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Consumers failing to leverage smart chargers to reduce EV charging costs

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Greater education is needed to help electric vehicle owners reduce the cost of charging their cars, according to a new survey from Smart Home Charge. 

While the UK Government is eager for everyone to install a smart charger at home, it seems that few consumers know how to actually benefit from them. As Smart Home Charge’s recent survey shows, just 46% of EV owners are actually using the scheduling ability to ensure their vehicles are charging during off-peak hours. 

Given the ever-increasing costs associated with electricity, electric vehicle owners who are not yet benefiting from off-peak electricity prices will find their bills are significantly higher than those who do. According to Smart Home Charge, those on a 45p per kWh standard day rate will spend £18 on a single charge of a Nissan Leaf, while those exclusively charging off-peak at a rate of 4.5p per kWh will spend just £1.80. 

From June 30, 2022, the UK Government will require all EV chargers sold in the UK to offer smart charging capability, that means chargers that are able to be remotely controlled through an app, which enables functions like scheduling. However, the vast majority of consumers are likely to already have this functionality, as the Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme, which offered grants towards the installation of an EV charger at home, required the installation of a smart charger. 

Danny Morgan, Editor and Marketing Manager at Smart Home Charge, commented, “Educating new EV drivers is key to helping them save on their car charging costs. Traditionally, drivers have not had much choice when it comes to fuel costs other than searching for which petrol station has the lowest price – and even then the difference is pennies.

“However, EV drivers have much more control over the cost of their home EV charging, firstly by finding an energy supplier which offers an EV-friendly tariff with off-peak rates and secondly by making sure they set up a schedule on their smart home charge point that coincides with their off-peak window.

“While drivers cannot ultimately control wholesale electricity prices, they can make sure they are charging their cars at the lowest rate possible.”

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