A step-by-step guide to an EV charger installation with OVO
09 February 2024 | OVO Energy
Is it worth buying an Electric Vehicle (EV) charger?
Charging your electric car at home is 85% cheaper than charging in public1. In fact, charging your EV at home is the cheapest and most convenient way to charge. That’s why 93% of EV drivers have an EV charger installed at home.
So if you’re thinking about getting an electric car charger for your home, we’ll show you what installation day at OVO looks like. And how to charge your car for less than £200 a year.
Your step-by-step guide to an EV charger installation
We joined OVO engineers, Matt and Darren, as they installed an EV charger at a customer’s home in Essex.
The customer, Alistair, chose an Indra Smart PRO untethered charger from our EV home charger range. He chose this model because he already had his own type 2 EV charging cable. If you don’t have a cable, we have 3 tethered chargers to choose from too.
Before booking an installation, we ask all our customers to fill in an installation survey. This way we can be sure that your home is suitable for an EV charger. It also means our team can give you an accurate quote, and plan your installation. Our engineers refer to it on installation day too.
A couple of days before the installation, Matt rang Alistair to let him know what time to expect them.
Here’s a step-by-step guide to what happened on the day:
1. Test and check bonding
Keeping everyone safe during the installation is vital. So the first thing the engineers did was their pre-install checks. This meant:
- Turning off Alistair’s power for a short time
- Checking the relevant earthing requirements are in place2
- Reviewing Alistair’s installation survey
After the checks were done, Alistair could turn the power back on.
2. Check the charger location
Your engineer should already know where your charger needs to go, following your survey. But they’ll double-check with you on the day that they’re installing it in the best place for you, your home, and your EV.
For Alistair, this was on the front of his garage, next to the drive where he parks his car.
3. Check the cable route
As part of the survey, Alistair let us know where his meter is located. This is so the engineers can plot a cable route from the meter to the charger. On the day, Matt and Darren made sure their proposed cable route was the best solution.
4. Install the EV fuse board
Whether your EV fuse board is going inside or outside, the engineer will install the board and run the cable from your charger to this fuse board.
When drilling holes in the walls, Matt and Darren used dust sheets to cover anything that could get damaged.
5. Run the power and data cables
Once the EV fuse board was installed, Darren ran 2 cables – the power cable and its data cable – from Alistair’s meter to the charger. The data cable pairs with the power cable to prevent the supply fuse from overloading.
6. Testing, testing…
At this point, Matt tested the cabling without it being connected to the mains power supply. This is called a “dead test”. When he was happy it was all working correctly, he ran a live test too. He also did a functional test on the charger.
7. Your new charger
Happily, everything was working fine, so Matt and Darren could move onto the final bit of the bit of the car charger installation – commissioning. Alistair gave Matt his WiFi code so he could get the charger online and connect it to Alistair’s phone app.
Matt ran through everything Alistair needed to know about his new charger, and showed him how to use it.
If you have any questions about your new charger, now’s the time to ask!
8. After the install
Once Alistair had plugged in his car, Matt and Darren cleared up and said goodbye.
Alistair told us, “My experience with OVO has been great. The engineers were really nice guys. I appreciated them calling ahead to let me know when they’d arrive.”
Once your electric car charger installation is complete, you’ll get an email with the manufacturer’s contact details, and the charger manual attached. All the final certifications for your charger will be emailed to you 2 to 3 weeks later.
How much does it cost to install an EV charger?
We offer 3 of the UK’s market-leading smart chargers, fully installed, from £9143. Both the Ohme and Indra home EV chargers come with or without a cable and the Hypervolt charger comes with a cable.
Charge your car for less than £200 a year
Once your charger has been commissioned, you can activate Charge Anytime, our special rate for EV drivers. Add Charge Anytime to any OVO energy plan, and get the UK’s cheapest charging rate of 7p per kWh, at any time of day. Not just overnight.4
To get Charge Anytime, you need to have:
- A compatible EV or charger – check our list
- A smart meter, to send half-hourly readings. If you don't have a smart meter, find out more about getting Charge Anytime.
If you’re already an OVO customer, you can simply log in to your account to find out if you’re compatible, and add Charge Anytime.
If you’re not, why not find out if your set-up is compatible, before you switch?
EV charger installation questions and answers
This really depends on your personal preference. There are 4 main points to consider:
1. Convenience - Tethered chargers have an attached cable, so it's easy to get home and plug in. Having an untethered charger means you have to get your charger from your boot (or wherever you store it), attach it, then plug in.
2. Cost - Tethered chargers are more expensive upfront because they come with a cable included. But you have to factor in the cost of a cable when buying an untethered charger.
3. Cable length - We offer cables from 5 to 10 metres long. All the cables have a Type 2 plug.
4. How it looks - Some drivers prefer an untethered charger, because it looks smaller and neater on the wall of their home.
Our standard charger installations take around 3 hours to complete and include:
- Our expert engineers fitting the EV charger to a brick/rendered wall.
- Up to 10 meters of 6mm power cable – this is neatly clipped to the wall between the electricity supply meter and the charger.
- Setting up the charger and pairing with your smartphone via WiFi or 4G – with full support from our engineer.
- A full demonstration of how your new charger works.
For a standard installation to go ahead:
- The existing electrical connections and protections within your home must be in good condition.
- All required main protective bonding at the property must be installed and adequately sized before the installation of the Charge point.
- No groundworks/civil works, electrical remedial works or any other trades need to be carried out.
If any of these requirements aren’t met, our surveyors will let you know. But please note that any work that needs to be done would need to be arranged by the customer. Our engineers can carry out Earth bonding upgrades for an additional cost. Main isolation switches can also be fitted for OVO customers on the day of install for an additional cost.
For a full quote, please choose your preferred charger and complete our online survey.
Some installations may need extra work than a standard installation. If your survey shows that additional work needs to be done, your quote will tell you exactly what the work is and how much it’ll cost.
We don’t recommend you try installing an EV charger yourself unless you’re a professional engineer or electrician. We only sell our chargers complete with installation by our specially trained engineers.
If you have an issue with your charger, you can contact the charger manufacturers directly. They’ll be happy to help:
If you have an Indra charger, call 01684 770 631, or email [email protected]
If you have an Ohme charger, call 020 3375 1586, or email [email protected]
If you have a Hypervolt charger, call 0333 253 8366, or email [email protected]
Ohme, Indra and Hypervolt both have their own social media communities that are a great source of information too.
Sources and references
1The 85% cheaper claim is based on a customer smart charging their EV using Charge Anytime – in comparison to rapid charging at a public charge point (actual percentage 87%). This is based on UK average public charging costs of 53p per kWh as of October 2023. Calculations are based on fully charging a 50kWh battery. To get the low Charge Anytime rate, you need to switch to OVO if you’re not already a customer. Then add Charge Anytime when your supply starts.
2These include your gas, oil and water bonding. We send photos of what these look like in the survey we send to you.
3Prices given include standard installation. Your survey might show that you need more work than a standard installation. In this case, your quote would include this additional cost. For full details about what's included in a standard installation, please see our Q&As.
4. There’s no need for Ohme and Indra users to download the Charge Anytime app to be able to use Charge Anytime. Ohme users can schedule their charging via their Ohme App and the OVO app will show their savings and credits. Indra users can use the Kaluza (our tech partner) webapp for charging and the OVO app will show their savings and credits.