Smart Home Charging. Smart home charger

Smart Home Charging

All of our Solo 3 chargers also come installed with a 3-year warranty with an option to extend to 5 years.

Please note: 22kW home chargers require a three-phase household electrical supply.

Charge activity monitoring with the Pod Point App gives you insights into your energy usage.

  • Oversee your car charging costs and track every kWh used.
  • Make informed decisions on when to charge, by viewing a forecast of your local carbon intensity, provided by National Grid.
  • Export itemised reports that can form part of your vehicle/house budgeting.
  • Learn when it’s cheapest to charge on your energy tariff.

Auto Power Balancing adjusts the rate of charge to avoid overloading your electrical supply when your home is using a lot of energy.

The charging will return to the fastest rate automatically, once more power is available.

  • Keeps your car charging without disrupting your home.
  • Makes it possible to install a 7kW charging point on almost any electrical supply.
  • Lets you run all your home appliances as desired (including extra home charging stations for other vehicles).

Our Charge Scheduling feature lets you charge overnight on off-peak rates.

  • Unlock the full benefits of EV ownership and drive for less than 2.5p per mile with Pod Point’s Smart home charger and EDF’s Go Electric tariff.
  • Take advantage of dual-rate electricity tariffs and save on costs by automatically scheduling your EV to charge during off-peak hours.

Applies to Wi-Fi enabled Solo chargers, typically installed after 2018. Requires a strong and stable Wi-Fi connection.

Based on average consumption of 3.5 miles per kWh.

When connected to Wi-Fi, the Solo 3 gets automatic software updates over-the-air.

  • Unlock new features for your chargepoint in the future without changing the physical charger.
  • Enable remote customer service and diagnostics from our team.
  • Get the latest software version for optimal performance.

Learn what else the Solo 3 can do.

4.6/5 star rating, from over 20,000 reviews on:

Solo 3

Start your order Learn more

Pod Point App

Download now Learn more

Pod Point Network

Find a chargepoint Learn more

Save over £500 a year on the typical cost of charging at home.

See footer for disclaimer.

Based on average consumption of 3.5 miles per kWh.

For more information in relation to the way in which EDF supplies zero carbon electricity, please visit https://www.edfenergy.com/zero-carbon

Are you eligible for the OZEV EV chargepoint grant?

The OZEV EV chargepoint grant reduces the cost of a home charger and its installation by £350.

Eligibility Checklist:

  • Live in a rented property or own a flat.
  • Have dedicated off-street parking.
  • Own, lease or have an eligible vehicle on order.
  • Not already have claimed a chargepoint grant.

% of our customers are eligible for standard installation.

What does this include?

What if I don’t qualify for standard installation?

If you don’t meet the criteria we can usually still carry out the home installation but an additional cost may be incurred.

Once your order is placed, we’ll be in touch to better understand your requirements and produce a no-obligation quote for the additional works. If you decide not to proceed, a full refund will be provided.

Ready to start Smart Home Charging?

Complete your order and book in your install.

4.62/5 star rating from 37115 reviews. Check them out at reviews.co.uk

Excellent communication throughout the process. Very quick and neat installation.

very nice engineer and fast installation

Very happy with the experience from order to completion of Installation.

smart, home, charging, charger

Installation of your Solo 3

Your home installation is included with your Solo 3 if it meets our standard install criteria.

Our team of Pod Point Experts go the extra mile to provide an excellent experience.

Your Pod Point Expert

Pod Point Experts are City and Guilds accredited electricians with thousands of hours of experience installing electric vehicle chargepoints.

Pre-arrival

Your Pod Point Expert will confirm their arrival time with you in advance of the installation.

Pre-installation

Your Expert will find the best position for your charger based on your power supply and how you park your car.

Installation

Standard installation package

Your install is included in the price of the home charger if it meets our standard install criteria. If it doesn’t, we’ll provide a no-obligation quote or a full refund if you’re not happy to proceed.

Next, the charger is fixed to the wall, a cable is run from the unit to the mains power supply, and it will be activated for use.

Your Expert will then connect the charger to the Wi-Fi and pair it with the Pod Point App.

Demonstration

Your Expert will give you a full demonstration of your charger, what the different lights mean and how to get in touch if you have any questions.

smart, home, charging, charger

Finally, you will be shown how to find and use public chargepoints in your area.

Top 5 FAQs

It depends on your preference:

  • Convenience. Tethered chargers have a cable already attached which will either be Type 1 or Type 2.
  • Flexibility. While you need to plug the cable into a universal charger, you can use both Type 1 and Type 2 cables.
  • Cable length. A tethered charger’s cable will be either 4.8m (Type 1) or 7.5m (Type 2) in length, whereas a universal charging cable can be up to 10m for either connector type.
  • Cost. Tethered chargers cost more upfront because they include the charging cable, whereas you can buy a universal charger without a cable.

It can’t be connected to a 3-pin plug socket; the Solo 3 needs to be connected to the main electrical supply.

Non-standard charger installations may incur an additional cost. Once your order is placed, we’ll be in touch to better understand your requirements and produce a no-obligation quote for any additional works. If you decide not to proceed, you’ll receive a full refund.

What information or data is collected by my Solo 3 and stored by Pod Point? Who has access to this data?

Your household energy usage data is only used for hardware and technical support.

If you choose to pair the Solo 3 with the Pod Point App (using your PSL number) this data is then displayed to the logged-in Pod Point-account holder via their Smart device using the Pod Point App.

  • Our Network Assurance team uses this data for support and diagnostic purposes.
  • Our Data team assesses and manages this data for analysis.
  • Our Software team maintains the software which stores this data.

We provide a remote survey in advance of your install. Our Pod Point Expert will then conduct a site survey when they arrive on the day of your install.

Go Electric tariff disclaimers:

Calculation based on average annual usage of 2,013kWh. (Datsourced from Pod Point customers average annual charging at home) Cost saving calculation compares charging on current Energy Price Guarantee rate (33.2p per kWh) vs EDF Go Electric off peak rate (8p per kWh). This is a variable tariff so can change, which would impact annual savings. Calculations are based on using a 7kWh home charger and charging within daily 5 hour off peak window (12am-5am during winter GMT and 1am-6am during Summer BST), slower charging speeds may result in charging outside of the off peak window and will increase cost.

The benefit of this tariff will depend on when your household energy usage occurs, when and where you charge your car, changes to wholesale energy and any future energy price cap changes.

This tariff is variable, meaning could change. This may impact cost savings and could mean change before your Pod Point is installed, depending on available/chosen installation dates.

The features of this tariff, its availability and any or costs displayed were correct at the time of writing according to information provided by EDF but may change in future. Before switching, you should consider the suitability of EDF’s Go Electric Tariff for your charging and household needs using the information and support provided by EDF. Pod Point does not take responsibility for your choice of electricity provider.”

Applies to Wi-Fi enabled Solo chargers, typically installed after 2018. Requires a strong and stable Wi-Fi connection.

Customers must have a Smart meter to access this tariff, full eligibility criteria can be found here.

The Best Home EV Chargers of 2023

See all 7 photos 7 photos

If you’re shopping for a home charging station, you have a lot of options—arguably too many. As electric car sales have taken off, the charging-equipment market has been flooded with products advertising the same basic attributes. This guide is your panacea for option paralysis. We’ve sifted through the heap to find the best home EV chargers, so you don’t have to.

We started by poring over specifications and scouring customer reviews to find the most promising chargers. That research narrowed our FOCUS to seven units that we installed in the garages of several of our editors and lived with for six months as a parade of EVs ranging from the 28,795 Chevrolet Bolt EUV to the 180,650 Lucid Air passed through our fleet. We used that experience to sniff out the nuances that separate the best from the rest.

The 240-volt Level 2 chargers listed here can be used with any electric vehicle or plug-in electric vehicle (PHEV) on sale in the United States and Canada (Tesla owners will need to use the J1772 adapter that came with their vehicle in some cases). Our top picks have a few common traits: They all can be installed indoors or outdoors, and every unit has been certified by Underwriters Laboratories (now known as UL Solutions) or Intertek, two trusted, independent safety organizations. Our favorite home EV chargers are also capable of delivering at least 9.6 kilowatts of power, which will add about 29 miles per hour of charging for a midsize crossover SUV like the Hyundai Ioniq 5 or approximately 18 miles per hour for the Ford F-150 Lightning. Even if your current vehicle can’t make full use of all that power, using 9.6 kW as a baseline futureproofs your home setup for vehicles you may buy or lease in the next decade.

This guide has been written to help you find the right Level 2 home charging station for your needs. Be sure to check out some of our other helpful EV stories including 3 Things to Know Before Buying An EV and How Much It Costs to Charge an Electric Car by State.

The Best EV Home Charger for Most People: Grizzl-E Classic

See all 7 photos 7 photos

The Grizzl-E Classic’s great price, multiple installation options, and durable construction make it the best option for most EV and plug-in hybrid drivers. The Classic is a no-frills home EV charger that gets the basics right. The 23.9-foot cable has the reach to accommodate multiple parking positions and the flexibility to easily coil and uncoil it. It’s also among the most affordable 9.6-kW Level 2 chargers with the Underwriters Laboratories stamp of approval. Many cheaper home charging stations, even if they’re less powerful, require you to give up that peace of mind.

Grizzl-E ClassicCHECK CURRENT PRICE MSRP: 395Max power: 9.6 kWCable length/diameter: 23.9 ft/0.9 inInstallation: 14-50 plug, 6-50 plug, or hardwire

The Classic doesn’t have Wi-Fi connectivity or a smartphone app, and you can’t use it to track your energy consumption and costs, or schedule charging during set times of the day. We think that simplicity is a selling point, rather than a shortcoming, as Wi-Fi-enabled Smart chargers are overkill for the average driver. The apps are often clunky, and the key selling point—programming charging to start at a certain time—duplicates a feature built into most EVs. With the Grizzl-E Classic, charging is as simple as it should be, and the lack of connectivity leads to a lower price. If you’re set on buying a home charging station with more advanced features, however, check out our pick for the best Smart EV charger below.

The Grizzl-E’s basic design lacks the curves of the competition for good reason. While most home charging stations are made of plastic, Grizzl-E’s Classic is built around an aluminum enclosure. That makes it an especially Smart choice for anyone installing one outdoors, where extreme temperatures and sunlight quickly age plastic.

Grizzl-E sells the classic with either a NEMA 14-50 or NEMA 6-50 plug, which means homeowners with an existing 240-volt outlet in the garage and basic DIY skills can install it without hiring an electrician. Alternatively, either unit can also be hardwired by a professional.

The Best EV Home Charger for Tesla Drivers: Tesla Wall Connector

See all 7 photos 7 photos

The Tesla Wall Connector is a masterpiece of industrial design that’s as functional as it is beautiful. The sleek, wall-mounted box doubles as the cable storage hook and features a holster on the side (rather than the front) that keeps the charging cord out of the way when it’s not in use. The Wall Connecter’s 1.8-inch-circumference cable—the slimmest of any home EV charger we tested—is lighter and more flexible than the unwieldy cords on most 11.5-kW Level 2 chargers.

Note that the unit pictured here is Tesla’s J1772 Wall Connector for non-Tesla vehicles. The version with Tesla’s proprietary charging port is white but otherwise visually identical. We like the J1772 Wall Connector so much, we considered naming it our top pick for all EV drivers, but the price keeps us from giving it that full endorsement. Tesla charges a hefty premium to anyone buying its home charging station to power a Ford, Hyundai, Chevrolet, or any other competitor’s EV.

Tesla Wall Connector (for Tesla vehicles)CHECK CURRENT PRICE MSRP: 425Max power: 11.5 kWCable length/diameter: 24.1 ft/0.6 inInstallation: Hardwire

Tesla J1772 Wall Connector (for non-Tesla vehicles)CHECK CURRENT PRICE MSRP: 550Max power: 11.5 kWCable length/diameter: 24.1 ft/0.6 inInstallation: Hardwire

The Wall Connector has Wi-Fi, but as this story was being written, it couldn’t be linked with Tesla’s app. Instead, the connectivity is only used during the initial setup and for over-the-air software updates. That shouldn’t be a deal breaker for Tesla drivers since the app pulls plenty of charging information directly from Tesla vehicles.

Data nerds and those who drive non-Tesla vehicles can get some information from the Wall Connector using a third-party app called Wall Monitor. It’s more intuitive and better-looking than the apps developed by charging-station manufacturers like Emporia and Wallbox, but it has some limitations. Wall Monitor is only available for iOS devices and only works when your phone or tablet is connected to the same Wi-Fi network as the charging station. The app maker also acknowledges that the information it pulls from Tesla’s home charging station can contain errors that it is powerless to fix.

smart, home, charging, charger

The Best Smart EV Home Charger: Emporia EV Charger

See all 7 photos 7 photos

The Wi-Fi-enabled Emporia EV Charger packs a ton of features into its reasonable price tag. When hardwired to your home’s electrical system, it delivers up to 11.5 kW for faster charging than the Grizzl-E Classic. (Using the NEMA 14-50 plug requires limiting the power to 9.6 kW.) Emporia’s app also makes it easy to schedule charging and track your costs if you’re on a time-of-use electric plan that makes it cheaper to charge at night and during weekends.

Emporia EV ChargerCHECK CURRENT PRICE MSRP: 399Max power: 11.5 kWCable length/diameter: 24.3 ft/0.9 inInstallation: 14-50 plug or hardwire

The Emporia EV Charger arguably offers more for your money than the Grizzl-E Classic, but it’s not our top pick because it’s better suited for power users rather than the general EV-driving population. Its cable is thicker, heavier, and stiffer than the Grizzl-E’s, and it can be cumbersome to neatly coil in small spaces. Data junkies will love the detailed graphs and the ability to export stats from the app to CSV files, but the average driver is more likely to wonder why the app can’t show the battery’s state of charge, the vehicle’s estimated range, or how much time is remaining until the battery is full. That’s not Emporia’s fault, though. No home charging station can report that information due to the limitations of the SAE J1772 charging protocol used by all automakers except Tesla. That glaring omission in the industry standard is one reason we think Wi-Fi connectivity is a nice to have rather than a need to have for a home EV charger.

Emporia sells additional Smart home products that integrate with the app to provide deeper insights for the electron counters. Its Smart Plug enables remote control and energy logging of a single electronic device, while the Vue energy monitor allows users to analyze energy consumption for their whole house and individual circuits. An EV driver with home solar panels can link the Vue with the Emporia EV charger to power their vehicle only when the panels are generating more electricity than the rest of the house is consuming.

OTHER HOME EV CHARGERS WORTH CONSIDERING

See all 7 photos 7 photos

ChargePoint Home FlexCHECK CURRENT PRICEMSRP: 749Max power: 9.6 kWCable length/diameter: 22.6 ft/0.7 inInstallation: 14-50 plug, 6-50 plug, or hardwire

The ChargePoint Home Flex is a fantastic charging station if cost is no object. The integrated cord hook and pivoting holster make it the next best thing behind Tesla’s design. ChargePoint also makes the most intuitive app of the units we tested, largely because it keeps things simple and offers only basic functions such as energy reporting, cost tracking, and charge scheduling. The Home Flex is one of our favorite home EV chargers, but the price premium is steep considering you’re only getting aesthetic improvements over our top picks.

See all 7 photos 7 photos

J Booster 2CHECK CURRENT PRICE MSRP: 549Max power: 9.6 kWCable length/diameter: 18.7 ft/0.6 inInstallation: 14-50 plug

The J Booster 2 can be used as both a home charging station and a mobile charging cord, making it a Smart option for an EV driver who frequently travels to a vacation home or campgrounds with 240-volt outlets. It’s built from durable materials to handle abuse on the road and stores neatly in the included travel case. Used as a home EV charger, though, the J Booster 2 is a compromise. The mounting bracket effectively shortens the cable length by nearly 2 feet and places the integrated cable hook so close to the floor, you’ll likely need to buy a separate hook. (A Booster 2 with an extra four feet of cable is available for an additional 100.) Another downside: The Booster 2 only comes with adapters for a standard 120-volt household outlet and a NEMA 14-50 plug, and additional adapters aren’t cheap.

See all 7 photos 7 photos

Wallbox Pulsar Plus 40ACHECK CURRENT PRICE MSRP: 649Max power: 9.6 kWCable length/diameter: 24.3 ft/0.7 inInstallation: 14-50 plug or hardwire

The Wi-Fi-enabled Wallbox Pulsar Plus 40A allows a user to monitor energy consumption and schedule charging through an app that’s more user-friendly than most, but it can’t accurately track costs if you have a variable-rate time-of-use plan. It does stand apart from the crowd if you want to charge multiple EVs simultaneously, charge using solar panels, or charge at full power without upgrading your home‘s limited electrical service. These features all require buying additional hardware.

Wallbox Pulsar Plus 48ACHECK CURRENT PRICE MSRP: 699Max power: 11.5 kWCable length/diameter: 24.3 ft/0.9 inInstallation: Hardwire

Compared to the Pulsar Plus 40A, the 48A delivers faster charging to vehicles that can accept its full 11.5 kW. The trade-offs for more power include a higher price, a bulkier charging cable, and a requirement to hardwire the unit.

Watch! The InEVitable Vodcast EVgo COO Episode

On this episode of The InEVitable, we bring on Jonathan Levy, chief commercial officer of EVgo and an absolute expert in public policy and EV infrastructure. Prior to joining the EV charging company, Levy served as deputy chief of staff for U.S. Secretary of Energy, John Chu, at the Department of Energy. Levy is positively delightful and we talk about the current state of EV infrastructure. Does he have all the answers to EV charging issues? Watch below to find out!

What is a Smart EV Charger How Do They Work?

Like standard Level 2 electric vehicle (EV) chargers, Smart chargers supply electrical power which is used to power up EVs and plug-in hybrid electric vehicles (PHEVs). Where the two charger types differ is in functionality, as traditional chargers typically do not connect to Wi-Fi and are not as feature-rich.

Understanding the basic capabilities of different EV charger types will help identify the right charging solution for your home, providing you with convenience and access to the charging attributes you want. Follow this simple guide to learn more about what a Smart EV charger is, how you might be best-served using one, and how you can start the installation process.

How Do Smart EV Chargers Work?

Compared to standard electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) chargers, Level 2 EV chargers are equipped with Smart technology that offers homeowners convenience and more functionality to gain greater control over their EV charging experiences. Essentially, Smart chargers allow for access to a host of features making it so you charge your EV when you want, from where you want. Otherwise, Smart chargers work similarly to other Level 2 systems, charging EVs up to 8x faster than Level 1 chargers, which come standard with most new EV purchases.

Why Do I Need a Smart EV Charger?

Optimizing energy consumption to save money is the primary reason to get a Smart EV charger. The added convenience is another great perk, since Smart chargers can be remotely operated through an app or web portal, and charging can be scheduled for a time that works for you. While it’s not critical to purchase a Smart charger, the added features make it easier for you to save money over time. Knowing that, why wouldn’t you pay a little more upfront to save a lot over an extended period?

Can I Install an EV Charger at Home Myself?

In some instances, you can install a Smart charger at home. But depending on your home setup, it’s often best to hire a certified electrician to install your new charger. Regardless of who installs your charger, you will need to power your system from a 240v dedicated circuit, which could be through an outlet or hardwire — so keep that in mind when determining where you want your charging setup in your garage or elsewhere on your property.

Do EV Home Chargers Need Wi-Fi?

Yes, Smart EV chargers need to be connected to Wi-Fi to unlock their full benefits. Many Smart chargers can also be used as simple plug-and-use systems, but you won’t have access to any of their robust features without connecting them to a network.

EvoCharge’s iEVSE Home Smart EV Charger can be controlled with the EvoCharge App or by accessing the web portal. An easy-to-use Level 2 charger intended for home use, the iEVSE Home connects to a 2.4Ghz Wi-Fi network, and includes technology that allows you to schedule charging times, which allows you to save money by charging your EV during off-peak hours.

The web portal is also a great addition to EvoCharge’s Smart home charger, granting access to a dashboard that provides users with high-level viewing of charging session and usage data. The web portal offers all the same convenient features as the EvoCharge app, but it also gives the ability to download charging session data via CSV files, and you get access to a sustainability webpage that gives insights into your charging and its impact on the environment.

How Much Does a Smart Charger Cost?

Since Smart chargers include more technology and features than basic chargers, this means they also cost more. Level 2 Smart chargers generally start around 700 and go up to 1,000 in price for the hardware, plus any accessories you may want to add to your setup. EvoCharge’s iEVSE Home starts at 679 and can be purchased through installments. Overall, Smart chargers typically cost a couple hundred dollars more than alternative systems, however they give users the ability to save a lot of money over time since they offer so much control over the charging experience.

Enjoy convenient and efficient Smart charging from anywhere

If you get the EvoCharge iEVSE Home and want installation help, we recommend using a certified electrician who is already familiar with EvoCharge products. Check to see if a Certified EvoCharge Installer is available in your area. If you have questions about the iEVSE Home or other charging equipment, contact us or view our FAQs.

What’s a Smart charger? Do I need one for my EV?

UK law mandates you’ve got to use a Smart charger. So what exactly is it?

As the number of electric vehicles sold in the UK and around the world continues to grow, more and more of us are looking at slapping a wallbox (y’know, those outdoor EV-charging sockets) on the sides of our homes.

If you’ve already got one that was bought before 30 June 2022, the chances are it’s a ‘legacy’ charger that simply connects to the car with a cable and, er, puts electricity in it. At a push, you might be able to set a timer.

Since then however (and in addition to making housing developers responsible for installing EV home charge points with all new builds), a new law means all EV home chargers sold now have to be ‘Smart’ chargers.

Yep, the law now states that home chargers have to be clever. There are several benefits to this, which we shall explain momentarily.

So, what is a Smart charger?

A Smart charger. or Smart home charging point, or wallbox. whatever you want to call it. has a data connection to the car, the grid and your energy provider. Just like your Smart electric or gas meter, you’ve got more visibility and control over your electric car charging. And the Smart tech enables the system to be controlled remotely, by you and your energy provider.

Since home chargers usually charge your car much more slowly than the ‘Rapid’ devices you get at most service stations, some Smart chargers also have ‘boost’ functionality, which will speed up charging if you need to leave the house sooner than planned.

Does that mean there are non-Smart chargers?

As mentioned, legacy chargers don’t have the same connected tech, simply drawing down the power from your household supply when you plug your car in. And that’s merely three-pin plug levels of intelligence.

Got it. How do these Smart chargers work then? And why do I need one?

Smart chargers are the quickest way to rapidly reduce your EV’s running costs, not least because the recent hikes in energy have made some public charging points obscenely expensive.

When you plug in, the Smart charger may or may not be controlled by a touchscreen but will always have a companion app with which you can remotely control the time and speed of the charge.

The connection to the grid and provider will one day enable your car to absorb the energy made by green sources like wind turbines, essentially using your car like a giant power bank. With lots of EVs plugged in, the grid will be able to do this on a national scale. Exciting times.

Top GearNewsletter

Thank you for subscribing to our newsletter. Look out for your regular round-up of news, reviews and offers in your inbox.

Get all the latest news, reviews and exclusives, direct to your inbox.

And so, the government has passed legislation about making all chargers Smart, in preparation for the Great Electric Switchover of 2030 (not officially an actual thing). No doubt to avoid a Great Electric Power Outage Debacle when everyone tries to charge at the same time.

How much will a Smart charger cost me to install?

It varies, depending on how bothered you are about how it looks and whether you need any of the extra features, as described above. Some models can cost as little as £350 (without installation).

Others cost upwards of £1,000 (again, just for the device), but offer a choice of colours and styles so you can avoid the soap-dispenser-on-the-garage-wall design of some of the cruder models.

Installation costs for Smart charging points can vary depending on your location. That’s because you’ll need an MSC-certified electrician for the installation. The good news is, if you time it right (think Fridays around 4.30pm or Sundays at 3.45pm) plenty of dealerships are willing to throw in some discounts to secure that final sale before they shut for the night.

Most Smart charger manufacturers have a network of approved installers too, so that takes some of the legwork out of getting set up.

Any money-saving schemes I should know about?

There are a few schemes being run by various organisations, including some government bodies, to offset some of the costs of installation, if you can’t get the dealership to discount. If you don’t qualify for one, try another.

The government’s original Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS) came to an end in April 2022. It was replaced with a promise to assist with home charge point installation, provided you meet certain criteria.

Landlords, flat dwellers, those renting and businesses are those being targeted by the new scheme. If you’re a homeowner with a driveway, you’re less likely to qualify. Sorry.

Will it make my charging costs cheaper?

It’s likely. When it comes to how much you’re paying to charge, all Smart charging points help you control that. Night time is often seen as the best time to charge an electric car because this is when demand is lowest and electricity is cheapest. Some energy providers provide special EV tariffs too.

The UK’s Big Six providers have all offered energy deals geared towards making EV charging cheaper: while some of these have been withdrawn in light of the energy crisis, the likes of Octopus Energy and OVO Energy continue to offer packages to keep electricity as low as 10p per kilowatt-hour (the standard rate is around 32p/kWh).

How long will it take to charge my electric car?

There are a number of factors that determine how long an EV battery takes to recharge, including the type of electrified car you’re driving. For example, fully electric cars usually have much bigger batteries than plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs), and therefore need more time to fully replenish.

As a general rule, a 0-100 per cent charge is an overnight job on a Smart charger that maxes out at 7kW.

But remember, you’re never (we hope) going to get home with 0 miles of range left on the gauge and you’re unlikely to need a full battery for a day’s driving unless you’re going long-distance.

Need to make the most of the juice in your EV? Here are six top tips for wringing out as much range as possible.

Should I buy a tethered or untethered Smart charger?

That’s a great question. And much of it depends on whether the model of Smart charger you’ve chosen gives you a choice in the first place. Some of the more advanced chargers are tethered (i.e. are fitted with their own cable) to better manage power and the features on offer.

Tethered chargers can look a bit unsightly to some as it means leaving the cable exposed to the elements (unless there’s a clever mechanism for hiding it). Having said that, an untethered Smart charger (i.e. with just a socket) means you’ll be pulling your own cable out of the boot in the pouring rain more often than you really bargained for.

Where do solar panels come in?

Solar panels have become more popular since the energy leapt up, but there isn’t a huge choice of Smart chargers that are compatible with solar panels. If you have these, or intend to install them in the next five years, you’ll want to pick a Smart charger that will help prioritise the use of any excess energy.

For example, your home will draw down all the energy being generated by your panels. Anything spare could charge your EV, heat your hot water cylinder (if you have one) or charge your home power bank (again, if you have one). By directing excess energy to your EV, you could lower your charging costs even more.

Could charging my car affect the power to my house?

Possibly, though with a Smart charging unit, the danger of that happening is really very small. They have safety mechanisms to prevent ‘nuisance tripping’.

Some Smart chargers offer load-balancing features, which is handy if your household has more than one EV. In the simplest terms, this helps you charge your cars simultaneously without tripping the power for the whole house. It’s also considered safer for your car’s battery.

Leave a Comment