Electric Car Charging At Home
Charging your car whilst you sleep.
It’s hard to imagine that the hum of electricity will eventually replace the sound of revving engines, but that’s exactly what the government is planning with their commitment to ban all new petrol and diesel cars by 2040. This means a dynamic shift in technology and a huge growth in electric car charging at home, yes – at home.
Of course, traditionally fuelled cars and vans will still be around long after the ban, but it does mean having to seriously consider an electric (or at least a hybrid) car in the future. So, what does that mean when it comes to ‘filling up the tank’?
What do I need to know about electric car charging?
The good news is that with around 16,500 electric car charging points in the UK, it’s easier to charge an EV (electric vehicle) today than it was a few years ago. But industry experts have said it’s still not enough and that the country needs at least 100,000 charging stations built over the next two years.
So, whilst EV owners wait for the government’s promised £440 million package to help do this, electric car owners will need to think seriously about how to do the bulk of their vehicle charging at home.
How does car charging at home, work?
Most EVs will come with a normal three-pronged 13amp plug and can be recharged from a standard socket. Whilst plugging in your car like a washing machine might seem strange, it’s the easiest and most hassle-free way of charging.
There are drawbacks to using a standard socket and unless you have an outdoor plug point, it could mean running an extension lead from indoors which can be inconvenient. Standard sockets also mean it could take as long as overnight to fully charge your vehicle. To solve both these issues, the RAC recommend putting in a dedicated outdoor car charging box which can reduce charging times by as much as 60%.
How easy is it to install an EV charging wall-box and how much does it cost?
Installing a new charge box shouldn’t take any more than a couple of hours and it’s relatively simple to do – but as with any electrical installation, make sure you ask a fully qualified professional to help you.
Whether you’re looking for a domestic charging point or want to install one at your business premises, we’ll discuss the best charging position bearing in mind where cars are parked.
The cost of installation depends on the power and type of charger you choose – some of this will be down to the type of EV you have but there are three main types of charger: slow, fast, or rapid.
Slow 3kW (kilowatt) chargers can take up to 12 hours to reach your battery’s capacity but around seven hours is the norm. Fast chargers typically come as 7kW or 22kW power sources, meaning you can have a ‘full tank’ in around five or two hours respectively. Rapid chargers are usually found at service stations and can give you a boost of up to 80% charge in just 20 minutes.
Can I use any charger with my EV?
Sadly – this is where charging your EV can get a bit tricky. Unlike petrol or diesel nozzles which fit all vehicles, there’s no standard ‘plug’ for an EV, and different chargers fit different cars.
You’ll also need to bear in mind that the various types of chargers (slow, fast, or rapid) are only compatible with certain types of connectors.
As confusing as this all sounds, we’ll take you through the options and help you work out what’s right for you.
Are there any maintenance costs?
Properly installed wall-box chargers shouldn’t be an ongoing expense as they’re weatherproof and usually connected directly to your main fuse box. They’re also protected from overloading so you shouldn’t have any concerns about tripping your power.
Where can I go for advice?
As accredited suppliers and installers of several different charging solutions, we’re well-placed to steer you through what’s available. To find out more about some of the work we’ve done, visit our Electric car charging page. You can also find us on Facebook, send us a message on Twitter , or give us a call on 01473 741320.