Electric Vehicle Resources
Electric vehicles (EVs) are becoming more and more popular. Nearly every manufacturer offers at least one model, and the technology continues to improve. EVs provide environmental benefits, lower operating costs, and a quiet, smooth and fun ride. Beltrami Electric is your resource for EV information, including sharing our experience with our own EV, a 2018 Chevy Bolt.
Electric Vehicle FAQs
Electric vehicle (EV) - powered purely with electricity, no backup fuel source
Examples: Tesla Model 3, Chevy Bolt, Nissan Leaf
Plug-in hybrid vehicle (PHEV) - can run on electric power or gas power
Example: Toyota Prius, Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, Chevy Volt
- At the standard electric rate, most EVs cost less than half as much to fuel than gas-powered cars.
- A 2018 University of Michigan study found EVs cost an average of $485 annually to operate, compared to $1,117 for a gas-powered vehicle.
- With utility incentives like off-peak charging programs, that cost drops even more.
- Many public charging stations can be used for free.
EVs don't need oil changes, because they don't use oil. They also lack air filters, spark plugs, timing belts and many other parts that need replacement in a gas car.
Smooth and fun ride
- EV motors are nearly silent and provide smooth (and incredibly fast) acceleration, as there are no shifting gears.
- With a heavy battery creating a low center of gravity, EVs handle curves and turns like a dream.
- Local EV owners charge up with clean, regionally produced electricity.
Level 1 - 120 volts
Charging a vehicle at Level 1 means plugging into a standard 12-volt outlet. Most vehicles can be charged at Level 1, although it takes significantly longer (15-40 hours) than other charging options.
Level 2 - 240 volts
Using 240-volt service, a depleted 60-kW battery can be fully charged in approximately 6 to 8 hours. Some electric models can completely charge in as little as 30 minutes. This is the most common level for a home charging system and many public charging stations. Beltrami Electric has three Level 2 chargers available for the public. One at our headquarters near the solar garden, one in the Blackduck Wayside Rest Area and one at the Big Bog Recreation Area in Waskish.
Direct Current (DC) - Quick Charging
This option is typically only available for public charging. On average, the DC fast charger can add 40 miles of range for every 10 minutes of charging. These stations are usually found along major transportation corridors and many charge a fee for use (cost varies). Beltrami Electric has a public DC charger at our headquarters, near the solar garden.
Preparing for your electric vehicle is easy. Installing a 240-volt Level 2 home charger is much like installing the wiring for a clothes dryer or other heavy appliance. Most homeowners hire an electrician for this, and it can usually be done in a few hours.
Home chargers usually cost between $400 and $1,000, but many utilities offer rebates that cover much of the cost. Beltrami Electric offers a rebate of $50 per kilowatt ($500 maximum) for installing a Level 2 charger connected to Beltrami Electric's off-peak program. The average charger is 6.6 kilowatts (kW), which would qualify for a $330 rebate.
All vehicles, electric or otherwise, will experience some level of decreased performance in the winter months. On the coldest days, when drivers are blasting their heaters, EVs may lose up to 40% of their standard charge range. However, that loss can be shortened up to 20% by keeping your vehicle in a warm garage and allow it to heat up while still plugged in.
It varies depending on the vehicle, the battery and how much it needs to charge. A typical electric car (ex. Nissan Leaf) takes four hours to charge from empty using a 7kW home charger.
Public charging options are increasingly available in Minnesota and North Dakota. There are dozens of stations throughout both states, with more popping up all the time. PlugShare.com, a national online charging station locator, is one of many online tools to find charging opportunities between you and your destination.
This can vary depending on your EV and the battery size.
- On average, an EV will require 30 kilowatt-hours (kWh) per 100 miles of range.
- If charging at home on our regular rate, EV charging will cost $.036 per mile.
- If charging at home using a Level 2 charger connected to our off-peak program, EV charging will cost $.020 per mile.
- Based on driving 10,000 miles per year, the cost to charge an EV will be $360 per year on the regular rate or $200 per year on the off-peak rate.
* This does not include any utilization of public chargers that may charge a higher fee for use.
Yes, Beltrami Electric Cooperative offers an incentive for the installation of a Level 2 charger (240-volt) connected to the load management program: $100 per kilowatt ($500 maximum).
In addition, there are currently federal consumer tax credits available for the purchase of an EV, ranging from $2,500 to $7,500 based on the size of the EV's battery. Most insurance carriers also offer discounted rates.
Beltrami Electric members Alyssa & Jamin share their experience owning an electric vehicle (EV), and the convenience and savings of charging at home on the off-peak program.