top of page

How reliable are public EV charging stations? Report shows many EV drivers have issues

Bailey Schulz

Jun 14, 2023

James Cobb believes there are a lot of perks to driving an electric vehicle, but public charging is not one of them.

“(The infrastructure) is just too sparse and unreliable,” said Cobb, 44 of Owasso, Oklahoma, who started driving a Volkswagen ID.4 last year to reduce his carbon footprint. 

While home charging makes most trips a breeze, Cobb said it's the longer rides that can be a headache, like the recent 150-mile trip to the University of Oklahoma for his daughter’s graduation. 

He typically stops at a public charging station in Moore, Oklahoma, on the way to the university to refuel. But during his last visit, he said one of the four chargers wasn't working and another was delivering a limited number of kilowatts. He fell in line behind three other cars, making what is typically a 30-minute stop drag on more than an hour. He ran into another line at the public charging station on the way back. 

Cobb has found other trips are impossible to make with his EV because of a lack of charging infrastructure. He plans to borrow or rent an internal combustion engine car to make an upcoming trip to Dallas. 

“Honestly, (public charging) has got a long way to go. It's far from as reliable as it needs to be,” he said. 

The public charging infrastructure has been an issue for EV drivers across the country, especially those who can't yet rely on Tesla's expansive Supercharger network. (Starting next year, EVs from General Motors and Ford will be able to charge at many of Tesla’s charging stations when Tesla is set to open a portion of its U.S. electric vehicle charging network to rival brands.)

bottom of page