The eligibility requirements for the OLEV grant scheme is set to change in July 2019 to cover only “smart” charging point installations in domestic homes.
The government announced the change to the grant scheme in December 2018, explaining that it will help fulfill their commitment to the Road to Zero Strategy, which sets out new ways that help clean up road transport and lead the way to using zero emission road vehicles.
What is a smart electric vehicle charging point?
Having a smart charging point installed in your home means that it has online connectivity, which allows you to remotely control your charging schedule.
With the smart technology and online connectivity, the charger can also choose the optimum time to start charging your vehicle by reacting to a signal. This means that when the grid has an excess of electricity available, it can start charging and when there isn’t enough electricity, it will automatically turn off.
This is incredibly useful, not only for the homeowner but also the National Grid, as the vehicle will only charge when the energy demand is low and help remove the need for any expensive reinforcement of distribution networks to cope with surges in demand.
The aim of having a smart charging point installed in your home is that you can have complete flexibility of when and how you charge your electric vehicle. You can keep your costs down and reduce the impact excessive charging at peak times has on our National Grid.
Also if you have solar PV installed in your home and you own an electric vehicle, then a smart charging point can allow you to divert any unused electricity generated into charging your car. This means that you don’t have to send any excess energy back to the Grid and you can use it to power everything in your home, including your car.
What if I don’t want to use the OLEV grants?
If you don’t wish to claim up to 75% of the cost of the installation (up to £500), then you can still install a “dumb” charging point.
You can still purchase a smart charging point without the grant schemes and you don’t need a smart charger to charge your electric vehicle, all you need is a dedicated circuit for your “dumb” charger.
However, it is recommended to take advantage of both the grant scheme and what the smart functionality can offer you and your charging routine.
Zero emission future
In just 5 five years, there has been more than 60,000 domestic charge points supported by the Government grant scheme and they want to encourage more people to turn to electric vehicles when buying their next car and take advantage of the benefits that the grants have to offer.
With the move to only supporting smart chargers on the OLEV grant scheme, it is hoped that this will help the overall mission to move all new cars to zero emissions by 2040 and entice more to invest in electric.
To find out more about the full terms of eligibility for the OLEV scheme, for both before and after July 2019, click here.
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