Electric Car Charger Installation: A Complete Guide

 

Electric cars in the UK are on a firm upward trajectory. Sales increased by a remarkable 76% in 2021, bringing the total number on Britain’s roads to around 400,000 pure electric vehicles, alongside 750,000 plug-in hybrids. That’s still some distance short of the millions of petrol-driven cars but the only way is up – especially when you consider that by 2030, just eight short years from now, no more all-petrol or diesel vehicles will be available for purchase in the UK. There has simply never been a better time to go electric.

Charging is central to the usage of electric vehicles (EVs). Without a full battery your shiny new vehicle won’t be moving an inch beyond your curbside or garage. But how exactly is this done?

Can you install an EV charging point at home?

Yes, you can. There are two ways of charging an electric vehicle: at home or on the road. Public charging points are used to top up EV batteries when out and about – and remarkably, there are now more than 42,000 across no less than 15,500 locations. That’s almost double the number of petrol stations in the whole of the country!

But most EV recharging takes place at home. There are two simple reasons for this: convenience and cost. Drivers cannot always be sure they will find a public charging point when they need one, and there is also the waiting time for the charge to complete, which is harder to accommodate when you’re away from home. Instead, most people simply plug in their vehicles when they get home at night, then wake to a full battery the following morning.

Using an electric car home charger reduces the already low cost of EV power even further, especially if the driver’s home electricity tariff includes a lower night time rate. A full battery, giving an average driving range of 200 miles, may cost less than £10.

Points to consider before trying to install an EV charge point

Where do you want to install the device in your home? Will it be on full display or hidden? 

What is the distance between the location of your charger and the charging port on your car, when the latter is parked in its usual location?

Where on the car body is the charging port located? Is this spot relatively easy to access and will it affect the location of your charger? You don’t want the charging cable to be too exposed or stretched as they can present a tripping hazard.

Is your preferred location relatively close to your wifi router? You will need a wifi link if you plan to use ‘smart’ features such as app control.

Finally, do you want a tethered or untethered charger? A tethered charger has a cable attached, an untethered one does not.

The advantages of a untethered charger include:

  • It looks tidier with no coiled cable on the front
  • You’ll be able to use your home charger with a new car should you opt for an upgrade at a later date, even if the new vehicle requires a different charging plug

The principal disadvantage is the need to supply your own cable. Most EVs come with a charging cable but you’ll need to carry this in the boot of your car and then reattach it to the charger every evening, then tidy away again in the mornings. Replacement cables cost around £100.

The advantages of a tethered charger include:

  • Coiled cables provide greater flexibility and can be extended further than fixed length detachable cables
  • There’s no need to carry a cable in the boot of your vehicle unless you know you may need to use a public charging point

On the downside, you may be left with an obsolete charger if industry standards change.

Can you install an EV charge point yourself?

No, you cannot – unless you are a properly qualified electrician that is. Like any other electrical device, a home charging point could be a significant safety hazard if installed incorrectly. Instead, hire a suitably qualified professional. Specialists are the best choice, as not all electricians will be familiar with the technology. 

Professional installation adds to the cost in the short term but it provides valuable reassurance. In addition, the manufacturer’s warranty may be voided by DIY installation.

How much does it cost to have an EV charge point professionally installed?

Electric car charger installation is a complex job that involves surveying your home, setting up the charger in a suitable location, then running secure cabling between the unit and your fuse box, which may be as much as 30+ feet away. This all means that electric car charger installation typically costs around £400. While this is not a small outlay, professional installation will almost always pay for itself eventually. Except in rare instances, you will have no repairs to commision and you will be making considerable savings on fuel. As we all know, petrol and diesel are heavily taxed and a major component of the cost of running a car.. With a hybrid, you will not need as much – and with an all-electric vehicle, you will (of course) need none at all.

Can you get government assistance in installing an EV charge point?

If you are a homeowner who owns and lives in a flat, or you live in rental accommodation, you may be eligible for the UK Government’s EV chargepoint grant. The grant provides a 75% contribution of up to £350 to the cost and installation of one chargepoint, and replaces the previous Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme. 

Installing EV charge points at your business

Many of the above principles apply to the installation of EV charging points for your business, except safety concerns should be an even higher priority because the points will be used by multiple individuals. 

Installation by fully qualified engineers is essential to meet applicable regulation.

If you’re installing multiple points you may also be able to negotiate a reduced rate from the supplier and installation engineers. Bulk discounts can make a big difference to business overheads.

FAQs

Can you install an EV charging point at home?

Yes, you can, however it’s recommended that you hire a qualified professional to do this for you.

How much does it cost to have an EV charge point professionally installed?

Electric car charger installation typically costs around £400, however this can vary.

What type of charger will I need for my electric car?

The most common type of EV charging cable plug in the UK is the seven-pin type 2 design. However, these can vary from manufacturer to manufacturer.

How do I find an electric car charger installation engineer?

There are several ways you can find good quality EV charger installation engineers, including:

  • Other EV dealerships
  • Online electric car owner communities
  • Google or Bing
  • Personal recommendations from friends and family

Any Questions?

Call us on 0330 165 4945

Email us at hello@elmodrive.com

Try our suitability tool

Browse our electric cars

WordPress Video Lightbox Plugin