10 Tips on How to Choose a Home EV Charger

June 13, 2024 8 min read

Choosing and installing your home's first electric vehicle charger can be daunting.

We put together a list of recommendations to help you get a grip on this.

1. Where is the best location to install an EV charger?

When choosing where to install the charger, consider that it needs both electricity and internet access, be it home WiFi, LAN cable, or 4G connectivity. Most chargers can be installed both in- and outdoors, placed on a wall or on a post.

Also, think about where the car’s charging plug is located and how you need to park so that the cable from the charger reaches the car. VOOL Charger’s 6.5m cable ensures that there is not only one correct way to park, but you can park your car in any direction.

2. How many Amps do you need for home EV charging?

For the home charger, a three-phase 16-amp connection is recommended, which supports an 11kW EV charger. You can also charge with a single-phase connection or with fewer amps, but then charging will take longer. The more amps, the faster you charge. Home charging stations have a capacity of up to 22kW, which is supported by a three-phase 32-amp connection.

3. What's the difference between AC and DC chargers?

DC chargers are larger and more expensive than AC chargers, and this kind of investment makes more sense in public charging points where there are many users and fast charging is important.

At home, a compact AC charger is more suitable, which is friendlier for your wallet and allows for “semi-fast” charging, which is sufficient in a home situation. On average, it takes 4-6 hours to fully charge a completely empty car battery at home.

VOOL EV Charger with a Type 2 cable is perfect for home

VOOL EV charger comes with a Type 2 cable

4. How powerful of an EV charger do I need?

Home chargers range from 3.6 to 22kW. Today, most EVs can receive up to 11kW of AC power. Check your car's technical specifications to find out with how much power and on how many phases it is capable of charging.

Choosing a 22kW charger, like VOOL, future-proofs your home because the trend in new cars is towards higher charging power. Even if your EV can receive 11kW power, you can charge it with a 22kW charger without harming your car. Keep in mind that an 11kW charger requires a 3x16A grid connection, and a 22kW one needs 3x32A.

5. What kind of a cable or plug shoud I prefer?

Again, check your car's tech specs to see what type of plug it has. Make sure that the charger's cable matches the plug of your EV.

Today, most fully electric cars have a CCS2 plug, which is compatible with both the Type 2 cable common in home chargers and the CCS cable of fast chargers. Most hybrid cars have a Type 2 plug, which works with the Type 2 cable of a home charger but not with the CCS cable of a public charger. The standard in new EVs and hybrids across Europe is to match with the Type 2 charging cable, like the one you find on VOOL Chargers.

You can also go for an untethered charger. This means there is only a socket but no cable attached to it. On one hand, a charger with only a socket offers flexibility—you can charge both Type 1 and Type 2 cars with it. On the other hand, you must attach the cable every time you want to charge your car, which is time-consuming and can just get annoying.

A charger with a cable (aka a tethered charger) adds convenience: the cable is always ready, and you don't have to pack it in the car afterward. In some tethered chargers, like the VOOL Charger, it is possible to change the charging cable (for example, from Type 2 to Type 1), but this requires a little bit of work and is not something you want to do every day.

6. Are there any good-looking EV chargers?

You will see your home charger every day. So, why not treat it as a design element like anything else you choose for your home? Choose a charger that fits well with the surroundings and is pleasant to look at and use.

For instance, the VOOL Charger has four different front plates, each with its own character to add elegance and flair to your home: matte black, natural wood, real moss, and brushed aluminum.

VOOL EV Charger for home in real moss

The VOOL EV Charger with real moss

7. What is a load management device, and do I need one at home?

Charging your EV with 11KW power is like running ten dishwashers at the same time. It’s a heavy load that most home grid connections are not ready to handle without a load management device. A dynamic load management device is installed in the electrical cabinet where it measures how much power your home is using and signals your charger how much current is available for charging.

Some load management controllers, like the VOOL LMC, also read which of the three phases is most loaded and switch the charger’s consumption to the least loaded phase – we call this automatic phase switching. No blown fuses and the car can charge as fast as the network connection allows.

8. What is smart charging?

Smart charging is widely understood as market-price based charging, meaning automatically charging your EV when the electricity rates are the lowest. However, this term covers much more. A smart charger is connected to the internet and helps control how much and when you EV is charged.

Working together with a load management device that reads the total energy consumption of the household, the smart charger uses only the available power for your EV, without blowing any fuses.

If you have solar panels at home, and solar is abundant, you can charge your car for free thanks to smart charging. Ask it from the manufacturer, if their product has solar charging.

While a smart charger requires a bigger investment upfront that just charging by cable via wall contact, then in the long run, it pays for itself through money saved and convenience.

9. How to install an EV charger?

An EV charger, like VOOL, is easy to install. For a qualified electrician. Could you, technically, do it? Sure. But you could also harm yourself and others, your home and your EV while installing the charger yourself. Also, it would probably not comply with local laws and void the warranty if you’re not a professional.

So, we highly recommend having an electrician install your EV charger. They will inspect whether your home electrical system is ready for a charger and do the necessary cabling, safe installation, system setup, and training for you. They can also take care of the paperwork according to local laws or advise you on how to file it yourself.

Here, you'll find a list of trusted installers for VOOL chargers.

10. How much does a home EV charger cost?

A typical home EV charger costs between 500€ – 1700€. The price of an electric car charger depends on the features, including charging speed, connectivity, smart functionalities, and whether it has a cable or not.

The VOOL Charger costs 890€, it comes with up to 22kW charging power, a tethered cable and loads of smart functionalities. Our LMC that enables Dynamic Load Balancing and Automatic Phase Switching and more smart functionalities for the charger, costs 290€. Some of our partners also offer rent models.

The VOOL Mobile App and advanced charging management Portal come for free for VOOL charger home users.

Additionally, keep in mind the installation costs. A simple installation that includes ca 10 meters of cabling could set you back around 300€. However, every home is different, and you should check with an electrician to find out how much setting up your home charger would cost.

Bonus: How much does it cost to charge my EV at home?

On average, when charging an EV at home, travelling a 100 km costs about 2-3€. This is affected by several factors like your car, driving speed, the season, electricity price etc.

VOOL EV Charging app

VOOL Charger comes with a free EV charging app

About us

VOOL is the first complete EV charging solution making reliable, smart, and cost-efficient charging available for everyone. Affordable and hassle-free EV charging fastens the energy transition. VOOL means hardware and software made inhouse, flexible charging options for private users and businesses. You can save money with smart charging and earn money opening your chargers to other EV owners.

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EU funding
This project has received funding from the European Union’s Horizon 2020 research and innovation programme under grant agreement No 190136402. This publication reflects only the author’s views and the European Union is not liable for any use that may be made of the information contained therein.