall outlet. The advantage of this type of connector is that it’s portable and easy to remove or repair. If you require a replacement, you need not worry about further installation costs as your outlet is already installed.
  • Hardwired: A hardwired EVSE is wired directly into your home, meaning that it has an internal connection to your electrical wiring. The obvious downside of these connectors is that they aren’t portable, and replacing them can be expensive. However, you can use them outdoors, and they are often cheaper.

Installation cost summary:

EVSE TypeAverage Cost
Hardwired$850 – $1,800
Plugged-In$1,000 – $2,200

Labor cost

EV charging stations need to be installed by certified electricians. These professionals can charge anything between $40-$100 an hour.

Here are some additional costs that you may need to account for:

  • $120-$200 for a heavy-duty outlet installation.
  • $300-$600 for a wall mount.

Labor cost summary

Charging Station LevelAverage Cost
Level 2$420-$800
Level 3$2,750-$5,500

Location cost

Would you prefer to have your EV charging station indoors or outdoors?

Fortunately, many manufacturers make models that you can install in both locations, with little difference in the overall costs. If you decide to place your charging station outdoors, you must ensure your charger has an IP rating.

If you decide to go the bollard route, you’ll likely incur additional costs, as these installation types are more complex.

Location cost summary

LocationAverage Cost
Interior$800 – $1,500
Exterior$800 – $2,500

What’s the verdict?

Factoring in charger type, installation method, labor costs, and location, you can expect to pay $2790-$6700 for a level 2 household EV charging station. This is the most frequently used charging station level found throughout U.S. households.

Related reading: At What Voltage Should You Charge An Electric Car?

EV chargers that we recommend

Now that we’ve broken down the average cost of an EV charging station, here are some chargers that we recommend:

1. ChargePoint EV charger

ChargePoint Home Flex Electric Vehicle
View on Amazon

Product Information

Charger levelLevel 2
Amperage 50A
Protection UL Listed for electrical safety, NEMA 3R weatherproof rated.
Cable length23 ft
Warranty3 years

2. Grizzl-E level 2 EV charger

Grizzl-E level 2 EV charger.
View on Amazon

Product information

Charger level Level 2
AmperageAdjustable amperage (16A, 24A, 32A, 40A)
ProtectionIP67 (Water resistant), Fire resistant. Over Current, Over Voltage, Under Voltage, Missing Diode, Ground Fault, and Over Temperature Protections. Self-Monitoring and Recovery, Power Outage Recovery. Built-in GFCI.
Cable length24 ft
Warranty3 years

3. Emporia level 2 EV charger

Emporia level 2 EV charger
View on Amazon

Product information

Charger levelLevel 2
ProtectionManufactured to meet the safety criteria defined by these industry standards: NEC 625, SAE J1772, UL 817, UL 991, UL 2231, UL 2251, and UL 2594.
Cable length24 ft
Warranty3 years

4. Pulsar plus level 2 EV charger

ClipperCreek Level 2 EV Charger
View on Amazon

Product information

Charger levelLevel 2
Amperage32A, 40A, 48A, 64A
Protection Certified by ETL, an Independent Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory, to UL 2594 standards
Cable length25 ft
Warranty 3 years

How much do public EV charging stations cost?

In 2022, there were a recorded 49,383 publicly accessible electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) stations in the U.S., with 123,013 ports.

If you’d like to have a look at this network, check out PlugShare’s app.

Public charging pricing models

There are three primary public charging pricing models:

  • Pay as you go.
  • Monthly subscriptions.
  • Public charging rates.

Some charging stations combine the two, resulting in multiple variations for EV drivers. However, the most common pricing method and the most favored by drivers is pay-as-you-go.

Pay as you go

Public charging station rates are based on several factors:

  • Time of use.
  • Location.
  • Length.
  • Charger level.
  • Commercial electricity price.

Let’s use California as an example.

This state is notorious for having one of the highest electricity rates in the U.S. Additionally, it has time-of-use pricing. This varies by time, days of the week, and even seasons.

Related Reading: How to build a DIY EV charging station


Most EV drivers don’t want to get tied down by monthly subscription/membership fees. With that being said, they can be very worthwhile, as becoming a member of a charging network provides you with easy access to public stations.

Electrify America is one such company that offers a membership. All you have to do is download the app, sign up, and make a payment. For example, if you live in California and use Electrify America’s membership, you’d save $0.12 per kWh.

For the networks that offer subscription memberships, the monthly rates range from $4 to $7.99.

Public charging rates

A site-host owner or EV charging network establishes these rates. For instance, a site host may want to offer free public charging to incentivize customers to use their retail stores. In doing so, they will increase “dwell time”.

In saying that, the method of charging “by the minute” is far more common. Additionally, you may see “pricing per charging session” and “per kWh”.

Public charging idle fees

You’ll notice that charging networks impose idle fees on their EV customers. This is to incentivize the proper use of their charging stations. These fees also vary by network and location.

An idle fee can range from $0.40 – $1.30 per minute.

Note to our readers: If you’re looking for a comprehensive guide that compares the public EV charging networks, check out My EV.

Are EV Charging Stations Profitable?

There is a lot to consider before answering this question.

Remember, electricity rates are subject to multiple factors, such as location, time of year, day of the week, and time of day. Fortunately, electricity usage and costs are at their lowest late at night — this is when most EV charging is done.

Additionally, you must determine your charging method — home vs. public charging.

Electric vs. gas-powered vehicles: price comparison

Let’s compare the cost of powering electric vehicles vs. gas-powered vehicles.

Car And Driver conducted a 3-year cost analysis to determine which type of car is cheaper. In doing so, they analyzed the energy usage costs by taking 4 cars (2 electric, 2 gas) and relevant gas and electricity pricing data.

They used the following cars:

Gasoline data

Here, the national average gas price in February 2020 was used; $2.44 for regular and $3.11 for premium (the Mini requires higher-grade fuel).

The following are gasoline costs for 45,000 miles driven by the two gas-powered vehicles:

  • Mini Hardtop: $4,478
  • Hyundai Kona: $3,623

Electricity data

The average kW rate of $0.1282/kW in the United States for February 2020 was used. The split between at-home and on-the-go charging was also considered.

The following are electrical costs for 45,000 miles driven by the EVs:

  • Mini Electric: $1939
  • Kona Electric: $1723

As you can see, there is an average price difference of $2219.50 in favor of electric vehicles.

Property price incentive (a bonus)

New research conducted by has found that proximity to EV charging stations has become one of the latest indicators of property value.

The website used data from OpenChargeMap to map 19,743 charging stations across 6,980 zip codes, then analyzed the housing markets in the top 20 cities with the most stations.

The combined median listing price for these areas is $782,000.

Homes in locations suited to EV drivers have listing prices that are 1.5 times higher than their surrounding metro areas and 2.6 times higher than the rest of the country.

In short: it doesn’t just pay to have an EV with a household charging station; it also pays to be situated near public ones.

Related Reading: Electric Car Battery (Everything you need to know)

Should I install a home EV charging station or use public ones?

While public charging stations are fantastic for on-the-go charging, you must have your own home EV charging station.

According to the U.S. Department of energy, over 80 percent of EV charging happens at home, where EV owners have set up their own chargers.

In addition to being incredibly convenient, having your own home EV charging station will also save you money in the long run.

3 Tips when using an EV charging station

Never reach full charge

Try to avoid fully charging your EV to full capacity. This is because lithium-ion batteries prefer to operate under an 80% state of charge (SoC). Not charging fully allows space for regenerative braking to convert kinetic energy into usable energy if your battery has enough space.

Avoid deep discharging

If you let your EV battery discharge completely before recharging, it can reduce overall battery life. If your battery dips down near the 30% mark, you need to charge it so that it won’t get any lower.

Protect your connector

Holster the EV connector when not in use to prevent dirt and moisture from reaching the metal pins inside. 

Final thoughts

EV charging stations come with a high upfront cost but are an invaluable long-term investment.

If you’re in the market for one, take the time to do the necessary research before purchasing.

As always, if you have any further questions, please feel free to reach out to us in the comments section below or follow us on Twitter.

Robert Wortrich

Robert Wortrich

Robert is a content creator and editor. His passion for researching and the environment led him to joining the Climatebiz team. When he isn’t busy writing articles or learning more about everything Green Technology-related, you’ll find him spending time with friends or hiking one of the many wonderful trails that his home – Cape Town – has to offer.

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I was just wondering if you have considered where all this electricity is going to come from. And how many charging stations can actually be installed in one neighborhood. With the move to try to shut down coal and other so called fossil fuels, I think you are going to have a real problem providing the actual electricity and the grid to carry all the required power.

Kyle Browning

Hi there,

Thanks for sharing your thoughts/concerns.

One such solution to the issue you mentioned is Smart charging, also known as V1G charging.

This is a system where an EV and a charging device share the same data connection point. This allows you to intelligently manage exactly how your EV charges by connecting it to the grid. V1G charging makes optimal use of the energy that is available during certain periods of the day.

Also, keep in mind that an EV battery can be used to store renewable energy during the day when production levels tend to be higher. In the evening, when most household consumption peaks, this energy can be discharged to relieve some pressure on the market.

For utilities, this basically means that EVs offer the option for cheap energy storage, with no capital cost and relatively low operating costs. Not only can EV batteries be used to help stabilize the grid but EV owners will have the opportunity to earn money for this service.

Today, smart charging is becoming even more “smart” with V2G technology now also being available.

V2G technology allows charged power to be momentarily pushed back from your EVs battery back into the grid in order to alleviate and balance any variations in production/consumption.

Lastly, keep in mind that the shift to renewables is a gradual phasing out process, with Nuclear perhaps playing a larger role than once thought.

I recommend watching this educational video by Kurzgesagt to get a better idea of how Nuclear may be of assistance while shifting entirely to renewables.

Libbie Bailey

This seems very informative. I have a VRBO and am considering installing a station outside for the guests. You have no recommendations here for a small station, do you have any? Personally we do not have an elective vehicle, so this is an entirely new area for me.