Where should I install the charger?
The most logical spot for a wall-mounted home charging unit is the garage or carport, but the ideal location is up to you. Consider which side of the garage or carport you want the charger, check where the charging port is on your EV, and factor in whether or not you usually reverse your car into the space.
You don’t need a great deal of room. RACV’s ChargeMate charger, for example, measures just 38 centimetres high, 13 centimetres deep and 18 centimetres wide and weighs around 3 kilograms. It also doesn’t matter if you don’t have a roof over your car space, as the charger is also fully weatherproof.
Do I need to upgrade my power supply?
When considering a home charging unit, you’ll need to determine if you have a single-phase or three-phase grid connection. If your switchboard is equipped with a three-phase connection, it means that the conduit that connects to your charger is bigger and can charge your EV faster than with a single-phase connection. To determine which type of grid connection your house has, check the width of the main switch on the switchboard. The single-phase switches are one ‘pole’ wide and three-phase switches are three ‘poles’ wide and look like a triple switch.
Technicians will need to install a dedicated circuit from the switchboard – the box with the circuit breakers that’s usually near your front door or in the garage – to the location of the charger. So, you’ll also need to determine how far the switchboard is from the charger and think about how the cabling will get there. Could it run through your ceiling or under the house? If your switchboard is close to the charging location, you generally don’t need to worry about this.
What if my house wiring is old?
Some older homes many have an old switchboard that needs to be upgraded, which could cost anywhere from $100 to $2,000 extra before a home EV charger can be installed.
"That’s because if we’re doing work in your switchboard, we’re required by law to bring it up to current code, so the whole switchboard may need upgrading," Liam explains.
Switchboard upgrades may also be required to make space for the new electrical protection switches. For example, if your home has old fuse blocks rather than new circuit breakers, you’re likely to need an upgrade of some kind. "However, those upgrades bring important safety benefits, so it’s a worthwhile investment for your home," Liam says.