The standard J1772 electric power receptacle (right) can receive power from Level 1 or Level 2 charging equipment. The CHAdeMO DC fast charge receptacle (left) uses a different type of connector.
To get the most out of your plug-in electric vehicle (also known as an electric car or EV), you must charge it on a regular basis. Charging frequently maximizes the range of all-electric vehicles and the electric-only miles of plug-in hybrid electric vehicles. Drivers can charge at home, at work, or in public places. While most drivers do more than 80% of their charging at home and it is often the least expensive option, workplace and public charging can complement residential charging.
TYPES OF PLUGS
Most modern chargers and vehicles have a standard connector and receptacle, called the SAE J1772. Any vehicle with this plug receptacle can use any Level 1 or Level 2 EVSE. All major vehicle and charging system manufacturers support this standard, so your vehicle should be compatible with nearly all non-fast charging workplace and public chargers.
Fast charging currently does not have a consistent standard connector. SAE International, an engineering standards-setting organization, has passed a standard for fast charging that adds high-voltage DC power contact pins to the SAE J1772 connector currently used for Level 1 and Level 2. This connector enables use of the same receptacle for all levels of charging, and is available on certain models like the Chevrolet Spark EV. However, other EVs (the Nissan Leaf and Mitsubishi i-MiEV in particular) use a different type of fast-charge connector called CHAdeMO. Fortunately, an increasing number of fast chargers have outlets for both SAE and CHAdeMO fast charging. Lastly, Tesla’s Supercharger system can only be used by Tesla vehicles and is not compatible with vehicles from any other manufacturer. Tesla vehicles can use CHAdeMO connectors through a vehicle adapter.