EV Surge Protection Devices

Surge Protection Devices for Electric Vehicles
Safety for EV charge point installations

From 28th September 2022, new regulations in the industry require us to offer
all customers Surge Protective Devices (SPD) as part of an EV charge point
installation. This will add an additional cost of around £40 and the decision to install
one lies with the customer. For this reason, we have put together this document to
provide enough information for customers to make an informed decision on whether
to omit an SPD.

SPDs are used to protect the electrical installation, which consists of the consumer
unit, wiring and accessories, from electrical power surges known as transient
overvoltages. They are also used to protect sensitive electronic equipment connected
to the installation, in this case, your EV charge point.

What are transient overvoltages?

Transient overvoltages are defined as short duration surges of electricity which occur
due to the sudden release of energy previously stored or induced by other means.
Transient overvoltages can be either naturally occurring or man-made.

How do transient overvoltages occur?

Man-made transients appear due to switching of motors and transformers. Historically
this has not been an issue within domestic properties but more recently, with the
advent of new technologies such as electric vehicle charging, air/ground source heat pumps and speed-controlled washing machines, transients are more likely to occur
within domestic installations.

Natural transient overvoltages occur due to indirect lightning strikes most likely to
happen due to a direct lightning strike on an adjacent overhead power or telephone
line causing the transient overvoltage to travel along the lines, which can cause
significant damage to the electrical installation and associated equipment.

What are the potential risks of not having an SPD?

The biggest consideration is of course safety. Electricity is dangerous if handled
incorrectly and minimising risk is paramount. The real risk is serious injury or even loss
of life and although quite rare, still exists. With the correct care and protection, you can
ensure your family, home and car are safe.

Other risks associated with non-installation of an SPD

  1. Damage to the EV charger. If you spent £900 on a brand new phone you would
    want to look after it and ensure it was protected from chips or cracks with a suitable
    phone case. The same applies to protecting your EV charger. Many people have their
    chargers installed outside and exposed to the elements, including thunder storms. This makes them particularly vulnerable to lightening strikes. Opting out of installing an SPD may in some cases affect the warranty of your EV charger.
  2. Damage to the car. EVs are a big investment and with the new SPD regulations in
    place, opting out of installing and SPD may in some cases affect the warranty of your
  3. Damage to the electrical installation. Lightening strikes which then pass back into
    your home’s electrical circuit can damage the wiring, consumer unit and other parts of the installation. This could be very costly to put right and may not be covered by your home insurance if you opt out of SPD installation.

Whatever the reason for purchasing an EV and home charger, it is vital you do proper
research to protect your family, your home and your vehicle.

If you decide not to proceed with an EV charge point installation with us, please ensure
you choose a provider who is qualified to install EV charge points, understands the risks
associated with the installation as a whole, and check they are 18th edition qualified
(also known as BS 7671).

If you want to know more about EV charging and the need for surge protection then please get in touch. Our team is on hand to answer any questions you have.

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Surge Protection Devices for Electric Vehicles


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