How Do Home Electric Charging Stations work?

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Filling up with fuel is easy, charging an electric car, however, seems a bit more complicated.  

The different connectors, compatibility, and variable rates of charge can make it seem like a complex job.  

But electric car charging doesn’t need to be so confusing. So free yourself from the tangled mess of charging cables with this short guide we’ve created to help you understand home electric charging stations.   

How to charge your electric car? 

So, you have brought an electric car. Exciting, isn’t it? But you are getting tired of having to charge your car up at a charging station or at work. The best option for you is to get an EV charging point in your home.  

You can charge using any regular domestic 3 pin socket, but a dedicated home EV charger is the better option by far.  

Dedicated EV home chargers typically deliver around 7kW of power (depending on the product). In contrast, most vehicle manufacturers limit the current drawn from a standard domestic 3 pin socket to 10A or less, which equates to a maximum of 2.3kW.   

A 7kW home charger, therefore, delivers approximately three times as much power and is approximately three times as fast as using a domestic socket. This will mean you won’t have to worry about finding a charging point last minute on a rushed trip out.   

How much does it cost to install an electric car charger at home?  

The typical cost of a home charge point is around £800.  

Under its Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme, OLEV currently offers a grant of up to 75% of this cost, capped at a maximum grant of £350.  

If you own or have primary access to an EV and off-street parking you may be eligible for an OLEV funded grant towards the cost of a home charge point.   

Can I still charge my electric car from an ordinary 3 pin socket?  

Yes, if you have the right lead to do so. However, it is better to use this option as a backup rather than as a regular charging method.  

This is because it usually involves running a 3-pin socket at 2.3kW, which is close to its maximum 3kW power rating, for hours at a time, which puts a lot of strain on a circuit.   

It’ll be slow as well. For example, charging a fairly typical 40kWh EV battery from zero to 100% would take more than 17 hours. That is not enough for a fully charged battery if you leave your car charging overnight.  

Therefore, most EV owners install a dedicated EV home charger which will typically deliver between 3.7 and 7kW of power. This reduces charging times significantly compared to a 3-pin socket.   

If you ever need to use an extension lead to charge an EV, you must ensure that it is rated at 13amps and fully unwound with no knots to prevent overheating and reduce fire hazards.  

We hope that this blog has been useful to you. If you are interested in learning more please consider reading some more of our blogs here.