Ever been so low on fuel that you just knew there was no way you could get to your destination without having to make a pitstop for fuel?
If it’s a gas station you need that’s not so much of a problem, but it’s quite a different story for EVs.
Sure, the number of charging stations across the US sounds like a lot. But in terms of how far apart these charging stations, that’s a different story.
Besides if you’re on your way to somewhere you don’t want to be late for, say to give a talk, or to attend a wedding, then you definitely can’t afford the time it would take to make a long detour for fuel or a charge.
But don’t worry – there's a solution. If you were to get yourself a portable charging station, you could charge up your EV literally wherever you happen to be.
All you’d have to do is find somewhere safe to stop, and you can charge the EV and get straight back on the road to your destination.
Without having to take any ridiculously long detour, and getting to your destination in plenty of time.
Coming up next, we’ve got some great portable EV chargers to show you. And better yet, they’re all level 2 chargers too.
And after that, you might want to stick around to see our buying guide where we cover all the main points to consider before you buy. We even have a little FAQ section for you too.
OUR TOP PICK
If you’re checking prices as you go along (recommended) then you’ll see that this charger is more expensive than many of its competitors that made our shortlist.
However, you do get some additional features for your money...
It has an intelligent chip that automatically adjusts the amperage as you charge up your EV.
It has universal compatibility and works well with any J1772 electric vehicle. And this portable EV charger works about 6 times faster than the level 1 charger that would have come with your EV.
The 32Amp model charges at 7.2kw/hour, providing 26 miles of range per hour. Super convenient!
We also love how water resistant the device is, at IP65, this means not only is it safe to use outdoors, but it's also safe to use in the rain too.
And speaking of safety, it's got some other great features too. Overvoltage, overheat, and overcurrent protection.
Not to mention protection against leakage, and even lightening. It’s passed a lot of rigorous testing too.
We also like the display screen, which provides all the info you need in real-time, including charging amperage, total kilowatt consumption, actual charging voltage, charge status, and so on.
It comes with a handy cable tie to keep everything neat and tidy. Handy because it’s a long cable, almost 24 feet in fact. And it has an ergonomic handle that is very comfortable to hold.
Customer feedback has been very positive indeed, with 80% of Amazon customers rating it at 5 stars out of 5.
And it comes backed by a 12-month warranty and great tech support.
- automatically adjusts the amperage
- Great safety measures
- Very fast charging
- universal compatibility
- Very water-resistant
- 12-month warranty
- great tech support
- Premium product at a premium price
This portable EV charger has been flying off the shelves and comes highly recommended by those who’ve tried it.
It’s really fast to charge up your electrical vehicle with, 2.5 times faster than the 16A level 2 EV charger, and 5 times faster than the 16A level 1 EV charger that most EVs come with. Great when you’re in a pinch.
It’s an upgraded version of Mustart’s previous model, with a brand-new design, better abrasion resistance, and a higher IP rating (dust and water resistance rating).
Speaking of which, the IP rating comes out at an impressive IP67, which means it's perfectly safe to use, even on a rainy day. This is thanks in part to the rubber ring and buffer area helping protect the cable outdoors.
It works with all plug-in EVs, and has a long charging cable, going up to 25 feet long.
We love the large display screen, and how it gives you real-time info on the current and voltage, how charged the electric vehicle is, and the remaining charge time.
It has several important safety features, including overvoltage, overcurrent, leakage, and overheat protection. It’s even lightening-proof. All good to know.
You can get a limited 24-month warranty on request from the manufacturer. Very reassuring.
- Very fast charge time
- Large display & real-time data
- Lots of great safety features
- Very high water resistance
- Limited 2-year warranty
- You need a 220 Volt or 240 Volt NEMA14-50 outlet to plug the charger into
This is a great option for the more budget-conscious amongst you. It’s one of the more affordable portable EV chargers on our shortlist.
But be assured, there’s no compromise with quality. This is a very reliable charger and comes highly recommended.
It will charge up your EV up to 3 times faster than a Level 1 charger would.
What we love about this charger is that it’s compatible with two different types of outlets, 120 volts, and 240 volts, and comes complete with a free adapter.
It has a universal connector, meaning it will connect with any standard J1772 connectors in North America.
We like how the device uses LED light indicators, which are very easy to see in low light and provide you with the car’s charging status.
The lights are color-coded, red for power, green for connection, blue for charging, and amber for fault. Very intuitive.
It has several important safety features, including lightning protection, leakage protection, over-current protection, and over-voltage and under-voltage protection.
It has a dust and water resistance rating of IP55, meaning it’s perfectly safe to use outdoors in bad weather. And this protection is further helped by the rubber cover over the connection area.
The charger has an ergonomic design and is comfortable to use.
It has a long charging cable, coming in at 25 feet, so it can reach right around the vehicle.
That said the product dimensions are quite modest, and keeping the various components in the trunk of your car presents no problem at all. And it comes with a carry case.
When the box arrives, you’ll find you will also receive a sturdy carry case for the charger that will easily fit in your trunk.
It comes complete with a 1-year no-hassle warranty.
If you’re not happy with your charger for any reason, you can reach out to the manufacturer and they will deal with the issue promptly.
- More affordable option
- 3 x faster than level 1
- Color-coded indicators
- Comes with an adapter
- 1-year no hassle warranty
- Some customers have found the charger stiff to remove and insert
This portable level 2 charger also comes at a very attractive price. And has also proved to be very popular with customers.
You can use it for either Level 1 or Level 2 charging, thanks to the special adapter.
It is compatible with all J1772 standard EVs and comes with a special adapter, so you can carry out either Level 1 or Level 2 charging.
It’s very intuitive and easy to use, with indicators displaying power on/off, connection, charging, and fault.
For a more in-depth guide to these indicators, please refer to the product page which can be accessed by clicking “Check price”.
This charger has an IP rating of IP55, meaning it’s safe to use outdoors, but you should avoid charging in the rain.
The charging cable is 25 feet long, which means it will reach right around the car.
It has an array of important safety features, such as overvoltage protection, overheating protection, leakage protection, overcurrent protection, and is even lightning-proof.
It comes in a handy portable carry case, that will fit everything and take up minimal room in your car’s trunk.
It comes complete with a 1-year warranty, which is reassuring.
- Level 1 or Level 2 charging
- Very easy to use & read
- Loads of great safety features
- Comes with a carry case
- Comes with a 1-year warranty
- Not designed to be used in the rain
Here’s another great portable EV charger. Very popular and very affordable too.
It comes with an adapter, so you can use it for either Level 1 or Level 2 charging. At level 2, you get 3 times faster charging than with the charger your EV came with.
This means less waiting around, and getting your destination that much quicker. The adapter cable is nice and long too, at 3 feet.
The plugs are compatible with all of the major EV automakers and multiple power outlets.
It’s very easy and intuitive to use, with LED indicators on the control box to inform you of the charging status, etc.
It comes with a 25-foot-long cable, which can get right around the car with no problems or excessive stretching.
It has an IP water resistance rating of IP55, which means it’s safe to use outdoors. However, we would advise against using it in the rain if this can at all be avoided.
There are plenty of safety features, so you can feel assured of your safety with it. There’s leakage protection, lightning protection, overcurrent protection, overheat protection, and overvoltage protection.
It comes with a convenient little carry case that you’ll have no problem fitting in your trunk, and will keep everything together and at hand when you need it.
The after-sales service is superb. Not only do you get a full 12-month warranty, but you get lifetime tech support to boot.
- Comes with an adapter
- Great value for money
- Lots of safety features
- Carry case included
- full 12-month warranty
- lifetime tech support
- Some customers complained that it doesn’t hang on the wall very well, but we suspect you’ll keep it in the carry case anyway
Best Portable Level 2 Charger Buying Guide
As promised, here’s your buying guide. By all means, have a scan through and check that you’ve thought of everything.
Why a Level 2
Level 2 chargers are much faster working than their Level 1 counterparts.
While a Level 1 chargers will deliver between 3 and 5 miles of range per hour to your EV, Level 2 chargers increase the rate to a range of between 12 and 60 miles per hour.
Compatibility is very important. Without this, your EV charger won’t work.
Luckily most portable EV chargers are pretty much universal, and all of the chargers that made our shortlist are compatible with any standard J1772 connectors in North America.
You also need to know the pattern of the sockets you will be using, also known as the NEMA enclosure so that you can buy accordingly.
Long charging Cable
Depending on how you park up to a compatible socket, you may need a large charging cable that will easily reach around the car. We would recommend looking for one that’s at least 25 feet long.
Not all portable EV chargers are designed to be used outdoors. For outdoor use, you will need a charger with a water resistance of at least IP55.
If you can’t get your car under shelter to charge it up, then you may need your portable charger to have a greater level of water resistance, in case it happens to rain when you stop to charge the car.
In this instance, you will need an IP rating closer to IP67 or higher.
Easy to Use
Your portable EV charger also needs to be easy to use, with indicators that will let you know, for example, when the charger is connected, when the power is on when it’s charging, and when there’s some kind of fault in the system.
When dealing with any kind of electrical power source, safety features are very important.
However, you can rest perfectly assured that there are no unsafe chargers on our shortlist. And, in fact, you’ll find that they all have quite an array of safety features.
Our advice is to also look to see if there’s a warranty available for the device. The length of a product’s warranty should give you a good indication of the expected lifespan of the product.
Sometimes warranty details are not available on the product page, but that’s not to say that you won’t get a warranty when the box arrives.
Portable EV chargers can vary in price from about $200 to over $400.
Our advice when it comes to the cost of a product that you’re shopping for online is to check the prices as you go along, so you can learn what your money buys on.
That way you can make a good, informed decision about what range your budget should be.
You may also want to consider which retailer you want to buy from.
This is because some online retailers, such as Amazon, sometimes allow payment in installments, which could come in handy for big-ticket items such as a portable EV charger.
Tips for using your portable EV charger
Finding the right kind of power outlet anywhere you go, is not, unfortunately, a given.
So, we recommend that you invest in an adapter, so you can plug your charger in at both 110 volt and 220 volt sockets.
Frequently Asked Questions
What is the best portable Level 2 EV charger?
We would argue that the best portable level 2 EV charger is our number one pick, the BESENERGY Portable Level 2 EV Charger.
Not only does it charge your EV very much faster than the charger that came with your EV, but it also features a special intelligent chip, to deliver the most appropriate amperage to your vehicle.
But it is expensive, so if you don’t have the budget for it, 4 other really great portable EV chargers also made our shortlist.
Can you charge an EV with a portable generator?
You can, in fact, charge an EV with a portable generator. The key to doing so is in checking that you have compatible cables.
But we will give you a heads up and say that a portable generator will take quite a while to fully recharge an EV’s battery pack.
Is a Level 2 charger worth it?
For anyone who does a lot of traveling day to day in their EV, we would absolutely recommend getting a Level 2 charger if you can afford to do so.
You should most definitely get a home charger, and if you are out on the road quite a lot, perhaps traveling across the state or on road trips, then it’s worth getting yourself a portable level 2 charger too.
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