EV Tips

ev tips

EV Tips, how to get the most from your electric vehicle.

Tip for Company Car Drivers wanting £500 EVHS Home Charge Grant

As the majority of newly registered cars these days are leased by companies it is important to know that there is an OLEV rule introduced during July 2016 which meant that the installation of an EVHS £500 grant approved chargepoint is not be eligible if the car’s lease date is more than 4 months before installation – or more than 4 months after installation. (This ruling does not apply to privately owned or leased cars).

So… Don’t wait too long after taking delivery of your car or from when leasing commences (more than 4 months) to get the installation of the charger done and your OLEV application processed – ideally get everything organised and installed before you take delivery of the car (just not too early either..  i.e. more than 4 months before). We can advise on any issues. Also Company registered cars require ANNEX i Completing on a Company Letterhead, all OLEV grant application forms can be downloaded right here on our application forms page: www.apielectrical.co.uk/application-forms

Tip for WCS WorkCharge Grant
If your business needs charge points go to our application forms page we can redeem £500 per socket off the cost < 20 sockets max.

TIP for BMW i3 Drivers

If your plug won’t release from i3 open rear driver-side door to find manual release

TIP for BMW i3 Drivers


To enable BMW i3 App it needs to be registered: bmw-connecteddrive.co.uk or call BMW on +44 (0)800 5610555


Tip for obtaining OLEV EVHS (Homecharge) & WCS (WorkCharge) Gov Grants


If you are getting a Plug-in Hybrid check how many charging cables are being supplied with the car. If one cable is supplied, it is usually just a (last-resort) mode-2 13A 3 pin plug which is not to be recommended for sustained use, depending on the electrical system / demands at your property – we have encountered numerous melted sockets and plugs when this type of kit is used – Take advantage of the £500 EVHS grant and get a fast (safe) AC mode-3 charger from as little as £149 inc Vat with the £500 EVHS grant contribution.


Download our self-survey document click here:


OLEV WorkPlace charging grants are still available with a generous £300 off per socket up to 20 sockets worth a whopping £6000 off the total costs – and you don’t need to even have a plug-in car on your fleet. The voucher scheme is, on the whole really simple and efficient to use – however, currently the scheme allows a 4 month expiry window to use the voucher. If you are uncertain, ultimately as to how many chargers you may require for the workplace – just claim for 20 sockets and receive the maximum value voucher, as you are not committed to the 20 sockets, the voucher just allows you to make your decision from £300 off costs (1 socket) up to 20 sockets – (£6000).


Download the relevant OLEV grant documents click here:


Tip for Plug Types

J1772 – ‘TYPE 1’ – (5 pin)

A charging standard of 5 pin plugs and car plug-inlets used by mostly Japanese car brands such as Nissan Leaf, Mitsubishi, Vauxhall, Ford – Also called Type 1. Cables and cars can be either 16A or 32A.

Tip for Charging Modes

Mode 1
Slow charge from a 13A electrical socket (1 or 3-phase). Not recommended for sustained use.

Tip for Charging Modes

Mode 2
Slow charge from a 13A socket equipped with EV protection arrangement. (Not recommended for sustained use or pure battery EVs)

Tip for Charging Modes

Mode 3
Fast AC charge using purpose built plugs/sockets with control and safety protection functions (SAE J1772 and IEC 62196)

Tip for Charging Modes

Mode 4
Rapid charge using DC charger such as Ecotricity which are equipped with both CHAdeMO (for Type 1 cars) and CCS (Combined Charging System) for type 2 cars. Only cars equipped with DC have the two DC formats – Nissan Leaf, Renault Zoe, BMW i3, Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, Renault Kangoo EV.

TIP for ChargePoint Choices
Socket or Tethered?

Sockets are suitable for any make/model EV – Tethered for ease of use but one tethered type plug doesn’t suit all makes/models

Tip for Plug Types

62196-2 (Mennekes) – ‘TYPE 2’ (7 pin) 

A charging standard of plugs and sockets used by most European EVs such as all German brands, Renault Zoe, Hyundai, Tesla, Also known as Type 2. Cables and cars can be either 16A or 32A.

Tip for list of EV Cars and what ‘Types’ they are for charging applications. Click here for list.

Tip for accessing Public Charging Networks

Currently, there are a diverse number of independent public charging networks:


Ecotricity – the green utility provider runs the Electric Highway scheme, mostly serving motorway service stations. These rapid DC charging points are only usable currently by the handful of EV cars with a DC capability, such as BMW i3, Mitsubishi Outlander PHEV, Nissan Leaf and Renault ZOE. The access is via their app and has a £3 fixed connection fee (for non-Ecotricity customers) and charges their standard kW rate for energy consumed.

Polar network

Chargemaster’s network of 3000 charge points also incorporates some regional networks. Although many charge points are free, there is a yearly and monthly subscription.


AlphaElectric, is owned by leasing company Alphabet, which is offered to fleets that allow access to and incorporates the larger networks such as Polar and its other regional networks – 85% of the charging points available in the UK.

Regional Networks

Regional networks provide the charging infrastructure for the following places, many of the charge points continue to offer free parking and charging facilities.

Charge Your Car (CYC) – owned by Chargemaster – incorporates the North East, Greater Manchester and the South East.

Source London covers London

Source East provides for East Anglia

Plugged-in Midlands services the East and West Midlands