Do I Need a Permit to Install an EV Charger?

Why is a Permit Necessary for a Home EV Charging Installation?

Installing an electric vehicle (EV) charger at your home is the best way to ensure you’ll enjoy your EV ownership experience. If you don’t own a home EV charger, you’ll have to head over to your local public charging station. How often you will need to depends on how much you drive your EV. Instead, if you install a Level 2 EV charging station at your home you’ll save money, time, and do it all from the comfort of your home. 

You will need a permit from your city or local jurisdiction to install an EV charging station. Your EV charger will likely be the next highest energy consumer in your house after possibly your Heating, Ventilation, and Air Conditioning (HVAC) system. Having a permit for the electrical work involved to install an EV charger is necessary to keep you and your household safe. Read on to learn more about a home EV charging station and why pulling a permit is necessary for the installation!

The benefits of EV charging at home

A Level 1 EV charger plugs into your household outlet and is not robust enough for practical applications. Level 1 charging is often called a “trickle charge.” It is too slow for most practical applications. If you only plan to drive your EV once a month, then a Level 1 charger should suffice, but if you want to take full advantage of your EV’s benefits, you will want to drive it much more often. A home Level 2 charger allows you to charge in the convenience, comfort, and safety of your home. You’ll be able to take advantage of the added benefits of always having a fully charged EV and save on gasoline and public charging costs.

Installing an EV charger at home

A home Level 2 EV charger requires a 240V NEMA 14-50 or NEMA 6-50 outlet or receptacle to work. Whether you opt for a plug-in or hardwired installation, you will need to enlist the services of an electrician. Installing it yourself is not advised by most EV charging manufacturers. You run the risk of harming yourself or sparking a house fire if the proper safety measures are not taken or installation techniques are not followed correctly. 

Once you can connect with an electrician you’ll want to talk with them about or figure out on your own how to get a permit from your city or jurisdiction for the EV charging installation. Most cities and municipalities require you to pull a permit for an EV charging installation. 

Why a permit is important for an EV charger installation

You may be thinking, “What if I don’t pull a permit, what is the worst that can happen?”

If you don’t pull a permit several consequences can arise from your decision. If your local department discovers you are installing an EV charging station without a permit, they’ll force you to cease the work. They may also require you to pay a fine owing to building code violations. 

You could be denied a claim by your home insurance company if an issue arises, such as an injury or electrical fire.

Above all and most importantly, your safety is of top concern. Electrical permits ensure the safety of life and property. A permit ensures the electrical work is being done by a trusted, licensed electrician and that all safety measures are being followed. Permit applications usually require load calculations, an electrical plan, a site plan, and other pertinent information. 

As mentioned above, your EV charging station will be consuming more power than most appliances in your house. The load calculation study is important to ensure you’re not exceeding the electrical capacity of your electrical panel. Overloading your panel could easily cause a fire.  If we know ahead of time about a load issue the problem can be mitigated with the installation of a load management device.

EV charging stations are considered “continuous loads” and are subject to the National Electric Code (NEC). The NEC defines “continuous load” as a load where the maximum current is expected to continue for three hours or more. The permit ensures the person performing the electrical work is abiding by the Code.

Pulling a permit requires extensive electrical knowledge. Most homeowners will not know how to obtain the necessary information to properly apply for an electrical permit. 

Pulling a permit is a necessary step to installing your EV charger but you shouldn’t do it yourself. The experts at WattLogic can help you get your charger installed and will pull all the necessary permits for your installation. On top of that, we will help you find the EV charger that is the perfect fit for your needs and preferences, research and apply for EV charging rebates on your behalf so you can save money on your installation and charger, and send a verified and licensed electrician to install your EV charging station.

We have also made the EV charging installation quoting process easier than ever. Instead of calling different electricians, scheduling a visit with them, then waiting for them to inspect your garage and electrical panel, then waiting to hear back from them on a quote…with our digital online survey there is zero obligation and you never even have to make a phone call! You’ll just answer a few simple questions and snap a couple of photos and we get you an estimate in no time.