The key to simple and enjoyable use of an Electric Vehicle is safe, reliable & convenient recharging. An EV will need to charge regularly at its normal 'home' or base, but we must not think of an EV as just another electrical 'appliance.' Whilst most EVs can be recharged using normal household mains electricity, connecting a large, mobile, metal-bodied vehicle to the mains, often outdoors in adverse weather, raises several issues which need to be addressed. Normal domestic plugs and sockets were never designed to transfer the high levels of power for the long periods of time that most EVs require and, in some cases, can present significant safety hazards due to the way in which houses are wired and electrical supplies are provided. An EV should be supplied on a separate circuit via a special connection to address not just electrical issues but also physical safety issues, such as avoiding trip hazards from cables. (Read more in Downloads)
EVs typically recharge in around 3 to 8 hours, usually overnight (on a cheaper "economy" tariff) when the vehicle would not be used anyway and therefore there is no time imperative. Starting each day with a full charge means no untimely detours to petrol stations. Charging Stations may be used at other locations such as at shops, restaurants, offices, on-street (at the kerbside) or in other public parking areas to add extra miles of driving during the day whilst doing other things and some vehicles can also recharge quickly from special Rapid Charge stations, the equivalent of filling station fuel pumps for conventional vehicles, to extend their daily 'range' - recovering up to 90 miles' worth of charge in as little as 30 minutes! These are now being deployed in parts of the UK, mainly through the Plugged In Places schemes.
Some vehicle manufacturers supply a cable
with their vehicle to use with a normal socket, but
this must not be interpreted as it being suitable for
plugging into any
socket. It should only be used at public
charging stations and sockets specifically installed
and approved for charging an EV. We are glad to see
manufacturers now moving away from supplying these
cables in favour of new, dedicated EV charging
plugs. At home (or at the vehicle's normal charging
location for a fleet vehicle) it is much safer (and
faster to charge) to use a 'wallbox' installed on its own
circuit, just like a cooker, with an attached cable
since this avoids the daily need to retrieve the portable
cable from the boot and connect it at both ends: simply get
out of the car, grab the connector and plug it into
port on the vehicle. When you do this everyday, sometimes more than
once a day, it is far more convenient and adds up to
save a LOT of time! It also means that you can keep
the portable cable in the vehicle and avoid the
temptation to leave it at home - and risk having no
means to charge your car whilst out and about!
of small vehicles like moto-scooters
and Urban Compacts, such as Renault Twizy,
requires far less power for a shorter time because of
the smaller batteries in these vehicles. Therefore they
generally DO use domestic plugs for economy and their
smaller physical size, with cables permanently attached
to the vehicle BUT
great care must be exercised when charging them.
You should not connect them to just any socket outlet
simply because 'the plug fits.' At home, the
electrical installation must be checked for suitability
and a new socket on a dedicated circuit may be required
with special protective devices and 'earthing.'
Extension cables must never be used.
other larger EVs should only use a normal socket at an
existing dedicated charging station.
We design and install Charging Stations for all
situations, from economical socket outlets for home use
for scooters and Urban Compacts,
to high-power stations for cars and
vans, to robust, vandal-resistant
installations with lighting and signage for public use
in car parks and other similar locations.
We also produce and supply replacement and additional
portable charging cables for production EVs with a
variety of connectors such as the 'Type 1' (or J1772)
for Nissan, Mitsubishi, Peugeot and Citroen (and
similar) vehicles, the 'Type 2' connection for new
European vehicles and the 'Maréchal' connector
used on older production EV models. These are PAT tested before dispatch and we
can test these regularly to maintain equipment registers
for continued Duty of Care and insurance requirements.
OEM, Trade and Local Authority enquiries welcome.