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Electric vehicle FAQs

Frequently asked questions

Some of the most commonly asked questions on charging an electric vehicle.

Can I have an EV charger if I live in a property without off-street parking?

In the majority of cases where a charger needs to be on-street, you will need to request a new supply which is separate to your existing property’s supply. It is not permitted to run charging cables across public footpaths so the charging unit will normally be located at the kerbside. Installers should ensure that they have the relevant permission from the local council or land owner before installing charging facilities on land not controlled by the charge point owner.

What happens if I need to charge more than one EV at my home?

As with a single vehicle charger it’s the responsibility of the installer to ensure that the existing supply is capable of supplying all of your property’s electrical demand. Charging multiple vehicles simultaneously can result in overloading of supplies or the need for a reduced charging output. Before installing a charge point, it’s important to understand if it will deliver the desired output and that it does not present a risk of overloading supply equipment.

Range anxiety – will my electric vehicle battery run out and leave me stranded?

Most mass market EVs today have a range of 100-150 miles before the battery runs flat, while some top-end cars, such as Tesla’s electric sports cars, can run for 334 miles before needing recharging. For longer journeys, planned recharging stops could help to break up journeys with some EV charge points being capable of providing up to a further 200 miles range from a half-hour recharge. Plan your long journeys by referring to a charge point map such as Zap-Map to make sure you don’t get stranded.

It’s important to note that the range of your EV will be reduced if you use the vehicle’s heating or air conditioning during your journey.

Is there enough power in the North West to meet the demand from new electric vehicles?

At present our forecasts show that there will be enough capacity in the North West to accommodate the uptake of EVs in the region. Our customers will charge their EVs at different times of day and in different locations meaning that existing network capacity will be utilised efficiently. In some locations the additional demand from EVs will be offset by flexible charging arrangements or through investment in energy efficiency.

In future smart charging and time-of-use tariffs will encourage off-peak charging and help to reduce high peaks of electricity demand, minimising the cost of EVs to the electricity system and keeping costs down for customers by enabling them to charge their EVs when power is cheaper.

Could an electric vehicle be used to power my home?

There are plans to make home electric vehicle charging two-way. By using the batteries inside electric cars as storage for the power grid, drivers could charge up when demand is low and power is cheap, and sell energy back to the grid during peak hours when people need it most.

Commuters could drive to work in the morning, plug in to charge their car battery while working, then draw power from their cars to save on their electricity bills in the evening. Later, they would use a timer to charge it back up again in the early hours when the price of electricity drops.