Should You Buy Hardwired or Plug-In?

When buying an home charging station for electric cars, there are a few things to consider. One is the amperage of the unit, as you have to make sure you have a circuit in your breaker box that can handle the charger. The next is whether you want one that free-stands or if you want it mounted to a wall. However, one of the more difficult questions is whether you want it hardwired in or plugged in.

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If you want it hardwired, the charging station comes with three feet of flexible conduit, which houses three stranded wires. Those wires need to be enclosed and they need to be wired into an open, appropriate circuit in your breaker box. This method provides a nice clean look but it’s more permanent, as it’s hardwired directly into your house, either through walls or conduit. However, electricians can fix its placement, or even uninstall it and reinstall it in case you move.


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The other sort of charger is a plug-in charger. It’s pretty simple, just mount the box next to the correct sort of 240-volt outlet and plug in it. No hardwiring, no running conduit. Just quite literally plug-and-play. This is one is kind of funny, too, because you have to plug the charger into the wall and then plug a car into the charger.

And because it’s just plugged in to the wall, it can easily be moved and isn’t permanent. Although, the cord can only be 12-inches long, by regulation, so the charger needs to be mounted close to the outlet. And since there’s no standardized 240-volt outlet, Clipper Creek sells every plug type available.

There’s no right or wrong answer, here. Either choice will be great for different homes. The plug-in one is certainly easier, though. So if you’re looking for easy and inexpensive, the CC plug-in model is the way to go.

[Source: ClipperCreek by Enphase]

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