Charging an electric vehicle in New Zealand has never been easier.
Whether at home or at work, New Zealanders are gaining better access to smarter electric vehicle charging options. As most EV charging takes place in these environments, it’s important to consider your charging method as it will greatly affect how much it costs to charge your EV, and how environmentally friendly your charging solution is. Here are a few options.
wall-mounted ev charger
Wall-mounted home EV chargers are the industry recommended charging option, allowing you to charge faster at higher AC power ratings. These home EV chargers often deliver a range of around 40km per hour of charging. This is ideal for charging long range vehicles overnight.
A professionally installed home charger makes charging your EV as simple, safe, and efficient as possible. Additional features like smart connectivity offer greater control over your charging and can help lower your EVs impact by prioritising clean energy sources like home solar.
Even if your EV has a limited charging rate, it’s worth considering a dedicated smart EV charger at home for long term benefits such as load balancing multiple EVs, and flexible control that will support the health of NZ’s grid in the future.
Estimated charge range: 40km per hour of charging *dependent on a given EV’s AC charging rate limit.
waterproof 15 amp outlet ev charger
If you don’t have a garage and you need an outdoor power point installed, or you want quicker EV charging than a standard household outlet can provide, a certified electrician can install a 15 amp socket with waterproof casing for you.
This method of charging is safer than a standard power point and you’ll gain around 20km range per hour charging.
While this option is less expensive than an installed home EV charger, it still relies on the use of a portable charging lead and does not allow for smart charging features such as load balancing of multiple EVs.
Estimated charge range: 20km per hour of charging *dependent on a given EV’s AC charging rate limit.
Standard power point socket for portable charging
Most EVs will be sold with a portable charging lead that can be used to charge your vehicle from a standard 8-10Amp wall outlet – your usual 3-pin power point socket found ins NZ homes. You’ll gain around 10km of range per hour of charging using this method.
Charging your EV with a normal power point socket can be a useful backup option when staying elsewhere overnight or in an emergency. For longer-term charging at home, we recommend more specialised equipment so you can ‘fuel up’ more efficiently to save time and money.
If you plan to use this charging method regularly, be sure to read EECA’s safety precautions. There’s higher importance placed on good practices for safe operation, which is a key reason why this method of charging is only recommended by Worksafe as a backup, not a primary method of charging.
Estimated charge range: 10km per hour of charging
workplace EV chargers
Kiwi businesses are beginning to make the change to electric, with organisations like Northland DHB and Foodstuffs taking the lead and offering charging stations to employees as a benefit, supporting the adoption of private electric fleets and lower company transporation emission.
Other companies like The Warehouse Group and Westpac are slowly making the transition to electrify their fleets of company cars too, making EV chargers more common in the workplace. Companies like ABB offer EV charging infrastructure solutions, so businesses can install chargers that allow employees to charge their vehicle in as little as one to eight hours, depending on the charger – view the EV charger comparison tool here.
This change is good news for household EV owners. Charging your vehicle while you work during the day, saving both time and money, is becoming more and more accessible.
HOME EV CHARGING TIPS
Some of the biggest concerns of new electric vehicle owners is how they’re going to charge their car at home, and how much it’s likely to cost them.
The good news is, charging your EV will cost just under $0.30 per equivalent litre (assuming an off-peak kilowatt hour of $0.15). That’s a lot friendlier of a number than the current prices we’re seeing at the petrol pump.
Once you’ve decided on your primary method of charging at home, there are a few things you can keep in mind to ensure you’re getting the most efficient, environmentally friendly and inexpensive charge.
saving money while charging at home
INVEST IN A WALL-MOUNTED CHARGER
Having your own charger installed at home (see these Evnex mounted wall chargers, for example) gives you the ultimate flexibility of when you charge your vehicle, most efficiently. These chargers still power your charge from AC, so it’s not as battery-wearing as the public fast chargers, but are usually a lot quicker than the standard portable plug.
Charge during off-peak hours
Many Kiwi power companies now offer discounted rates for power usage during off-peak hours, most commonly between 9pm and 7am, depending on the company and where you’re based. This is perfectly suited to save money by charging your EV overnight. Do your research on NZ power companies before buying an EV, and make the switch.
smart charging technologies
Many wall-mounted chargers also have smart control over when your car charges, such as setting a timer for a controlled period during off-peak power times, which reduces unnecessary overcharging and your electricity bills.
Homeoverload protection capabilities also actively monitor your home energy draw to provent tripping your home circuit or blowing fuse.
Local electricity companies like Vector, are also running ongoing trials to understand customers’ EV charging behaviours, to integrate the EV chagring network and use smart meters to automate this process, improving affordability and reliability long-term.
Evs are also able to be charged through solar power right from your home solar. Using the power generated by your solar system, you can fully charge your EV within hours and save upwards of $1,000 a year.
If your household has multiple EVs, EV charging load balancing instructs the chargers to deliver the right amount of energy and manages the energy flow across charge points. It helps to optimise your EV charging networks and distribute available power equally across all charge points, ensuring your EV is charged as quickly as possible.
reducing your Evs carbon footprint
Investing in an EV can significantly reduce your reliance on fossil fuels, however considering where the power comefs from that you’re using to charge your EV can optimise the environmental benefits.
There are two reliable ways to ensure that you’re minimising your carbon footprint.
using an optimised solar EV charging system to generate power.
In a nutshell, it’s an automated charging feature built to maximise the benefits of locally generated solar energy, prioritise EV charging from clean energy, and minimise the electricity costs of grid power to charge your vehicle. For example, take a look at Evnex’s simple solar integration.
Charging when nz’s power grid is most renewable
There are a bunch of factors that change the proportion of grid electricity generated by renewables such as wind and solar energy. Anything from how hard the wind is blowing or how strong the sun is shining can lead to a huge variation in the grid power available.
Controlled EV charging gives you the flexibility to manage your EVs charging patterns to coincide with low-demand periods, helping ensure a cleaner charge. An intelligent EV charging point, which can communicate with the grid, will in the near future help balance demand with supply and do this automatically for you.
Safer charging at home
Just like other electronics in your home, electric vehicles use electricity to charge, which means there are a few precautions you need to take when charging to keep your home and yourself safe.
Generally, EVs are sold with a portable charger that’s intended as a backup, not for everyday use (you could think of it as a spare tyre). The safest way to charge your EV at home is using a wall-mounted charging unit that is connected to the electrical wiring of your home and has been installed by a Registered Electrician.
A safe ev charging tips
- Only use electric vehicle charging adaptors supplied by the vehicle manufacturer or by an electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) manufacturer.
- Don’t use any household adaptor (such as a multi-box or double plug), a socket-outlet adapter, extension lead, or portable socket outlets (inclduing EPOD and PSOA).
- Never use damaged or modified charging equipment
Don’t use any faulty charging equipment, always get it checked by the manufacturer.
- Never use a single socket outlet for the supply of more than one vehicle at a time.
- Do not use a EVSE that is not labelled by the manufacturer as being compatible with a 230 V, 50Hz supply.
- Do not use the supply of electricity to anything other than an EV from an IC-CPD charging station.
For more detailed safe EV charging guidelines, visit WorkSafe and EECA.
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INDUSTRY LEADING RESEARCH
Through whitepapers and articles compiled by scientists and other experts we aim to distribute accurate information about EVs, their benefits and the issues around nation-wide implementation.