EV Charge Points
Home Chargepoints (EVSEs)
The majority of electric car charging happens at home. Whilst it is possible to keep your car charged up with a standard household plug, it is not always quick, tidy and convenient.
A dedicated electric car chargepoint at your house will typically allow you to charge quicker, safer, and easier.
This article is about charging your electric car at home and the charge points available to you. For an overall look at EV charging please see our Drive Green Charging Guide.
What is a Chargepoint?
A chargepoint is simply somewhere to charge your EV. All a chargepoint needs to do is take the 240V electricity supply from your house and make it accessible to your car through an appropriate connection.
Why do you need one?
There are a few reasons to install a dedicated chargepoint, the key reasons are:
• To charge quicker
• To improve safety
• To reduce clutter and increase convenience
• To take advantage of government incentives
Charging your electric car through a standard household plug can take a long time. With a dedicated charger, you are typically able to choose how fast you would like to charge. Most EV drivers will now choose to install a 7Kw Fast Charger at home to reduce charge times.
There are three options of chargepoint output (and charging speed) for home use:
• Standard Charging – 3kW (16A)
• Fast Charging – 7kW (32A)
• Super-Fast Charging – 22kW (32A three phase)
Even a Standard rate charger will be able to charge at around 60% faster than a standard household plug. By upgrading to a 7kW charger, you will be able to charge around 3 times faster. A fast charging set-up is the most suitable for the majority of electric car drivers.
A standard household plug is designed to output a certain maximum power. When charging an EV you do not exceed this power, however you do draw nearly the maximum power for long periods of time. In some cases, this can lead to the plug getting quite hot. This is unlikely to cause an issue in the short term or for emergency charging; however, it is something to be aware of with long-term use.
The real issue arises from restricted access to a household plug. Many drivers may find it hard to locate a suitable plug socket near to the vehicle and will be forced to use an extension lead. Unless the correct, uprated cables are used this can cause issues with overheating. By fitting a dedicated charging point closer to where the vehicle parks, this can be prevented.
Finally, a dedicated charging unit and cable are designed to stop charging immediately should someone attempt to disconnect the cable. This prevents danger through mishandling of charging equipment.
Increasing convenience and reducing clutter
A dedicated chargepoint will typically be placed close to the car’s parking spot. This will allow for a minimum of cable and require less effort when it comes to plugging in.
The chargepoint will also be fitted with the connector that you have selected as the most suitable for your vehicle. At home, no adapters will be needed; you can plug straight in to the vehicle.
To make life even easier, most home chargepoints allow for a fixed cable to be attached to the chargepoint. This means you can plug straight in when you get home, no need to search through the boot for cables.
Taking advantage of government incentives
In the UK, there is a government-grant scheme available to help reduce the cost of installing a home EV chargepoint.
This scheme offers up to £500 off the cost of installing a home electric car charging point. The scheme is available to electric vehicles purchased after 1 April 2015. It also requires the applicant to have off-street parking and to use an OLEV-approved charge point installer and charge point.
For more information on the scheme see the OLEV website.
If you have any questions about home chargers, or you would like some more information on OLEV and the installation of chargepoints through the government-grant scheme please get in contact with us and we will be happy to answer your questions.
Home Charger Options
We will help you to organise the installation of any electric car chargepoint. If there is a particular brand or company you would prefer to use then we are happy to discuss that with you.
Through our experience we have selected some of our preferred chargepoints and compiled a list below. We believe that a chargepoint needs to be:
• Simple to use
• Aesthetically pleasing
There are now an incredible number of options in the home chargepoint market. The choices below we recommend because they all come from very experienced manufacturers or they offer something different to the rest of the market.
Zappi – The Smart Home Charger for Solar and Wind
• A 7Kw Fast Charger
• Integrates with Solar and Wind generation
• Allows you to maximise your use of green energy
• Works with your existing inverter and controllers
• Charge rate can be adjusted from 6A to 32A depending on solar/wind production
• 3-year warranty
In many ways Zappi works just like a regular EV charger. Where Zappi stands out is its ability to integrate with grid-tied microgeneration systems, such as wind or solar PV generation. Zappi comes with two special modes that allows charging to be automatically adjusted in response to on-site power generation and household consumption.
In ECO mode, charging power is continuously adjusted in response to changes in solar/wind production and household consumption. Zappi will ensure that your electric car gets fully charged, only drawing power from the grid if necessary.
In ECO+ mode, charge power is adjusted continuously just like ECO mode. The difference with ECO+ is that Zappi will pause charging if too much power is being drawn from the grid. This ensures that charging is as cheap and green as possible, even if this extends charging time.
When required Zappi can be used in Fast mode which allows Zappi to charge your EV as regular 7kW (32A) charger.
The Zappi can be installed without the need for solar or wind. Zappi will work just like any other Fast charger but will allow you to seamlessly add solar in the future. We consider the Zappi a great choice for anyone that may consider more green technologies in the future.
EoMini – The Smallest Charger for Subtle Installations
• The smallest fast charger available
• Simple, discrete installation
• No software, no nonsense
• Standard or Fast Charge options
• OLEV Grant Approved
• 3-year warranty
The EO Mini is a fantastic, simple charger that focuses on the single function of charging your car. As the smallest fast charger on the market, the EO Mini can be installed almost anywhere without impact.
The EO Mini is a no software, no nonsense charger. There is a single light which displays the status of the chargepoint, other than this you just plug in and go. This simplicity makes the EO Mini the perfect charger for someone that wants to fill up without worrying about apps or updates.
The EO Mini is eligible for the OLEV Government Grant and comes with a 3-year manufacturer warranty.
New Motion Home Fast – Smart charging from Europe’s best manufacturer
• Fast and safe charging
• Online portal with charging insights and history
• Charge cost monitoring for workplace reimbursement
• Available in all charge rates from 3.7kW to 22kW
• OLEV grant approved
• 3-year Warranty
The New Motion Home Fast offers everything you need from a home charger in a sleek and simple package. The New Motion chargers can be ordered with a wide choice of charging outputs (Standard 3kW, Fast 7kW, and Superfast 22kW) and with either a Type 2 socket or attached cable for connection.
New Motion is the market leader in the Netherlands and brings its years of experience over to the UK. With over 30,000 chargepoints installed in Europe, New Motion know what they’re doing.
This is not only a very sleek and attractive charger, it is also one of the more advanced home chargers in this category. The New Motion online user portal allows for full configuration, management, and insights of your charger.
New Motion’s chargers can be customised with one of their four standard colours or you can provide a custom colour sample for seamless integration into your home design.
This charger has multiple upgrades available. If needed, you can upgrade to a fully controllable Smart charger with features such as RFID user identification, and guest usage meters.
Rolec Wallpod – Low cost charge points with custom options
• Low cost fast charging
• Hard wearing design
• Many upgrades available
• OLEV grant approved
• 3-year warranty
Rolec EV make some of the most cost-effective home charge points available in the UK. They also offer customisable features that can make the Rolec chargers adaptable for your personal requirements.
Rolec chargepoints come with the option of fitting a “Amp-Selector Rotary Switch.” This enables you to adjust the charging rate (6amp solar/13amp domestic/16amp or 32amp FastCharge.) This can be very useful when trying to make effective use of a solar PV array.
Rolec also allow options such as lockable sockets, built in meters, and a clock/timer. The charger itself is a simple unit that can be ordered with either a Type 2 socket or an attached charging cable.
Note: A Rolec 32A (7kW) charger is the same price as a 16A (3.3kW) charger so we would always recommend upgrading to the 32A charger even if you feel it is more than you require
Andersen A1 – Premium Home Charger with Stylish and Discrete Design
• Premium design from the British designer Paul Crofts
• Durable and stylish aesthetics
• Customisable finishes
• Discretely hidden cable and plug
• Lifetime guarantee
Chargepoints such as the Andersen A1 are on offer for those with properties which require a more aesthetically pleasing addition to the home. Available in a wide variety of colours and even an Accoya wood finish, the Andersen A1 can be integrated in to any property with a sense of style.
The cable and connector are stored neatly inside the unit and brushes on the cable slot ensure that your cable is always clean before going back in to storage. A charger like the Andersen is proof that everything can be improved with the help of a good designer.
Mennekes Amtron – Smart Home Charging Station
The Amtron Smart Charging System is the most technically advanced and futureproof Charge Station available. It offers everything you need from a home charger in a stylish yet functionally designed package, plus a host of other features that set-up apart from other home charging systems.
The Mennekes chargers can be ordered with a wide choice of charging outputs (Standard 3kW, Fast 7kW, and Superfast 22kW) and with either a Type 2 socket or attached cable for connection.
The Amtron is wirelessly connected to your home network, and the Mennekes Charge App allows for full and simple configuration, management, and insights of your charger. It also enables you to set time controlled charging profiles to help you benefit from smart meter tariffs.
What really sets the Amtron apart from other charging stations, is can be connected to your Smart Home Energy Management system, enabling it to be intelligently controlled and integrated into your solar power, and battery storage systems, as well as home appliances to ensure that always optimize your green energy consumption and minimize your energy costs.
For High Powered (22kW) Fast Charging
A 22kW charger is as powerful as a fast charger can get. A chargepoint of this power will be able to charge a Renault Zoe from 50% to 100% in around thirty minutes.
There are some limitations to 22kW home chargers. Firstly, these chargers require a 3-phase electricity supply. This is very uncommon in the average home so it is very rare that a 22kW charger installation is possible/cost effective. The other negative is that only a few vehicles are able to make use of the charger’s full power at this moment in time (Renault Zoe, and the Teslas.)
If, however you do have, or are planning to get a 3-phase electricity supply then speak to us about the large range of 22kW home chargers now available.