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How to choose an electric vehicle charger?

Points to consider when buying an electric vehicle charging station

Electric cars are wonderful for saving the environment, but some can take up to 40 hours to charge! You wouldn’t wish to be sat at the shops or in public car parks for that long whilst your electric vehicle (EV) charges, so how do you choose which charger will be best for you to save time and money?

The number of EVs on the roads is increasing month on month and soon they will be the only vehicle that you can buy so it’s important to have your wall charger installed before the demand increases even higher. A wall charger in your home will certainly improve the value of your residence as will it be an essential asset in the near future.

To have an EV charger installed, you may need to consider upgrading your switchboard to run the charger at full capacity and to do so may depend on the power supply limitations of your home. Most manufacturers have settings on the charger that can be adjusted to reduce its demands on the power supply that you have available.

Electric vehicle charger

What types of electric car chargers are available?

EV chargers can be categorised into 3 subsections: level 1, level 2 and level 3.

Level 1 chargers

Level 1 chargers are the standard, basic charger that comes with your electric vehicle with around 2.4kW of charging power and can plug into any standard 10 Amp (240v) power point in your home. These provide the slowest charging speeds, which can mean it takes up to 48 hours to fully charge!

Level 2 chargers

A level 2 charger will be a wall box charger and they come in either a ‘single phase’ or ‘3 phase’ power supply. Although they are both level 2 EV chargers, they actually require different installations and you must ascertain whether your home has enough power available to install a level 2 charger. If not, you may need to upgrade your switchboard to accommodate the increased power demand.

Level 2 - Single phase

Basically, the single-phase level 2 charger increases the charging power from 2.4kW to 7kW. This would certainly reduce your charging time, with most EVs being able to charge fully in under 12 hours. So, if you think this will suffice and you just need to charge your car overnight then this could be all you need. However, if you would be taking longer trips or need to leave at short notice, you risk not being able to charge your EV in a reasonable length of time fully. If this is the case, the 3 phase charger may be more suited to your needs.

Level 2 - Three phase

The 3 phase charger raises the bar substantially as the charging power is boosted from 7kW to 22kW and can charge 3 times faster. An hour of charging from the 3 phase charger can give you a yield of 130km driving!

The much faster charging time gives you heaps more flexibility and if you already have, or will have, more than 1 EV, you will certainly need to have the 3 phase charger installed. The costly aspect of having an EV charger put in can be the labour to put the cabling in. So, you may as well make it worth the investment and have 3 phase cabling put in as even if you don’t think you’ll need it now, you certainly will in the future.

DC chargers are also known as ‘superchargers’ as the charge capacity can be between 50kW and 350kW! Compare that to the trickle of power that you get from the standard charger! However, to get this output, major infrastructure upgrades are required due to the considerable power demands.

DC chargers are made for industrial and commercial settings only due to the substantial power demands.

Electric vehicle charger image

Professional electric vehicle installations and advice

With our help, you'll be able to determine what power your home has available for an EV charger. We can install any type of standard or fast charger that work with the make and model of the car in question.

If you’d like professional advice on choosing your EV charger for your Brisbane, Sunshine Coast, Ipswich, Logan or Gold Coast home contact our team at 1300 054 488 or complete our EV charger enquiry form today.

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