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October 6 2023

A residential EV charger is an excellent investment for any EV driver who owns their own home.

By installing Level 2 charging at home, you’ll save both time and money compared to using public charging stations and likely increase your property value. 

 What’s more, EV owners in Washington state can access thousands of dollars in savings through tax exemptions, special incentives and rebates when it comes to purchasing an EV and installing a Level 2 home charging station – and that’s on top of the thousands of dollars of federal rebates available. 

In this guide, we’ll walk you through how to save through Washington state electric vehicle incentives for EV purchases and residential EV charger installs.

We’ve done our best to cover all the state-level and utility-provided savings on the market at the time of this writing. But in addition, we always recommend checking with your local government and utility provider to see what discounts or rebates are available. 

Interested in EV purchase and charger installation incentives in other states? Then stay tuned to the Kopperfield blog, where we’re continuously working to publish content that helps our readers understand all electric vehicle rebates by state.

Washington state EV rebates and incentives

The state of Washington offers several incentives and rebates for electric vehicles and charging infrastructure, mostly in the form of tax exemptions. 

The Alternative Fuel Vehicle Retail Sales and Use Tax Exemption

Starting in August of 2019, Washington issued a sales and use tax exemption for the purchase of used as well as new “clean alternative fuel” and plug-in vehicles.

A more detailed list of qualifying vehicles can be found here, but generally it applies to passenger cars, light-duty trucks, and medium-duty passenger vehicles powered by clean, alternative fuel or able to cover at least 30 miles on battery power (that’s where the hybrids come in).

The tax exemption can be applied to the sale price, or fair market value, of vehicles that meet these criteria and are sold/valued at up to $45,000 (new) or $30,000 (used).

Buyers can take advantage of this exemption through the Washington State Department of Revenue (DOR) by submitting an application for refund of use tax or refund of sales tax, if they pay or have paid sales or use tax between Aug. 1, 2019 and July 31, 2025. This exemption is set to expire July 31, 2025. That said, we often see incentives like these updated and extended.  

For more details on this exemption and to learn how much sales or use tax exemption may be available for your EV purchase, this special notice from Washington State DOR has everything you need to know.

Tax exemptions on electric vehicle infrastructure

While the above rebate is for the purchase of the vehicle itself, this next tax break applies to charger installation. 

As of July 2019, a sales tax exemption was extended to July 1, 2025, for labor and services related to installing, repairing, or improving battery electric vehicle infrastructure (among other things unrelated to this article). In other words, a rebate on the cost of getting your EV charger installed, or upgraded/repaired as needed. 

To take advantage of this exemption, the buyer will fill out a Buyer’s Retail Sales Tax Exemption Certificate for the seller, who will then take a “Sales of zero emissions buses, batteries, fuel cells, and infrastructure for electric vehicles” deduction. 

More information about this exemption can be found here.

The Alternative Fuel Vehicle Emissions Inspection Exemption

This exemption saves EV owners both time and money. 

It states that alternative fuel vehicles (AFVs), including fully-electrified vehicles as well as plug-in hybrids that get at least 50 miles to the gallon, are exempt from state emissions control inspections in Washington. 

Washington state utility EV rebates and incentives

In addition to state-backed savings programs, plenty of utility companies in Washington state also provide incentives related to electricity rates, EV purchases, and home charger installations. 

Pacific Power TOU rates

Pacific Power provides time-of-use (TOU) plans for residential (and commerce and irrigation) customers. 

This means that EV owners can save on electricity by charging outside of on-peak hours. June to September, on-peak hours are 2-10 p.m. From October through May, those hours are 6-8 a.m. and 4-10 p.m.

Pricing per kilowatt-hour during on-peak hours is $0.12, and $0.07 during off-peak hours. So EV owners can stand to save a lot by choosing charging times wisely.

Tacoma Public Utility EV charger install rebate

The Electric Vehicle Charging Station Rebate from Tacoma Public Utility (TPU) offers their residential customers a $400 rebate, in the form of a credit to their bill, when purchasing and getting a level 2 EV charger installed. 

Just one rebate is available per installation and your total credit can’t exceed $600. Applications have to be submitted within 90 days of the purchases and installation of a charger. For more details on savings and to start the application process, visit TPU’s EV charging page.

Clark Public Utilities EV purchase & charger installation rebates

The Residential Level II Connected Charger Rebate from Clark Public Utilities (CPU) provides a $400 rebate for customers who purchase and get a level 2 EV charger installed. 

The rebate applies to new EV chargers only and can be used a maximum of two times per household. 

To be applicable, chargers must be ENERGY STAR rated, Wi-Fi enabled, and connected to the internet. The qualifications also note that residents should follow local requirements as far as permitting goes.

CPU also has a digital marketplace where customers can get the full rebate instantly when they purchase a JuiceBox Level II charger, as well as a used EV rebate for limited-income customers. Learn more about everything CPU has to offer for EV owners on their Electric Vehicle Program page.

Snohomish Public Utility District EV & charging station rebates

Snohomish Public Utility District (PUD)’s Residential Electric Vehicle Charging Station Rebate offers up to $350 to customers when they purchase and install a qualifying level 2, ENERGY STAR-certified EV charger at home.

In addition, Snohomish PUD provides a $200 account credit when a customer newly purchases or leases a (new or used) electrical vehicle, as long as applications are received within three months of the purchase or lease date.  

To get more information, visit Snohomish PUD’s very helpful Tax credits & rebates page.

While we’ve given a top-level description of all the applicable rebates and incentives for residential EV owners, you can dive deep into Washington’s EV-related incentives (as well as laws) here

But you don’t have to take the time to do that if you don’t want to when you work with Kopperfield on a hassle-free residential EV charger installation. 

Our smart online form connects you with a local, licensed electrician who will provide a quote that takes everything from permitting to rebates and incentives into account. When applicable, they can even help you with any paperwork required to take advantage of the savings available to you.

Federal rebates for home EV charging

In addition to the more local incentives, at the federal level the Inflation Reduction Act of 2022 offers taxpayers various tax credits for purchasing new and used EVs as well as charging equipment.

New vehicles may be eligible for up to $7,500 and used vehicles for up to $4,000. Tax payers in rural or low-income communities may qualify for a tax credit of up to $1,000 for a home EV charger purchase and install.

Get all the details of this deal here:

If codified into law, in 2024 a proposal from the U.S. Department of the Treasury may make tax credits for new and used EVs more accessible by offering them as upfront discounts at the time of purchase. That’s news we’ll be following and sure to let you know about.

How much does it cost to install a Level 2 EV charger in Washington state?

How much does it cost to install a home EV charger in the first place? 

Well, for one, there’s the cost of the charger itself. In 2023, most Level 2, hardwired chargers (learn why you should hardwire) fall in between $400 and $800.  

Then there’s the installation process. In 2022, we found that about 90% of the homeowners we partnered up with electricians paid less than $2,000 for installation, including permit fees. About 7% of customers paid between $2,000 and $4,000, which included minor electrical modifications and working with more complicated wiring conditions. The remainder, outliers who needed significant wiring and electrical panel improvements, spent as much as $7,000 all told.

Do you need a permit to install a Level 2 EV charger in Washington state?

Yes, most electrical work performed in Washington requires a permit as well as an inspection. Generally speaking, all-in the permitting process can cost anywhere from $200 to $1,000. Kopperfield recommends obtaining permits to ensure that the work meets local safety standards, and that your homeowners insurance policy remains valid. What’s more, proof of permit is often required to take advantage of local rebates and incentives related to the EV charger installation.

The electricians in our network of Kopperfield Certified Pros make this process easy, by handling permit paperwork and scheduling an inspection on your behalf. 

Get your home EV charger installed by certified professionals

Kopperfield is making it simpler than ever to connect with reliable, licensed electricians with EV charger installation expertise.

It all starts when you request a quote. You'll get a response from a pro electrician within one business day detailing pricing and the next steps. From there, you can easily schedule and manage the rest of the installation process right from our platform.

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