As part of its strategy to have more electric vehicles on the road by 2020, the Government has been increasing the number of public charging stations. Currently, there are around 1,100 EV charging points all over the country and more are expected to be installed in the coming years.
Despite the availability of public charging stations, you still need to have your own EV charger in your house. Most EV owners prefer to charge their EVs at home because it is convenient. It also leads to savings in the long run as having a home charger means being able to charge at night when electricity rates are lower.
The cost of installing a charging unit is not cheap, but the SEAI offers a grant of up to €300 towards the purchase and installation of an EV home charger. The overall cost of installing an EV home charger in your house may vary depending on the price of the unit and installation fees.
Getting a charging unit installed in your own home is easy. All you need to do is to look for a reputable EV charger installer. However, it is a different story if you live in an apartment complex as the process can be complicated.
The Challenges of Installing an EV Charger in Your Apartment
According to the SEAI, you have to talk to the apartment owners’ management company (OMC) regarding the EV home charger installation. You cannot decide on this matter on your own even if you are installing the charging unit on your parking space. The management company needs to give the green light before this project can commence.
The thing is that OMCs are reluctant to approve the installation of charging points, especially in multi-unit developments built before EVs were sold. The possibility of installing EV home chargers were not taken into consideration when these residences were designed and constructed. Hence, management companies fear that installing the chargers may require massive and costly changes to the apartment’s electrical infrastructure.
How about putting the charging point on your own parking space? This is feasible if the parking slot is near your electric metre. But some OMCs are also apprehensive about allowing this because it can be challenging when more residents with EVs do the same thing. This is going to create cabling issues, especially if some residents have metres which are not near their parking slots.
An alternative solution to address the cabling and metering issues is to connect the charging points to the common area electricity supply of the apartment. This is a good option if there are a few users as identifying who pays for electricity is easy. However, when the number of users grow, splitting the bill equally can be challenging.
In addition, surges in electricity usage may happen as the number of EV users and fast chargers grow. This may overload the system and cause power outages for some apartments. To prevent this, OMCs need to ensure that their current base infrastructure is accurate and the chargers are properly installed.
How to Install an EV Home Charger in Your Apartment
It can be challenging to have an EV charging point installed in an apartment complex, but it is not impossible. All you need to do is to prepare and take the right steps.
You can start by finding neighbours who have EVs or intend to buy one and want to have home chargers. The more people in your group, the higher your chances are of getting heard by the OMC. It is also best that you identify someone who can spearhead the project and keep the ball rolling.
Be proactive and research about EV home chargers, specifically the requirements and processes involved in installing them. To get accurate information, call a reputable company that offers EV charging installation service. Providing the company with pertinent details like the location and the number of parking spaces can help them assess how easy or difficult the installation project is going to be.
Next, inform the OMC about your request. Make sure you build your case by letting them know about the importance and benefits of having EV charging stations nowadays. Inform them that having EV chargers can make their apartments more appealing to prospective tenants. It can also increase the value of their property.
You can give the OMC a copy of the information you’ve gathered during your research. Alternatively, you can send them the contact details of the charging point installer you’ve talked to in case they want to get additional information.
Expect the OMC to raise the issues we’ve mentioned earlier regarding the installation of EV charging points in pre-existing buildings. What you can do is to let them know that there are reputable companies which employ expert installers who can find good solutions to these issues.
Do you want to install an EV home charger in your apartment? Call us now on 1800 99 88 77 and let us talk about how we can help you make this happen!