Cheap EV chargers and cheap installations - are they worth it?

You may be new to the world of electric vehicles or just putting feelers out with a view to making the switch.

Everywhere you look at the moment there is talk of the ULEZ zone, net zero, infrastructure, range anxiety – it is overwhelming, as is the amount of information about electric vehicle chargers.

As an independent company installing EV charge points for homes and businesses for over 6 years now, we have seen a huge number of changes to the industry.  When we started out, there was a choice of a handful of charge points on the market. They literally were glorified plug sockets, you simply plugged your car in and unplugged when it was charged. There were more readily available and generous government grants available to encourage drivers to switch. However that has all changed now with the advent of smart charging, tariff tracking, smart home integration and solar compatibility.

If you go online, you will be met with a huge range of products, all professing to be the best. However, one of the things we tell customers is that with a normal domestic electrical supply, the fastest charger you can have is going to be 7.2kW which will charge at approximately 29-30mph. Spending thousands on a charger isn’t going to make it any faster if your electricity supply isn’t up to it.

With the cost-of-living crisis affecting so many and the tussle between wanting to be green and wanting to save money, another question we get asked a lot is what is the cheapest charger and the cheapest price.   We are honest and fair with our pricing, but we tend to advise against always going for the cheapest EV chargers. Why? Because for us it is about the after sales care provided by the manufacturer that is just as important as the install itself.  Picture this.  You have a shiny new car and a journey planned. You want to charge but your charger has gone wrong a few weeks post install. You know that it is covered by a 3-year warranty so you call us. The problem is, we can only fix it by getting spare parts from the manufacturer.  They take weeks to send the part and in the meantime you are having to pay out for public chargers when you have already spent money on a home charger. Makes no sense!

The chargers we have in our range are ones that we know are good quality in terms of the build and the after sales care from the manufacturer. If we are confident in the product, we are confident to recommend it to our customers.

Another thing we get asked a lot is for our ‘best price’ for installation. Yes any electrician can install a charger but our engineers have that extra level of training to be able to install the unit correctly and safely. There are many more things to understand about installing safely and to current regulations. Our team will also do the commissioning and being manufacturer approved, commissioning means the 3-year parts and labour warranty will apply. Within that 3 years, if there is a problem, you come straight to us and we will aim to get it sorted asap. Not only that but if you get a charger installed incorrectly and it causes problems, you may not be covered by your insurance. Incorrect installation can cause problems with your home electrics and even your electric vehicle.

We offer no obligation quotations and as we are not tied to any one manufacturer, we offer impartial advice based on the best choice for your individual requirements. We are not a call centre so you can ask for the same person each time you call. Our lead times are 1-2 weeks and not months. Our team of advisers is on hand to answer any questions you may have, however silly you think the question is, we’ve probably heard it before.

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