Electric Vehicle FAQ

Electric Vehicles differ from traditional gas/diesel-fueled vehicles, as they rely on electric motors either partly or completely to propel the vehicle. PHEVs and HEVs still have a small internal combustion engine, along with battery banks and electric motors that improve gas mileage. BEVs solely rely on electric motors with a large battery bank to power them.

The key difference between Plug-in hybrid vehicles and hybrid vehicles is that Plug-ins can charge their batteries in two ways: through the combustion engine and an external power source. Hybrid vehicles, on the other hand, only can charge their battery through regenerative braking and the combustion engine. For more information visit the Plug-In hybrid and hybrid tabs through this link.

The time it takes to charge an electric vehicle depends on the type of charger used and the size of the battery. Level 1 charging, which uses a standard household outlet, can take up to 24 hours to fully charge a vehicle. Level 2 charging, which uses a dedicated charging station, can take anywhere from 4 to 8 hours. DC fast charging can charge a vehicle to 80% capacity in as little as 30 minutes.

The range of an electric vehicle varies depending on the type of vehicle and the size of the battery. Some battery electric vehicles can travel up to 300 miles or more on a single charge, while plug-in hybrids may have a range of 100 miles or less of fully electric driving.

There are several places where you can charge your electric vehicle:

  1. Home charging: You can charge your electric vehicle at home using a Level 1 or Level 2 charger. Level 1 chargers can be plugged into a standard household outlet and provide a slow charge, while Level 2 chargers require a dedicated circuit and can provide a faster charge.
  2. Public charging stations: Public charging stations are available in many cities and can be found using various smartphone apps and websites. These charging stations may be free or require a fee to use.
  3. Workplace charging: Many employers offer workplace charging for their employees. If you have access to workplace charging, you can charge your electric vehicle while you're at work.
  4. Destination charging: Many businesses, such as hotels, shopping centers, and restaurants, offer electric vehicle charging for their customers. This allows you to charge your vehicle while you're out and about.
  5. Roadside charging: Some electric vehicle manufacturers offer roadside charging assistance, which can provide a quick charge if you run out of battery power while on the road.

Check out this map to see the current charging infrastructure in and around the state.

Yes, you can charge your electric vehicle (EV) while it's raining. The charging stations are designed to be safe and waterproof, and the charging cable is insulated to protect against water and other elements. However, it's always a good idea to take precautions and make sure that the charging station and cable are dry before plugging in your EV. Additionally, you should always follow the manufacturer's instructions and safety guidelines when charging your EV.

Charging a BEV is cheaper than filling up a gas-powered vehicle. A study by the University of Michigan Transportation Institute found that in Rhode Island, the average fuel cost per year for gas vehicles was just over 1.5 times the average fuel cost for battery-electric vehicles. To compare fuel costs in other states, or see the national average, click here and go to pages 8-9.

Here are some general estimates for the cost to fully charge an EV:

  • For a small EV with a 40-kWh battery and an average electricity rate of $0.13 per kWh, it would cost around $5.20 to fully charge the vehicle.
  • For a mid-size EV with a 60-kWh battery and an average electricity rate of $0.13 per kWh, it would cost around $7.80 to fully charge the vehicle.
  • For a large EV with a 100-kWh battery and an average electricity rate of $0.13 per kWh, it would cost around $13.00 to fully charge the vehicle.


It's important to note that these are general estimates and the actual cost of charging an EV can vary depending on your specific circumstances. Additionally, some public charging stations may require a fee to use, which can add to the cost of charging your vehicle.

The lifespan of an electric vehicle battery varies depending on factors such as the type of battery, the vehicle's usage patterns, and environmental conditions. Generally, electric vehicle batteries can last anywhere from 8 to 15 years, but may need to be replaced earlier if they no longer hold a charge.

The upfront cost of an electric vehicle on average was found to be around $10,000 more expensive than traditional gas-powered vehicles. However, this price can be offset through various federal and state rebates, as well as a decrease in fuel cost.

Yes. You can click here to learn more and apply for the DRIVE EV rebate program.

BEVs have no tailpipe emissions, and FCEVs only emit water vapor and warm air. However, PHEVs and HEVs still emit nitrogen dioxide, carbon monoxide, and hydrocarbons like traditional gas & diesel-powered vehicles, though the amount emitted per mile is reduced significantly by the added electric motor.