How rude! Just watch.
It seems obvious that unplugging someone’s unattended car to charge your own is, at the very least, rude. But manners are often easier said than done.
Electric vehicle charging, especially public charging, is a new concept for many. And with new technology comes new rules to keep things civilized.
Here’s some quick EV etiquette for C-stores to be aware of as they get into the e-Mobility game
Never Unplug Someone Else’s Vehicle
You should never unplug another EV unless you have explicit permission from the owner. Because electric vehicle charging stations typically operate on a “first come, first served” basis, unplugging someone else’s car just because you think you need the battery power more is immature and misguided. Unless it’s an absolute emergency and you’re 100% certain the car is fully charged, you should follow this rule to the letter. After all, you wouldn’t want someone to unplug your car while it’s charging!
Don’t Block the Plug
As an EV driver, seeing an Internal Combustion Engine (ICE) car blocking access to EV charging stations probably makes you feel a bit enraged. Don’t become the kind of person you despise by parking in front of a charging station when you aren’t using it. Whether you drive a gasoline-powered vehicle or an electric car, don’t park in front of a charging station if you aren’t using it. Even if it’s “just for a few minutes,” find another place to park. Nothing makes EV drivers more upset than getting “ICEd” when they desperately need a charge. And if you finish charging before you finish running errands? Move your car to regular (non-EV) parking space so other EV drivers can use the charging station.
Correctly Assess Your Needs
Some EV owners panic when they know they might not be able to find electric car charging stations in close proximity to their location. It makes sense that when you see one, you’ll stop to fuel up. But is it really necessary to always top up? If your battery is close enough to being fully charged and you’re not far from home, it’s a good idea to leave the charging station open for a driver who really needs it. There’s no reason to top off your charge if you’ll have private access to your own port and you can easily make it there without running low.
Know When to Leave a Note
If you need to complete a full battery charge, it can take several hours. Though you’ll probably do your best to return before your battery is done charging, you might get caught up in a checkout line or on a hiking trail. If you aren’t sure you’ll make it back in time, you should make a point to leave a note for other EV owners. This can let them know 1. that they can unplug your vehicle once it hits a certain percentage or 2. that they should only unplug your vehicle in the case of an emergency. Some EV drivers put signs on their windshields, while others leave notes on PlugShare.
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