When it comes to electric vehicle (EV) charging, it’s not as simple as one size fits all. Not all EVs are compatible with all types of chargers, so it’s important to be aware of that when you’re choosing your model.
Charging stations will offer a variety of connectors to suit different EVs, and you’ll be able to get a home charging point installed that fits your particular model.
Don’t worry – it's not a case that there are so many different EV charging connectors that you’ll struggle to find a charging point that’s compatible. Most new models use a Type 2 connector, but there are also Type 1, CCS 1, CCS 2, specific Tesla chargers, standard UK three-pin plug chargers, and CHAdeMO.
What is CHAdeMO?
CHAdeMO is a type of EV connector that offers a quick charge and is popular at rapid charging stations. While your typical home charging unit will offer charging at a rate of 7kW, the CHAdeMO set-up really takes it up a level and can reach ranges of 400kW.
In a Nissan Leaf, the CHAdeMo connector can offer a charge from 20% to 80% in as little as 60 minutes. That’s ideal for getting a boost on the go, and perfect for longer road trips.
How do CHAdeMO connectors work?
CHAdeMO connectors use direct current (DC) to power up the car’s battery and carry out the conversion from alternating current (AC) in the charging point. AC is what the national grid in the UK supplies, so the conversion is necessary for the charging of our EVs.
If you choose to charge with a standard AC home charger, the vehicle itself will carry out the conversion to DC. It used a rectifier to convert the AC power into DC that the vehicle can use.
Choosing a CHAdeMO connector that can do those conversions itself means it can charge quicker.
What does CHAdeMO stand for?
‘CHAdeMO’ is a play on the phrase ‘CHArge de MOve’, which means ‘charge for moving’. It’s a pun on the Japanese phrase ‘O cha demo ikaga desuka’, which translates to ‘let’s have a cup of tea while charging’.
Which cars use CHAdeMO connectors?
You probably won't be shocked to hear that CHAdeMO charging is favoured by Japanese carmakers, since they put the work in to get it into action.
Here in the UK, EV models that can use the rapid CHAdeMO connector are:
Citroen Berlingo Electric Mk1
Tesla Model S (with an adapter fitted)
What’s the difference between CHAdeMO and CCS?
The Combined Charging System (CCS) was introduced just after the CHAdeMO system, and is favoured by European and American carmakers.
CCS connectors are different from CHAdeMO as they allow both AC and DC charging from the same port. Cars fitted with a CHAdeMO connector need an extra adapter to offer Type 1 and 2 charging, whereas CCS are more universal.
How to find a CHAdeMO charger
If you’re looking for a CHAdeMO charger in your area, there are a range of websites and apps you can use to see what’s available.
This might also be helpful before you even purchase your new electric car, as you can see which compatible chargers are closer to you. If there are more CCS charging points nearby, you might want to look for a model that offers this type of connector.