April 12, 2023

What You Need to Know About Installing an EV Charger at Home

Electric Vehicles now account for about 3% of new car sales, making them some of the most popular vehicles in Australia. As the technology becomes more affordable, the last hurdle we need to clear is the issue of EV charging. Charging is essential to the success of EVs in Australia. While the government sorts out public charging stations, at-home chargers have become more affordable than ever. In this article, we’ll go over everything you need to know about installing an EV charger at home and how much you can expect to pay for the system.

Can I Install an EV Charger at Home?

Most Australian homes are capable of supporting an EV charging station. The catch is that not all homes are capable of supporting 7.4kW+ fast charging. Rapid EV chargers draw huge amounts of current, which places a strain on your local electrical infrastructure. Some suburbs and homes have insufficient wiring or power supply to support rapid charging.

Depending on your location and power infrastructure, you may be able to install one of three types of EV chargers:

  • Level 1 charging. Level 1 EV chargers (also called trickle chargers) use an existing wall socket and special cable supplied with the vehicle. This type of charging is slow, meaning it’s better suited to plug-in hybrid vehicles.
  • Level 2 charging. Level 2 EV chargers are dedicated units that provide 7.4kW, 11kW or even 22kW fast charging. Not all homes are capable of supporting a Level 2 charger, but these are the best option if you own an EV. Your electrician may be able to upgrade your property to support Level 2 charging.
  • Level 3 charging. Level 3 EV chargers are commercial units with outputs ranging from 25kW to 350kW. Level 3 chargers aren’t currently available for home installation.

You’ll need to talk to your electrician to figure out which type of charging is available at your property. They’ll be able to assess your location, infrastructure and wiring, and then make a recommendation on which is the best system for your home and budget. If you’re willing to spend a bit extra then you can also upgrade to three-phase power, allowing you to install faster Level 2 chargers.

Do I Need a Permit to Install an EV Charger?

You currently don’t need a permit to install an EV charger in Brisbane. While Energex is monitoring EV charger usage, most homes can install a charger without permission.

With that said, home EV chargers are a major challenge for Energex. As electric vehicles become more common, homes are beginning to draw larger amounts of power while charging cars overnight. This could cause serious issues in areas where the local power infrastructure is unable to support the additional demand. To deal with this, Energex has placed limits on the amount of power available to certain suburbs. Your electrician will be able to tell you whether your area is subject to any restrictions. If Energex is limiting the power in your area, you may need to install a three-phase Level 2 charger to keep your vehicles topped up.

How Much Does it Cost to Install an EV Charger?

It can cost anywhere between $500 and $5,000 to install an EV charger at home. The actual cost depends on the type of charger you want and whether your electrical infrastructure needs to be upgraded. For instance, if you plan to use a Level 1 trickle charger, you may only need to install a new power point that’s located near your car. But, if you want a three-phase Level 2 charger, you could pay up to $5,000 for the charging unit and installation.

The cost of your EV charger installation depends on things like:

  • The type of EV charger you want
  • Distance from the switchboard to your car
  • Whether you have single or three-phase power
  • Whether cables are being run to external carports or garages
  • Additional work that needs to be done, such as upgraded circuit breakers

A large proportion of the cost comes from the EV charger itself. Most Level 2 EV chargers are simple to install, but the system itself could cost $1,000-$2,000. Discuss your budget with your electrician before you purchase an EV charger. They’ll be able to help you select a system that matches your budget.

Get Ready for the Future with EV Charger Installation by Martel Electrical!

An at-home EV charger is a must-have if you’re thinking about buying an electric vehicle. Being able to charge your EV overnight is an affordable and convenient alternative to public chargers. Even better, at-home EV chargers are simple to install with the help of Martel Electrical! Martel Electrical is a qualified electrician working across Brisbane. Our team offers EV charger installation that can transform your garage into a cost-effective charging station. Get in touch with us today to make an appointment or to find out more about installing an EV charger in your area!