Close this search box.

Electrifying Homes: The Electrician’s Role in Residential EV Charging Setup

The electric car market has grown exponentially in recent years. Motorists are getting more comfortable with hybrid and battery electric vehicles, and many are choosing to purchase EVs when it’s time for a new vehicle. EV drivers benefit from lower to no fuel costs, along with a more environmentally friendly transportation option in the face of increasing climate laws and regulations.

In fact, EV sales exceeded 10 million in 2022, and the sale of electric cars more than tripled from 4% in 2020 to 14% in 2022. As the electric car market continues to expand, there is a need for EV charger installation electricians. EVs require residential and commercial charging stations, as well as electricians with the knowledge and hands-on skills to not only install them, but also ensure they adhere to the National Electrical Code (NCE).

Here’s how electricians—with their expertise in wiring, electrical codes and safety—can help to accelerate the future of electric vehicles through residential charging station installation.

Understanding EV Charging Stations

Charging stations installed at residential homes ensure that EV drivers have access to power when they need it. Charging stations are not as widely available as gas stations, so many homeowners prefer to install a convenient charging station in their garage. The two most common residential EV charging stations are:

Level 1 charging

Level 1 charging stations are the most common for residential use, as they use a standard 120-volt outlet. Many modern garages already have this outlet type installed, making this a cost-effective choice for homeowners. However, level 1 charging is the slowest, and some homeowners may contact an EV charger installer to upgrade for faster charging.

Level 2 charging

Level 2 charging stations can’t plug into a typical wall outlet—instead, they require a 240-volt special plug for homes. An EV charger installer must install a level 2 unit, which gives motorists the opportunity to charge an EV in about two hours.

An electric vehicle charging station installed in a garage by an electrician

Assessing the Electrical System

It’s important that a skilled electrician conduct a thorough assessment of the existing electrical system in the home before installing an EV charging station. Assessments ensure that the electrical panel is up to code and can support an EV charging station. Sometimes, the electrical panel may need an upgrade to accommodate the increased electrical load.

Residences equipped with level 2 vehicle chargers necessitate a 200-amp service. In cases where the house is equipped with a 100-amp electrical panel, an electrician will need to upgrade it to a 200-amp.

Code Compliance and Location

Licensed electricians have hands-on skills and code compliance knowledge to ensure that residential EV charging stations adhere to local electrical codes and regulations. In addition to compliance with EV charging station safety, electricians can help advise homeowners on choosing the right location for their EV charging station.  Many EV charging station cords are approximately 15 feet long. Electricians can help residents consider the desired parking space proximity and the length of the charging cord when installing the charging outlet.

Safety, Testing and Troubleshooting

A family charged their electric car at a residential EV charging station

Electricity poses unique safety risks, whether it’s a bathroom light fixture or an EV charging port. Qualified, highly trained electricians emphasize safety precautions during installation, such as proper grounding and insulation. They also use high-quality materials and components to ensure longevity and safety for residents and their vehicles.

Electricians may perform a number of testing procedures to ensure the EV charging station functions properly, including verifying the voltage, current and power outlet. Electricians can also instruct homeowners on how to safely use their new charging station.

Despite safe installation and thorough instructions, homeowners may find they need maintenance from time to time. Electricians can also provide regular, scheduled checks and troubleshooting to reduce risks posed by a charging station.

Learn About the Electrical Program at Apex

Electricians will play a growing role in supporting the installation of EV charging stations as more homeowners buy electric vehicles and seek home charging options. It will be important for electricians to stay up to date on the latest advancements in electricity and follow safe best practices for wiring, voltage, grounding and more.

If you’re interested in pursuing a future in electrical, explore what the Electrical & Advanced Electrical program at Apex has to offer. Classes are starting soon!

*Apex Technical School and its instructors are licensed by the State of New York, New York State Education Department.

Disclaimer: Apex Technical School provides training for entry-level jobs. Not everything you may read about the industry is covered in our training programs.