If you’re an EV driver, one of the most convenient places to charge is on your house because your car is parked there for eight hours overnight. So you can install a Level 2 home EV charger to have the confidence that you’re going to wake up in the morning with a full charge.
Level 2 chargers can charge your EV up to nine times faster than Level 1 EV chargers and are becoming the standard for home charging.
Best Overall Value Home Charger – ChargePoint Home Flex (240V, 16A~50A, 23ft)
ChargePoint Home Flex was chosen as our top pick for overall value home chargers. It’s flexible on how you figure the charger electrically. This charger will charge all the way up to 50 amps. Even though your car is only capable of 16 amps, you may go buy a Tesla or other EVs in the near future. It could charge a lot faster than what a Level 1 charger does. You buy this for future growth.
You can plug it directly into a NEMA 14-50 or NEMA 6-50 outlet, or you can downgrade it into a different configuration because you may not have 50-amp service in your garage. If you have a 20-amp breaker, configure the charger for 16 amps.
In the future, if you buy another car, you can upgrade the service to your garage.
The actual charge cable from the unit is 23 feet, so that’s pretty long to use on any corner of a standard garage.
It’s Wi-Fi connected with a ChargePoint app that has smart charging features available on the market. The app allows you to set reminders, view past charging sessions, track cost and usage, etc.
This home EV charger is Energy Star certified, meaning it’s energy-efficient. They have a three-year parts replacement warranty.
If you’re in the market for a home Level 2 charging system, the ChargePoint Home Flex should definitely be considered as a top option.
Best Smart Home Charger – Enel X JuiceBox (240V, 32A & 40A, 25ft)
The JuiceBox home EV charger has more smart charging features than any other smart home charger.
It’s Wi-Fi enabled and comes with an app. You can view your past charging sessions, adjust the current, and schedule it to charge from your app.
How long the car has been charging and how much energy it took can also be viewed from your mobile.
You can pair the station with Amazon Alexa or Google Home and take advantage of voice commands.
The JuiceBox allows you to pair your charger with your local utility through a service called JuiceNet Green. You can schedule your charging station to charge your car when the cleanest energy is available during the day, which is important for a lot of EV drivers who want their cars to be zero emissions.
The JuiceBox is one of the only chargers that allow you to actually select when you charge your car based on how clean the grid is.
Honorable Mentions go to the Wallbox Pulsar Plus and the ChargePoint Home Flex.
Best Non-Smart Home Charger – Grizzl-E Classic EV Charger (240V, 16A~40A, 24ft)
The Grizzl-E 40-amp classic home charger has the best value in the non-smart home charger category. It’s a dumb charger without smart charging features, so it doesn’t pair with Wi-Fi. You can’t select an app.
The Grizzle-E EV chargers are made in Canada, which are built to withstand severe weather conditions. They offer up to 10 kW of the maximum power output that is adjustable, so you could set it to deliver the power that you want (16 amps, 24 amps, 32 amps or 40 amps) based on what your circuit can supply.
It used to be $399, but it jumped up to $459 (as of 9/21/21) recently because of the semiconductor chips shortage and so forth.
However, even at $459 (as of 9/21/21), this home charging station is still our best value choice for a non-smart EV charger.
Best Home Charger for Tesla Owners – Tesla Wall Connector (240V, 16A~48A, 24ft)
Tesla uses a different connector than all of the other electric vehicles in North America. They use a proprietary connector, while every other electric vehicle uses the J1772.
If you own a Tesla, the official Tesla Wall Connector is the most convenient way to charge it at your home or office, with the fastest charge speeds available. Simply plug your electric car in overnight and wake up to a fully charged EV every morning.
The Wall Connector can be purchased online from the Tesla store or Amazon, and the price is similar to the majority of other high-quality home charging stations.
Compatible with 208 and 240-volt power supplies, this charger can give you an output of up to 48 amps, the right amount to juice up the Performance and Long-range Models 3s in a matter of minutes.
In addition, you could use one of the other charging stations to charge your Tesla with the adapter that’s provided by Tesla.
Most Compact Home Charger – Wallbox Pulsar Plus (240V, 16A~48A, 25ft)
There are smaller units like Wallbox Pulsar Plus that you could carry around with you in your car. A lot of people like to have charging equipment in the back of their EV in case they need to plug in on the road.
Some EVs come with a nice portable EVSE, a Level 2 unit that can charge the car relatively quickly. But some cars come with very weak charging equipment as standard, a Level 1 unit that trickles charges. You only get about three to five miles of range per hour. Those owners prefer to go out and buy a nice Level 2 charging unit.
Unlike other portable home chargers, the Pulsar Plus has smart charging Wi-Fi enabled features, so it allows you to schedule charging, view and track your charging data and set reminders. Plus, you’ll be able to update your station remotely with any software upgrades.
It’s really one of the most compact home chargers you’re going to find on the market today.
Most Suitable Home Charger for Outdoor Use- Grizzle-E Classic EV Charger (240V, 16A~40A, 24ft)
When we talk about home charging, it’s always inside the garage, but a lot of people either don’t use their garage or don’t have a garage. They would probably install their home chargers outside, so we need to consider different aspects in charging equipment for outdoor use.
If you’re going to buy one to mount it outside, there are a few things about the cable that you need to look at:
- How well is the cable if you live in a cold weather area?
- How does that hold up in really frigid cold weather conditions?
- Does it remain nice, bendable and pliable or does it like a frozen rope, and you can’t even bend it?
You also need to know what the NEMA waterproof rating is.
Some of these units have better NEMA ratings if you’re going to mount your unit outside. If you live in an area where it frequently rains or snows, you should look for a NEMA 4 rated unit. These units are the best for outdoor.
United Chargers makes absolutely fantastic products, some of which are the most durable and robust units available.
Honorable mention goes to the ClipperCreek chargers that are also super tough units.
Both units are the best if you’re going to mount them outside and use them as an outdoor charging solution.
How to Pick a Home EV Charger?
A Level 2 home EV charger is a good option between Level 1 charging and commercial DC fast charging stations, and is a must-have for any electric car owner. But how to choose a home EV charger?
When you’re looking for an EV home charger, you mainly want to have an amperage at 40 amps or higher. These home charging stations provide some of the fastest home charging for your EV.
Hardwired or Plug-In
Choosing a hardwired or plugged version is up to you. Hardwired EV chargers are a more permanent solution than installing an outlet. Plug-in chargers allow you greater flexibility for travel and can be less expensive to install.
Typically, a 48-amp powered charger is recommended to be installed using a hardwired connection. Either way you go, there’s a chance that you’ll need an upgraded circuit breaker to get installed. So check with your home charger manufacturer to see the recommended amperage to install properly.
Now that you have chosen a plug or a hardwired connection, you’ll want to look at the cable length of a home EV charging station. A cable longer than 20 feet can save you on installation and service panel upgrade costs, especially if you plan on charging multiple vehicles outside or in your garage with the same charger.
Indoor or Outdoor Use
Whether installed indoors or outdoors, look for a device with a weatherproof case that is rated for outdoor durability.
If you live in mild weather areas, a home charger with a NEMA 3 rated enclosure can be installed for outdoor use, while a NEMA 4 rated unit is needed if you are under harsh weather conditions.
Home charging stations vary greatly in size. Avoid bulky ones that consume too much space in your garage, and a portable plug-in station can easily be packed to go on a road trip or move to a new home.
Smart or Dumb
Smart chargers connect to Wi-Fi and let you schedule charging, track history, set up alerts and reminders, limit charger rates and even take advantage of off-peak electricity rates. But not all smart chargers work well when Wi-Fi is not available.
Dumb chargers just regulate the charge to the vehicle at a cheaper price point.
Reputation and Safety
Lastly, make sure you’re buying from a reputable brand that produces UL or cUL listed or safety-certified home charging stations, so you don’t damage your vehicle or have the charger stop working.
1. What’s the difference between “charger” and “electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE)”?
The “charger” is built into every electric car. Every electric car has what’s called an on-board charger that’s the device that actually charges the car.
The EVSE or charging stations just supply energy to the vehicle safely.
2. Which one is the fastest home EV charger on the market?
It’s not a good way to go. The car always dictates how fast it charges on AC Level 2 charging. There are plenty of charging stations that can deliver up to 48 amps which is really the maximum power any EV can accept today.
It’s not fair to pick one of those home EV charging stations because there is a bunch of them available on the market that can deliver up to 48 amps.
3. Why can’t I charge my car as fast as I do it at the Supercharger or DC fast charging stations?
Because there are two types of charging: AC (Alternating Current) and DC (Direct Current) charging.
At home, Level 1 charging is on a regular household 110 or 120-volt outlet. Level 2 charging is at 220 or 240 volts.
Energy is stored in a battery as a DC, so when you charge a car from AC, either Level 1 or Level 2, it has to be converted to DC. That’s basically what the on-board charger does.
Imagine that the electricity coming from these home EV charging stations has to go through the on-board charger that converts the energy to DC and stores it in the battery. That’s why the on-board charger is the bottleneck. It restricts how fast the car can charge.
When you do DC fast charging or Supercharging, energy is taken directly from that charging station and goes right into the battery. It doesn’t have to go through the on-board charger. That way, the battery can accept a lot more energy and charge a lot faster.