EV Charging Station at Home

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
deikel
Posts: 1625
Joined: Sat Jan 25, 2014 6:13 pm

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by deikel »

I had an EV many years ago and went through 3 charging stations in two years (I guess I picked bad quality) - I was very happy that they were plug ins. But in the time between the replacements, I also learned that a simple 15 amp was charging just fine for my purposes and range when plugged in overnight, which it always was anyway (commuter car during the week)


Plug in not hardwired charger - better flexibility, choices, easier to take with you or remove if not needed anymore. Get the tax credit !

Use the line you have and use it to the max you can

Absolutely use UL rated equipment, receptacles and otherwise (or similar agency rated, does not need to be UL itself, but to the applicable standard and certified) - anything else is a carp shoot in terms of electrical or fire hazard) - maybe I misunderstand what you are asking, is there any vendor of equipment that sells 'self-certified' ? Thats crazy legal liability.

I don't see where you need a permit if all you do is change the outlet (?) of an existing cable in the wall to attach an EV charging station to. You would not ask for a permit if you connected a welder to it ?
Everything you read in this post is my personal opinion. If you disagree with this disclaimer, please un-read the text immediately and destroy any copy or remembrance of it.
TheGreyingDuke
Posts: 2241
Joined: Fri Sep 02, 2011 10:34 am

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by TheGreyingDuke »

If a permit is reuqired I woud strongly urge you go through the process. Some other response in this thread talked about a fire with an EVSE. If that were to happen to an unpermitted install you can assume the insurance company will find a way to avoid covering the event.

The theory of permits is to protect the homeowner from substandard work; in my town the inspector is very helpful in thinking about how to do a safe efficent installtion. Ifyours is not so helpful, talk to the boss in the jurisdiction and force a change. With the growth of home EVSEs uneprmitted work by those who don't know what they are doing is a big hazard to us all.
"Every time I see an adult on a bicycle, I no longer despair for the future of the human race." H.G. Wells
cheesepep
Posts: 1319
Joined: Wed Feb 17, 2010 9:58 pm

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by cheesepep »

I would like to say that just because you have an EV that you must charge at home. Quite the contrary. I only charge at the Tesla Superchargers (and very occasionally at Costco and other places). I charge once every 1-2 weeks for my M3. I drive 40-60 mins a day to drive my wife to her office and back home and drive to various supermarkets and restaurants.
User avatar
TomatoTomahto
Posts: 17421
Joined: Mon Apr 11, 2011 1:48 pm

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by TomatoTomahto »

cheesepep wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 6:09 pm I would like to say that just because you have an EV that you must charge at home. Quite the contrary. I only charge at the Tesla Superchargers (and very occasionally at Costco and other places). I charge once every 1-2 weeks for my M3. I drive 40-60 mins a day to drive my wife to her office and back home and drive to various supermarkets and restaurants.
As long as you understand that you are shortening the life of the battery …
I get the FI part but not the RE part of FIRE.
AspirationalBH
Posts: 54
Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2022 12:08 am

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by AspirationalBH »

And... SplitVolt recently came out with a UL certified line.

I was shopping for a friend recently and noticed the new product line. I've had mine since late 2021 with no issues sharing the dryer socket. The only annoyance is that the LED is so bright it functions as a night light in the laundry room which makes me feel like I'm wasting energy.
teCh0010
Posts: 460
Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2011 11:20 am

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by teCh0010 »

suemarkp wrote: Tue Feb 06, 2024 7:53 pm
vfinx wrote: Tue Feb 06, 2024 5:05 pm EV inbound and I am trying to figure out the best charging solution. It will come with a 14-50 portable connector, but I don't have that receptacle. 120V would be too slow.

In addition to evaluating options, I'd appreciate input on:
  • The benefit of hardwire over plug-in, and whether it's worth the added cost.
  • The importance of permit+inspection, and whether it's worth the added cost (California). From what 2 electricians told me, home EV charging stations are generally being installed without permit+inspection now (one said 90% of his clients).
  • The importance of "UL Listed".
Hardwire connection lets you eliminate GFCI protection for the receptacle which saves about $100+ for a GFCI breaker. There have also been issues with 14-50 receptacles melting down in EV charger applications. You need to buy a good one if doing the full 40 continuous amps through that. I see that Leviton has just come out with a new heavy duty 14-50R for EV charger applications. Hopefully those won't melt down and will be cheaper than the good Hubbell ones.

I'm cynical about permits, as most inspections i have had have been superficial except for once. And on that one time I was battling the guy with the code book for over an hour and finally ended up having to get a ruling from the chief electrical inspector. He ruled in my favor, but the whole process was annoying. Depending on how your permit system works, there may be no way to tell exactly what you have permits for. If the EV charger is just a branch circuit permit and it doesn't say what it is for or the rating, no one is going to know which branch circuit was separately permitted. Here, when I get a permit for a panel, it includes up to 6 circuits, so if I change a panel I can add 6 circuits that the inspector will probably not even look at. That being said, permits and inspections are typically legally required, but it does depend on your jurisdiction.

UL listed is another quandry. I've seen UL listed things that have flaws or issues. Usually they manifest over time or just age degradation. But, to pass a UL (or ETL or other NRTL listing), there are some basic things that need to be met so you'll know at least basic stupid safety things didn't occur. The listing process is expensive, and it is certainly possible to buy a well designed item that isn't NRTL listed. Here in WA (and many other states), anything electrical you install (even in your house, not just for a business) is supposed to be NRTL listed. This is violated every day by Amazon deliveries... There is not a god State enforcement mechanism to find and eliminate these devices. Businesses get some of it at OSHA/WISHA inspections. Homes could if you get an electrical inspection and the inspector notices it. But even the electrical inspector isn't going to pick up your toaster or blender to look for a NRTL mark.
Bryant is $50 at grainger and is the exact same thing as the Hubbell.
Topic Author
vfinx
Posts: 713
Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2018 9:35 pm

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by vfinx »

AspirationalBH wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 8:36 pm And... SplitVolt recently came out with a UL certified line.

I was shopping for a friend recently and noticed the new product line. I've had mine since late 2021 with no issues sharing the dryer socket. The only annoyance is that the LED is so bright it functions as a night light in the laundry room which makes me feel like I'm wasting energy.
:oops: :annoyed

Where do you see that? I couldn't find anything with a Google search. Oh well, it's too late to return the Clipper Creek unit.
teCh0010
Posts: 460
Joined: Mon Oct 31, 2011 11:20 am

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by teCh0010 »

I would go with option C. Grab a UL listed hardwire and configure it to limit current to 24a.

The outlet / plug is the most likely part of a continuous high amp load to melt down, might as well eliminate it.
Valuethinker
Posts: 49364
Joined: Fri May 11, 2007 11:07 am

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by Valuethinker »

billaster wrote: Tue Feb 06, 2024 9:03 pm
vfinx wrote: Tue Feb 06, 2024 8:56 pm
billaster wrote: Tue Feb 06, 2024 7:32 pm
suemarkp wrote: Tue Feb 06, 2024 7:25 pm You said the car comes with a 14-50 plug? If so, can you tell the car to limit its charging to 24 amps?

If both are true, you can put a 14-50 receptacle on a 30A circuit. Code requires the receptacle to be as larger or larger than the circuit rating (30A). It can seem misleading to put a 50A receptacle on a 30A circuit, but the code allows it. I would probably label that receptacle as "30A max" to avoid mis application.
Even easier, you can use a 14-30 to 14-50 adapter and just plug it right into the existing outlet. You don't even need an electrician.

https://www.amazon.com/ELETHOR-Charger- ... 0BRSSZPYK/

As stated above, it would be best if the EVSE itself could be programmed to only 24 amps, but programming your car to 24 amps should also work.
I’ve looked into this, and if I were the only person that would ever use the car it might be an option but I don’t trust others to keep the amps below 24 in the vehicle. I would also have to install a gfci breaker if I change the receptacle, according to code, and those don’t seem to play nice with EVSEs which have their own gfci.

I also don’t like the idea of added adapters as they are potential failure points. Perhaps I am being paranoid on this point.
If that is your decision, then just buy either a 16 or 24 amp EVSE with a 14-30 plug and be done with it. You don't need an electrician to just plug it in.

People tend to get paranoid about 240V circuits as they may seem exotic but don't forget that most of the rest of the world has only 220V to 240V outlets in their homes. Even their little phone chargers plug into a 240V outlets.

In European hotels, there always seem(ed) to be cases of American tourists burning out various small electrical items -- at least at one time that was the urban legend.

(You also find the absence of plug sockets in British bathrooms to be strange. Any lightswitch has to be on a pull cord (or outside the room), and the only sockets allowed are little (3 Amp?) ones for electric shavers. That's in the Building Regs (Codes) and I believe any electrician who installed one could be criminally liable. Some Continental countries are similar, I believe. Hair dryers are hardwired in).

When my spouse (British) discovered what North Americans consider to be a legitimate plug-in device.... she was a bit taken aback, it looks totally unsafe to her eyes. British plugs all have a fuse in them.

(OTOH 30 years ago, when you bought a device with a plug in the UK, they actually would snip the plug off at the counter. There were at least 3 different plug configurations out there. You were supposed to safely install a plug yourself at home. I think eventually they showed that 50% of home plugged appliances were not correctly wired (the brown wire for the ground). They finally scrapped that law, to much cheering in Parliament.

I remember how annoyed I was to discover my builder had snipped off the plug on my toaster, to wire up the light strip under the cupboards -- it was the closest to hand :oops: :oops: ).

OTOH we are 50 HZ and you are 60 HZ. Japan manages to be both - in different parts of the country.
ensign_lee
Posts: 535
Joined: Fri Mar 12, 2010 9:03 am

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by ensign_lee »

I chose installing a plug, and then buying the Grizzl-E (non-smart) version.

That way I can take the plug with me to the next house, or swap for another one if this one malfunctioned. Plus, if I wanted to still an NACS charger instead of a CCS charger later, it'd be much easier than replacing a hardwired unit.
NYCaviator
Posts: 2171
Joined: Sat Apr 09, 2016 5:06 pm
Location: NYC

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by NYCaviator »

vfinx wrote: Tue Feb 06, 2024 5:05 pm In addition to evaluating options, I'd appreciate input on:
  • The benefit of hardwire over plug-in, and whether it's worth the added cost.
  • The importance of permit+inspection, and whether it's worth the added cost (California). From what 2 electricians told me, home EV charging stations are generally being installed without permit+inspection now (one said 90% of his clients).
  • The importance of "UL Listed".
1. We just bought a Tesla (first ever EV) and decided to go with a 14-50 plug and just use the Tesla mobile charger to plug in. There are no benefits I could see of having a hardwired charger, at least for the Tesla. I screwed a rubber coated hook into the wall that I use to hang the cord when I'm not charging. I thought about adding a hardwired charger, but if we replace our other car with an EV or plugin hybrid, I want a plug that'll be universal. The electrician we had come out said that the hardwired chargers generally have GFCI built into the charger, but if you are using a regular 240v plug, a GFCI at the breaker is a must given the potential for garages to get wet with melting snow, rain dripping off the car, etc. We had him replace the standard breaker with a GFCI. Not cheap, but worth it.

2. Yes, do a permit. We have had too many issues with electricians, plumbers, etc. trying to cut corners and do garbage work. I'm not an electrician or plumber so I don't know what to look for, until something breaks and you have to have someone else come out and fix it. With a permitted install, you know it's being done up to code. Worth the peace of mind.

3. I'd get UL listed. I'd assume most well known brand chargers are safe, but there's a lot of made in China junk being sold on Amazon and the like, and who knows if it's safe or not. That much electricity has the ability to start fires or cause serious injury, so I wouldn't risk getting something that isn't UL listed. Again, it's a small price to pay for peace of mind.
GT99
Posts: 773
Joined: Wed Jun 20, 2018 5:26 pm

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by GT99 »

vfinx wrote: Tue Feb 06, 2024 6:55 pm Thanks for the responses.

Regarding charging speeds, I think the way the difference would play out is that with slower chargers, I would have to plug it in more often. It wouldn’t be a matter of whether I could make it work at all, just a convenience factor.

There may also be a consideration of fitting charging within a lower electricity cost window. I am currently in a tiered rate plan, but it may make sense to move to an EV time-of-use plan. But I haven’t run the numbers on this yet, and I suspect it won’t be a big deal either way (we don’t drive that much, projected ~6k miles on the EV).
Been driving EVs for over 10 years, with a the first 9 years of charging on a 120v outlet. Unless you have an odd setup, that inconvenience of plugging in is literally about 5 seconds. I'm an optimizer to the point it drives DW nuts, but that's not an inconvenience I personally would worry about optimizing. Most people will only ever really need to charge overnight, so the difference between options A and B in terms of frequency of charge is fairly trivial - you're talking about less than a minute of time savings per month, probably less than 30 seconds.

That said, I'd still go with option A - for just $100 more, why not get the extra charging speed for the times where maybe you've been driving a lot and only have like an hour or something before having to drive again. Or maybe you forgot to plug in the night before or something. I personally have only been in that situation a handful of times in 10 years, but I'd still get the faster charge rate.
AspirationalBH
Posts: 54
Joined: Sat Oct 01, 2022 12:08 am

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by AspirationalBH »

vfinx wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 8:47 pm
AspirationalBH wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 8:36 pm And... SplitVolt recently came out with a UL certified line.
:oops: :annoyed

Where do you see that? I couldn't find anything with a Google search. Oh well, it's too late to return the Clipper Creek unit.
I found it by going directly to their site. It's the black case lineup, except for the NEMA 10-30 + 14-50 which can't be certified and the one I need. :)

https://splitvolt.atlassian.net/wiki/sp ... +Certified
lazydavid
Posts: 5350
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by lazydavid »

ensign_lee wrote: Wed May 15, 2024 7:49 am I chose installing a plug, and then buying the Grizzl-E (non-smart) version.

That way I can take the plug with me to the next house, or swap for another one if this one malfunctioned. Plus, if I wanted to still an NACS charger instead of a CCS charger later, it'd be much easier than replacing a hardwired unit.
If you changes houses or chargers on a regular basis, this could real timesaver. But most people don't move all that often (we've been in our current house for 11 years so far, and the prior one for 9), and the effort involved in hardwiring a charger vs. installing an outlet are about the same. True, swapping chargers is quicker and easier with a plug; definite benefit for something you do a few times a week. But with typically years between swaps, the 5-10 minute changeover doesn't really move the needle.
lazydavid
Posts: 5350
Joined: Wed Apr 06, 2016 1:37 pm

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by lazydavid »

AspirationalBH wrote: Wed May 15, 2024 8:42 am I found it by going directly to their site. It's the black case lineup, except for the NEMA 10-30 + 14-50 which can't be certified and the one I need. :)

https://splitvolt.atlassian.net/wiki/sp ... +Certified
Correct. You will never find an integrated NEMA 10-30 EV charger with a UL listing. That's because 10-30 does not have a ground, and therefore has been a violation of the electrical code for almost 60 years--since the publication of NEC 1966--with the lone exception (thanks to the appliance lobby) of when it is used for an electric dryer. UL will not certify devices that violate code by their very design.

The only 10-30 capable charger I'm aware of that is UL listed is the Tesla one, because it's modular and they released the 10-30 adapter after the unit itself had already received its UL listing. I don't expect anyone else will be able to successfully pull off this stunt in the future.
elforeign
Posts: 75
Joined: Fri Dec 09, 2022 11:43 am

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by elforeign »

I got an 48A Enphase IQ 60 hardwired. Works great, built like a tank and has 5 years warranty. Charges my Ioniq 5 no problems.
neilpilot
Posts: 5069
Joined: Fri Dec 04, 2015 12:46 pm
Location: Memphis area

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by neilpilot »

lazydavid wrote: Wed May 15, 2024 8:49 am
ensign_lee wrote: Wed May 15, 2024 7:49 am I chose installing a plug, and then buying the Grizzl-E (non-smart) version.

That way I can take the plug with me to the next house, or swap for another one if this one malfunctioned. Plus, if I wanted to still an NACS charger instead of a CCS charger later, it'd be much easier than replacing a hardwired unit.
If you changes houses or chargers on a regular basis, this could real timesaver. But most people don't move all that often (we've been in our current house for 11 years so far, and the prior one for 9), and the effort involved in hardwiring a charger vs. installing an outlet are about the same. True, swapping chargers is quicker and easier with a plug; definite benefit for something you do a few times a week. But with typically years between swaps, the 5-10 minute changeover doesn't really move the needle.
Another reason to consider a plug over hardwired: Some of us travel and stay in other homes that sometimes have 240v receptacles available. I check with the homeowner beforehand, and can bring along my EVSE if a compatible outlet will be available. That's literally the only time my plugged-in EVSE gets unplugged.
Topic Author
vfinx
Posts: 713
Joined: Thu Apr 19, 2018 9:35 pm

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by vfinx »

AspirationalBH wrote: Wed May 15, 2024 8:42 am
vfinx wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 8:47 pm
AspirationalBH wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 8:36 pm And... SplitVolt recently came out with a UL certified line.
:oops: :annoyed

Where do you see that? I couldn't find anything with a Google search. Oh well, it's too late to return the Clipper Creek unit.
I found it by going directly to their site. It's the black case lineup, except for the NEMA 10-30 + 14-50 which can't be certified and the one I need. :)

https://splitvolt.atlassian.net/wiki/sp ... +Certified
I think the certifications only apply to their switches, and not their EVSEs. Or at least I still couldn’t find a certified 14-30 in their lineup.
mushripu
Posts: 177
Joined: Fri Jan 26, 2018 7:26 am

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by mushripu »

My Tesla home charger was installed without any permit by a certified installer.
WhyNotUs
Posts: 2657
Joined: Sun Apr 14, 2013 11:38 am

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by WhyNotUs »

Over time, the plugs will become two way to provide backup electricity in emergencies. Plan accordingly.
I own the next hot stock- VTSAX
cmr79
Posts: 1441
Joined: Mon Dec 02, 2013 3:25 pm

Re: EV Charging Station at Home

Post by cmr79 »

TomatoTomahto wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 6:42 pm
cheesepep wrote: Tue May 14, 2024 6:09 pm I would like to say that just because you have an EV that you must charge at home. Quite the contrary. I only charge at the Tesla Superchargers (and very occasionally at Costco and other places). I charge once every 1-2 weeks for my M3. I drive 40-60 mins a day to drive my wife to her office and back home and drive to various supermarkets and restaurants.
As long as you understand that you are shortening the life of the battery …
DCFC has turned out to not be nearly as big of an issue for battery longevity according to some of the longer term (and primarily Tesla focused) data that has come out over the last 1-2 years. Probably the biggest risk would be if cheesepep frequently charges to 100% to minimize how often they need to charge along with how much time the battery spends sitting at a high state of charge.

One of the biggest advantages to home charging for us personally is that we can keep our battery state of charge close to 50% the vast majority of the time without affecting our day to day lives. We set our charging limit to 60% and only adjust it if we have a longer trip planned. Keeping a tighter state of charge range and lower limit with frequent charging is supposedly the best battery health practice one can follow for any lithium ion device, whether EVs, cellphones or toothbrushes.
Post Reply