When helping a customer choose a Level 2 charging station for home use you will need to be familiar with the brands of chargers, connections necessary for specific vehicles and the features that make a charger a good fit for a home. The technical term for “charging station” as defined in the National Electric Code is EVSE (Electric Vehicle Supply Equipment).
One might not initially consider safety when searching for EVSE. However, it is one of the most important things to think about. Though the primary function of an electric/plug-in vehicle charging station is to power the vehicle for transportation, it is also responsible for providing electrical safety for the operator and infrastructure in order to prevent the risks of fire and electric shock.
There are some of the certifications you may see listed on your private or public EVSE and what they mean:
The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) awards ENERGY STAR certification to EV chargers that meet specific efficiency standards in standby mode. The EPA wants to see that a charger is conserving energy when it is not charging.
The EPA asserts that use of efficient EV chargers could conserve 280 million pounds of greenhouse gas emissions each year. This would essentially be the equivalent of removing 26,000 gas-powered vehicles from the road.
If you see EVSE with an Energy Star certification, you can trust that it conserves energy, decreases emissions and will lower the cost of operating the vehicle.
The UL listing is a certification that lets users know that EVSE has been tested by the Nationally Recognized Testing Laboratory (NRTL). The NRTL ensures that products, including EV charging stations, meet applicable standards of safety for users.
The AICPA SOC 2® - SOC for Service Organizations: Trust Services Criteria certification confirms that an EVSE company or operator is dedicated to safely managing company, customer and driver information. Part of this criteria requires that an operator or company have appropriate safeguards and procedures in place to protect customer data in the cloud. This certification gives customers the peace of mind that companies are practicing strict information security procedures regarding data security, availability, and confidentiality.
Originating in Europe, RoHS stands for Restriction of Hazardous Substances. It restricts the use of specific hazardous materials found in electrical and electronic products. If you see this certification, you can be sure that the company took an extra step to prevent the risk of electrical hazards with both your vehicle and the EVSE itself.
The CE, or Conformité Européene, label certifies the EVSE’s conformity with health, safety and environmental protection standards for products sold within the European Economic Area (EEA).
Charging your electric vehicle should always be a safe and easy process, but you should never take chances. Be sure to always select a certified charging station. If you would not drive a car that has not been crash tested, surely you would not want to charge your car with a charging station that hasn’t been tested and certified. Remember to look for certification marks when selecting a charging station.
As electric vehicles become more popular, the transformation from gas powered cars will rely heavily on trade professionals who can supply the labor needed to upgrade private and public infrastructure. Electricians who are able to install and maintain charging stations will be in demand as well as designers and home builders who incorporate charging effortlessly into their home and work places layouts.
Keep up to date with the changes in workforce demands with trades.org. We will help you determine what the new plan means for you and your business and take advantage of new markets that will be opening as technology advances. Our business is to help your business plan and be prepared for changes to the construction industry so you are ready to meet the needs of your customers.