How Does the Utility Limit Power to My Dealership?
Current infrastructure limits the electrical load at every step of the distribution process. This begins as soon as electricity leaves the power plant.
The substation steps down the voltage level to facilitate shared distribution. Businesses, residences, and other facilities share a limited local energy delivery.
Once power has reached your facility, the transformer decreases the voltage further for building distribution. And finally, the electrical panel further limits the load and distributes it to your various systems. This includes your EV chargers, which require large kilowatt and amp accommodations. Power Requirements can be a hurdle. Let Future Energy work with you to make sure you are prepared.
How Many EV Chargers Do We Need?
Your OEM may mandate how many EV chargers you need to install. For example, a major auto dealership group is requiring its dealerships to carry a certain number of EV chargers, depending on the dealership’s size. A level 5 dealer, for example, has to install one level 3, or direct-current fast charger (DCFC), and at least five level 2 chargers, which run on 240-volt circuits.
The number of ports on your EV chargers is also a consideration. A port can charge only one vehicle at a time, but most commercial EV chargers allow for dual ports: one on each side. Your business use case determines the answers to some of these detailed questions.
Where Do I Place My Dealership’s EV Chargers?
Your dealership will use EV chargers in these situations:
- Front of store, to provide charging for the public and to attract business
- Showroom, to demonstrate EV charging solutions to customers
- Inventory lots, to keep your EV inventory ready to drive
- Service bays, to charge EVs that have come in for service
Your power consumption needs vary by use case. For example, you wouldn’t charge your inventory in the front of the showroom. For one thing, this occupies parking spots that customers could use.
But public-facing chargers out front can attract EV drivers to your business. Your EV chargers would serve not only as an income source but also to advertise your EV inventory to walk-ins.
Your service bay has even further considerations with commercial EV charging station installation. For example, to comply with OSHA regulations, your cables likely need to emerge from the ceiling and pull down to vehicles to avoid tripping hazards.
EV Chargers and Renewable Energy
Renewable energy may help alleviate power consumption challenges in the near future. And the public is increasingly interested. For example, 59% of respondents in a Plug In America survey indicated it was “vital” or “very important” that EVs charge with renewable energy. In fact, EVgo, the largest public EV fast-charging network in the US, uses 100% renewable energy to power its EV chargers.
EV Chargers and the Microgrid
A microgrid is a decentralized group of electricity sources that can disconnect from the central grid and operate independently. Especially for dealerships in the Sun Belt, a solar-powered microgrid could provide additional power capacity to feed commercial EV chargers.
EV Chargers and Education
Only 15% of respondents to the Plug In America survey reported the EV salesperson’s knowledge about EVs as “very high.” Future Energy includes training in our EV charger power requirements and consulting. We can show your dealership how to use your commercial EV charging station installation to educate potential customers, which in turn helps drive sales.
Who Can Help Analyze Power Requirements for EV Chargers at My Dealership?
The Edison Electric Institute estimates there will be 22 million EVs on US roads by 2030, requiring more than 100,000 fast chargers. Don’t let your dealership get left behind. Contact Future Energy today to benefit from our knowledge on power consumption needs for dealership consulting.