Selecting your first EV charger can often be a daunting prospect when you are new to the fast-emerging world of Electric Vehicles.
As specialists in domestic and commercial charging we are frequently asked by our customers to recommend the most appropriate EV chargers for their specific requirements.
Over the last two years we have amassed a large knowledge base on the benefits and pitfalls to consider when deciding on your perfect EV charger which we are happy to share.
Much like electric vehicles, chargers can often come down to personal choice but there are Five key areas that we think everyone should consider before deciding on their charger.
Functionality and Technology
Most modern EV chargers are defined by their functionality and connectivity. Working on smart internet platforms they belong to the stable of new products now available through the “Internet of things” (IOT). The “smart” revolution enables connectivity to a huge range of devices from Electric meters, heating systems, solar panels and yes EV chargers.
Huge amounts of data and analysis can be utilised which will help you save money and reduce your electric and battery costs.
From off peak timed charging, power load balancing, remote monitoring and multiple mode control the possibilities are endless. You can even connect to your solar panels and let the sun pay for your travel costs!
Much like your broadband there are various levels of speed available, but we intend focussing on rapid and fast in this overview.
Charging at home is the most convenient and cost-effective way to recharge an EV.
Most home chargers are rated at 7 kW. This is roughly equivalent to pulling through the same power in KW to three boiling kettles. The more the KW the faster the charging time.
An increasing number of companies are installing workplace EV charging units for use by employees and visitors this has the added benefit of providing an alternative revenue stream from parking charges.
Much like home-based charging, plugging-in an EV at the workplace is often used by employees to top up during the day whilst they are in the building working.
Having a charger at the workplace will also help retain and attract staff who are EV owners.
As the adoption of EV accelerates this will become a more important factor in recruitment and retention rates.
Benefit in kind and tax benefits are now readily available via HMRC and through government grants. At the workplace companies can now get up to £14,000 grant value for installing EV charging infrastructure.
There are restrictions on how fast an individual vehicle can charge which varies from manufacturer. A car inverter restricts the level of power it can receive from the charger which obviously affects the charge time. For example you could feasibly plug in to a 22kw charger but subsequently discover that your vehicle can only charge at maximum of 7kw.
As a result, you will only ever draw a maximum of 7kw.
If you are a regular at the motorway services, you will probably have noticed an array of new EV chargers appearing these are categorised as rapid chargers and typically offer superfast charging speed at between 40-350 kw DC output. Usually more expensive to use than the home or workplace charger they enable you to re charge very quickly if you are unexpectedly running low. Often used as a “last resort” they are useful when you find one working!
Power Output of charger (KW):
3.6kW = (15 miles of driving per hour of charge)
7kW = (25 miles of driving per hour of charge)
11kW = (40 miles of driving per hour of charge)
22kW = (80 miles of driving per hour of charge)
Look and design
EV chargers like EV vehicles come in all shapes and sizes. As it will be fitted to your home you may want to consider the look and location.
The three most common considerations are :-
Reputable and reliable installation
This comes under the category of pitfalls and beware of odd job men without the necessary accreditations and expertise.
Installing EV chargers is a specialist job and our installers have gone through extensive training both with the unit manufacturers and Office of Zero Emissions. The OZEV grant is only available to installers who have been certified and accredited following a robust process.
All our chargers come with a three-year warranty which is only valid if installed and signed off by one of our in-house specialist installers.
We pride ourselves on our installation expertise and no-nonsense traditional customer service.
Our reputation is underpinned by reliability, value for money and honest open communication: these are the critical components of our continued success.
We offer a comprehensive maintenance package which optimises the performance of your charger and our regular testing procedures ensures all required electrical safeguards are in place and fully compliant to industry health and safety regulations.
We strive to ensure your experience is seamless and simple by guiding you through every step of the process. Our rationale is simple. If our customers are happy then we hope they will recommend us to others.
Price and value for money
Cost is obviously an important consideration. There are a broad array of price points to suit every budget and currently the OZEV grant means you can secure a state of the art charger with a large discount via the Government grant scheme.
Be quick though because this is a temporary benefit. It is anticipated that as more EVs hit our roads this subsidy will disappear. Over the last two years the grant value has reduced in line with the increase in EV adoption.
We pride ourselves on our transparent pricing and offer the latest most up to date chargers at the best possible price. We usually conduct a remote or site survey which determines a firm price.
The easiest way to get an accurate price for your installation is to click "Request a contact" on your chosen charger. Our team will then talk you through the process.