Jenny RisherCar and Driver
You’ll want a dedicated 240-volt circuit for charging your car. A professional installation generally runs between $750 and $1750, plus the price of permits, according to Qmerit, a company that specializes in this kind of work. If your current electrical supply can’t handle the extra load, you’ll need a new service line run to your house, pushing your cost to the high end of that range. A modest house with 150-amp or higher service can perhaps squeeze in an additional 30- or 40-amp circuit, but it depends on whether there are other large draws, such as a tankless water heater, an electric stove or dryer, or a hot tub. In addition, you may have to purchase charging equipment to connect your EV to the new circuit.
The distance from the electrical panel to the charging location can alter the cost substantially. A 40-amp circuit requires 8-gauge wire at more than $3 per foot. Stepping up the amperage for faster charging requires thicker-gauge wire, which costs more.
We recommend installing a NEMA 14-50 outlet rather than hardwired charging equipment. Some EVs come with portable charging cords that work on both 120- and 240-volt circuits, saving you from an additional purchase. And even if you do buy home charging equipment, having a plug-in unit means you can use the outlet for other high-draw equipment, such as a welder, and take the pricey box with you if you move.
Because we’re nerds, we like to know how much energy our EVs are using. The Wi-Fi-connected JuiceBox ($650) has a handy app to track charging history and the amount of energy dispensed during each session. You can also schedule charging for set times—a useful feature if your electric utility offers a lower rate during off-peak hours.
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