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What to look for when shopping for a home EV charger

1. Speed:
How much charging speed do you want?
Although all Level 2 chargers use 240V, the charging speed will vary depending on the amperage of the charger (or equivalent circuit). Your need for speed will vary, depending on the mileage per hour of a typical EV charging station, your commute, and how you drive: short miles, long commutes, or constant top speed driving. The car may indicate that fast charging at home might help.

A 32-amp charging station is an appropriate choice for many vehicles, as most EVs can draw around 32 amps, providing about 25 miles of range per hour of charge. You can even pick up your pace or prep your next car with the faster 50-amp charger, which can add roughly 37 miles of range in an hour.

2. Supply:
How much space do you have on your switchboard?
As mentioned earlier, all Level 2 chargers require a 240V electrical connection. You must choose a charger with an amperage or current level that matches your vehicle and home’s electrical capabilities. According to the National Electrical Code, the circuit must be certified and its amperage must be 25% higher than the output of the charger.

For example, if you want to buy a 40 amp level 2 charger, you will need a breaker that can handle at least 50 amps. (Alternatively, you can get a flexible home charger, such as the ChargePoint Home Flex, that you can adjust to the amperage that suits your home.) To find out how many amps your home has available for charging, open the power strip door and look for Unused circuit breaker, or consult an electrician. If your panels are currently full or nearly full, you may need to increase your electrical service.

3. Location:
Where is the best place to put the charger?
Install home chargers as close to the power strip as possible. Your electrician may need to run conduit from your panel to where you’ll be charging, which can be expensive. Mounting the charger near the garage door may make it easier to charge multiple cars, and outdoor-approved weatherproof chargers give you the option to mount it indoors or outdoors, depending on where you want to park. .

Chargers should not be used on a dryer circuit; instead, look for one that will accept a NEMA 6-50 or 14-50 outlet, two popular plug types that electricians can easily install.

4. Safe and reliable:
Safe and reliable
Rest assured that your charger has been thoroughly inspected and verified by a nationally renowned testing agency, making sure it is safe for you to use in your home and on your EV charger. Although the charger is ENERGY STAR certified, it uses very little energy when not charging, which can help you save money on your electricity bills.

While a portable charger might look great for travel, dealing with cords and plugs lying on the ground can get old quickly — and it’s not particularly safe, especially if you have small children (human or animal) roaming around. Consider purchasing a wall-mounted charging station with a secure place to store your charging cables and connections when not in use.

Check out the warranty and support options for the charger you’re considering, as well as the reputation of the company that made it. A three-year guarantee from a reputable charging company is essential, and 24/7 phone assistance comes in handy when you need to charge up but don’t know what you’re doing.

5. Savings:
Are they cost effective?
Many utility companies offer specific EV charging rate plans that allow you to save money by charging during off-peak hours, usually at night. You can ask your local utility company about such programs, and get chargers with a built-in schedule so you don’t have to wait until midnight to install a plug-in.

While many cars allow you to schedule charging times, doing so while you’re away or on the road can cause problems with charging. Your local utility company may offer grants and incentives for home EV chargers. To qualify for these discounts, the charger must be smart.

6. Intelligent function:
What else can you expect from a charger?
Finding the right charger is one thing. Using it is another matter. Some WiFi-enabled smart EV chargers link to an app to control charging, establish schedules, and receive simple charging reminders.

If you’re a data junkie or just want to know how much you’re spending on charging, an app can help you track your charging costs and mileage easily in one place. If you have a ChargePoint home charger, the ChargePoint app shows your public ChargePoint activity while charging at home. New features on the smart EV charger will also be updated immediately.

7. Cost:
What is the cost?
You get what you pay for, just like anything else. The typical cost of a home EV charger is $500-$900, which is almost half of what most drivers spend on gas in a year. You’ll probably be keeping your home charger for a long time, transporting it and (if feasible) changing the amperage for the next car. It’s worth investing in a smart charger that’s been tested for safety and comes with a guarantee to protect your EV investment.

Cheaper chargers may not be certified for safety and may lack useful features, such as the ability to set charging reminders and schedules. Opt for a plug-in charger that not only keeps your car and home safe, but also lets you schedule charging, helps you save money on charging, and may qualify for discounts, which may require safety certificates and “smart” electric vehicles charging station.

Post time: 2023-04-21