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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
I have had a quote from a local installer, based on photos. I was under the assumption that my installation would be 'standard'. The supply cabinet is outside the garage wall. The Consumer unit is on the inside of the same wall. The charge point is to be fitted on the other side of the garage (either internally or externally, depending on which charger I go for). The total cable run is about 6m.

The price quoted is £468 including VAT.

I have been told that a need...
  • A new enclosure
  • Henley block
  • Type A RCD
.... which makes the installation non-standard, hence a higher price than expected.

Is anyone able to explain the function of these additional components and why I would need them?

I have yet to have my smart meter fitted (by Octopus). Would this fitting include an RCD in the supply cabinet, and would that obviate the requirement for the RCD as part of the installation?
 

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I have had a quote from a local installer, based on photos. I was under the assumption that my installation would be 'standard'. The supply cabinet is outside the garage wall. The Consumer unit is on the inside of the same wall. The charge point is to be fitted on the other side of the garage (either internally or externally, depending on which charger I go for). The total cable run is about 6m.

The price quoted is £468 including VAT.

I have been told that a need...
  • A new enclosure
  • Henley block
  • Type A RCD
.... which makes the installation non-standard, hence a higher price than expected.

Is anyone able to explain the function of these additional components and why I would need them?

I have yet to have my smart meter fitted (by Octopus). Would this fitting include an RCD in the supply cabinet, and would that obviate the requirement for the RCD as part of the installation?
Which charge point are you getting ?
If it doesn't have internal RCD protection, you'd need a type B RCD.
If it does, depending on the cable type and routing you may or may not need an RCD ( type A or AC) feeding the cable.
The new enclosure is either because there's no room in the existing consumer unit for a new breaker, or the installer doesn't want to use the existing CU as that can make them responsible for its previous condition ( the latter is quite common), so prefers to split the feed from the meter (with Henley block) into a seperate enclosure with breaker.
Your install sounds about as standard as it gets, except maybe lack of space in the CU if that is the issue
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Which charge point are you getting ?
If it doesn't have internal RCD protection, you'd need a type B RCD.
If it does, depending on the cable type and routing you may or may not need an RCD ( type A or AC) feeding the cable.
The new enclosure is either because there's no room in the existing consumer unit for a new breaker, or the installer doesn't want to use the existing CU as that can make them responsible for its previous condition ( the latter is quite common), so prefers to split the feed from the meter (with Henley block) into a seperate enclosure with breaker.
Your install sounds about as standard as it gets, except maybe lack of space in the CU if that is the issue
The quote was for an Andersen or a Zappi.

There are several unused fuse points in the current CU. It is an older (plastic) type however.
 

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As above:

I have yet to have my smart meter fitted (by Octopus). Would this fitting include an RCD in the supply cabinet, and would that obviate the requirement for the RCD as part of the installation?
No.

  • A new enclosure
  • Henley block
  • Type A RCD
.... which makes the installation non-standard, hence a higher price than expected.

Is anyone able to explain the function of these additional components and why I would need them?
  • A new enclosure (CU) - as above for overall safety responsibility (metal is recommended but not a requirement) - possibly due to a lack of space for all of the wires as well as the actual MCBs
  • Henley block - to split the supply between the meter and the existing CU to avoid doing any work in the existing CU
  • Type A RCD - required due to the additional enclosure
They have realised that you are willing to spend serious money (quality charge points) and want to do the rest of the job to the "gold standard". You might be able to get it done cheaper but is that what you want?
 

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Discussion Starter · #6 ·
  • A new enclosure (CU) - as above for overall safety responsibility (metal is recommended but not a requirement) - possibly due to a lack of space for all of the wires as well as the actual MCBs
  • Henley block - to split the supply between the meter and the existing CU to avoid doing any work in the existing CU
  • Type A RCD - required due to the additional enclosure
They have realised that you are willing to spend serious money (quality charge points) and want to do the rest of the job to the "gold standard". You might be able to get it done cheaper but is that what you want?
Thanks for that explanation.
I have no problem with spending the extra for the 'gold standard' if this solution is better and/or safer.
I just want to be sure [knowing very little about electrics] that I am not being taken for a ride!

Does the quoted amount seem reasonable for this work?
 

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£468 is a good price for a Zappi install. I’ve just paid £700 for mine with similar work as you listed (£700 was my cost after OLEV grant taken off).
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
£468 is a good price for a Zappi install. I’ve just paid £700 for mine with similar work as you listed (£700 was my cost after OLEV grant taken off).
£468 is just the cost of the installation.
Total price including the Zappi and less the OLEV grant is £928.
 

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Does the quoted amount seem reasonable for this work?
It strikes me as on the high side - the components are probably under £150 and the amount of work isn't unusual so should be closer to two hours than four. Does your supply cabinet have a main switch or are they going to have to interrupt your supply to fit the Henley blocks? They may be allowing for a charge from the DNO to do that.
 

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NPower fitted an isolation switch for me completely free of charge (at the same time as a smart meter upgrade, but I got the impression they would have done it anyway).
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
It strikes me as on the high side - the components are probably under £150 and the amount of work isn't unusual so should be closer to two hours than four. Does your supply cabinet have a main switch or are they going to have to interrupt your supply to fit the Henley blocks? They may be allowing for a charge from the DNO to do that.
I don't think there is a switch in the supply cabinet and don't know about interrupting the supply.
I asked for a breakdown of the work which was as follows:

Labour: £240
Enclosure, Henley block or Type A RCD: £80
6mm 3 core SWA cable: £30
Sundries: £40

= £390 + VAT = £468
When they fit the smart meter, if you supply them with an isolating switch, they might fit that for free if you ask nicely.
Is the 'Type A RCD' the same as an isolating switch?
If I was to get one of those, what should I be looking for?
 

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£468 is just the cost of the installation.
Total price including the Zappi and less the OLEV grant is £928.
I recently had a Zappi2 1phase tethered wth Harvi & Hub installed for £890 (cost to me). It was a simple install, however, the installer was there for at least 4 hours and did a cracking job. You might get cheaper, but I would be concerned if they are done in a couple of hours, what corners are they cutting? My installer setup the Zappi/Hub etc and did not leave until everything was working 100%. I personally don't think your quote is too far off the mark for a quality install. You should probably do some due diligence on the installer to ensure that they will indeed deliver a quality install and not just meet the minimum standards.
 

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Is the 'Type A RCD' the same as an isolating switch?
If I was to get one of those, what should I be looking for?
No

This is an isolator switch, it is a simple manual on-off design that isolates both the Live and Neutral meter tails allowing you to safely work downstream.



The Type A RCD goes in an enclosure and cuts both Live and Neutral terminals in the event of a current being detected in the Earth.



Note that this is just to provide safety to the cable between the enclosure and the charge point - the charge point will have its own protection for the circuit to the car.
 

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I recently had a Zappi2 1phase tethered wth Harvi & Hub installed for £890 (cost to me)
The Hub is an OLEV requirement, but the Harvi is a £55 "extra" required if there is a need to current limit the Zappi (or if you have a secondary source such as solar or a battery).

The Zappi is a complicated install to get working correctly and test, particularly with the Harvi and multiple sources.
 

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(metal is recommended but not a requirement)
True, the requirement is for a non-combustible material with steel given as an example but I think most of the easily available enclosures are metal.

A lot of electricians won’t mix manufacturers of breakers inside a consumer unit and some modules are getting scarce and hence expensive. If it’s all inside the existing CU, it’s arguable that it’s a standard install and they wouldn’t be able to justify charging extra.
 

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Discussion Starter · #17 ·
This is an isolator switch, it is a simple manual on-off design that isolates both the Live and Neutral meter tails allowing you to safely work downstream.

The Type A RCD goes in an enclosure and cuts both Live and Neutral terminals in the event of a current being detected in the Earth.

Note that this is just to provide safety to the cable between the enclosure and the charge point - the charge point will have its own protection for the circuit to the car.
Thanks for that.

So... I may be able to get Octopus to fit an isolation switch in the supply cabinet when I get a smart meter fitted.

And... A new enclosure inside the garage would have the RCD...

If this is all normal practice, however, I am struggling to see how this does not qualify as a 'standard' installation! I guess I need to get a couple more detailed quotes and see how these compare.

I also find it strange that I can order an Andersen direct from the company, and pay for standard installation at the time of purchase. They won't tell me until after I have ordered and paid, however, whether I actually qualify for the standard installation...
 

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Discussion Starter · #19 ·
Interesting the above breakdown didn't mention the 40A MCB that will also be needed, maybe that's included in "Sundries"
The quote mentions elsewhere "40 amp Type A RCD, mains tails and Henley block".
Does that cover it? (I'm not sure what an MCB is).
 

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Presumably the MCB is standard, the RCD, the Henley Blocks and the additional short tails are not? :unsure:

MCB = miniature circuit breaker, a sort of modern replacement to a fuse.

RCD = residual-current device - something that interrupts the current if there is significant (typically 30mA) leakage to Earth

Sometimes they are combined into a single device as an RCCB - residual-current circuit breaker. Edited - this is wrong - see @mikeselectricstuff post below

Well you did ask! ;)

Meter tails are the thick cables from the meter to the consumer unit, which can be "forked" in Henley Blocks which are multi pole multiway connectors for thick wires.

 
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