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If an EV is part of your transportation plan, the options available for home charging have never been more accessible or affordable.

PMG PHOTO: JEFF ZURSCHMEIDE - The Enel X JuiceBox uses a standard 50 Amp plug format common to electric stoves. Adapters are available and different brands of charging stations use different plug formats.

One of the biggest obstacles to EV adoption is concern about home charging. At first, home charging stations cost thousands of dollars and required extensive work to connect to a home's electrical system. Now a new generation of charging stations can plug directly into existing 240-Volt outlets, and cost much less than previous solutions.

PMG PHOTO: JEFF ZURSCHMEIDE - The Enel X JuiceBox hangs on a metal bracket that must be secured to a stud. The JuiceBox charging station weighs about 15 pounds including the connector and cable.

New products from companies such as AmazingE, Amazon Basics, Chargepoint, and Enel X allow homeowners to plug a 240-volt Level 2 charging station into an existing outlet, enabling full EV charging in minutes. The Enel X product retails for about $619, priced competitively with the comparable ChargePoint device at $649. The Amazon Basics and AmazingE products cost less, but also deliver less amperage and will take longer to deliver a charge.

Depending on the unit purchased, total charging power ranges from about 16 amps up to 50 amps. Compatible plug formats include the American standards for both clothes dryers and electric stoves.

Before ordering any home charging station, be sure the outlet you plan to use has adequate amperage and is installed and functioning according to all relevant electrical codes. Consult a professional electrician if you're not sure. Also, note the plug style of your outlet and make sure the charging station you purchase has a compatible plug or adapter.

PMG PHOTO: JEFF ZURSCHMEIDE - Simply hang the charging station on the bracket. A key on the side locks the unit to the bracket for security

To test the ease of installation and function, we recently installed an Enel X JuiceBox into an existing 50 Amp 240-Volt circuit. The JuiceBox may be ordered with an optional 30 Amp plug format adapter. When plugged into the 50 Amp circuit, the JuiceBox delivers about 40 Amps of charging capability through a standard SAE-J1772 connector.

Installation takes about 10 minutes, and involves installing a metal support bracket to a wooden stud. The JuiceBox unit weighs about 15 pounds, including the cord and connector. The wall unit hangs on the bracket with a keyed lock to prevent theft.

All brands of wall units have short cords, and so must be installed within about 2 feet of the outlet. However, the cords for the EV charging plugs can be up to 25 feet long, so the charging stations can be located some distance from the EV parking space. The Enel X box is weatherproof, so it may be installed indoors or outside, but some brands are limited to indoor locations. Once plugged in, a home charging station is ready to use.

PMG PHOTO: JEFF ZURSCHMEIDE - As soon as it is plugged in to a working 240-Volt outlet, the charging station is ready to use. The JuiceBox delivers 40 Amps when plugged into a 50 Amp circuit.

A phone app is available from Enel X to monitor and control charging activity, and the JuiceBox can be connected to a home WiFi network for desktop monitoring. If your home is controlled with an Amazon Alexa, Echo, or Google Home device, the JuiceBox will also respond to voice commands through those devices.

If an EV is part of your transportation plan, the options available for home charging have never been more accessible or affordable.


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