EV Charging Terms Explained

It’s helpful to think of charging an electric vehicle like water flowing through a pipe.


Volts (V)

Voltage refers to the tension — or potential — of energy. Using the analogy above, “water pressure” is equivalent to “voltage.” The higher the pressure, the more water can push through. The same applies for voltage — higher voltage means each bit of electricity can provide more power.

Amps (A)

Amps refer to the flow of electrons through a conductor (called a “current”). Using the water pipe analogy, this describes the volume of water flowing. The wider the pipe, the more water can flow.

Power (W)

Watts are units of power. They describe the rate at which energy is transferred. Using our water pipe analogy, we find that rate by multiplying the voltage (the water pipe pressure) by the amps (the flow rate or water). W=V*A

Energy (kWh)

Kilowatt-hours are a measurement of energy. It equals the amount of energy transferred over one hour. Using the water pipe analogy, it refers to how much water — or energy — flows out of the pipe over one hour.

Drivers on Pay As You Go and EVgo Membership plans both currently pay by time spent charging, with EVgo members having access to a lower rate. Because charging rates slow down dramatically after 80%, it’s more cost-effective to switch to an AC Level 2 charger--and helpful to the next EV driver hoping to

fast charge.

SOC (State of Charge)

State of Charge describes how full your battery is, in terms of percentage. Think of it like a fuel gauge.


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