With Electric Vehicle Charging (EV Charging) continuing to grow across the UK – 158% rise in July alone this year – we are hearing new stories daily about its incredible technology.
It is still somewhat of a mystery to individuals and businesses though. One of the questions we regularly get asked is what equipment do I need? We created a short guide to help answer this.
Types of charging
Equipment varies depending on the type of charging that you facilitate:
- Level 1 – this is the most basic form of charging for your vehicle. Plugged into your regular three-pin plug (Not recommended for regular continual charging).
- Level 2 – an optional dedicated fuse board and a dedicated socket provide fast and efficient charging for your vehicle.
- Level 3 – for super-fast vehicle charging, predominantly reserved for industry and public charging stations, these charges can be bulky and much more than the regular house or business will need.
For the purposes of this post, we’ll concentrate on level two, as this is the level of charging that most of our customers, both domestic and commercial, will be familiar with.
How does EV charging work?
Electric vehicles are charged from the grid either at your home or place of work. They work at their most efficient when a driver has their vehicle parked for several hours in one location. Charging is simple but smart.
A driver plugs their vehicle into the socket via a lead that will accompany their car. Using an app, you can programme your vehicle to only begin charging during the most energy-efficient period of energy usage. For charging at home, this is usually overnight. When the vehicle is fully charged, charging stops and no more energy is used. Your vehicle is fully charged ready for your next journey.
Full charges are not always needed. Just like with regular diesel or petrol engine motors, you can top up your vehicle charge if it is half full.
Equipment You Will Need
Dedicated charging point – this will be installed in a garage or outside your property, wherever suits your location.
Dedicated fuse board – this does not always have to be the case, however, it can be a safer way to install. You will be advised on each install.
Your mobile phone and an app – The final piece in the puzzle is your own smartphone and a dedicated app that tells you the information you need to control your vehicle charging via Wi-Fi.
It really is as simple as that.
Are all plugs the same?
No, plugs and connecters vary depending on the equipment used in your install and the model of the vehicle you are using. There are three common plug types:
Type 1 – Normally found at the vehicle connection
Type 2 – This is the most common socket; it has seven pins and a locking mechanism when attached to your vehicle.
CHAdeMO – This is normally used on the fast DC charging units in the UK at present and is the original rapid DC connector.
Combined Charging System – This can allow for high power charging and is likely to become the most popular in the UK.
Remember, plugs vary per vehicle but the above highlight the most common. Talk to Go Electric and we can advise you on different models and plugs. Western Power has created a booklet on charging including a guide on charge types for councils that also contains information you can benefit from.
Does it take much space?
No, standard install means equipment on show at your property will be one wallbox per charging point (when charging at a business, you may require a number of chargers). These do vary in size depending on the brand you use and can be wall-mounted or pillar stand alone.
As standard when your EV Charging unit is installed you should expect:
- An onsite visit to inspect the requirements
- Confirmation of schedule of work
- Information on all elements of your install including health & safety
- Installation work will be completed within a day
- Checks and testing by an OLEV approved installer
- Training on your equipment
- Aftercare service and maintenance
Are there any limitations?
The only limitation for any home or business wanting to install an electric vehicle charging point is that you have dedicated off-street parking.