Installing an Electric Vehicle Charger in Your Home
Many electric vehicle owners would rather not be at the mercy of the uptime of public charging stations. So, installing (or hardwiring) an electric vehicle charger to their home's grid is a great option to allow you to charge your vehicle at home faster.
Note electric vehicle owners can always plugin using the standard charge cord that came with their vehicle and using a household outlet. But that will require waiting longer for their vehicles to charge. By hardwiring/installing a charging station at home, drivers can charge faster. For example, instead of 12 hours to charge it can be 6 hours to go from 0% to 100% full battery.
If you choose to install a charging station in your home, you'll want to make some considerations before you buy and install. Here are some pointers to get you started.
For starters, there is safety. Electric vehicle chargers installed incorrectly can become fire and electrical hazards, as well as cause shock and electrocution. That's something every homeowner wants to avoid. But these issues can all be avoided with proper procedures and a clear understanding of how electrical issues should be handled. Hiring an electrician who has installed charging stations is your best way to ensure safety. Some vehicle manufacturers publish a list of electricians whom they recommend for installations. That will likely be a great way to start. For example, Tesla's "Find an electrician" list. To getter a better understanding of what electricians consider, Green Car Reports has an excellent article on the basics.
Installing a dedicated electric vehicle charger in your home has different costs to consider. Naturally, there is the cost of electricity to charge the vehicle. However, depending on your location electricity to charge your electric vehicle can be as low as 10 cents an hour. Not bad! Keep in mind that depending on your set up (i.e., apartments or condominiums), utility companies may require that electric vehicle charging have separate rates. This may cause the hourly/total cost to charge to be higher.
When looking at the price for the physical hardware (the EVSE equipment) prices start around $500 and can go up to $1,500 or more. You purchase electric vehicle home charging units on Amazon.com, for example. Home Advisor has tool that provides general information on the national average for the price of electric vehicle chargers.
When conducting your search for electric vehicle chargers double check that it will work with your vehicle and be able to meet your charging requirements. Read the reviews of the products on Amazon and consult your electrician for the best options.
Location of the charger matters when it comes to charging your vehicle. Remember charging is usually done every day, so you'll want it installed in a convenient spot. Most homeowners install it in their garage. If a homeowner doesn't have a garage or doesn't want the charger there, it can be installed on the exterior of the home. Keep in mind there may be homeowners' association restrictions and other requirements on installing charging stations. Finding out these restrictions beforehand and determining whether a permit is needed are two of the best ways to reduce the chances that there will be a problem with the home's car charging station after it is installed.