How To Prepare Your Garage For An Electric Car

Electric Car Garage

With electrified mobility making its way into every home in America, it's only natural to wonder how to create an ideal electric car garage. Setting one up is easier than you might think, not to mention more budget-friendly than ever. Depending on your exact make & model, there's a wide variety of applications for your custom electric car garage. This page will outline the main types of equipment and what's involved with the installation. Explore all of our used electric cars for sale, determine which home charging application is right for you, and say goodbye to fuel costs forever.

Benefits of an Electric Car Garage

Every EV or PHEV should come with a Level 1 charge cable. This is the most basic type of wall charger, which requires no special equipment to work. You can charge your vehicle from a conventional wall plug – the same type of plug your TV is connected to, etc. A word of caution: the continental US utilizes 110-volt outlets, and this can cause prolonged charge times. If you are charging a fully electric vehicle from total depletion, a complete charge can take up to two days.

But fear not; take the leap and foot the expense of installing a custom electric car garage. You'll save not only time but also money in the long run. Home charging stations are convenient, and with e-mobility on the rise, a charging station of almost any kind will add curb appeal and value to your home. We'll discuss the equipment required in the next section.

Creating an Electric Car Garage at Home 1-2-3

You're worried about range. You're worried about charge times. You've just gotten your EV or PHEV and aren't familiar with the locations of all the public charge stations in town. Your best solution for total peace of mind is installing one in your garage. Electric car charger stations also make PHEV ownership more cost-effective than ever. You don't need a second mortgage to pay for one. Here's our best advice:

  • Go With Factory Equipment – If you're the type of driver that loves to match factory accessories to your vehicle, and if money is no object, then go for the factory equipment. Almost every vehicle brand offers a branded home charging station. The range in prices depends on the brand but can be anywhere from $500-$5000. Most OEMs have a preferred installation partner. There are standard installation rates and occasionally incentives to use them. Installation can cost several hundred dollars.
  • Go Aftermarket – If you can source a quality Level 2 charger and have a reliable home electrician, your cost for installation & equipment can be under $1000, all told. Searching on popular digital retail platforms will showcase top brands & equipment. Time your purchase (if possible) around a holiday for even more incentives.
  • Do-It-Yourself – If, and only if, you have a background in home wiring and are comfortable working with fuse panels and electronics, you can save even more. Not only that, your options to customize your electric car garage become even greater. You'll need to inspect your fuse panel, garage wiring, and desired equipment to determine what additional bits of hardware you'll need. But all told, you can be on your way for under $500 for a Level 2 home charger.

Other Things to Consider With Your New Electric Car Garage

If you live in Lexington, KY, you know that you can see a lot of rain, sleet, and snow. If you have a garage filled with personal belongings, you'll need to think about whether or not you'll install your home charger inside or outside. Fortunately, most home chargers are weatherproof. Even with a slower onboard vehicle charger, you run no risk of weather damage for extended charge times. External wall chargers are J-plug ready for nearly all new electric cars for sale that might be in your future. If you are unsure about your options, ask us!

Another thing to consider is the location of your vehicle's charge port and the length of cable you'll need to get from the home charger to your car. Ask the vendor if your desired charger comes with optional cable lengths such as 8', 12', or even 25' in some cases. To avoid the mistake of getting a cable that's too short, err on the side of caution and go slightly longer.

Notice the connector on your vehicle. It will be round and have three larger holes flanked by two smaller holes. This type of connector is called a J1772 connector, otherwise known as a "J-Plug," and it is sufficient for all Level 1 and Level 2 charging applications. If your vehicle is newer and has fast-charge capabilities, you'll also see two additional input/connector holes below your J-Plug. This specialized CCS (Combined Charger System) plug is for use at DC fast-charge stations only. You will not be able to install this 480-volt system at home.

Lastly, you'll want to consider the amp garage factor that's best for you. What does that mean? An "amp" is a unit of electrical current. Most older EV or PHEV vehicles are 16-amp-ready. That doesn't necessarily mean you should get a 16-amp home charger, however. You can prepare your garage for the future and faster-charging vehicles by installing a 30-amp or even 50-amp unit. No need to worry about the higher voltage; your vehicle will only accept a charge at the rate it's designed to.

Your Electric Car Garage: Final Thoughts

Search the internet for "free EV charging near me," and you might be surprised by the availability of free public chargers in your exact area. You might also like to know that at the time of our writing this, the national average of the cost of electricity equivalent to a gallon of gas costs well under half the price of fuel. Combine all of that with the fact that you'll never have to pay for gas again, and owning electric vehicles in Lexington, KY, or anywhere else is a very wise decision.

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