Most electric vehicle charging is done at home; after all, it’s the most affordable and convenient way to charge an electric car. So, whether you already own an electric vehicle or plan to, preparing your home and garage for an electric vehicle charging station is important. In this blog, we’ll cover how EV chargers work, the types of electric vehicle chargers, if your house can accommodate one, and share a step-by-step installation guide.
How EV Charging Stations Work
EVSE (electric vehicle service equipment), also known as an electric vehicle charging station, receives its power from your home’s electrical system.
Home-based charging stations are technically not chargers; electric vehicles have chargers built into them. These chargers receive alternating current from your home and convert it to direct current for the car’s battery pack.
Types of Home Electric Vehicle Charging Stations
There are two options for charging your electric vehicle at home.
First, the Level 1 charging stations are known as the slower charger. It has a 120-volt plug and can take over 24 hours to deliver an optimal battery charge of 80% at a speed of about 9 km per hour. These chargers also can only charge one electric car at a time. However, they are more cost-effective.
Whereas Level 2 charging stations have a faster charging rate and require either a hardwired electrical connection or a NEMA 14-50 outlet on a dedicated circuit. It can deliver an optimal battery charge of 80% in 4 to 5 hours at a charging speed of about 22.5 km per hour for a plug-in hybrid and up to 45 km per hour for an all-electric vehicle.
Can my home accommodate an electric charger?
We’ve got good news and bad news! Bad news first, if you rely on street parking, your home most likely cannot accommodate an EV charging station. The good news, if you have a driveway or garage, you can install an EVSE.
The closer you can park your vehicle to an existing power source, the easier and less expensive it is, and you can find chargers with 25 feet of cable.
Something to also keep in mind is if you have a detached garage that isn’t connected to a power source and that’s far from the house. This could be a problem because you must connect the garage to your home’s electrical panel. This would mean running cable underground.
Another consideration is whether your home’s electrical system can accommodate the load of a charging station. This is when you would want to consult an expert, such as an electrician. You’ll also want to ensure the charge is within your home’s Wi-Fi network range or can access cell communications.
We are happy to answer your questions and get the best solution for you.
How to Install an EV Charger
For Level 1 EV charging, you’ll need to connect the cord provided by the manufacturer to a 120 V wall outlet in your garage. For Level 2, you’ll need to install a 240 V outlet near the location of the EVSE.
BC Hydro has an excellent step-by-step guide for your installation steps that you can read here.
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