Electrical Vehicles in the Home

Before purchasing an electric vehicle there are certain things to consider to ensure that your home is equipped as well.

Home Evaluation

Consumers should first have an electrical evaluation of their home performed by a licensed, qualified professional to determine that their home is adequate for EV charging.

This evaluation should include examination of the following:

Electrical Service- This involves utility lines and the electric meter controlled by your local electric utility.

Electrical Panel- Every home has a service panel that distributes electricity to switches, outlets, and appliances. This is usually found in the basement, garage, or utility area.

Home Wiring System- The wiring system delivers electricity from the panel to the circuits.

Installation Process

A licensed electrician can determine if an electrical system upgrade or other improvements are needed to support an electric charging system.

Your city or county may require permits and inspections, which can be facilitated by your electrician.

Once your home has passed an evaluation by a licensed electrical contractor or the local utility, the charging equipment can be installed.

Installation should be performed by a licensed, qualified electrician in accordance with all applicable local and national codes.

Charging Requirements

EV charging can be performed at three levels.

Level 1: Uses 120 volts and takes 8-12 hours to fully charge

Level 2: Uses 240 volts and takes roughly 6-8 hours to fully charge

Components of Home Charging Equipment

If your EV has a smaller battery or you simply drive less, you can charge your electric car within a few hours using a standard household 120-volt outlet.

If your electric car has a larger battery and you drive more, you may require a home charging station to enable faster charging.

All charging equipment should be bear the logo of an independent testing laboratory such as Underwriters Laboratories (UL), Intertek (ETL), or CSA International, signifying that it has been tested by a nationally recognized safety laboratory.

Power Supply Device (Charging Station):

For Level 2 charging, this piece of equipment can mount on your garage wall to safely supply 240 volts of electrical power.

Power Cord: For Level 1 and Level 2 charging, this cord or cable conducts electricity from the power supply device to the charger or receiving unit onboard the vehicle.

Connector: This is a plug on the power cord that connects the supply device to the on-board charger.

Charging Safety Tips

Always read the Owner’s Manual for your charging station upon installation.

Never use an extension cord to charge the vehicle as it can increase risk of electric shock and other hazards.

Inspect for damaged cords and plugs, which could result in shock and fire hazards.

Charging equipment should not be installed in an area with heavy foot traffic, or near any materials that are flammable or explosive.

Outdoor charging equipment is weatherproof, but should be protected from damage.

Information source: EFSI

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