Charging cables for electric cars - find the perfect cable for your e-car!
Electric and hybrid cars are taking over the roads, and with this growing popularity comes the need for a suitable charging cable. In this overview, you will find all the important information about charging cables for electric cars so that you can make the best purchase decision. We will also look at the different types of cables.
Why special cables for electric vehicles?
A special charging cable for electric cars is necessary because the amount of charging current does not depend on the demand of the vehicle. In most cases, the demand is much higher than the capacity of the mains connection anyway. It is much more a question of not overloading the mains connection. The charging cables play an important role here.
When charging an electric car, high voltages and currents are used, which can lead to problems. That's why developers and manufacturers have had to come up with some solutions to problems when it comes to charging cables. Safe, reliable, fast, and comfortable charging is the goal.
To meet these criteria, eMobility charging cables must fulfil many important requirements that inexpensive cable drums or extension cables cannot. Among other things, it is a question of avoiding overheating, a sufficient cross-section, the use of high-quality materials and much more.
A special charging cable for electric cars is thus indispensable to ensure that the vehicle can be charged quickly and reliably without overloading the mains connection. It is an important part of the infrastructure for electric mobility and contributes to making electric cars an increasingly attractive alternative to vehicles with combustion engines.
What requirements must the charging cable for e-cars meet?
In addition to the plug connection, the cable cross-section also plays an important role in transmitting the charging power. Powerful charging cables therefore have a large conductor cross-section to minimise losses due to line resistance. Nevertheless, the cables must remain flexible and elastic to ensure easy handling, even in sub-zero temperatures in winter.
The interaction between charging pole and vehicle takes place via special connection cables such as CP (Contact Pilot or Control Pilot) and PP (Proximity Pilot or Plug Present), which exchange information and release the charging voltage. The actual charger is in the vehicle, not in the charging pole. For safety reasons, the charging current must not be released until the charging plugs are securely connected to the vehicle and the charging station.
Another important factor is charging safety, which must be ensured by an automatic cut-off when the charging cable is disconnected or a premature release before the safe plug-in connection. If the plug contacts are already live before they are joined, the unavoidable sparking shortly before contacting can burn the contacts in a very short time. The same would happen if the plug of the charging cable is disconnected during the charging process.
In summary, an e-car charging cable must be robust, easy to handle, insulated and flexible to transfer the charging power safely. Interaction between the charging pole and the vehicle is ensured via special connection cables to release the charging voltage. Charging safety is ensured by an automatic disconnection when the charging cable is disconnected or a premature release before the safe plug-in connection.
What is the difference between Mode 2 and Mode 3 charging cables?
Mode 2 and Mode 3 charging cables refer to different charging modes defined in the IEC 61851-1 standard. They differ mainly in terms of their charging performance, safety functions and areas of application.
Mode 2 charging cables:
Mode 2 charging cables are usually used for occasional or emergency charging.
They allow charging at a conventional household socket (Schuko plug or CEE plug) and do not require a special charging station.
The charging power is limited and usually slower than with Mode 3 charging cables. Typically, it is between 2.3 kW and 3.7 kW.
A Mode 2 charging cable contains an integrated protection device (In-Cable Control and Protection Device, IC-CPD) that monitors the charging process and switches it off if necessary to ensure safety. Due to the lower charging power and the use of household sockets, Mode 2 charging cables are more suitable for occasional charging or emergencies.
Mode 3 charging cables:
Mode 3 charging cables are designed for regular charging at dedicated charging stations or wallboxes.
They require a dedicated charging station or wallbox equipped with a corresponding plug (usually type 2 in Europe).
The charging power is higher than with Mode 2 charging cables and ranges from 3.7 kW up to 22 kW (single-phase or three-phase) for AC charging.
Communication between the electric vehicle and the charging station ensures optimal charging performance and safety.
Mode 3 charging cables are more suitable for daily charging at home, at work or at public charging stations.
In summary, the main difference between Mode 2 and Mode 3 charging cables is the charging performance and the application range. Mode 2 cables are suitable for occasional or emergency charging at household sockets, while Mode 3 cables are intended for regular charging at dedicated charging stations or wallboxes.
What types of cables are there?
There are different cable types for electric cars, such as type 1 (SAE J1772), type 2 (IEC 62196), CCS (Combined Charging System) and CHAdeMO. Each cable type has its own specifications and is suitable for certain vehicles and charging stations. You're sure to find the right type for your e-car!
What power and length do charging cables for e-cars need to have?
Power and charging time are important factors to consider when choosing your charging cable. There is normal charging (AC) and fast charging (DC), and depending on your vehicle and charging needs, the ideal charging power may vary.
Cable lengths and types are also crucial for comfortable use. You can choose between 3-metre, 5-metre or 7.5-metre cables and decide between coiled or smooth cables.
Which charging cable for public charging points?
For public charging points in Europe, a Type 2 charging cable is recommended as it is the standard for electric cars in the EU. When choosing, pay attention to compatibility, power, cable length and cable type. A suitable type 2 cable enables convenient charging at various public charging stations.
So, what are you waiting for? Find the perfect charging cable for your electric car and enjoy the numerous advantages of environmentally friendly mobility!
FAQs on charging cables for e-cars:
Do I need a special charging cable for my e-car?
Yes, every e-car needs a charging cable to be charged. However, there are different types of charging cables, which can vary depending on the charging situation and the type of vehicle.
Which charging cable is best for my e-car?
This depends on various factors, such as the charging power of the vehicle, the type of charging point and the distance between the vehicle and the charging point. It is important to choose the right charging cable with the right plug type and capacity to make the charging process safe and efficient.
Can I use one charging cable for different e-car models?
It depends. Some charging cables can be used with different e-cars if they support the same plug type and charging capacity. However, it is important to make sure that the charging cable is compatible with the specific e-car model.
Can I use my charging cable outside?
Yes, there are charging cables that are specifically designed for outdoor use and have weatherproof insulation. However, it is important to ensure that the charging cable and connector are protected from moisture and other weather conditions.
Do I need to service my charging cable regularly?
It is advisable to regularly check the charging cable for damage or wear and replace it if necessary. It is also important to ensure that the connector is clean and free from dirt or corrosion to ensure a reliable and secure connection.
Can I roll up my charging cable or does it always have to be fully unplugged?
It is best not to roll up the charging cable when in use as this can cause overheating and cable breakage. It is better to leave the cable fully extended and flat on the floor to ensure proper cooling and avoid cable damage.
Can I plug my charging cable into an ordinary socket?
That depends on the power of your e-car. Some e-cars can be charged at an ordinary household socket, while others require a special charging station. It is important to check the charging power and requirements of your e-car before attempting to charge it from an ordinary socket.