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Electric vehicles: Energy for the future

Our customers are becoming more and more environmentally conscious and are looking for ways to adopt green energy, like solar panels and electric vehicles (EVs).

Whether it's providing advice on the application process for becoming an Independent Power Producer when you are thinking of installing solar panels or for where to go for information about installing electric vehicle chargers, we're here to help.

Statistics show that more electric vehicles were sold in Canada in 2018 than in the last two years combined.1 This increase in electric vehicles means more people—and machines—will be relying on electricity to power their transportation across our city.

Are you thinking about getting an electric vehicle?

Here are some things you should think about before purchasing and installing an EV charging station in your home:

​1. Can your home's electrical system handle the addition of an EV charging station?

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  • Contact your electrician. They can measure the amount of electricity coming into your home. If you don't have an electrician, the Electrical Contractors Association of Alberta provides a list of qualified electrical contractors (Members) in the Edmonton area.

If you need to upgrade the electrical system in your home, find a qualified electrician and follow our process for renovations.

​2. What type of charger should you install for your chosen EV?

Here are some things to consider:

  • What level of charging station does your chosen vehicle require? This is something to confirm with your cars manufacturer's instructions. Note: Level 1 chargers can plug into normal wall outlets, but are very slow at charging. Level 2 chargers are much faster, charging most EVs overnight; however, they require a 208v or 240v outlet which typically requires an electrician to install in your garage.
  • What length of cord do you need? You will want one that is long enough to reach your vehicle from where the charging station is being installed.
  • Are you able to schedule when your EV charges? This way you can make sure your EV is charging when you're not using a lot of power in your home as the added usage can tax your home's electrical system. Typically we use more power when we're getting ready in the morning and when you get home from work. We'd recommend charging your EV later in the evening or when you're sleeping.
  • Do you want to be able to get information remotely about your charging station? Some models offer web portals and apps to monitor EV power usage. If this is something you think you'd want to monitor, choose a charger that has internet capabilities.
Plug'n Drive offers more information about the EV's and EV charging stations available in Canada.

3. Once you have determined the type of charger you want to purchase:

  • Have it installed by a qualified electrician. For a list of qualified electricians in the Edmonton area, visit the Electrical Contractors Association of Alberta.
  • Plug in. We recommend charging your vehicles overnight so the electrical system of your home isn't taxed when you get home from work and begin making dinner and running other heavy electricity use appliances.

Although it's not required, we do recommend that you let us know you are installing a charging station. This helps us monitor the impact of electric vehicles on the electrical system in your neighbourhood and upgrade equipment like transformers, when needed.

1Source: Schmidt, Eric. (2018, November 6). Electric vehicles sales update Q3 2018, Canada. Retrieved from https://www.fleetcarma.com/electric-vehicles-sales-update-q3-2018-canada/