Solar EV Charging: Improve Your Vehicle Efficiency
Do you own an electric vehicle (EV) and are interested in saving more money? Solar EV charging may be the answer for you.
Both solar power and EVs are increasingly popular, so why not enjoy the best of both worlds? You can charge your EV for free!
Warmaway has pulled together a full guide on everything you need to know about solar EV charging, including benefits it can bring to you, your household, and your life. Read more on how to save the money and the planet the smart way.
How does Solar EV charging work?
It all starts with installing a solar panel system on your roof.
This generates electricity via a direct current to your solar panel inverter. This converts the DC current generated to AC current so it can be used in your home to power your home appliances and EV home charger via a wall mount (usually level 2 charging). For more detail on the science behind solar panels and how they work, read our full solar panels guide.
How long does it take for solar to charge my EV?
There are usually a few factors involved when considering the length of time it takes your EV to charge using solar panels, including:
- Size of your electric car battery (battery capacity): Usually the larger the battery, the longer it takes to charge.
- Power (kW) your solar panels produce.
- The type of EV you have.
- How much charge your EV has prior to charging (i.e., is it a small or full top up charge).
- How often you use your EV.
- How many miles you use your EV for.
For a rough idea, let’s take a look at an example:
Looking at the Nissan Leaf EV with a battery size of 40 kWh and a 150mile drive range, it can take around 7.5–11 hours using electricity from the grid. However, with solar panels you can trickle charge the car throughout the day using the electric that would normally be exported to the grid meaning a charge from free electricity. The time to charge would depend on the system size and weather conditions.
As an alternative option, you can utilise cheaper off-peak tariffs to charge your EV or solar battery directly from the national grid during quieter hours. If you aren’t in a huge rush to charge your EV in the middle of the day, this can be a great option for cost-efficient charging.
How many solar panels do I need to charge a car?
Again, this can be entirely dependent on your car and its battery capacity. However, if we are following with using the Nissan Leaf EV as an example, you may need around 6-8 solar panels installed. However, this is only an estimate and can change depending on:
- The size of your house
- Where you live
- Power (kW) per solar panel
Is solar EV charging worth investing into?
At Warmaway, we put our customers’ interests first and so we also feel it is our responsibility to give you a full outlook on both the advantages and disadvantages of Solar EV charging.
Benefits of Solar EV charging
- Reduces your carbon footprint – It is environmentally friendly due to it using 100% renewable energy.
- Save on your energy bills – Solar EV Charging provides free energy to charge your EV meaning you are protected from fluctuations and the dynamic market of tariffs and energy prices.
- Earn Profit – If you are generating more energy than you are using, you can even earn a profit from the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG) by generating energy via solar and feeding it back into the national grid. You can also rent your EV charger and earn money straight from your driveway. For more information, read our article on whether you should invest in an EV charger.
Things to consider for Solar EV charging
- Time: it can take some time to charge. If you’re wanting to travel longer journeys then charge time will need to be taken into account.
- Cost: It can be quite expensive and cost around £5,000-£6,500 to install solar panel systems as your EV charger installation. Fortunately, to help cut down some of these costs, there are government grants available such as the Electric vehicle charge point grant to cover some of the costs.
Final Verdict – Should I invest in Solar EV charging?
If you use your EV for shorter journeys or less frequently, solar EV charging is ideal for you and you can benefit the most from them. It will not only save you thousands of pounds annually, you can even earn profit from the Smart Export Guarantee (SEG).
Interested in Solar EV charging?
If you are interested in creating and achieving an environmentally friendly yet cost efficient future, click below to contact our team to make an enquiry.