It might surprise electric car owners that the car charging system is actually found inside of the vehicle rather than on the wall. The equipment is buried inside of the car and uses an AC source of juice from your home. It then converts it to DC so your car’s battery pack can charge efficiently.
Many people still call the wall-mounted box the “charger” when in fact, it’s called an Electric Vehicle Service Equipment (EVSE). Therefore, you would have to purchase an EVSE to safely connect your electric car to the 240-volt source mounted on your wall. And even better: you can totally install this on your own at home.
We will take you through the steps in this guide to installing an electric car charging system.
Many people think that a DIY car charger outlet will cost entirely too much money. However, proper EVSE will only cost around $500 to $700. You could also spend less or twice as much — check your options with The Electric Connection.
The cost will always depend on the key features of the EVSE. You want to purchase one with solid portability and connectivity. These features can make the price higher or you can avoid them to reduce the cost; it’s up to you.
When you purchase a car charging system, ensure that it can handle at least 30 amps. A good rule of thumb is to have 30-amp service since it will give you the freedom to add 30 miles of range per hour. Adding 15 amps will also add about 15 miles per hour of charging.
Most electric cars fail to take full advantage of this faster rate. But it’s still important to have the capacity to charge at a 30-amp level. Even if your car cannot fully utilize this higher amperage, you won’t have to upgrade a few years from now if you buy a faster level 2 charger.
Keep in mind that you will need a circuit breaker for at least 40 amps for a 30-amp EVSE.
Charging Cable Lengths and EVSE Locations
Before purchasing a car charging system, imagine where you’ll have your electric car parked. Find the most ideal location to have a car charger to wall outlet. Then measure the distance between where you’ll place the EVSE and where the charging port will be.
Cables typically run from 15 to 25 feet, so you want to ensure that the cord can easily reach where it needs to go. You should also consider the length for a second car charger outlet in your driveway or garage. Since you’ll be charging nearly every night, you want the location to be as convenient as possible.
This is the year where nearly every person owns a smartphone. But if you’re considering buying an EVSE with Wi-Fi, you may want to reconsider.
While those devices have the convenience of timers and touchscreens, most long-time electric car owners think it’s an unnecessary complexity. And in some cases, once the connection is lost, the EVSE can shut down.
Before You Install a Car Charging System
DIY can be a low-cost installation option, but consider all sides before trying this yourself. It can be a dangerous job without the right precautions so keep our information in mind.
And don’t forget to check for any required permits or inspections before installing your car charging system.