EV charging station providers who manage the installation of EV charging stations are highly sought-after as the increase in electric vehicles each day. However, the demand currently isn’t even a fraction of the amount of orders that we’ll witness in the next few years and the staggering amount of charging stations required to be constructed to facilitate the electric mobility revolution.
What are EV charging station contractors?
The EV charging station providers are certified and licensed to set up and power up an EV charging station. They may be licensed to install and energize EV charging stations with one of the manufacturers of charging stations.
All in all, EV charging station contractors perform tasks that involve the engineering, planning, and building of EV charging stations. Additionally, they may also assist with repair and maintenance services in the event that they are later required.
Are EV charging station contractors in demand?
As we have previously discussed in our blog about EV charging infrastructure issues and opportunities, in the EU there will be at least 65 million more EV charging stations (home+public) in 2035. Nearly 7 million of these are public charging points. Additionally, according to Brattle Group that the US requires 6-10 million home chargers, and nearly two million publicly accessible EV charging stations in 2030. In essence, around a million EV charging stations will have to be put in place each year across Europe as well as the US all by itself.
The answer is yes, there will require a large number of businesses that can install electric vehicle chargers since this is considered to be an expanding industry.
Types of Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE)
Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment (EVSE) is the term used to refer to all the equipment required to supply electric energy through the power source and to an electric vehicle. EVSE supplies the energy and connects EV charge software to the charger and vehicle, ensuring that charging is carried out properly and safely.
Based on the strength and speed of charging there are three basic types of EVSE.
Level 1 chargers
Level 1 charging allows charging the electric vehicle from the regular 120V outlet found mostly throughout North or South America. It’s the least efficient method to charge and most EV owners will choose to use it only in emergencies because it takes longer than twenty minutes (4 minutes per hour) to recharge batteries for up to 100 miles. It is charged using the charging cord that is typically supplied by the manufacturer of the EV and does not require EVSE installation.
Even on a 220-230V outlet, charging via cable can be slow, and direct charging from the outlet is not an alternative for electric vehicle owners who are using their vehicles on a daily basis.
Level 2 chargers
The Level 2 charging method is by far the most commonly used type of charging. So, the majority of office, home, or fleet charging stations are Level 2. Based on the size of the battery and capacity, they are able to fully charge the battery of an electric vehicle in between 6 and 12 hours.
This charging option will require the acquisition and installation of a Level 2 EVSE. This is the area where electric charging station operators will be most busy in the coming years.
Level 2 EVSE employs a 240V electric service for home use or 208 V for commercial use using a dedicated electrical circuit that ranges from 20 to 80 amps (A) according to the EVSE specifications. Naturally, these installations should be wired properly for safe operation and must be done by a licensed professional.
Many offices and homes have electricity that is suitable to charge Level 2 devices however, a garage socket that is free does not mean that you can install a charger onto the wall and connect it to the outlet. It is evident that in the majority of instances, an electrical service upgrade is required. The new wiring and the modification of the electrical system make the installation more complicated.
An evaluation of the location is essential prior to install any charging stations. Load calculation must be made since any home or office will also have many other electricity-consuming devices.
If possible the client should consult with the EV charging station providers prior to buying an Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment.
If we consider the future EV charging trends are that anyone who is installing an EV charger should choose an intelligent charging station. They should be able to include EV charging load balancing and dynamic EV charging load management remote management, Plug and Charge, and perhaps the V2G (Vehicle to Grid) technology.
Level 3 DC Fast Chargers
DCFC, also known as DC Fast-Charging EVSE can speed up charging by 50 kW-150 and even 350 kW. In general, fast chargers can charge an EV within 20 minutes or 1 hour. They provide the best solution for motorways or any other place where users are looking to quickly charge their EVs and continue their journey.
Fast chargers are costly and require installation by highly experienced and certified electric vehicle charging station installers. Anyone who is considering this costly investment should definitely take the extra step to find a reliable company to manage the project, from the initial design through the final setup.
For more information about chargers and charging power check out our blog about EV charging station solutions.
Installing and maintaining the EV Charging stations
EVSE installations vary from fairly simple tasks to complex ones and experienced EV charging station technicians will be able to perform the following tasks.
EV charging station operators must inform the client regarding the various aspects of EVSE necessary, including:
- A specification for EV chargers, EVSE, and even EVSE is required
- Distributor Network Operators (DNO) specifications for installation
- Safety and electrical demand
- Charge Point Management System (CPMS)
The contractors who will be constructing EV charging stations have to make sure that the project runs smoothly and that everything is completed in accordance with the specifications of DNOs as well as different state requirements. They have to handle the following:
- Design and planning for electrical installations
- DNO applications
- Apply and be approved for the permit
- Purchase the necessary equipment (EVSE and wiring, breaker panels, etc.)
- System of procurement and payments
- Amendments to National Chargepoint Register, or any other registers required
Electric vehicle charging station companies should offer the entire installation service which includes:
- Coordinate work on the site
- Complete service upgrades
- Electrical installation takes place from the power source until station the station’s location.
- Cable trenching
- Earthing solutions
- Charger mounting groundworks
- Mount Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment
- Install devices to protect against impact (bollards or wheel stops etc.)
- Line marking and signage
- Testing, commissioning, and certification
- Perform the final inspection
Support & Maintainance
The EV charging station companies provide additional services that range from regular inspections and maintenance (monthly and annually) as well as 24-hour support on-site.
Any business that provides maintenance and supports on-site must be knowledgeable of how to use the Charge Point Management System (CPMS) that a specific charger or network utilizes. It is essential that the charge point owner (EV CPO) provides the necessary information to repair the issue. We explained this in more depth on the blog of our EV Charge management Software blog.
How to become an EV charging station contractor?
Installing electric vehicle charging stations as well as EV charging infrastructure or creating an electric vehicle charging network require specific knowledge and abilities. This is why the contractors for EV charging stations are mostly electrical contractor firms.
Before beginning EVSE installation, any potential EV charging station installers must be certified and trained by a reputable organization. Thus, several organizations are now providing EVSE installation and project training for electricians. The programs offered include: Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Training Program (EVITP), the Qmerit Certified Solutions Partner program, and an NICEIC Approved Contractor,…
After completing the program, newly-certified EV charging station operators may join forces with several companies that sell EVSE and become their authorized installers or provide services on their own.
How do you choose the best EV charging station and contractor?
Based on the type (level) of the charging stations that require installation electric vehicle charging station installers require a different level of knowledge and certifications for the installation.
One method to identify the most suitable EV charging station providers is to consider the EVSE the EV manufacturer recommends. Certain charging solutions providers have formed partnerships with electric vehicle manufacturers to earn the status of “a preferred EVSE provider.” Another method of deciding is to examine the name of the EV and the EVSE they suggest. Certain, the selected EVSE service provider will have certified electric vehicle charging station installers.
Another method is to reach the utility company, which will also provide the list of contractors who are certified partners, or look up which independent charging station contractors are in the region.
How Much Does It Cost to Install a Home Charging Station?
It is possible to expect the cost of installing a home charging station to be about $1,000 at the lower end and more than $3,000 at the higher end. Of course, your expenses will differ based on the above factors. If you already have an existing 240V outlet you are able to skip permits, electric supplies, and electrical wiring costs by using the Smart Splitter. This will save you hundreds, or even thousands of dollars in the process for a home charge station.
Despite the initial expense, however, electric vehicle owners still save money when they switch to electric. Imagine this as follows: if it were possible to pay just a modest cost to set up a gas station near your home with a lower cost for gasoline than you would at the pump, why wouldn’t you take advantage of it? With electric vehicles and Smart Splitter, you can!