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The Parkers guide to home EV chargers

• The best home EV chargers on the market right now
• What the difference between chargers means for you
• Voltage, current, power and connection types explained

Written by Chris Williams Published: 12 August 2022 Updated: 7 June 2023

As of April 2022, there were nigh on 850,000 plug-in cars in the UK, with 64,000 newly registered since the start of the year alone. Given that the figure was nudging 400,000 at the end of 2020, one doesn’t require a degree in common sense to recognize the immense rise of plug-in vehicles.

Purely electric cars now make up over 10% of all new cars sold and combined with plug-in hybrids, it jumps to about 18%. And get this: in June 2021, the car that topped the best-selling list was the Tesla Model 3, even beating the stolid Volkswagen Golf. These are remarkable statistics given that plug-in cars , particularly EVs, have only been a useable and relatively expensive concept in the real world for about ten years.

With the number of people buying and considering plug-in cars growing ever larger, we want to help plug-in owners and prospective buyers navigate the new landscape of car charging at home. No longer is it about gallons or litres and MPG. These days, we have to return to GCSE physics and reacquaint ourselves with voltage, kilowatts and current. Fear not, for what you’ll find below is our thoroughly readable and informative guide to EV and plug-in car charging at home. We also provide our recommendations on the best home EV chargers.

If you want to read up on EVs and plug-in hybrids themselves, Parkers explains both:

What is an electric car? | What is a plug-in hybrid?

Jump to:

1. Amps, Voltage, and Watts

2. How EV chargers work

3. Plug types

4. The best home EV chargers

5. Electric Vehicle Home Charge scheme

6. More on EVs

Amps, Voltage, and Watts

If you can’t remember from your high school science days, amps is the unit for measuring electrical current, that is, the flow of electrical charge.

Voltage measures how much current can be shoved through an electrical circuit. Think of current as the quantity and voltage as the muscle.

Watts is the power that results; the higher the current and voltage, the more power you get.

Power = Voltage x Current.

In relation to car chargers…

Residential buildings have standard 230V, single-phase power supplies. A regular socket has a 13A current; single-phase home EV chargers have either 16A or 32A current. If we multiply the voltage by the current, you will get the power rating of the car charger:

Single phase charging rates

EV chargers give you this information, of course – it just helps to understand what they mean. Now that you know how much power a given charger has, you can work out how long it will take to charge a given car battery. For example, a Nissan Leaf with a 40kWh battery, using a 13A home plug, will charge at a rate of 3 kilowatts per hour and therefore take about 13 hours to fully charge (40 divided by 3). Naturally, the 32A plug will charge the battery faster in under six hours. Of these three single-phase options, the 32A is the only one considered a ‘fast’ charger.

Only with three-phase power supplies can you get into faster and rapid charging, as you can get with some public chargers. Unless you have a workshop at home that uses heavy machinery demanding of a three-phase power supply, your home won’t have it. And to be honest, there is no need for you to go and get it installed just for your car charger. When you’re out and about and want a quick top-up, that is when you want rapid charging. However, when you get home at night, the car is going to be plugged in overnight for several hours anyhow, which is usually ample time to fully charge batteries.

Our recommendation is to look at a 32A single-phase setup. This will fully charge a Peugeot e-208 with a 50kWh battery in under seven hours, and Porsche Taycan with a 79.2kWh battery in under eleven hours. That’s fully charged – empty to full. Since we don’t tend to run our EV batteries completely flat, the charge time will be less than this.

A quick note on EV mileage: A kilowatt-hour (kWh) is the amount of energy that a one thousand-watt device uses in an hour. Car manufacturers generally give EV mileage in miles/kilometres per kWh, or Wh per mile/kilometre. In the case of the former, a mileage figure of, say, 4.2 miles per kWh in a Nissan Leaf with a 40kWh battery will give you a range of just under 170 miles (4.2 x 40).

Plug Types

EV plug types
EV plug types

Current plug-in cars can be charged via two means: slow and fast charging, or via rapid charging; although, some older plug-ins do not have the rapid-charge option.

The slow/fast charging cable will be either a Type 1 or Type 2. Type 2 connectors are by far the most common – it’s what you’ll find on a Hyundai Kona Electric, Renault Zoe, and Jaguar I-Pace to name but three. The Type 1s are usually found on older plug-ins, but they can still connect to a Type 2 charger because the cable will have a Type 1 connector at one end, but a Type 2 at the other. Thus, we can safely call Type 2 plugs universal.

Rapid chargers come in two types as well. The most common is the Combined Charging System (CCS) socket. This type of socket is a Type 1 or 2 plug with the CCS DC rapid charge connector attached at the bottom (see above). This means you can plug in your car at home on the slow or fast charger using the Type 2 connection, but you can also use the public rapid chargers with the CCS connection beneath when you need to.

The other type of rapid charging socket is the CHAdeMO socket, which you will find on the Nissan Leaf for example. As we noted before, you won’t be able to install a rapid charger at home without a three-phase power supply. You can use Zap-Map to help you find public charge points.

The best home EV chargers

Do note that a qualified professional should be responsible for installing your home charger.

QUBEV EV Charging Unit

QUBEV EV Charging Unit
QUBEV EV Charging Unit

Price: RRP £299.99 | VIEW OFFER

The QUBEV is a superb value option for those not wanting to spend hefty sums on home charging units loaded with smart features. It comes with an amp selector, allowing you to choose the current (and therefore the charging rate) between 6, 13, 16, and 32A. The drawback with this unit is that it doesn’t come with a built-in earthing rod and you would need to get one installed, too.

Wallbox Pulsar Plus

Wallbox Pulsar Plus
Wallbox Pulsar Plus

Price: RRP £479 | VIEW OFFER

The Wallbox Pulsar Plus fills in the gaps left by the more basic QUBEV charger above. To begin with, it’s considerably smaller at 166 x 163 x 82mm, and it’s made to be much more aesthetically pleasing. Nevertheless, the Wallbox Pulsar Plus is a punchy home charger that comes with a 5 metre Type 2 cable. Maximum charging power 22kW.

In addition, there is a MyWallbox app from which you can get monitor charging sessions remotely. It will give you stats and let you program the unit to charge at off-peak times at cheaper rates, for example.

Hive Home Smart EV Charger

Hive Home Smart EV Charger
Hive Home Smart EV Charger

Price: RRP £599 (starting and including grant) | VIEW OFFER

A professionally installed, app-controlled 7.4kW smart charger for your home. Choose from tethered or untethered models. Unit dimensions are 240mm (W) x 370mm (H) x 130mm (D).

Pod Point Solo With EDF Energy

Pod Point Solo With EDF Energy
Pod Point Solo With EDF Energy

Price: RRP £549 (starting and including grant) | VIEW OFFER

Boxt EV Charger Finder

Boxt EV Charger Finder


Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme (EVHS)

In the same way you can get a government grant of up to £3,000 for certain plug-in vehicles, the Office for Low Emission Vehicles (OLEV) also offers a grant for plug-in home chargers. Provided you comply with the fairly simple requirements, the government will contribute up to £350 towards the installation of your new home charger.

How many public charging points are there in the UK?

As previously mentioned, the number of public charging stations is growing in order to keep up with the intense spike in EV demand – particularly those offering rapid charging capabilities. As of January 2022, there were 24,279 public electric car charging points in the UK – 5,279 of which capable of rapid or ultra-rapid charging – according to the RAC. Compared with a total 10,309 charging stations in January 2019, this is a monumental rush of demand, showing little signs of slowing down. So, should you be caught out in your EV, away from home and in need of some juice – you’re well covered.

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