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Escalating Demand for EV Charge point Installation

Escalating Demand for EV Charge point Installation
Replenishh, the trade distributor of EV charging and associated equipment, always has a close eye on the latest news and trends about electric vehicles in the UK. It’s an industry that is proving to be a prime time for electricians, who want to branch out to become EV charging installers.

The demand for electric vehicles is high as an increasing number of car owners, and company fleets, move away from the ‘internal combustion engine’ in favour of either battery electric or plug-in hybrid alternatives. We are all seeing more and more of those distinctive ‘green’ branded registration plates on the UK roads, denoting that the vehicle is fully electric. And so, it is not surprising to learn that EV uptake increased by 71% in 2021 according to the Society of Motor Manufacturers and Traders (SMMT) and given the sales data so for 2022, electric vehicles continue to grow, up by 35.4% up to the end of August. The SMMT reports that BEVs account for 14.5% of the market share. Naturally, this is driving increased demand for the installation of EV chargers, whether at home or in the workplace.

The Electric Vehicle Homecharge Scheme, which came to an end in March 2022, created a flurry of demand for domestic EV charging installation, resulting in some 291,549 devices being installed at homes across the UK. There are still a variety of schemes and grants in place for eligible landlords renting out multi-residential and commercial properties. Landlords who meet the criteria are eligible for up to 200 grants a year for residential properties, and a further 100 grants for commercial properties. The Workplace Charging Scheme is also in place to incentivise businesses to make EV ownership a more practical and appealing option for their employees, and electric fleet charging, while adding a welcoming gesture for visitors. Eligible businesses can apply for up to 40 charging sockets for dedicated off-street parking, with grants of up to £350 per socket being awarded to those who meet the criteria.

Feeding this sharp increase in demand for EV charge points, especially for home applications, is new legislation. In June 2022, it became law for all new homes with their own off-road parking to have EV charge points installed. The Electric Vehicles (Smart Charge Points) Regulations underpin standards relating to charge point equipment used. The regulations, according to the UK government website:
“Ensure smart functionality, allowing the charging of an electric vehicle when there is less demand on the grid, or when more renewable electricity is available. The regulations also ensure that charge points meet certain device-level requirements, enabling a minimum level of access, security and information for consumers.”

In addition, IET BS 7671:2018+A2:2022 18TH edition wiring regulations and the Electric Vehicle Charging Installation code of practice 4th edition provide the standards for EVC installations for all electrical engineers to be compliant with.

EV adoption is still in its infancy but will be accelerating at pace as the UK edges ever closer to the banning of sales of new petrol and diesel cars from 2030, followed closely by hybrids in 2035. The industry is predicting that there will be some 36 million EVs on the roads by 2040 in the UK. That’s a lot of electric vehicle charge points … and a lot of potential business for electricians with EV charging installation qualifications under their belts! The demand for EV charge points is inevitably going to be greater this decade. That all sounds good, doesn’t it?

There are challenges ahead, and it’s not just confined to manufacturing electric cars, which crucially relies on an efficient supply chain, and now requires a workforce with different skillsets. To meet the 2030 target, the supporting EV infrastructure has got to progress fast to keep this ‘electric dream’ alive. EV charging installation is at the heart of this, and so is the ever-important requirement for qualified electricians who are certified installers of EV chargers.

Understandably, there are some excellent opportunities for electricians to train and upskill to become a fully certified EV charge point installer. The European Association of Electrical Contractors is citing that if the passenger car market goes full electric, then up to 1.2 million jobs will be created in the electrical industry by 2050, with the provision of EV charging points playing a pivotal role in this. But, as it stands, there is a huge skills gap in specialist EV charging installation.

So, while there are many qualified electricians, there are currently comparatively few who have the specific qualifications required for electric vehicle charge point installation. And that is important. Government grants for electric vehicle charging installation are subject to the work being carried out by an Office for Zero Emissions Vehicles (OZEV) approved installer. To become an OZEV approved installer, the first requirement is to be a member of an Electrical Competent Person Scheme, along with proof of public liability insurance. And, then of course there are the qualifications required for OZEV inclusion, which necessitate the need for specialist training.

As a trade distributor specialising in electric vehicle charging equipment, Replenishh is helping to bridge the skills gap. Replenishh has exceptional specialist knowledge of the EVC industry, and the requirements of EV charge point installation, with a fully understanding of the requirements of installers. A specialist one-stop-shop for EV charge point installers, with a huge inventory of multi-brand chargers, cables and associated tooling, Replenishh wants to encourage more electrical contractors to pursue EVC installation. Standing by this commitment, Replenishh has partnered with NAPIT to offer three courses: 2919 City & Guilds Electric Vehicles Charging qualification.

Understanding that many electricians are reluctant to take time out of paid work, the City & Guilds course provides a two day in-person training at assessment centres positioned across the UK includes a combination of practical and theory, focusing exclusively on the installation of electric vehicle charging equipment. Upon successful completion, candidates can then apply for inclusion on the OZEV register of approved Electric Vehicle Charging Installers. Further specific brand training is then the norm (which is mainly done online). The culmination is often a listing on that brand’s database of approved installers.

For all your EV charging needs and guidance, Replenishh is here to help electrical contractors every step of the way.