With the increasing sales of electric vehicles and the growing demand for both personal and public charging, there is a need for qualified electrical engineers to install charging units not only in homes but also in businesses and charging stations.
The shortage of certified electricians has created new employment opportunities in this field. This article aims to guide you on how to become a certified EV charger installer and explore the available EV charging training options. Keep reading to learn more and discover how you can take advantage of these new opportunities.
Why Is It a Good Idea to Become an EV Charger Installer?
The surge in electric vehicle sales has increased the demand for professionals to install chargers in homes, businesses, and public charging stations. This provides electricians with an opportunity to increase their income by offering EV charger installation services.
As the number of charging points is expected to rise rapidly in the coming years, more electricians have the chance to upskill and provide additional services. Currently, there are tens of thousands of charging points, but this number is expected to increase to millions soon, offering plenty of opportunities for certified and skilled electrical engineers to install more charging points.
What Does an EV Charger Installer Do?
EV charger installers are electricians who have the skills and knowledge to install the various types of electrical vehicle chargers. This involves connecting the charging point or station to the power supply and making sure that it is safely and correctly installed. They are also responsible for maintaining electric vehicle charging equipment and stations.
Maintenance involves regular checks on the station to ensure it continues to work correctly, and any repair work that may be needed. Another part of their job will include customer service, such as answering any questions that the customers may have about the charging station and advising them how to use it properly.
Do All Types of EV Chargers Require a Certified Installer to Install?
While some EV chargers require professional installation, the most basic type, known as Level 1, can simply be plugged into a standard wall socket in your garage. If you already have one of these sockets installed, you can use it to charge your EV without any additional setup required.
Level 2 chargers and Smart Chargers typically require the expertise of a professional electrician for installation within a home. Attempting to install these systems without the assistance of a qualified professional may result in the homeowner's household insurance becoming invalid, and could potentially compromise safety measures as well.
In general, qualified electricians who want to install electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) do not need to be especially certified. They do need training in the various types of installation such as CCS fast chargers, Smart Chargers etc, and they have the opportunity to become certified through various institutions.
This helps when they are advertising their services, since it gives the customer more confidence that the electrician is suitably trained and experienced. This is particularly important with businesses and public charging stations, which will generally insist that the work is carried out by electricians who are fully certified in EVSE installation.
How to Become a Certified EV Charger Installer?
You may want to increase your opportunities to find work installing EV chargers, or perhaps work under contract for a particular company installing their charging stations and equipment. Either way, you will need to attend training courses to become certified.
Attend a Training School or Course
The largest and most widely recognised training course in the US and Canada is the Electric Vehicle Infrastructure Training Program (EVITP). It is a non-profit organization that is designed to give electricians the most comprehensive training in EVSE installation. After EVITP training, the electricians must pass a certification exam for proof of knowledge and skill.
To be accepted on the EVITP course, a participant must be a state licensed or certified electrician or provide documented proof of a minimum of 8,000 hours of electrical construction experience, plus pay the course fee of $275.
Upon completing the course and passing the exam (combined 20 hours), electricians will be confirmed as EVITP certified.
Anyone looking for an electrician who is EVITP certified will be able to locate them on the EVITP website. In the state of California, local laws insist that on any public EV charger installation there must be at least one EVITP certified electrician.
Train With a Specific Brand
Some EV charger equipment suppliers require electricians to be trained in their specific products, as in the following examples:
ChargePoint is one of the most common EV charging station operators in the US, Canada and Europe. In order to become a ChargePoint installer, an electrician is required to take a free training course online with ChargePoint University (CPU).
ChargePoint also supplies charging equipment for residential homes and for businesses, and all installations can only be done by CPU certified electricians.
EvoCharge is another company that requires all its installers to be certified through its own in-house program. The training takes qualified electricians through the EV charging market, their portfolio of products, and how to install them. On completion of training the electrician can then apply for certification with EvoCharge, and will be listed on their website as an approved installer.
The increasing demand for electric vehicles is creating new opportunities for electricians to expand their business by offering EV charger installation services. Professional electricians are required to install most EV chargers to ensure safe and proper installation.
To maximize their potential opportunities, electricians can pursue professional training courses to become certified EV charger installers. While it is not yet mandatory, many EV charging equipment suppliers require certified electricians to install their products and may even offer in-house training programs to ensure familiarity with their specific equipment.
By obtaining certification, electricians can improve their income potential and secure more work in the rapidly growing EV market. Therefore, it is highly recommended that electricians interested in this field pursue available training programs to become certified EV charger installers.