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Hi all,

I’ll be taking delivery of an i3s soon and need to arrange a charger installation. I have a few questions which I’m hoping you could help me with please, as I am a bit confused.
  • To benefit from the government grant does the charger have to be smart? I ask because I know we are unable to get a smart meter installed due to our location. Are the two things totally separate?
  • What is standard installation? I assume the charger needs to be directly connected to the main fuse board to the house. This is a long distance from where we would park our car to be able to charge (running a cable around the house is about 25 metres distance and would involve a lot of digging. We have a garage with it’s own fuse board and direct armoured cabling to the house which an electrician friend feels would be good enough to use. This is about 50 metres from the house in a direct line. I’m guessing none of this extra cabling and work would be covered by a standard installation..
  • The garage and back of the house would both be too far away for a WiFi signal if needed by a charger.
  • So, we are considering just getting a simple charging unit, relying on the car app to manage the settings. Will this work and in your experience do you think it will work out about the same financially? I just don’t know where to start! The BMW dealer directed us to the BP Chargemaster website but these appear to be smart chargers which I am not sure will work for us. Help!
 

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Thank you for sharing that @davesul but it doesn’t really answer my questions. I know we would be eligible for the grant because we meet all the requirements so I was asking for experiences of what has constituted a standard installation for others. The document doesn’t specify whether chargers have to be smart to receive the grant. Do you know if this is the case?
 

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Hi all,

I’ll be taking delivery of an i3s soon and need to arrange a charger installation. I have a few questions which I’m hoping you could help me with please, as I am a bit confused.
  • To benefit from the government grant does the charger have to be smart? I ask because I know we are unable to get a smart meter installed due to our location. Are the two things totally separate?
The charger has to be smart, i.e. controllable over the Internet. This has nothing to do with smart meters.


  • What is standard installation? I assume the charger needs to be directly connected to the main fuse board to the house. This is a long distance from where we would park our car to be able to charge (running a cable around the house is about 25 metres distance and would involve a lot of digging. We have a garage with it’s own fuse board and direct armoured cabling to the house which an electrician friend feels would be good enough to use. This is about 50 metres from the house in a direct line. I’m guessing none of this extra cabling and work would be covered by a standard installation..
Standard installation generally means cable runs up to 10m, but they may let it go up to 20m. Above that they will charge extra.


  • The garage and back of the house would both be too far away for a WiFi signal if needed by a charger.
To be 'smart' and so get the OLEV grant it needs to access the Internet - you would need to provide in advance either a WiFi extender or hardwired Ethernet connection.


  • So, we are considering just getting a simple charging unit, relying on the car app to manage the settings. Will this work and in your experience do you think it will work out about the same financially? I just don’t know where to start! The BMW dealer directed us to the BP Chargemaster website but these appear to be smart chargers which I am not sure will work for us. Help!
It may turn out cheaper if you can get a local sparky to install it - but it will likely have fewer features.
 
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Hi all,

I’ll be taking delivery of an i3s soon and need to arrange a charger installation. I have a few questions which I’m hoping you could help me with please, as I am a bit confused.
  • To benefit from the government grant does the charger have to be smart? I ask because I know we are unable to get a smart meter installed due to our location. Are the two things totally separate?
  • What is standard installation? I assume the charger needs to be directly connected to the main fuse board to the house. This is a long distance from where we would park our car to be able to charge (running a cable around the house is about 25 metres distance and would involve a lot of digging. We have a garage with it’s own fuse board and direct armoured cabling to the house which an electrician friend feels would be good enough to use. This is about 50 metres from the house in a direct line. I’m guessing none of this extra cabling and work would be covered by a standard installation..
  • The garage and back of the house would both be too far away for a WiFi signal if needed by a charger.
  • So, we are considering just getting a simple charging unit, relying on the car app to manage the settings. Will this work and in your experience do you think it will work out about the same financially? I just don’t know where to start! The BMW dealer directed us to the BP Chargemaster website but these appear to be smart chargers which I am not sure will work for us. Help!
Just work it all out with your electrician friend and forget about all the compromises involved in taking the government grant.

I've done several installations this way, to a much higher standard than any national charging company would adhere to.

Important things for me are properly rating cabling, protection and NO visible cabling.
 

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Thank you @Trevor Larkum that‘s very helpful. Providing I can precondition and set the charge times from the app a simple charger will be just fine. I’m really looking forward to getting the car. :)
 

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OLEV define which chargers are approved for the grant.

Basically the charger has to include OCCP comms protocol or equivalent which allows some unknown company to you to remotely harvest data, upgrade firmware and control the charging rate ( in theory for know).

Notice how Is didn't use the word smart.. The OLEV approved charger may not have any user interface, OLEV don't specify any if that.
 

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To be 'smart' and so get the OLEV grant it needs to access the Internet - you would need to provide in advance either a WiFi extender or hardwired Ethernet connection.
I believe some use (or can use) the mobile phone network, so connection to your home network isn't always essential.
 

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Thank you for sharing that @davesul but it doesn’t really answer my questions. I know we would be eligible for the grant because we meet all the requirements so I was asking for experiences of what has constituted a standard installation for others. The document doesn’t specify whether chargers have to be smart to receive the grant. Do you know if this is the case?

Being an official document you do have to read it a bit - see page 9 Q3 :
"How do I know the chargepoint I get installed is eligible for the grant?"

The reply gives reference to document "Grant schemes for electric vehicle charging infrastructure", which has the statement :

" From 1st July 2019, the EVHS will only support smart chargepoints as announced in December 2018"

- So that answers your question about needing to be smart or not...
 

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Being an official document you do have to read it a bit - see page 9 Q3 :
"How do I know the chargepoint I get installed is eligible for the grant?"

The reply gives reference to document "Grant schemes for electric vehicle charging infrastructure", which has the statement :

" From 1st July 2019, the EVHS will only support smart chargepoints as announced in December 2018"

- So that answers your question about needing to be smart or not...
It pays to read and understand the OLEV definition of SMART.
Any other definition is irrelevant
 
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