All posts


November 2 2022

Yes- In most installation cases, permits are required. Some electricians may offer to do electrical work without a permit. However, this presents risks to you and the electrician.

The best way to determine whether or not your EV charger installation requires an electrical permit is to contact your local municipal office or building department. Many municipalities will have this information posted online for easy homeowner access. Additionally, your state's administrative code will mention if permitting is required for electrical work in your area.

You can also discuss permitting with your electrician of choice to determine any needed steps. 

The following is from Washington State:

“WAC 296-46B-901 General—Electrical work permits and fees

General. (1) When an electrical work permit is required by chapter 19.28 RCW or this chapter, inspections may not be made, equipment must not be energized, or services connected unless: (a) A valid electrical work permit is obtained and posted per subsection (5) of this section; (b) The classification or type of facility to be inspected and the exact scope and location of the electrical work to be performed are clearly shown on the electrical work permit; (c) The address where the inspection is to be made is clearly identifiable from the street, road or highway that serves the premises; and (d) Driving directions are provided for the inspectors' use. (2) Except as allowed for annual permits and two-family dwellings, an electrical work permit is valid for only one specific job site address. 

Permit - Responsibility for. (3) Each person, firm, partnership, corporation, or other entity must furnish a valid electrical work permit for the installation, alteration, or other electrical work performed or to be performed solely by that entity. When the original purchaser is replaced, another entity may request, in writing, written approval from the chief electrical inspector to take responsibility for the work of the original installing entity under the original permit. If permission is not granted the entity must obtain a new permit for the remaining work.”

Why EV adoption is key?

EV adoption is a leading indicator of the broader electrification movement.

As EV sales climb, so do sales for household electric upgrades like super-fast home EV chargers (also called Electric Vehicle Charging Stations, or EVSEs), heat pumps, and electric water heaters. For example, Norway, which leads the world in EV ownership per capita, also leads the world in heat pump adoption.

It makes sense when you think about it. If you’re anything like the typical homeowner in the U.S., you’ve likely upgraded your car at least once or twice... but your furnace or water heater? It’s not likely you’ve thought much about them. That’s why an EV tends to be a person’s first major investment in electrification.

Once you convert to driving an EV, you’re more likely to consider other options for your home. In our Seattle pilot, we found that about half of our customers installing Level 2 EV chargers in their homes are still using fossil-fuel-burning furnaces. These are great candidates for heat pumps and other upgrades.

Home EV charging as a 'lead domino'

For many, an EV charger installed in the garage is the first foray in home electrification.

According to the Department of Energy, 80% of EV charging happens at home. EV owners who want to wake up with a full charge every morning install a high-speed “Level 2” charger in their home. Attractive rebates help make this a home electrification upgrade most EV owners can afford. Sky-high EV adoption means landlords are also looking to add charging stations to attract tenants.

To keep up with demand, electricians across the country need to install 28 million high-speed Level 2 home chargers by 2050, according to a McKinsey analysis.

We’re working hard to develop the commerce infrastructure that enables electricians to meet that demand. Over 90% of our customers get a price and book their installation completely online, often within just a few minutes. Installs generally happen within two weeks — all without calling, or Googling, around to get answers.

Home electrification is becoming more affordable

In addition to EV tax credits, there are new financial incentives in 2023 that will make home electrification more attractive than ever for millions. In January homeowners become eligible for a range of cash rebates and tax credits to improve energy efficiency and go electric, under the recently passed Inflation Reduction Act.

The Energy Efficient Home Improvement credit, or “25C,” allows households to deduct from their taxes up to 30 percent of the cost of upgrades (which includes purchasing the equipment and paying for the installation) to their homes. These measures cover heat pumps, electric water heaters, and, upgrades to breaker boxes in order to accommodate additional electric load.

These deductions are limited to $600 per measure, up to $1,200 per household per year, though there are two key exceptions. Households can deduct 30 percent of the costs for buying and installing an electric water heater or electric heat pump for heating and cooling, up to $2,000.

More than 15 states (including California, Colorado, Connecticut, Illinois, Massachusetts, Maryland, Maine, Michigan, Minnesota, New Jersey, Nevada, New York, Oregon, Rhode Island, Wisconsin) and hundreds of cities are taking steps to encourage heat pumps as a critical climate, air quality, and affordability solution. Many are offering their own financial incentives, especially aimed at working families.

Related articles