The UK has previously set some incredibly ambitious targets for installing EV charging infrastructure, claiming that these figures are required in order for the upcoming petrol and diesel vehicle production ban in 2030 to be viable.
It was claimed that 300,000 public chargepoints are required across the country. Currently, there are just over 40,000 installed, around 13% of the target. This means that the average monthly installations need to increase by 215% if we want any hope of reaching the goal.
The Department for Transport has also pledged to ‘ensure that every motorway service area has at least six rapid chargers by the end of 2023’. With only four months left in 2023, just 27 out of 199 motorway services in the country currently have six or more rapid chargepoints, a mere 13.6% of the overall target.
Something needs to change if we want to hit these targets, so in honour of National Tradesmen Day (15th September), we’re sharing an electrician’s guide to installing EV charging points.
What qualifications do you need to install EV chargepoints?
The baseline required to begin installing EV chargepoints is to be a qualified and competent electrician. You will need to have completed an NVQ or an apprenticeship, and be registered with a Government Approved Part P Scheme Provider, such as NICEIC.
There is a range of specialised courses and qualifications for installing EV chargepoints, but you aren’t legally required to complete any. The process is similar to other electrical installations, so many of the skills are transferrable. That being said, it can be beneficial to complete a chargepoint installation course to gain both confidence and competency within the sector.
EV chargepoint installation courses
There are a variety of courses available, all at different price points and lengths. Even if you don’t have much spare time to complete one, many run for only 1-2 days. Be aware that not all courses will provide a qualification at the end, some may only give a certificate of completion, so double-check what is provided if you’re looking for an official qualification.
Most EV chargepoint installation courses will cover:
- The IET Code of Practice for Electric Vehicle Charging Equipment Installation
- The types of chargepoints on the market
- Electrical requirements for installation
- Key design considerations
Completing a course will make you more desirable to potential customers, but will also make you more competent with the process, meaning that you’re less likely to make mistakes or encounter unmanageable problems on the job.
Electricians who are still in training can find benefit from completing a chargepoint installation course. This is a great way of understanding the niche ahead of time, leaving you ready to start installations as soon as you’re fully qualified.
What equipment do you need?
Similar to transferable skills, most qualified electricians will have most of the required tools and equipment to install EV chargepoints. The only piece of equipment you’ll likely need to purchase is an EV tester. An EV tester is used to identify any faults in the charging state output. They retail for around £400-£500 but are a worthy investment if you plan to branch out into EV-related jobs.
You’ll need an EV tester for every installation, but it’s also recommended that chargepoints are serviced every 12 months. Owning an EV tester opens up opportunities for smaller jobs in the future, testing chargepoints at both business and residential properties.
Become an OZEV-approved installer
The government provides funding for up to 75% of certain EV chargepoint installations, provided that the installation is completed by an OZEV-approved installer. Many businesses or individuals looking to install chargepoints will hope to utilise these grants, so becoming an OZEV-approved installer is highly recommended. If you’re a qualified electrician, you can apply.
With such a long way to go to meet the ambitious chargepoint targets, the UK needs as many installers as possible to step up and help out. If you’re a qualified electrician, you can help the country meet its net zero targets by branching out into EV chargepoint installations.
Not only can you help the UK meet its targets, but becoming an EV chargepoint installer opens up a new world of job opportunities. More and more people are making the switch to electric, and businesses across the country are following suit. New legislations are constantly being introduced to encourage the mass uptake of EVs, like the expanding ULEZ zone and changes to new build construction regulations.
Get ahead of the curve and start installing EV chargepoints. Put your workload in good stead for the future of EV uptake whilst supporting the country’s net zero and sustainability goals.