Over 350,000 new electric vehicles are predicted to be sold in the U.S. in 2020. Popular all-electric vehicles like the Tesla Model 3, Chevy Bolt, Tesla Model X, Tesla Model S, and the Nissan Leaf are appealing options to Americans making the switch to electric power. This means an increasing number of homeowners are setting up electric vehicle charging stations in their homes.
Though an electric-powered vehicle can be charged by plugging it into a standard 120-volt electric volt, the home’s electrical system may not be able to handle the demand and may take too long to charge. Dimming lights and circuit breaker tripping are signs that your home’s electrical system can’t meet your charging needs and requires an upgrade. Upgrading your electrical system can help keep your home safe from electrical issues and speed up the electric vehicle charging process.
3 Types of Electrical Systems
The type of system best for you will depend on how many appliances you need to be plugged in and how quickly you’d like your vehicle to charge.
AC Level 1 (120V/15A)
– Uses a 3-prong household plug/outlet
– Requires 8-12 hours for a full charge
AC Level 2 (240V/30-70A)
– Requires the installation of special home charging equipment
– Requires a dedicated circuit
– Requires 3-6 hours to charge
– Government rebates may incentivize this type of charging system
DC Fast Charging
– Requires 20-40 minutes to charge
– Require special equipment and electrical service upgrades
– Typically used at public charging stations
Installing a Level 2 EV Charging Station
Setting up this type of charging station requires using a four-strand cable to attach a “double-pole” circuit breaker to two 120 volt buses at once to double the circuit voltage to 240 volts. The four-strand cable should be properly insulated to prevent damage. The final step is to mount the charging unit and attach it to the 240-volt cable. In addition, the breaker box may need to be replaced with a compatible interface.
Installing a Level 2 EV charging station requires electric expertise and is best handled by a professional electrician. Reach out to Blue Apple Electric with any questions about upgrading your electrical system and installing a Level 2 EV charging station.