The global market for electric cars (EVs) is steadily expanding, as is the charging infrastructure for these vehicles. By 2019, there were an estimated 7.3 million EV chargers installed globally, of which around 6.5 million were private, installed by homeowners, as well as those found in businesses and apartment complexes.
With this new trend and the increasing affordability of electric vehicles, it makes sense to consider putting a charging station on the grounds of your company or residence. This allows you total control over the charging schedule for your car. However, what is the expense of installing an electric car charger?
Cost of an Electric Vehicle Charging Station
Numerous variables affect the cost of establishing a charging station in a house or other site. The output design and charging method are critical. The location of the charging port, the contractor you pick, and the cost of labor all contribute to the final cost.
Charging stations are classified into Level 1, Level 2, and direct current (DC) (direct current). The following table summarises the ratings for these three charging levels:
• Level 1: This is the industry standard for electronic vehicle charging infrastructure, using 120-volt single-phase alternating current (AC) at up to 16 amps. They are, however, restricted to 12 amps and may charge at a maximum pace of 1.9 kilowatts (kW) or around 5 miles per hour of charging. Because 120-volt outlets are frequently accessible, Level 1 devices may be utilized with regular domestic wall outlets.
• Level 2: These need a 240-volt unit and provide a wide variety of charging rates. They can give up to a 19.2-kilowatt charge rate or up to 60 miles of range per hour of charging time due to their up to 80 amp power rating. As a result, it is one of the most appropriate charging stations for most electric cars. Level 2 EV chargers need specialized charging equipment and a 20–100 amp dedicated electrical supply.
• DC Level 3: These charging stations operate on 480 volts and may charge up to 80% in less than 30 minutes. This equates to a charging rate of 249 miles per hour. However, they are not universally compatible with all automobiles.
Installation expenses for various charging devices also vary greatly. For instance, a Level 1 charger costs between $300 and $600 before labor, totaling around $1,000 to $1,700. The Level 2 charger is somewhat more expensive, costing between $500 and $700 and requiring around $1,200 to $2,000 in labor. Level 3 requires a massive investment of between $20,000 and $50,000 in components and labor, which might cost upwards of $50,000. It’s worth noting that if the installation procedure necessitates significant electrical improvements to your property, the cost may be higher.
Costs of Tesla Charger Installation
Tesla automobiles are equipped with unique and proprietary adaptors for charging if you choose to use a different charging station. They often have a Level 1 charger that connects to a conventional 120-volt outlet. They do, however, sell Level 2 chargers for about $500. The installation fee is comparable to that of other chargers, and it is around $1,100 for a typical unit.
Costs of Installing an EV Charging Station in Your Home
If your house already has a 240-volt circuit, you should expect to pay between $250 and $400 for the basic installation. However, mounting a station and running specialized 50-amp wiring would cost $400 and $1,700. You are mounting a new station, installing a new service panel, cabling, and equipping it with a 240-volt outlet costs between $1,500 and $4,500. The same holds if substantial wiring is required and trenching and running conduit throughout the house.
Typically, the increased expenses are due to electrical repairs. Electricians charge between $40 and $100 per hour, and installing a 240-volt, 50-amp outlet costs $300 and $800. Between $1,800 to $2,500 is the cost of upgrading a 200-amp panel. On the other hand, wiring may cost up to $8 per foot, while trenching costs $4 and $12 per foot.
The federal government of the United States of America grants a tax credit of up to $1,000 to purchase and install a household electric vehicle charging station. The credit reimburses 30% of the cost of the home EV charger’s purchase and installation (up to a maximum of $1,000). You must acquire and install the system before December 31, 2021, and claim the credit when filing your tax returns.
Additionally, states provide rebates and incentives. For example, when a customer purchases a DC Fast EVSE charger via California’s PG&E DCFC program, the cost of site preparation is covered. Even better, impoverished areas may qualify for incentives on the car purchase. These incentives contribute to cost savings associated with purchase and installation.
The installation of an EV charging station must adhere to federal, state, and municipal construction requirements. Federally, the installation must adhere to the National Electrical Code (NEC). Building permission is necessary for most states, as is an electrical permit.
Permits may cost anywhere from $50 to somewhat more than $160, depending on municipal restrictions. For instance, the total cost is predicted to be $162 in Fremont, California.
Costs of Garage Modification
A 240V outlet is required to modify your garage to install the EV charger. This is simplified if your primary electrical panel is equipped with a dedicated circuit. Install a separate panel board if your electrical panel does not include a 2-pole breaker.
This new system requires four more wires, including one for the ground, two for the phases, and one for the common. You may have to relocate some of the electrical hookups in your garage to accommodate the new system.
Suppose your garage’s floor plans need additional alterations, budget roughly $150 per square foot. This enables the charging station to be wall-mounted and the 25-foot cord to be used easily.
Consider the Following Before Installing an EV Charger
Apart from deciding whether to install a Level 1, Level 2, or DC (Level 3) charging port, the following factors must be considered:
• Plug and connection type – The vehicle’s make and model decides this. Naturally, you’ll use the usual Tesla connection if you own a Tesla. Additionally, there is the SAE J1772, which is the standard plug for most automobiles in the United States. It is capable of both Level 1 and Level 2 charging. Additionally, you may choose CHAdeMO, which is utilized for rapid charging.
• Safety — Look for UL-certified charging stations. The UL certification verifies that the charger has undergone safety testing. Additionally, keep pets and small children away from connections and electrical outlets.
• Electric capacity – Always check first to ensure that your electric panel can support EV charging. A circuit with a minimum of 32 amps must be installed in your house or garage to be functional. Consult your landlord and local authorities to get authorization and ensure compliance with any legislation.
• Cable length – Regardless of the location of the charging station, pay attention to the cable length. It should extend from the wall mount to the vehicle and construct a tough and well-insulated material to avoid any mishaps.
It’s advisable to evaluate if the charger will be hardwired or plugged in as well. EV chargers that provide more than 40 amps must be hardwired to the unit’s power source. Additionally, you should evaluate the equipment’s cost and the installation site.
The Economic Benefits of Home EV Charging
Charging at home saves you money. For starters, you may take advantage of government funding and technical help for electric cars and charging infrastructure, which will significantly lower installation costs. Additionally, when compared to the expense of gasoline and routine maintenance associated with other kinds of cars, electric vehicles will result in considerable long-term savings. For example, assuming a cost of 12.6 cents/kWh, if you completely charge an electric car with a 100-mile range at home, the cost will be the same as using your central air conditioner for six hours.
Solar panels used to charge your electric car can also save you money in the long run on power bills, but the initial investment is very costly.
House Alternatives In comparison to apartments and condominiums
In contrast to single-family residences, EV charging in apartments and condominiums has problems related to parking, electrical availability, and regulatory issues. It entails collaborating with building owners and obtaining their consent before erecting a station. Fortunately, there are best practices and case studies for flawless installs that you may share with landlords.
Residents of a condominium or apartment share electricity generated by a single solar panel. As a result, requests to connect a single EV charger will be allowed only if accompanied by a plan. Most apartment complexes prefer to provide residents with communal charging outlets. They allocate charging places, and renters are responsible for monthly fees and power costs. Apartment managers may charge by the hour, kWh, or any other pricing plan they desire. Tenants may use an app to check the availability of a charging area for certain chargers. Additionally, a queue, charge status, and alarms are included.