What is graze charging?
We love grazing here at Ohme.
And no, we’re not talking about lying on the sofa watching a box set with a tub of popcorn the size of Devon, we’re talking about grazing when charging.
What does ‘graze charging’ mean exactly? The best way to think about charging your EV is the way you probably think about charging your mobile phone. Unless you don’t have easy access to a plug, you don’t usually run the battery on your phone down to zero before charging it up.
The same is true for your EV. When running an EV as your car, it’s far better to constantly top up by charging at home, so that you always set off for any journey with the highest convenient level of charge and range.
What’s in it for me?
This has two benefits. First, if you’re on an off-peak electricity tariff with your energy provider, it best enables you to keep as much of your charging in those off-peak times as possible, maximising your savings on your running costs. Second, by always starting any journey with that highest level of charge and range, it enables you to reduce any usage of public chargers, which are far more expensive than charging at home.
“I charge my Hyundai every day and whenever I’m at home, I always plug it in to my Ohme Home Pro and let the app take care of the rest, so I’m always graze charging,” said Ian Muller who drives a 2020 Hyundai Ioniq and covers around 25,000 miles a year. “My charging obviously varies with the smallest charge being 5kWh and the largest being 38kWh over the last year, but my average is less than 14kWh a day. That’s less than two hours, which means I’m always within the off-peak times of my Intelligent Octopus Go tariff.”
For any first-time EV drivers coming from a petrol or diesel car, this may be a new lesson to learn. With petrols and diesels, the usual habit of most drivers is to let the fuel gauge run down low before doing a big fill up.
Graze charging is effectively the opposite of that, so the equivalent of topping up your fuel tank when it drops to three-quarters or less. But while it may sound a bit unusual when described in that way, the reality is that, with an EV, graze charging is the best way to reduce your running costs and get the best value for money from smart charging your electric vehicle.