All about EV Smart Charging

by Monta | September 23, 2022

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What is EV Smart Charging and how does it work?

EV Smart Charging refers to a system that enables electric vehicle owners to charge their vehicles more efficiently and cost-effectively. The system uses data from the grid and the EV owner's usage patterns to optimise the charging process, reducing the overall cost of charging the EV by understanding when the charge should take place to check all boxes: low price, time to use the car, needed charging breaks.

Like that, the entire charging cycle becomes more dynamic and more data-oriented paving the path for lower energy consumption. All data is automatically uploaded and stored in the cloud allowing for continuous reiterations of features and processes depending on the needs of the EV owners. Regardless of whether you are an EV driver or a provider you can always feel safe that you can keep up with whatever the future brings.

data driven smart charging illustration
Smart charging in a nutshell

On the contrary, traditional EV chargers are unable to share data between them, your car, and the grid making the entire charging experience more pricey and energy-demanding. That being said, it is no surprise that so much attention has lately been invested in Smart EV Charging and the development of new regulations about it.

Smart EV Charging: From basic to advanced

Smart EV Charging isn't an "either or" state. Even if you are still relying on traditional EV chargers, there is room for improvement and for finding more efficient ways to charge your electric vehicle.

In a nutshell, here are the five steps towards an EV Smart Charging experience from basic to fully advanced:

  1. Are you still using an old (non-smart) charge point? There is still a smart way to charge your electric vehicle! All you have to do is plugging your electric car to the charging point manually during off-peak hours.
  2. Plugging your EV manually can sometimes be inconvenient or even annoying. That's why, you might want to look for electric vehicles that allow you to schedule in advance the time you want them to charge. In that manner, you can still take advantage of off-peak hours despite the fact that you don't have access to a smart charge point.
  3. In the case that you have the opportunity to use a smart charge point, things are much simpler. More specifically, it is highly probable that your smart charge point is supported by an app that will help you plan when your electric vehicle should charge outside of peak hours or on the basis of renewable energy availability.
  4. Relying on an EV tariffs could also be a beneficial option for you. By doing that, you allow the energy supplier of your choice to monitor when the best time for charging your vehicle is and remotely manage your charging events.
  5. The last step on our list is still under development but it is certainly part of the Smart EV Charging future. The "vehicle to everything" is seen as the next step in EV charging, as it allows other entities (e.g. your home or any other type of building) to benefit from any additional energy of your Electric Vehicle battery.

The benefits of Smart EV Charging

Smart EV Charging, in essence, just means that the charge point is connected to the Internet, enabling it to be remotely controlled by a software provider. It helps optimise the charging process, reducing the overall cost of charging the EV.

There are several benefits for EV drivers, businesses and hardware manufacturers or resellers:

How can an EV driver benefit from Smart Charging?

We know well that being always on your toes about finding the right time window for charging your electric vehicle can be tiring. This is why Smart Electric Vehicle Charging can make a difference, as it will allow you, as an EV driver, to enjoy a number of benefits:

  • Reduced overall cost of charging your EV
  • More efficient use of electricity (i.e. less wasted power)
  • Avoidance of "peak demand" charges from your utility company
  • Increased convenience (e.g. being able to set a charging schedule that works for your lifestyle)

Smart EV Charging benefits to businesses

EV Smart Charging isn't beneficial only for Electric Car drivers. Businesses have a lot to earn from it, as well. Regardless of your type of business, Smart Electric Vehicle Charging can provide you with the following:

  • Full and automated control of your charge points
  • Schedule private, semi-public or public access to your charge points
  • Custom pricing for employees, customers, guests, etc.
  • Plan price changes or opt for dynamic spot pricing for peace of mind
  • Open up your charge points for public or semi-public access for additional income
  • Hassle-free payments
  • Better monitoring of your consumption

What can partners gain from Smart EV Charging?

If you are after an intuitive end-to-end EV charging experience, then this is again the single future-proof way for you. Thanks to Smart EV Charing, you will be able to:

  • Scale your business faster
  • Gain full and intuitive control of charge points
  • Set automated rules for private, semi-public or public access for individual chargers or entires sites
  • Dynamically adjust pricing based on your own preferences: different times or groups of drivers, static or following the spot price of energy
  • Automate and reduce maintenance needs
  • Increase charge point availability

How to get started with EV Smart Charging

Diving into Smart EV Charging might feel like an overwhelming task. However, it is much simpler than you think if you have the right strategy in place:

Start from the basics

First things first, you need to make sure that all the prerequisites for Smart EV Charging are in place. For instance, you have to decide where your smart charge point will be installed. Do you have an off-street parking spot to do it? And what about connectivity? Remember that a smart charge point relies on Wi-Fi or 3G/4G/5G connection to receive and share data.

Find the right smart charge point for you

Now that the fundamentals are in place, it's time to start looking for the right charge point. Charge points can be either tethered or untethered. In simple words, a smart charge point can either have a cable permanently attached to it or not. There are a number of different models in the market, so be sure to do your research to find one that meets your needs.

Use the right EV charging management app

Once you have a smart charge point, the next step is to download and install a charging management software like Monta. It will allow you to connect your charger to the Internet in an easy and intuitive way, and configure it to work with your specific EV and charging schedule.

Smart charging in the Monta app
Smart charging feature in the Monta app

Listen to the data

Once everything is up and running, you will soon start seeing the benefit of this new data-driven approach around EV charging. Just by monitoring the app on your smartphone, you will be able to monitor whether everything works as it should and act quickly if a problem emerges.

Read more: What makes Monta different from other options in the market?

UK smart charging legislation: A quick introduction

The new Smart Charging regulations in the United Kingdom came into force just a few months ago (30.06.2022). One of the main goals behind this new legislative initiative was the standardisation of all charge points used in UK.

In that way, the British government hopes that it will increase charging behaviour consistency and control demand on the grid more effectively.

The main points to keep in mind

In short, all new devices sold by charge points sellers should be able to support the following features:

  • Charging during high-demand hours should be disabled by default
  • A randomised delay function should be introduced
  • Stronger focus on safety
  • The charging cycle should not be interrupted even if the charge point loses access to a communications network
  • Provide owners of electric vehicles with a detailed measuring system which will give them full overview of the amount of electricity used as well as the duration of the charging session

Learn more and be prepared

It quickly becomes evident that the new Smart Charging legislation introduced by the British government is a very ambitious plan which in the long run could reduce energy consumption and bring UK to a greener and more energy-efficient path.

If you live in the United Kingdom and want to find out more about the new regulations, we invite you to read our detailed guide on the topic!

FAQs about EV Smart Charging

We know well the Smart EV Charging can in the beginning be quite confusing. For that reason, we have prepared below a list with some of the most common questions to help demystify the topic:

Q: What is the difference between EV Smart Charging and regular EV Charging?

A: EV Smart Charging refers to a system that enables EV owners to charge their electric vehicles more efficiently and cost-effectively. The system uses data from the grid and the EV owner's usage patterns to optimize the charging process, thereby reducing the overall cost of charging the EV.

Q: How much does EV Smart Charging cost?

A: The cost of EV Smart Charging will vary depending on the specific management system you choose to set up and use. Be sure to do your research to find a system that meets your needs and budget. However, Monta's software is completely free for private users charging their own electric vehicles.

Q: How do I get started with EV Smart Charging?

A: If you're interested in using EV Smart Charging, the first step is to purchase a smart charge point. There are a number of different models on the market, so be sure to do your research to find one that meets your needs. It's worth noting that Monta integrates with any hardware brand.

Once you have a smart charge point, the next step is to download and install Monta. Monta will allow you to connect your charger to the internet and configure it to work with your specific EV and charging schedule.

Through Monta you can receive a quote for a charge point installation from one of our certified installer partners. They will make sure you are properly set up with a charger as soon as possible, get access to the right grants, and enable your charge point to use Monta.

Q: What types of Electric Vehicles can use EV Smart Charging?

A: EV Smart Charging is compatible with all electric car models.

Q: Is EV Smart Charging only available in certain countries?

A: EV Smart Charging is currently available anywhere, you just need your charge point to be connected to the Internet.

Q: Do car chargers have to be smart?

A: In certain countries like the United Kingdom, it is required that all new charge points support certain features that make them smarter, more cost-efficient and all in all standardised.

Depending on the country that you live in, the regulations might differ. However, it is strongly recommended that you rely on a smart car charger, as it is the most friendly option both for your wallet and the environment.

Q: Does Monta support Smart Charging?

Yes! Smart Charging has been a priority for Monta since the very beginning. We encourage all users to download our app (it's free!) and see how the smart charging option can help them gain full overview of their vehicle's charging cycle.

How can Monta help you?

Making EV charging smarter and hassle-free has been a priority for Monta since day one. This is why our app is already able to support a smart charging option and we encourage our users to interact with their charging data in our intuitive insights section of the app.

Since June 30th, we have also disabled peak charging as a default and introduced a randomised delay at the start of each charge via our software for new charge points connected to our platform.

We work with over 220+ charge point brands, so if your charge point uses Monta you can have peace of mind that all your charges are smart, green and cost-efficient.

Try out our smart charging feature today by downloading the Monta app. It’s free!

Save more with the Monta app, its free!

We built the Monta app to give you full control over the charging experience. Use Green energy, save more on your monthly electricity bill and lower CO2, all with a touch of your finger.

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