Five Common EV Charging Questions Answered - We Power Your Car
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Five Common EV Charging Questions Answered

Whether you’re new to the world of electric vehicle charging or are thinking about making the switch to electric, you may be wondering – how do I charge my electric car? Where can I find an electric vehicle charger near me? What’s the difference between a socketed and tethered home charger?

Don’t worry! We are here to answer the five most commonly asked electric vehicle charging questions.

So let’s get started…

1. How do I charge my electric vehicle?

There are three main ways to charge your electric vehicle:

1. A 3-Pin Plug Charger

3-Pin Plug charging is when you utilise a 3-pin domestic socket to charge your electric vehicle. You would need a Type 1 or Type 2 to 3-pin charging cable for this, and it is undoubtedly the slowest way to charge, and it can be dangerous! 3-pin plug charging is therefore only recommended in emergencies or one-off occasions.

To read more about 3-pin plug charging, please click here.

2. A dedicated home charger

Typically rated at 7kW as standard (but if you have a three-phase electricity supply and are prepared to spend more, you can invest in a 22kW home charger), a dedicated home charger is installed on your property and makes charging convenient and faster – charging three times faster than a 3-pin plug! Moreover, dedicated home chargers offer smart features that up your EV charging game, such as solar compatibility, charge scheduling and locking features.

To read more about investing in a dedicated home charger, please click here.

3. Public Charging Points

Charge your electric car at public chargers, typically found at supermarkets, motorway stops, and car parks. Public chargers can come as fast chargers, with a rating of 7kW and 22kW, or rapid chargers, charging at a standard rate of 50kW.

Whilst some public chargers can be free and are ideal when you need to charge quickly, they lack convenience, given that you have to leave your house for prolonged periods of time. Frequently using rapid chargers can also damage your electric vehicle, so it is best to save rapid charging for long journeys!

2. Are there any government grants to help with the cost of a home electric vehicle charger?

The OZEV led Electric Vehicle Homecharge scheme that offered a £350 grant towards the cost of an electric vehicle charger and its installation for single-unit homeowners (detached, semi-detached, terraced houses and bungalows) has now ended. However, there is a new version of the Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme – the EV Chargepoint Grant for flat-owner-occupiers and people living in rented properties! £350 is therefore still up for grabs for those who are flat-owner occupiers or if you live in rented accommodation!

Unfortunately, if you are a single-unit homeowner, there is no longer any funding open to you. However, finance is available on our range of electric vehicle chargers so you can spread the cost of your EV charger over time!

Please click here to read more about the new EV Chargepoint Grant for flat-owner-occupiers and people living in rented properties.

3. How long does it take to charge an electric car?

Well, there is no clear-cut answer for this as it entirely depends on what electric car you own and how you charge. For example, if your electric car has a larger battery and you use a 3-pin plug to charge, it will be very, very slow (too slow, some might say!). Whereas if your car has a smaller battery and you use a rapid public charger, it should take barely any time at all.

But let’s take a deeper look into this.

So, as previously mentioned, there are three main ways to charge – 3-pin plug chargers, dedicated home chargers, and public charge points. They are also referred to as slow, fast, and rapid charging, and each method charges your electric car at different rate.

How long it takes to charge therefore depends on what kW rate you use; please see below for a rough estimate of charging times for each charging method.

Type of EV charger Charging Speed kW Rating Average Time to Charge
3-Pin Plug Charger Slow Charging 2.3kW Up to 18 hours
Dedicated Home Charger Fast Charging Either 7kW or 22kW 7kW – *4-6 hours

22kW – *1-2 hours

 

*Based on 40kW on-board charger

Public Charger Fast or Rapid Charging Fast – 7kW or 22kW

Rapid – Up to 50kW

7kW – *4-6 hours

22kW – *1-2 hours

 

*Based on 40kW on-board charger

 

Rapid – One Hour

 

Without getting too technical, it’s important to note that electric vehicles will only charge to their maximum capacity. Even if the kW charger is the highest rated charger out there, it will not charge any faster than its maximum charging capacity. For example, the Tesla Model 3 has an on-board charger that can only accept 11kW, so even if you were to use a 22kW charger, it would only charge at 11kW, meaning you would not truly benefit from a 22kW AC charger as it would only ever accept the maximum rate of 11kW.

Moreover, charging speed depends on your electric car; for example, fully charging your Tesla Model 3 with a DC 50kW Rapid charger should take about 2 hours. Whereas a Nissan Leaf (2018) would likely take one hour with a 50kW charger. So, charging time depends on the size of the battery, with the general rule of thumb being the larger the battery, the longer it will take to charge.

To understand charging speeds in a little more depth, please read our blog here.

4. Where can I find an electric vehicle charger near me?

If you don’t have a dedicated home charger and rely on public charging points, you can use Zap-Map to find your nearest electric vehicle charger! With over 30,000 chargers in the UK, you will likely find one without much hassle!

5) What is the difference between a tethered and socketed home electric vehicle charger?

Simply put, a tethered electric vehicle charger has the charging cable permanently attached to the unit. Think of it like a petrol station pump, where you cannot take the hose off the pump. Some of our tethered electric vehicle chargers include the Webasto Next and the Ohme Home Pro.

On the other hand, with a socketed charger (or sometimes called untethered), you can remove the charging cable and store it elsewhere. Think of it like a phone charger, where you can detach and reattach the charging cable. Examples of our socketed units include the Easee One and the EVE Seven.

Whilst you cannot have an electric vehicle charger that is technically both untethered and tethered, the Easee One is the closest you can get to having both. With its futureproof smart feature – cable lock, you can decide whether you would like a tethered or non-tethered EV charging unit. Acting as a universal charger, you can permanently lock your socketed cable into place, giving it the look and feel of a tethered EV charger. Just keep it in the ‘Always Locked’ state, whereby the cable is locked into the unit until changed on the App. Or, if you prefer to keep your Easee charging robot untethered, you can still remotely lock and easily unlock your charge from the app to ensure no unauthorised use.

There are advantages and disadvantages to both types of electric vehicle chargers, but in the end, it comes down to personal preference as to which is better.

To read more about the differences between socketed and tethered EV chargers, please click here.

Are you looking to get a smart EV charger installed? We Power Your Car can sort it for you!

If you are thinking about getting an EV home charger installed, please get in touch with us for helpful and unbiased advice. We install nationwide with quick installation times.

Get a quick and free quote for your smart home charger installation today!

You can browse our exciting range of dedicated EV home charge points here.  Or, if you still don’t know where to start and prefer to speak to someone directly,  call us on 03333 44 96 99, our expert customer service team are always happy to help.

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Tethered charger

This type of electric charger has it's own cable to charge your car.

Socketed charger

This type of electric charger requires a seperate cable to charge your car.

Spread over a 60 month period.

Also available over 24, 36 and 48 month periods.

We will contact you to process the credit application. Approval is subject to application, financial circumstances and borrowing history. 12.9% APR representative. T&Cs apply.

Your order is not confirmed until your application has been approved.

Underground cable

We lay SWA cable laid at 600mm deep, with a protective cable warning tape laid 150mm above the cable. These are laid on a sand or sifted sand soil bed then backfilled.

Overhead cable

We position overhead cables at a minimum height of 3.5m and are run along a catenary wire. The cable run should not be accessible to vehicles.

Standard Installation
Our instant price is fixed if it falls within our standard installation package plus any additions that you have selected (extra cabling for example). This package covers the majority of homes in the UK. Before we undertake your installation we will carry out a digital survey to check that nothing has been missed. After reviewing the survey results some additional work may be required in order to complete your installation safely and to the required standards. If this is the case, we will contact you well before the installation date and advise the cost of any required work. You can then continue with your installation, or alternatively we will refund you in full if you do not want to proceed.

Included in our standard installation is :
• Fitting of a single phase charge point to a brick or plaster wall or other suitable permanent structure
• Up to 10 metres of cable, run and neatly clipped to the wall between the electricity supply meter / distribution board and the charge point.
• Routing of the cable through a drilled hole in a wall up to 500mm (20 inches) thick if this is needed.
• The fitting and testing of electrical connections and protections required for the charge point.
• An additional three way consumer unit, if required
• Installation of a Type A RCBO in an RCBO enclosure
• Up to 3 metres of plastic trunking to conceal interior wiring.
• An O-pen earth protection device if the charge point requires it. (This is NOT an earth rod)
• Up to 4 hours of labour from your installer to complete the work.
• Electrical testing of the whole installation.
• Handover and setup of the charge point and any app that may be needed.

Not included in our standard installation (additional work) :
• Where the installation requires additional cabling over and above the amount you have told us about.
• Upgrade/replacement of the main incoming supply fuse where the local DNO (eg Northern Powergrid) would need to attend site.
• If the charge point is to be mounted on a post/pedestal rather than an existing wall and where you have not selected a post as an extra cost option in your order.
• Installation of a charge point to a three phase supply.
• Where gas and water mains bonding (earthing) is not in place at your property. If this is not in place, additional work would be required before installation of the charge point.
• Any groundwork that has not been selected during the order process.

What else you need to know :
• On the day of installation, please ensure that the area around your consumer unit (fuse box), incoming electricity supply meter and proposed charge point location (including where the cable is expected to be run) is clear and free of obstructions.
• We will need your WiFi password as part of the installation process in order to connect your charge point to the internet. Please have this available for the installer. Details will not be kept.
• The charge point must be on your own designated off road parking.
• The charger will be fixed in line with current guidelines at a height where it cannot be hit by a vehicle.
• Our installers are not able to enter loft spaces; lift floorboards or flooring; take apart any furniture of work above a height of 2m. If you anticipate that any of this may be required, then please contact us and we can discuss in more detail and provide you with a quotation.
• Should there be extreme weather conditions our installers may not be able to continue with you installation if it is not safe to do so (for example flooding). They will always do their best to complete the work where they can.

If you have any questions then please contact our customer service team who will be happy to help. Please also read our terms and conditions.