Information on upgrading to a 3-phase installation for faster charging
Are you a lease a driver looking to 'Future Proof' your home charge point? If so, you can now upgrade to a 3-phase connection and charge up to 3x faster.
What is a ‘Future Proof’ installation?
At Shell Recharge Solutions, we've been ‘Future Proofing’ installations for lease drivers since mid-2018. It's a special type of installation where we install charge points on 1-phase connection but prepare all the cabling and supplies for a 3-phase installation, in case it is needed later down the line. Why do we do this? There are two reasons, firstly, more and more cars will be able to charge on 3-phase in the future. The other reason could be that the connection to the grid might not be adequate for 3-phase just yet, but could be fairly soon.
3-phase EV charging
Three-phase (3-phase) charging is a method of charging electric vehicles (EVs) that uses three AC circuits instead of just one. It's often considered to be faster and more efficient than single-phase charging because it uses a higher voltage and more power.
This type of charging is usually required for EV fleets, commercial and public charging stations, where multiple vehicles need to be charged simultaneously or charging needs to be done quickly. So, three-phase charging is the way to go when charging demand is higher.
Charging speeds on a 22 kW charge point
- The time it takes to charge an EV on a 22kW charger depends on several factors, including the capacity of the EV's battery and the type of charger.
- However, as a general rule of thumb, it takes around 4 to 6 hours to fully charge an EV on a 22 kW charger.
Benefits of a 3-phase connection
Depending on your needs, a 3-phase connection for electric vehicle (EV) charging can offer several benefits over a standard 1-phase connection.
A 3-phase connection can provide faster and more efficient charging than 1-phase charging. This is because it uses three alternating current (AC) circuits instead of just one, resulting in a higher voltage and more power being delivered to the EV. Often in a business or corporate environment when multiple vehicles need to be charged simultaneously and the charging demand is high, a 3-phase connection is necessary to meet the power requirements. Finally, a 3-phase connection can help future-proof your EV charging infrastructure. As more EVs with larger batteries and faster charging capabilities are introduced, the need for higher power charging will become more common. By installing a 3-phase connection now, you'll be able to accommodate future EV charging needs without needing to upgrade your infrastructure again in the near future.
Consider whether you really need a 3-phase connection for EV charging
Despite the benefits for some, for most EV owners who charge at home, single-phase charging is more than enough.
However, if you plan to charge your EV frequently or quickly or you own an EV with a high capacity battery, you may want to consider three-phase charging. But it's important to weigh the benefits of faster charging against the additional cost and effort of upgrading to a three-phase charging connection.
Are you thinking about upgrading your current charge point?
Are you a lease driver who already has a charge point installed? If so, "future-proofing" is easy. Your current installation can be upgraded to 3-phase charging. Just follow the simple steps we outline below.
Ready to get a charge point with 3-phase connection installed?
You can find more information about the charge point installation process by reading the FAQs at bottom of this page.
1-phase connections are suitable for most home chargers
- For the majority of EV owners who charge their vehicles at home, single-phase charging meets their needs.
- Plus, it is compatible with the majority of EV models available on the market.
Upgrading to a 'Future Proof' installation for lease drivers
Contact the grid operator and leasing company
Contact the grid operator and ask if the grid connection allows for a 3-phase installation. Then contact the leasing company whether a 3-phase upgrade is allowed within the lease agreement. The leasing company will then contact Shell Recharge Solutions to request this upgrade.
Call with Shell Recharge Solutions
Shell Recharge Solutions will contact you about your current installation. Based on a number of questions, the situation is assessed and we are able to prepare a customised quote. This quotation is then shared with the leasing company.
Leasing company confirms the quote
Once the leasing company approves the quote, Shell Recharge Solutions will contact you and our installation partner will be notified
Our installation partner will contact you to set up an appointment so the installation can be adjusted
Ready to charge with 3-phase connection
The installer will activate your charge point. You can immediately start 3-phase charging. The invoice will be sent and paid as agreed with the leasing company.
Cost to get a 3-phase connection installed in the UK
The cost of a three-phase EV charging installation in the UK can vary greatly depending on several factors, such as the location of the installation, the type of charger, and the necessary electrical infrastructure. However, as a rough estimate, a three-phase installation can cost between £5,000 to £15,000 or more. This cost can include the cost of the charge point, installation labour, and any necessary electrical upgrades.
It is important to note that this is just a rough estimate and consulting with a professional electrician or contractor will give a more accurate cost estimate, taking into account the specific requirements and location of the installation.
Frequently asked questions about 3-phase connections
Installation of a 3-phase EV charge point is simple, the process is actually the same as getting a 1-phase charge point installed. Read the following steps:
Step 1. Complete our online installation survey
The online installation survey helps us get a better idea of your needs and the options at your home. It helps us understand what kind of electricity supply you have and where we can best install your new charge point. The information you fill out helps determine your exact needs, which allows us to provide a more accurate quote.
Step 2. Get personalised quote
After you complete the online installation survey, we will send you an email to confirm that we have received it. One of our experts will review the completed intake. If we have any questions we will contact you. After this we aim to send the quote within 1 week.
Step 3. Accept the quote
Once the lease company receives the quote, they will review the quote with you and/or your employer if necessary. If the lease company are satisfied, the quote will be approved. You will receive confirmation once we have processed the approval internally.
Step 4. Plan your installation
After the approval is processed, one of our skilled and certified installation partners will contact you to schedule the installation of your new charge point.
Step 5. Get ready to charge into the future
From now on, you can charge your EV with your own charge point. We will guide you through this, help you set up your Shell Recharge account, prepare you to start your first charging session, and wave you off as you drive into a greener future.
Interested in learning more about installation? Read everything that is involved in charge point installation.
We ask you to complete the online installation survey to understand exactly what it takes to install the right charge point for you.
We ask some important questions about your home situation and what requirements you have for your charge point. Based on that information, we try to determine what type of electricity supply you have and the best place to install your charge point. To best prepare for our installation survey, take a look at our checklist. This will show you all of the information you are required to provide.
Yes, the connection between the charge point and the grid is indeed balanced. Therefore three-phase EV chargers are typically balanced loads.
However having a three-phase connection does not eliminate the possibility of overloading. In order to ensure this, you may require a Dynamic Power Management (DPM) module to be installed. This means that the electrical power in your home is distributed evenly across the three phases, which helps to prevent overloading and damage to the electrical system. This is important in order to ensure that the charger functions properly and to avoid potential safety hazards.
Yes, three-phase EV chargers come with cables that are used to connect the charger to the electrical infrastructure and the EV. These cables typically include a three-phase power cable, as well as a control cable that is used to communicate with the EV and the charger.
Almost all new EVs work with a 3-phase connection, but some older models can only charge with 1-phase. It's always better to check your specific model to be sure.
It depends on the specific circumstances of your installation request. If the installation has not yet begun, it may be possible to cancel the request without incurring additional costs. However, if the installation has already begun, or if the installation company has already incurred costs, you may be responsible for paying a cancellation fee. It is best to consult with the installation company to determine if cancellation is possible and if any fees apply.
The time it takes to upgrade from a single-phase to a three-phase EV charging installation can vary depending on several factors, such as the location of the installation and the necessary electrical upgrades. However, as a rough estimate, the upgrade process can take anywhere from a few days to several weeks. It's important to note that the upgrade process will include a site survey, obtaining necessary permits and approvals, installing the electrical infrastructure, and the installation of the charger itself. It's best to consult with a professional electrician or contractor to get a more accurate estimate of the time it will take to upgrade.
Three-phase charging is not better than single-phase charging but it can provide higher power levels and faster charging times, so could be better suited to your needs. This is because three-phase charging uses three alternating current circuits, which can provide more power than a single-phase circuit. Additionally, three-phase charging can charge an EV up to three times faster than single-phase charging.
However, it's worth noting that not all EVs support 3-phase charging, and it may not always be practical or cost-effective to install a 3-phase connection, especially for residential charging. Ultimately, the best choice for EV charging depends on a variety of factors, including the EV's charging capabilities, the available electrical infrastructure, and the user's specific needs and preferences.