Plug-in Readiness at Home 
 
It’s anticipated that 80% of all electric vehicle (EV) charging will take place at home. Electric vehicle dealers and charging station suppliers will provide a lot of assistance in setting up the home for vehicle charging. Electrical contractors are familiar with installation and other technical and permitting issues. Ameren can provide assistance regarding the adequacy of the service wires to the home and is always available to answer many other questions, so there’s plenty of help out there!

Here’s a step-by-step process and other considerations for getting ready at home:

    Before anything else, decide how you will charge at home. Your new EV will already come with a small, portable 120-volt charging unit that can be used with a common household outlet. And this may be all you need, depending on the size of your EV’s battery, the number of miles you drive daily, and the amount of time you feel you have to “charge back up” at the end of the day. Check out the charging times in the <a href="/Environment/ElectricVehicles/Pages/ChargingTimesEstimatedCost.aspx">Fuel Cost Comparison Table</a> for help in making this decision.<br/><br/> Your new EV will also be capable of charging at 240 volts. If you feel that 240-volt charging would better serve your needs, determine the type and model of charging station your EV manufacturer provides or specifies, and that equipment’s electrical requirements. More than likely, a number of options will be available. Learn more about <a href="/Environment/ElectricVehicles/Pages/VehicleCharging.aspx">electric vehicle charging</a>.
     
    A quick survey by an electrical contractor or the dealership's assessor can determine if your home has adequate electrical capacity for EV charging.<br/><br/> <ul><li>If you’ve chosen 120-volt (Level 1) charging, most EV manufacturers recommend a dedicated 20-amp circuit be available. </li> <li>If you’ve chosen 240-volt (Level 2) charging for the faster charging times, a dedicated 240-volt, 40-amp circuit will have to be added. </li></ul><br/> Depending on the size and age of the home, there may not be sufficient electrical capacity to handle this, meaning a new electric service panel may have to be added. The initial survey can determine if such an upgrade - generally the most costly step in installing charging facilities - is necessary.
     
    <ul> <li><b>If installing in an enclosed garage:</b><br/> The wall socket or charging station should be located for easy access and where the charging cable will stretch the shortest distance - so check the location of the charging port on the vehicle too! Avoid locations where the cord or cable crosses an area of heavy foot traffic. A wall-mounted charging station should not block a garage entry or exit, or be installed near explosive materials like flammable liquids or combustible dust or fibers.</li> <br/> <li><b>For a detached garage with inadequate capacity or no electric service at all:</b><br/> The installer should be able to help you decide how to extend the wiring to accommodate charging equipment. An overhead wiring extension is less expensive but less attractive, while an underground extension represents a more attractive (and more expensive) option.</li> <br/> <li><b>For charging outside:</b><br/> Electrical sockets and charging stations are weatherproof and can be placed outdoors. They should be protected from damage and installed in a secure location to protect against vandalism. As an EV buyer, you should check the vehicle manufacturer’s recommended operating and charging temperature ranges and locate the equipment accordingly.</li>
     
    Apply for the permit to do the desired work, if required by local jurisdictions. If applicable, your contractor can begin work when it is issued. When the installation is complete, your contractor can also arrange for the wiring inspection with the local inspection authority (if needed) and make any required changes.
     
    The steps above will ensure your home is ready, but there is the "other side of the meter" to consider as well, and this is where Ameren comes in. As our way of contributing to a positive ownership experience, we want to ensure our grid is sufficient for charging your EV too.<br/><br/> Call our Construction Hotline at <b>888.659.4540 in Illinois or 866.992.6619 in Missouri</b> or submit an <a href ="https://stageforms.ameren.com/sites/corp/EV/Pages/EVServiceAssessment.aspx " target="blank">online request</a> for a free capacity assessment of our service wires to your home. In most cases a visit to your home is not required. If you've purchased an EV and an upgrade of these lines is necessary, we’ll take care of it at no charge!
     
    <ul> <li>Where is your outlet or charging station located compared to the plug-in port on the vehicle itself? Standard cord lengths are 18 feet but are available up to 25 feet. </li> <li>Do you want your 240-volt charging station to be permanently wired to your electric panel or plugged in to a 240-volt wall socket (like your clothes dryer)? Plugging it in lets you to take it with you if you ever move.</li> <li>What kind of warranty are you getting? Understand any costs that may be involved in maintaining your charging station.</li> <li>Is the charging station Underwriters Laboratories (UL) listed? This is a standard but necessary certification for assuring safe and reliable operations.</li> <li>Is a trained, certified electrician with a current license doing the installation? Make sure they have access to parts and equipment for any future service needs.</li> </ul>
                 
charging stations, charging electrical capacity, home charging considerations
 
 
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