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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hi all,

I know UK/US have different providers/installers for home chargers so I think UK advice would be great here.
Any recommendations on home chargers?

I know the most common seems to be Podpoint - I have contacted them to find out installation dates etc and also with BP Pulse.
I have come across Ohme and Wallbox just now too

Good to hear what you are using !
We do have solar panels but no idea if they do anything to the house let alone the car but maybe this could solve it too in which case podpoint may not be first choice.

Thanks in advance!
 

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Our PodPoint serves us well. Until the New Year or thereabouts, there were issues with them and e-trons not playing well together. They caused our e-tron to require a dealer reset to clear a charger-inflicted problem with timed charging and, where the charger was distant from the meter box so that the charger's sensor assessing total home demand could not be used, there were problems also. To the best of my knowledge, these issues are now fixed.
Recently an OTA update of PodPoint's chargers allowed users to restrict when the charger would supply power to a plugged in car via the 'phone app ensuring that only cheap rate electricity would be used. I feel that the e-tron's charging system does not need this tight level of control but others I know prefer it.
So, where there have been issues, PodPoint have acted (probably in liaison with Audi) to resolve them and they provide free and useful upgrades.
The charger is not truly smart; as far as I know it cannot take advantage of dynamic power pricing schemes like Octopus Agile, for that I think you need something like an Ohme changer. I hope other's will chip in with their opinions to balance mine.
 

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pressurized comments say it the way it is.

Lots of wall boxes out there and they all do pretty much the same thing (with a few minor details).

I assume that you don't yet have the car. If the car is new, Audi will pick up the tab for a PodPoint, if second-hand I would still get them to through one in the deal. They are dirt cheap to buy for Audi and the installation costs can be reclaimed from UK Gov.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
Thanks both.
Podpoint is certainly one I keep seeing pretty much everywhere and was going to initially place the order last night but then started the research into them and Ohme came up a number of times.

It is second-hand/used Audi - has anyone / have you succeeded in getting Audi to throw one in as part of the used deal? I have really struggled with this dealership aside from the fact I'm a return customer. Could not even get a fiver off let alone a podpoint!
Only reason I am sticking to them - and I have moved away from them with the SQ5 I currently have because they would not budge - is because group-wide for the spec and price (and budget), this is the best.
 

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has anyone / have you succeeded in getting Audi to throw one in as part of the used deal
Nope, no dealer has any incentives to do so. These boxes are not that expensive as well, and will pay off quickly compared to charging in public stations. On the other side of the pond, you also get incentives (tax rebates) to get them installed. I'd look around to see if these (tax incentives) are not available in UK.
 

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I have a podpoint as free with the car but as long as you have a driveway and no charge installed you can get a government grant towards the fitting cost think it’s £350 which should help
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
Thanks for this - have emailed the dealer so lets see what they say.
Car will be garaged and I have mains already so hopefully an easy enough install as the fusebox is pretty much directly behind the wall where the pod would be
 

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I have an EO mini. Its a dumb charger wired up to handle 3.6kW. Its been fine. Really small and discrete. Untethered, we have a 10metre cable to the car which is down the driveway, away from the charge point.
We have just had solar and battery installed. I wish I had gone with a Zappi or EO mini pro originally. Both manage the solar gain and throttle the energy being delivered to the car so that you can largely charge using the sun alone. Both will pull from the grid if the solar gain isn't strong enough. Both will also integrate with the Octopus Agile tarrif to charge when the grid cost is low. You can control everything via the apps. I'd recommend these from what I've seen especially if you can get them installed with the OLEV grant.

If you don't know what your solar is doing then these devices will take care of it and reduce your running costs without you having to think about it too much. Combined with the Octopus Go or Agile tariffs you should be able to charge very cheaply indeed using the cheap tariffs and solar.
 

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Discussion Starter · #11 ·
Thanks all

I have asked for a quote on Zappi
I think Ohme might be out due to the earth rod - Can't see how this can happen in a carport/garage environment.
Podpoint is back on the options list but 2-3 week leadtime apparently.

I really did not think the order through properly...car arrives next week but with only means of the 3 pin charger currently
 

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We were in the same position for about 2.5months. Installers are struggling to keep up with current demand (and making very good money at the moment).

Mrs mik’s commute is about 15miles so the trickle charger (which adds around 4miles range per hour) could cover that. We used a couple of localish 50kW chargers to top up if the car was used more.

to be honest - with this usage we could probably have coped long term with the trickle only - having the proper charger just removes worry and complexity.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
the 3 pin plug apparently is 42 hours from 20-80% so you're right, as a top-up it should work and maybe the local morrisons can sort the rest.
Other option is we do have a 7.5k public charger in the new build complex about 2 mins away but I'm trying to avoid this more with the 6 yr old thugs running around :- ) Still the option is there.

The installer who has come in the best in terms of price for the Zappi (£750) has said 3-4 weeks lead-time.
Podpoint is 2-4 weeks
Ohme however, next Friday - just exploring this now as it requires the earth rod which may be a dealbreaker
 

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Our garage is separate from the house, so although there is a small consumer unit in there - the capability to supply a 7.2kw car charger was marginal. (Which is rather frustrating as the house was built just 3yrs ago…. I would have thought the developers might have considered this).

Our install was therefore more expensive as they had to run a dedicated cable from the house fuse box (where the mains comes in) which meant doing some digging to hide the cable properly.
 

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Discussion Starter · #16 ·
That is frustrating! I thought these days new builds would be more standardised in terms of the basics like electricals and this is coming from someone in the construction business!

Just spoke to an installer who initially came in with a good quote for Zappi albeit with a 3-4 week delay. They can fit a Ohme next Friday for £599 including a Matt:e device which gets around the need for an earth-rod.

Saves me around £150 on the Zappi which would have been ideal with the solar panels but given some advice on another forum, they're too underpowered to do much (less than 1.4kwh on a hot day). and so it probably will never pay itself off.
This with the fact I am hoping to move in 3ish years....

I've gone a full round circle going from Ohme > PodPoint > Zappi and back to Ohme so unless there are any objects going this route, I will go ahead with the install next friday.
 

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If I were in the boat of not having a complimentary charger installation, I'd be looking at getting an electrician fit a commando socket.
They can supply 7kW via the supplied Audi charger just as competently as a subsidised charger and the e-tron is smart enough in of itself to make the best use of variable tariffs without relying on the charger (except for Octopus Agile).
The commando socket isn't as 'pretty' but, if you are putting it in a garage, this is not an issue. Nor is having your Audi charger lying around in your garage.
It may not be a desirable solution but it is a practical one.
On a cost basis, the commando option would be less than £100 plus fitting. In an equivalent situation to a subsidised charger it would be much, much cheaper; smart chargers are not worth ~£1000.
I appreciate that this may muddy the water somewhat but there it is.
 

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pressurized does have a point. At the end of the day it would produce exactly the same result, it is an option often overlooked. Wall boxes are somewhat oversold in that there really is very little in them. There is a bit of circuitry to communicate with the car (very minor), some form of DC and PEN fault detection device and a relay (to switch the power on and off). The most valuable bit is the copper lead. Most now also have a w-fi connection to make them compliant with the Government's 'smart' criteria.

The only thing to consider though is that most of the cost of an installation is the labour to actually fit the thing which would be much the same whatever you do. Also you can't get a Government grant to install a commando socket.
 

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The only thing to consider though is that most of the cost of an installation is the labour to actually fit the thing which would be much the same whatever you do. Also you can't get a Government grant to install a commando socket.
Yes. I should say that I've no direct experience of this myself but know about it from a friend who used to be a qualified electrician and was able to put one together. So, the eventual savings that may be made very much depend on whether or not you or someone you know could install one cheaply. At the end of the day, however, the installation must be safe and in accordance with regulations and certified as such.
 
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