Home car chargers to be 'smart' by July 2019

Only smart chargers to be eligible for government grant from next July

Home wallbox charger

The government has stated that it will continue to offer its £500 ‘OLEV’ (Office for Low Emission Vehicles) grant for the foreseeable future, but any domestic charger funded by the grant from July next year must have ‘smart’ functionality. This means that the charger must have online connectivity that allows it to be accessed remotely, and which allows it to vary its charging times automatically in order to help avoid surges in demand for electricity at peak times.

Smart chargers have become commonplace in the last two years, and most modern domestic (and workplace) car charging sockets already have wi-fi connectivity and future grid-management features. So if you’re thinking of having one installed, there’s no extra cost coming your way.

All you need to qualify for the £500 government OLEV grant is proof of your ownership of an electric vehicle (new or used). The charge point provider – Pod Point and Chargemaster are the two biggest providers of domestic car chargers in the UK – will do the necessary paperwork to get you the saving, and after that’s been applied, you can expect to pay around £300-£1,000 depending on what speed and type of charger you want.

James McKenny, Head of Insights at Pod Point, stated that smart chargers can “balance out the peaks from charging, and will enable the mass adoption of electric vehicles without the need to carry out significant and expensive reinforcement of distribution networks. Furthermore, smart charging electric cars will also allow the UK to make better use of intermittent renewable energy; charging not only when demand is low, but also when supply is high.

“So, in a number of ways the mandating of smart charging is actually an important step towards ensuring the UK meets its obligations for carbon emission reductions.”

Other big changes to electric car charging include the potential to use electric cars as energy storage. OVO energy and Nissan are currently running a trial where Nissan Leafs that are plugged in can actually sell energy stored in their batteries back to the grid.

Recommended

Complete guide to the GMEV (now Be.EV) charging network
gmev
Your questions answered

Complete guide to the GMEV (now Be.EV) charging network

25 Feb 2021
What is CHAdeMO charging?
CHAdeMO port
Charging

What is CHAdeMO charging?

25 Feb 2021
Free electric-car charging: Does it exist? How do you get it?
Fiat 500 charging
Your questions answered

Free electric-car charging: Does it exist? How do you get it?

23 Feb 2021
Complete guide to the electric car charging point grant
Home wallbox charger
Your questions answered

Complete guide to the electric car charging point grant

15 Feb 2021

Most Popular

Volkswagen ID.1 on the way as Polo-sized entry-level electric car
Volkswagen ID.3
Volkswagen

Volkswagen ID.1 on the way as Polo-sized entry-level electric car

Volkswagen is working on a small electric car based on its MEB platform; Cupra and SEAT models also on the cards
24 Feb 2021
New 2021 Honda HR-V hybrid SUV revealed
Honda HR-V
Honda HR-V

New 2021 Honda HR-V hybrid SUV revealed

Next-generation Honda HR-V will go on sale later in 2021 with pure-hybrid power only
18 Feb 2021
Best plug-in hybrid cars 2021
Skoda Superb iV
Best cars

Best plug-in hybrid cars 2021

The best plug-in hybrid cars offer great fuel economy and very low running costs as long as you keep their batteries charged
17 Feb 2021