Electric cars may still be new in Singapore, but uptake is fast-growing. We spoke to Paul Welsford, Vice-President of the Electric Vehicles Association of Singapore. He noted that in the second half of 2021 alone, the number of Electric Vehicles (EVs) have more than doubled. Charging infrastructure is rapidly increasing to encourage this shift.
Electric Car Outlet Requirements
The planned 40,000 installations of public EV charging points will take several years to complete. Installing your own dedicated EV charger at home saves you the hassle of finding public charging stations now. This is an option for private landed property or MCSTs (Management Corporation Strata Title) residents.
However, you can’t simply plug an electric car into your normal wall socket. In Singapore, you’ll need to engage a Licensed Electrical Worker (LEW) to install and certify your charging station.
Types of EV Chargers
AC vs DC Charging
There are two types of EV charging: Alternating Current (AC) and Direct Current (DC). Without going into technicalities, what you need to know is that AC charging is cheaper but slower than DC. Commercial DC chargers can bring an empty car battery up to 80% charge in as little as half an hour.
AC chargers on the other hand can take around 8 hours for a full charge, varying wildly by power. This isn’t really a problem as you generally park your car overnight at home for that long anyway. You also won’t need to charge it everyday as one full battery charge usually lasts at least 300km. That’s about 4-6 times the average daily distance Singaporeans drive. Hence, AC is preferred for EV home chargers as it is the most economical.
Longer range electric cars boast a range as high as 650km, so you’ll need to charge even less frequently. There are of course, additional factors your battery life is dependent on. If you’re an adrenaline junkie accelerating at every opportunity, expect faster battery drain.
In Singapore, AC and DC plugs are standardised. AC uses Type 2 inlets and DC is predominantly CCS2. As such, you can use the same charger for different cars, but should pay attention to your car’s optimal voltage.
An EV charger’s kW (kilowatt) rating is a measure of its charging speed. A lower voltage EV home charger has a rating of 7.4 kW and below. Higher voltage chargers are 11 to 22 kW and above, which are suited to full-electric cars with faster speeds.
Usually, homeowners install a wall mounted charging station in their car porch, as opposed to standing, to conserve floor space. Your installer will help you choose the best position for your charger based on your power supply and how you park your car.
Some electric car dealers bundle the car and charging unit installation together. Whether you purchase them together or separately, your best charger is what matches the charging capacity of your car. We’ve compiled a list of popular installers and chargers in Singapore suitable for homes below.
Best EV Home Chargers in Singapore
Wallbox’s latest EV charging offering is the Commander 2, with an electrical power of 7.4 to 22 kW. It weighs 2.4kg without the cable. Its black or white body, touchscreen user interface, app and wi-fi connectivity make it an appealing choice.
EVBox offers a range of smart charging solutions. For instance, the EVBox Connect app allows you to monitor and control your charging session remotely. Their EV home charger design, the EVBox Elvi, is offered in charging powers 7.4, 11 and 22 kW. It weighs 3 to 11kg with and without the cable.
EO prides itself on the small size of its chargepoint. Its mini models weigh under 1.5kg without the cable. Unfortunately, this means it only offers up to 7 kW charging power – though this is still sufficient for overnight charging. It’s best for electric car models with lower charging capacity and owners who like their charger to blend in.
An additional concern is that EO has yet to be issued Singapore’s Letter of No Objection (LNO). Regardless, some LEWs will still sign off such chargers for private use as it complies with TR25:2016 or the relevant International Electrotechnical Commission (IEC) standards, and passes essential tests as per the Technical Compliance Checklist.
Best EV Home Charger Installers in Singapore
Watt is a preferred installer of Wallbox. You can try out their Augmented Reality (AR) tool to visualise your new EV charger in your parking space.
- EVSE Singapore
EVSE Singapore is part of the Novexx Group of companies, providing integrated engineering solutions. They are a partner installer of EO. At this time of writing, they offer two EO models at 3.6 and 7 kW, retailing for $1,580 and $1,880.
Eigen Energy is a systems integrator in renewable energy solutions. Aside from electric vehicle charging infrastructure, they also specialize in solar photovoltaics and battery storage systems.
QuickCharge covers the design, supply and installation of your EV home charger. Buying and installing their Aurora 7 residential EV charger, offered in 7 to 22 kW, would cost around $2,600 all-in. They even offer owners the opportunity to become Charging Point Operators, making money by selling electricity to drivers.
As more entrants come into the EV charging market, this list will grow and change. For example, Tesla has its own home charging unit but this has not been launched in the Singapore market.
Step 1: Request Installer Site Evaluation
The installer will assess your distribution board, cable routing and ascertain a suitable location for your charging station. Importantly, they should determine the charging capacity of your home.
Step 2: Select EV Charger and Installer
Your best charger depends on your electric car model’s charging capacity, and that of your home. You should select the recommended charging capacity for your car model and home. Refer to our list above to start off your search.
Step 3: Finalize Design Proposal
Based on your preferences and property layout, your engineer will propose engineering works, application methods, and cable concealment.
If you are representing an MCST property or condominium, you will need to submit an additional construction permit. Private landed properties do not require this. Your installer will assist you with the necessary documentation.
Step 4: Installation Work
Your installer will position your EV charger by drilling and clipping the cable to the wall. While installing and connecting it to your main household supply, the power supply will be briefly turned off. This process will only take a few hours.
Step 5: Licensed Electrical Worker Certify and Hand Over Installation
The LEW brought in must test the safety of and certify the EV charging station, switchboard and wiring. If your home is under an MCST, the building LEW will also need to complete the approval sign off. The charger is now yours, and you should periodically make arrangements to inspect and maintain the charging station.
Cost & Savings Calculation
Installation & Charger Costs
How much does it cost to install your EV home charger in Singapore? A mid-range EV home charger ranges between $1,000 to $2500, to around $4,000 for a station with higher charging capacity. Additional costs for cabling depend on how long you need to pull the cables for the car and charger design.
Electricity Costs Calculation
Now, you might be thinking: with Singapore’s electricity prices going up, how does charging an EV affect your home’s electricity costs? Let’s crunch the numbers.
Electricity consumption varies depending on the car model. Let’s compare two very popular electric and internal combustion engine (ICE) car models. The average annual mileage for cars in Singapore is about 17,500km. Fuel or electricity costs are calculated based on SP Group’s electricity prices ($0.2580/kWh including GST) and average petrol prices ($2.55/l) as of Nov 2021.
|Car Model||Fuel Economy / Electricity per Kilometre|
From One Motoring Fuel Cost Calculator
|Fuel / Electricity Cost|
|Tesla Model 3||0.144 kWh/km||$650|
|Toyota Corolla 1.6 Altis||0.061 litre/km||$2,722|
The Tesla Model 3, highly popular in Singapore since Q3 2021, is extremely energy efficient. It will cost you about $650 in additional home electricity bills annually. For the typical landed homeowner consuming 1,200 kWh of electricity per month, this means you may be expecting your electricity bills to go up by 20%.
Electricity is still much cheaper than fuel however, which along with government rebates, make getting an EV worth considering. The Toyota Corolla 1.6 Altis, a best-selling ICE car, will cost beyond $2,000 more in fuel costs annually. If cost is your motivation, you should also factor in higher road tax, insurance and COE premiums.
If reducing your carbon footprint is your motivation though, how green will your electric car be?
For the environment, an electric car saves 1.4kg of CO2 emissions per kWh on average. But to really make them zero-emissions, you can make sure they’re drawing on renewable electricity. As a landed property owner, you have the option to make this cleaner choice with solar panels.
Clean Energy – Solar Simulator
Installing solar panels on your roof might sound scary, but getting solar is actually very easy! With this online solar simulator tool, you can calculate your roof’s solar potential and electricity savings instantly.
Just like electric cars, solar has gotten a lot cheaper in recent years with better technology. As your electricity costs increase dramatically from charging your electric car, solar is a better cost-saving investment than ever. Both let you reduce your carbon footprint significantly and save money in the long run.
Electric vehicles and solar panels – a match made in heaven!