It’s our mission to make it easy to switch from fossil fuel-powered systems to more sustainable, resilient, electric technologies. That means making sure you have all the information you need before embarking on your electrification journey or taking the next step.
Qmerit is North America’s leading provider of installation services for EV charging and other electrification technologies. Together with our nationwide certified-installer network, we set the industry standard for safety, service quality, and customer support. Our electricians are licensed, insured and background-checked, and every installation is backed by the exclusive Qmerit Peace of Mind Guarantee.
Level 1 Level 1 is charging at home with a 120-volt circuit (i.e., using a standard electrical outlet).
Level 2 is charging with a 240-volt circuit in the home or workplace. This requires professional installation of either a NEMA 14-50 outlet or a hardwired charging station, but Qmerit and our certified installers make it easy. Nobody is more experienced than Qmerit, and our safe, hassle-free installation services are recommended by top automakers and charger brands.
Level 3 or Direct Current Fast Charging (DCFC) uses a 480-volt DC circuit, and typically provides about an 80% charge in just 30 minutes. These charging stations are generally found at commercial sites such as shopping centers or highway rest areas.
Still not sure what you need? Watch our quick 1-minute video on Level 1 and Level 2 chargers.
Fast charging, also known as DC Fast Charging (DCFC), operates at higher power ratings than Level 1 and Level 2. Compared to Level 2 charging, DCFC subjects EV batteries to high temperatures and resistance. How much depends on several factors, including how thick your charging cables are and whether your EV battery pack is outfitted with a thermal management system. While you may need to fast charge when necessary, avoid frequent fast charging as it reportedly may cause an EV battery to crack, leak, and lose storage capacity over time.
No. You cannot accidentally charge an EV’s battery beyond 100%. EV charging stations also monitor battery charge and end the charging cycle at 100% charge. Keep in mind that you should only charge your EV to about 80% to prevent excess wear on the battery pack. Learn more about EV charging best practices.
As defined by the National Electronics Manufacturers Association (NEMA), a charger is a device that recharges an EV’s batteries using electric power. Most, but not all, chargers can be used with a wide variety of EV models. Be sure to consult the equipment manufacturer’s recommendations to ensure the charger you are considering is compatible with the EV you own.
Yes. You can safely charge your EV at home with a Level 1 cable or Level 2 charging station. Certified EV charging station installers should install Level 2 EV charging stations. Learn more about EV charging best practices.
Qmerit recommends asking your vehicle’s manufacturer which charger they prefer. Your installer can also help you choose a charger, and you can find exclusive discounts on chargers from Qmerit partners on our website: qmerit.com/shop
Note: If you are a fleet customer, please contact your Qmerit concierge for information on the charger that is provided with your program.
If you need a Level 2 charging station, check out our “Shop” page for exclusive deals from a few of our partners.
You can install your EV charging station either inside or outside. Interior installations provide good protection from the elements. Outdoor EV charging stations must be rated for outdoor use. Both locations will need access to the home or building’s electrical service. Learn more about selecting an optimal location for your EV charging station.
Most Level 2 chargers deliver a charging range from 6.2 to 19.2 kilowatts, averaging around 7.6 kilowatts. This would provide between 18 and 25 miles of charge per hour and take approximately 8 hours to charge a battery electric vehicle (BEV) fully. Level 1 chargers have much lower power ratings. Supplying an average of 1.3 to 2.4 kilowatts, Level 1 chargers plug into a standard 120-volt AC outlet and provide 3 to 5 miles of EV range per hour.
Four main factors determine your EV battery charging speed:
Hardwiring a wall charger can prevent nuisance tripping. Most UL-rated Level 2 chargers come equipped with internal ground-fault protection so the breaker in the main panel will shut off (or “trip”) if there is a surge in the system. At the same time, most local electrical inspectors require the use of a Ground Fault Circuit Interrupting (GFCI) breaker when adding a 240-volt circuit for a NEMA 14-50 outlet to accommodate Level 2 plug-in charging. Having two GFCIs on the same circuit can cause nuisance tripping. (Whether you need a GFCI breaker depends on your local city or county permit policy, although Qmerit recommends one for all installations.) Qmerit recommends hardwiring all wall chargers to prevent nuisance tripping; however, our installers can install a plug-in outlet to use with a Level 2 charging cord that may come included with your vehicle, as these do not have the same GFCI requirements.
No. A certified installer should install your EV charging station for several reasons. First, your home’s wiring and/or electrical service panel may need an upgrade. Second, your homeowner’s insurance may require hiring a certified installer. Third, your EV’s warranty may require that certified professionals install and maintain any charging equipment.
Level 2 chargers are faster and more convenient than Level 1 chargers but require a dedicated 240-volt, 40 to 100-amp electrical circuit. The size of the circuit depends on the output of the charger you purchased. In some cases, you may need an upgraded electric panel or a load-shedding device to charge your EV most efficiently.
If you’re using a 32-amp Level 2 charging cord that came included with your EV, you can use your existing outlet as long as it’s rated for the indicated continuous charging load. Qmerit does not recommend using a plug-in wall charger with a NEMA outlet.
No. Your EV probably came equipped with a Level 1 charging cord, which you can plug into any standard household electrical outlet. Remember that EV charging differs from other household electrical usage because it draws current continuously for long periods. Most EV manufacturers and EV charging station manufacturers strongly recommend a dedicated outlet with a suitable breaker in the electrical service panel.
It’s up to you. A Level 2 charger can replenish your plug-in hybrid battery up to three times faster than a Level 1 charger which uses a standard 120-volt outlet.
Go to our EV Charger Installation page for a quick overview, and click on the “Get Your Estimate Now” button to begin our simple EV Charging Assessment. You’ll answer a few questions about your home, upload a few pictures—and receive an upfront pricing estimate.
All electrical contractors in the Qmerit installation network must comply with our stringent certification standards and provide proof of:
Rigorous background checks for Qmerit-certified installation electricians include:
The standard installation cost does not include the purchase price of a Level 2 charger, which runs about $500 to $800.
When you purchase a new EV, it may come with a charging cord – Level 1 or Level 2. If you want a Level 2 charging station and it is not included with your EV purchase, Qmerit will be happy to assist you with purchasing one.
There are several steps you should take before buying and installing an EV charger:
The time it takes can vary based on a few factors including the length of the permit approval process, delivery of your charging hardware, and your installer’s schedule. Your installer can give you a better sense of the timetable once they review your project and assess the scope of work.
Your Qmerit-certified installer will conduct a professional evaluation and perform a load calculation to determine the capacity available for EV charging. If your panel lacks sufficient capacity, your installer can provide a price estimate for an electrical upgrade.
If permits are required in your city or county, your Qmerit installer will secure them for your convenience. It protects both you and your installer to ensure your project is done to code and reviewed by a local inspector. Electrical upgrades increase your property value, but you will be required to show proof of permits when selling your home. Other installers may not pull permits, putting you in jeopardy in multiple ways. Without proper permitting and inspections, for example, the work performed may be sub-par, violating electrical codes and creating a fire hazard.
There are many reasons to pull a city permit, including:
Yes. Homeowners can purchase service agreements for their EV charging stations. Most equipment also comes with a guarantee. For instance, Qmerit offers a one-year guarantee on the installation. Additionally, Qmerit’s network of installation service providers offers maintenance service programs to regularly inspect the EV charging station and provide any needed preventive maintenance. Learn more about Qmerit’s maintenance and repair services.
Yes, we perform charging installations at multifamily and commercial properties. (You do not need to own your home, but the owner must give authorization to proceed with the process.) To get started, please contact us at +1(888) 272-0090 and be prepared to answer the following questions:
Before having an EV charging station installed, you must obtain permission from the landlord and/or property manager. Once you secure this approval, a Qmerit-certified installer will visit the site to determine the best way to proceed.
The installation price will vary depending on your project requirements, but typically ranges from $799 – $1,999. (That includes a $149 deposit required to schedule installation.) Factors impacting the cost include the length of wiring needed, installation method (hardwire or outlet installation), and location of the installation site in relation to your main electrical panel. In most cases, you will receive an upfront pricing estimate via email based on the responses you submit through our online assessment. If additional information is needed or your project requires electrical upgrades, your Qmerit-certified installer will follow up with you to furnish a custom proposal.
The cost includes installation of a Level 2 hardwire charging station or NEMA 14-50 outlet to accommodate a Level 2 charging cord, plus labor and materials. You also get a one-year warranty on all electrical work, parts and labor. (Our warranty does not include the charger, which is covered by the manufacturer’s warranty.) Where required by local jurisdiction, the cost of a permit will be added to the installation cost on your final estimate.
Note: You must supply your own wall-mounted charger or Level-2 charging cord UNLESS your installation is being completed through a corporate fleet program. For fleet customers, the charger will be provided by your sponsoring EVSE provider and will be shipped to your home once your installation estimate is approved.
Your Qmerit-certified installer will:
Qmerit provides the highest quality installation services which offer you unsurpassed convenience and peace of mind. Our certified installers are top-rated electricians who are licensed, insured and background-checked, sparing you the hassle of researching and vetting contractors yourself. They meet the highest standards for safety and service quality, and handle all required permitting and inspections, saving you time and ensuring the job is done right. You may be able to find someone to do a cheaper installation, but you could be sacrificing quality or putting yourself at risk if electrical codes are not followed or required inspections are not performed.
Once your installation is completed, Qmerit will send you an invoice for the cost of installation, permits and any service upgrades that were required. If your auto manufacturer or program sponsor offered any installation credits, they will be deducted from your balance due.
The deposit secures your project with a Qmerit-certified installer and allows them to initiate the permit process. If you choose to cancel your project at any time, your deposit will be fully refunded. Otherwise, it will be deducted from the installation cost.
Effective EV charging is about extending battery life. Fully charging or fully depleting the battery can reduce its life expectancy. Limit fast charging because the resulting heat may lead to deterioration and damage over time, and don’t leave the battery fully charged when you store your EV for long periods. Use the 80/20 rule when not taking your EV on long trips, trying not to let the vehicle’s state of charge fall below 20% and stopping the charging process at 80%. This will extend the life of your battery.
EV batteries are most efficient between 20% and 80% of a full charge. Therefore, EV owners should recharge up to 80% during each charge cycle and avoid depleting the charge below 20%. Charging the battery higher than 80% and/or lower than 20% will age the battery pack faster. Learn more about how to optimize EV battery charging.
The cost of electricity for charging your EV at home will vary depending on the rates assessed by your local utility and how often you charge. For example, in October 2022, the average retail cost of electricity for residential customers in the US was 16.09 cents per kWh. Assuming a widely available 40 kWh battery and a Level 2 charger delivering 7.2 kW at 30-amps, it would take approximately 6 hours (rounded to account for lower efficiency as the battery charges) and 40 kWh to charge the EV. The cost would be approximately $6.44. Multiply this by the number of times you charge per month to calculate how much would be added to an electricity bill. It is always the most economical to charge during off-peak hours.
Most EV charging stations, and many related EV charging apps for your smartphone, allow you to track your energy consumption. Additionally, many public charging stations allow you to track your energy consumption as part of your subscription service.
Most short-lived power outages won’t impact your EV. If the power goes out while an EV is charging, most EV charging stations will simply resume charging as soon as the power comes back on. A power outage could impact the timer if you use a timer to control the recharging operation. A long-term power outage could prevent charging entirely. Thankfully, homeowners have some options. Learn more about energy storage and bidirectional charging for EV owners.
Yes. Home charging uses the home’s electrical current without additional fees. Some smart EV charging stations can even use electricity at night, which may be cheaper. Public charging, on the other hand, includes electricity and usage fees. That is usually more expensive than home charging.
There are two main avenues for reducing EV charging costs. For your initial acquisition, the federal government, your state and local governments, and your utility provider may offer tax credits or rebates that lower the cost of buying and installing your charging equipment. For ongoing charging costs, check with your local utility to determine if time-of-day pricing is available. It is typically optimal to charge your EV at night, when demand is low.
You must buy a charger with two plugs or install two separate charging stations. Remember that a solution for charging two EVs simultaneously will likely require upgrades to your home’s electrical system. Otherwise, charging two EVs simultaneously could exceed your home’s electric capacity, causing circuits to trip. If you install equipment that can share the same circuit, it may lengthen charging times but eliminate the need for an electrical panel upgrade.
When selling a house with a charging station, you must show proof that you have a permit for the charger. The jury is out on whether having an EV charger in your home increases its value. One study showed that houses in communities with denser concentrations of EV charging stations were 1.5 times more valuable than homes in other areas. While there is not a precise causal relationship between charger installation and home value at this time, the demand for EVs is projected to grow for decades to come.
Qmerit recommends reaching out to your tax professional about applying for credits. For more information, you can also visit the “Laws & Incentives” section of the U.S. Department of Energy’s Alternative Fuels Data Center.
Homeowners can do their own simple inspection of their EV charging stations. They should remove any buildup of dirt and grime and look for any signs of worn cables or loose connections. They should also monitor charging behavior for suspicious drops in charging speed. Many EV charging station installers offer professional maintenance services for a nominal yearly fee. Learn how EV charging station owners can proactively manage their charging station’s maintenance needs.
Standalone solar panels sometimes generate more power than needed during the day and none at night, as the solar panels require sunlight or solar energy to produce power. When you integrate those solar panels with other energy management tools, you can fully optimize the panels’ power generation. Learn about all the benefits offered by a well-integrated whole-home system.
Solar panels are sometimes an all-or-nothing solution. They are incredibly efficient at converting sunlight to power and often provide more energy than needed during the day. Then when the sun goes down, they offer no energy at all. Solar integration allows panel owners to harvest and save that energy, use it as needed, and store it for when the sun doesn’t shine. Learn more about the benefits of solar integration.
You can integrate most solar panels with other energy management components. You can use integration to optimize your energy harvesting, consumption and management. Your best integration options will depend upon your particular circumstances. Consult a certified installer to evaluate your options and determine your best course of action.
A nanogrid is an integrated energy generation, storage, and distribution system for homes and small buildings. With a nanogrid, you can disconnect from utility distribution lines and reconnect when needed. Nanogrids can produce between 3 and 20 kW from rooftop solar panels and store between 15 and 150 kWh of electricity in batteries. Nanogrids can be interconnected to create a microgrid.
Nanogrids reduce exposure to utility power outages and can be used in places not connected to a transmission grid. By going off-grid in part or whole — called grid defection — homeowners with nanogrids can reduce or even eliminate utility payments for electricity. Solar nanogrids also reduce your property’s greenhouse-gas footprint, helping combat climate change.
Many experts believe the U.S. electrical grid is antiquated and prone to disruption. Small-scale energy storage systems, whether for residential or commercial uses, can help take the pressure off regional power grids and provide local power sources during regional power disruptions.
Solar panels offer many energy independence advantages, but those advantages evaporate when the sun goes down. Energy storage equipment can help improve that situation. Energy storage captures solar power and stores it for future use. This partnership provides true energy independence.
Installing energy-storage technology can save you money by accumulating electricity generated via renewable solar energy, which can be used when the sun is not shining. It can also store electricity from the grid during periods when low-cost time-of-day pricing is in effect, for use during high-cost periods. Speaking with an experienced electrical contractor is advisable to get a better estimate of the specific potential savings available to you.
Yes, energy storage will help power your home during an outage. The degree to which a storage system can power your entire residence depends on the amount of electricity your home draws and the battery system’s storage capacity. It’s advisable to consult a reliable electrical contractor to understand exactly how much of your home’s electricity draw can be met by a particular storage system.
Two ways exist to couple energy storage with an existing rooftop photovoltaic (PV) solar array. AC-coupled systems involve installing a PV inverter to charge the batteries. A direct connection between the PV array and a charge controller or other DC–DC converter is required for DC-coupled systems. DC coupling is more efficient if your home’s electricity load is heavier during the evening and night hours. If your home’s load is higher during daylight hours, an AC system makes sense. This is because it allows solar energy to be used directly, with any excess routed for storage in the batteries.
Smart panels allow you to monitor and manage your home’s electrical load via a smartphone or other mobile device. Using an app, you can turn on and off individual circuits (including to your EV charger), set timers to turn circuits on and off remotely, and prioritize circuits based on the parameters you set. These functions are not possible with traditional panels.
A smart panel optimizes your use of energy and the amount you spend on electricity. It shows how much power each circuit is drawing. You can prioritize critical power loads, such as your refrigerator and heating system, and you can program the controls for your convenience (e.g., you can plug your EV in when you arrive home but program the charging system to click on late at night, when utility rates are low).
Yes. You can control most smart panels with either an Android or iOS app. The smart panel manufacturer can give you more information on your specific smart panel and how to control it with your smartphone. Learn more about optimizing your energy usage with a smart panel.
So-called “smart panels” are electrical service panels that offer several advanced features. These features help you monitor energy consumption, prioritize energy circuits, and provide surge protection. Smart panels ultimately help optimize your energy usage. Learn more about how smart panels reduce energy costs and improve energy efficiency.
The degree to which a heat pump can fulfill your needs at your home or business depends on its rating, whether it has a ducted or ductless air source (or ground source), the climate in your area, and the size of your home. A heat pump is rated according to its Seasonal Energy Efficiency Rating (SEER). Modern heat pumps have better coil designs and compressors, improved motors, and highly efficient fans, meaning excellent SEER ratings, high efficiency, and the ability to heat your home even when temperatures are below freezing.
The amount a heat pump will lower your home heating costs depends mainly on the size of your house, its insulation, the prevailing climate, the pump’s SEER, and the cost of electricity, gas, or oil in your area (as a point of comparison for the fuel you used before installing the heat pump). An online heat pump cost savings calculator can provide an accurate estimate of the savings you can expect.
Yes, modern heat pumps work very well in cold weather. Heat pumps provide cost-effective heat for homes and businesses in all 50 states, including Alaska. If the house or building is poorly insulated and/or drafty, any heating system will struggle to heat the building.
Yes. Modern heat pumps are very energy efficient compared to other heating systems. Heat pumps typically use 50% less energy than conventional heating system requirements.
In many cases, yes. Hybrid heat pump systems pair up with existing heating systems, including forced-air furnaces, electric baseboard heaters, and even woodstoves. This pairing can utilize the best of both heating systems under different conditions. Heat pumps can also supplement or outright replace air conditioning. A qualified installer can help you understand how a new heat pump can best supplement your existing system.