Hardwired vs Plug-in EV chargers, which do I need?

Hardwired vs Plug-in EV chargers, which do I need?

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If you're an electric car owner, the decision to purchase a Level 2 EV charger for home charging comes with a choice between two options: Hardwired and Plug-in chargers. This choice can significantly impact your charging experience. So, which one should you go for, and which option suits you better?

Differences Between Hardwired and Plug-in EV Chargers

A Hardwired EV charger offers a permanent charging solution directly connected to your electrical system. Unlike Plug-in chargers, which use standard outlets, Hardwired chargers require professional installation and are typically mounted on a wall or pedestal. This setup offers a cleaner and more streamlined appearance, blending seamlessly into your home's design. Additionally, Hardwired chargers reduce the risk of theft or damage since they are securely fixed in place.

Plug-in EV chargers, on the other hand, are portable and do not require any special installation. They can be easily connected to existing electrical outlets, often NEMA 6-50 or 14-50, making them convenient for users who may want to move their charger or install it in different locations. The Plug-in option is perfect for renters or those who anticipate moving in the future, as the charger can be easily taken along to a new residence.

Factors to Consider When Choosing

When deciding between a Hardwired and Plug-in EV charger, the following 6 factors should be taken into account.

Charging Speed

Hardwired chargers generally offer faster charging speeds compared to Plug-in chargers. This is because Hardwired chargers have a direct electrical connection, eliminating any potential voltage drop or power loss associated with plug connections.


Plug-in chargers provide greater flexibility since they can be easily disconnected and moved. If you expect to change your living situation or charging location in the future, a Plug-in charger may be the better option.

Electrical Infrastructure

Consider the existing electrical setup in your home. If you already have a dedicated circuit and appropriate electrical capacity near your parking area, a Hardwired charger may be the most efficient choice.

Cost and Installation

Hardwired chargers generally require professional installation, which may result in higher upfront costs compared to Plug-in chargers. However, Plug-in chargers may require additional electrical work if the existing outlets are not sufficient to handle the charging load.

Safety Considerations

Both Hardwired and Plug-in chargers are safe when installed correctly. However, it is crucial to follow local electrical codes and have a certified electrician handle the installation to ensure safety.

User Preferences and Lifestyle

Your personal preferences and charging habits play a significant role in the decision-making process. Consider your long-term plans and charging needs to make the best choice for your lifestyle.

Flexibility of Charger Installation: Plug-in to Hardwired Conversion

An important aspect to keep in mind is that many EV chargers offer the flexibility to be converted from Plug-in to Hardwired installations and vice versa. This feature allows users to adapt their charger to different electrical setups or locations as their needs change. If this adaptability is a priority for you, consider choosing a charger model that offers this option.

AutoBot EV Charger also offers this adaptability. Refer to our instructions for more details.

Selecting the right EV charger for your electric vehicle is a crucial decision that can impact your charging experience and convenience. By carefully considering factors such as charging speed, flexibility, electrical infrastructure, installation costs, and your personal preferences, you can make an informed choice between a Hardwired and Plug-in EV charger. Remember to follow safety guidelines and consult with a certified electrician to ensure a seamless and safe charging setup.

Whether you opt for a Hardwired charger for its efficiency and permanence or a Plug-in charger for its portability and versatility, rest assured that both options will provide you with convenient and reliable charging for your electric vehicle.

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