Electric car? Know the hidden charges
We spoke to David Mooney from Evolve Electrical Contractors Ltd to get his advice on installing an electric car charging point at home, and about the Government grant that can save you money.
Electric car sales driving up
Sales of electric and plug-in hybrid cars have soared in the past few years. It’s a trend that’s set to gather pace, especially with the UK Government banning sales of new petrol and diesel engine cars in 2030 and major car manufacturers, such as Volvo, following their lead. Add in more affordable models of electric and hybrid cars, and greener motoring is becoming a realistic choice for many.
Electric cars have a financial as well as environmental benefit for owners. Electric cars cost around 2-5p per mile to run, compared to around 15p per mile for petrol or diesel cars, saving you up to £1,000 a year on fuel costs*. While you can wave goodbye to expensive trips to the petrol station there are some costs you need to be aware of when thinking about switching to electric motoring.
For instance, have you thought about the cost of installing a charging point at your home? And how do you even go about it?
Choose an authorised installer
Installing a dedicated home charging point will charge your car quickly and safely. Usually a compact, weatherproof unit, the charger will be mounted to a wall at your home, with a connected charging cable.
David Mooney from Evolve Electrical Contractors recently qualified as an OZEV (The Office for Zero Emission Vehicles) authorised installer. We asked his advice for anyone installing an electric car home charging point. He said:
“Use an OZEV, or as it used to be known, OLEV, approved installer. There’s a full list on the Government website. Like us, these professionals not only have the proven skills and knowledge to install your charging point safely, but they also have access to the Government’s Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS), which offers a grant of up to £350 including VAT towards the cost of installation.”
Choose a quality electric car charging unit
There are lots of different car charging brands on the market, and as with anything, some are better than others. Having researched the market, David recommends Project EV chargers.
“This is the brand I would choose personally. It’s sturdy, robust, has an excellent health and safety rating, plus other benefits such as an extended warranty. They’re also ‘earth spike free’, which means you don’t need to dig up the driveway. In terms of cost, they’re a similar price to other car charger brands.”
The total cost of purchasing and installing an electric car charging unit, for a straightforward installation, is around £800.
“Most electric car charging points we install are either on the side of a house or in a garage. If there’s an existing electricity supply in the garage, for example, then it’s usually a straightforward job. The costs start to rise if we have to install a new supply, but we always provide customers with a complete and transparent quote,” said David.
Save money with an EVHS grant
Whatever the cost of your installation, providing your vehicle is in the valid list (most are but you can check online) and you use an authorised OZEV installer, you’ll save 75% of the cost (up to a maximum of £350 including VAT) thanks to the EVHS grant.
Top tip: If your approved installer supplies and fits the unit for you then, more often than not, you’re entitled to claim the full £350 back on the total bill. If you opt for installation only, however, you’ll only receive 75% of the installation cost back, which could be less than £350.
The EVHS grant is expected to be available until at least April 2023 but there are no guarantees, so if you’re thinking of switching to electric motoring and need an electric car charging point installing, have a chat with David and his team.
*Savings are a guide only as actual costs are dependent on many factors, including make and model of car, length of journey, driver behaviours.