With more than 80% of all electric car charging taking place at home, getting to grips with a domestic charging routine really can be the best way of having the most economic and practical way of using an electric vehicle.
While there are a few options available to you as a ‘home charger’, it’s worth just revisiting the benefits of home electric car charging before we go into detail about how best to do it.
Advantages Of Charging From Home
-It can save you money on running costs. -It can save you time - never use a petrol station again! -It’s good for your car battery’s health.
Why It Pays To Charge At Home
The biggest reason of all? Because it makes running an EV as simple as plugging in every night and coming down to a happily charged car every time you set off.
And the second biggest reason – it’s going to be the most cost-effective way of paying for charging, thanks to highly economical electricity tariffs that allow EV owners to charge at night for a fraction of the cost of using a public rapid charger – perhaps a tenth of the cost.
And if you need one more reason – slower home charging is actually kinder to your battery, meaning longer battery life and potentially prolonged range and performance over the vehicle’s lifespan.
What’s more - if you lease an EV with Vanarama, you can get a free home charger worth £900!*
What Do You Need To Charge An EV At Home?
In reality nothing more than a basic three-pin charging cable that your car will probably come with that allows you to plug into a standard socket in your house.
The pros? It’s incredibly simple to use and highly portable. The downsides? Unless you have a small EV runaround with an equally small battery (less than 40kWh) then charging off a house plug could take over a day to provide a full charge for an EV with a large battery such as a Tesla, Jaguar I-Pace or Audi e-Tron.
And you’ll probably get bored of running a long extension cable out of the sitting room window in winter…
Far better to think of your basic charging cable as an emergency back-up for when
you need to charge somewhere unexpected and plan, instead, to install a bespoke wallbox charger.
Why You’ll Want A Wall Charger For Your Electric Car
Charge times for popular cars at home on a 7kW charger:
You may already have spotted one of these on the side of a neighbour’s house or tucked away neatly in their garage.
A wallbox charger is a purpose-built unit, designed to quickly and safely draw maximum current from your domestic supply and, if you opt for a 7kW model, dramatically reduce the time it will take you to charge at home.
Rather than running off a house socket, a wallbox is wired directly into your domestic fuse box, meaning it can draw maximum power safely, without impacting on your household supply.
Wondering how much it costs to charge an electric car? Take a look at our guide.
How To Get An Electric Car Charging Point Installed At Home
If you’re leasing an electric car through Vanarama then the great news is the UK's leading independent online car and van leasing company will be providing EV leasing customers with FREE electric vehicle home charge points.
The scheme has been developed in partnership with ChargedEV, the UK's leading independent EV charge point provider.
The Smart+ home charge points, which will be supplied and fitted by ChargedEV, will feature 7kW output, programmable charge times and load balancing which will deliver a simple and effective solution for customers.
"Statistics show that where off street parking is available, over 80% of charging will be done at home. But, it is also clear that one of the concerns people have about moving to an electric vehicle is the cost of installing a charge point. We hope our offer will make this happen seamlessly and simply for our customers," explained Vanarama’s Head of EV, Paul Kirby.
Watts Up - What Wattage Wall Charger Should You Buy?
Most wallboxes installed in the UK deliver 7kW ‘fast’ charging, which reduces the time by about half compared to 3kW ‘slow’ home chargers.
Assuming your house wiring permits the installation of a 7kW wallbox, there really is very little reason to opt for the slower 3kW type. All modern-spec electric cars will happily charge at 7kW, which means a 10-hour boost through the night would get a 70% charge into even the largest 100kWh batteries on something like a Porsche Taycan or Tesla Model S.
Even faster 22kW home chargers are available but to run one you will need to have a three-phase power supply in your property. That’s something you’re currently unlikely to find at home but might well find ready for use on business and industrial sites. Something to consider if you are in a position to arrange a workplace charge point.
Is It Smart To Get A Smart Charger?
Many home chargers available today are classed as ‘smart’ chargers, which means they use Bluetooth or Wi-Fi to feed charging data to your smartphone
Once hooked up you can communicate directly with your charge point via your phone to ensure that you are making the most of cheap tariff rates, or can instruct the unit to stop charging at 80% capacity, thereby improving the lifespan of your battery pack.
It’s worth remembering that if you want to apply for the government’s £350 OLEV wall charger subsidy then you will HAVE to install a charger that is classed as ‘smart’.
How Much Does It Cost To Install A Home Charger?
The average cost of home installation for a ‘smart’ 7kW charger is in the region of £800 but that is before the widely available government wallbox grant that will pay up to £350 towards the overall cost of the installation.
If you buy or lease a new EV, then you’ll currently qualify for a grant that pays for 75 percent of the price and installation cost of a wallbox, up to a maximum of £350. Currently you can apply for a grant for each EV you own, although this is limited to two vehicles.
To make the process seamless, the grant is applied for by your installer and offset against the price of the installation, so for example a Pod-Point 7kW Solo smart charger with ‘untethered’ universal socket will cost £879 before the grant, but £529 once the grant has been applied (assuming you have no additional installation costs).
Want to know more? Take a look at our handy guide on everything you need to know about charging electric cars.
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