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FAQs for on-street electric vehicle charge points

This page answers the most common questions about new on-street charge points. It tells you how they work and how you can request one.

Why are we getting charge points in residential areas?

The number of electric vehicles on the road is getting bigger. Until now, charging electric vehicles has normally happened off-street in car parks, garages and driveways. In Portsmouth, off-street parking is not an option for many residents.

By installing charge points on-street, residents without off-street parking can enjoy the convenience and value of charging their plug-in electric vehicles at home.

Will the charge point make any noise when a car is charging?

No, there is noise emission from the charge point.

Will the electric vehicle parking space be easy to find?

The space will be marked, so it can be easily identified as an electric vehicle charging bay.

Will the parking bay be enforceable?

Yes – we want to make sure these spaces are kept clear so people can charge their vehicle when they need to. To park in the bay, the vehicle must be plugged into an electricity supply, otherwise a penalty charge notice may be issued.

Can anyone park in the space?

Anyone with an electric vehicle can park in the space as long as they are plugged into an electricity supply. These are shared-use charge points, rather than for private use.

Can other cars use the space if there are no electric cars using it?

No, we want to keep these spaces clear for those with an electric vehicle. To park in the bay, the vehicle must be plugged into an electricity supply, otherwise a penalty charge notice may be issued.

How long can an electric car park there?

This scheme is a trial. There are no plans for time restrictions for electric vehicle charging bays, but a car must be plugged into an electricity supply to use the bay.

How do I request a charge point in my street?

Contact our transport planning team: transportplan@portsmouthcc.gov.uk or 023 9283 4672.

How does the charge point work?

The charge point draws electricity from the lamp column. To charge an electric vehicle a charging cable is required. Our charge points can be used with a standard charging cable or a ‘SmartCable’. To find out more about the SmartCable, visit the Ubitricity website.

How long does it take an electric car to charge?

As the charge points we are installing will draw electricity from lamp columns, they will take longer to charge than other types of charge points. The scheme is designed for residents to use for overnight charging. It is estimated that eight hours would provide most electric vehicles a full charge.

The charge points are 5.5kW of charge. The time it takes to charge an electric car depends on the size of the battery inside the car. Each car has a different size battery, meaning the charge time varies.

To work out how long it will take to charge your vehicle, divide the battery size by the power of the charge point. For example, a 30kW battery / 5.5kW charge = 6 hours, which can be seen as a typical overnight charge rate.

How much does it cost?

The price is 20p/kWh.

What type of charging point is it?

We are installing ‘Pay As You Go’ charge points. All you need is a Smart Phone that can scan a QR code on the charge point. You do not need to register to use the charge point. Simply turn up and scan. Each charge point is fitted with simple instructions for use. A SmartCable can also be used at the charge points, by plugging in and following the instructions on the screen of the SmartCable.

Can any electric car use it?

Yes, so long as it can use a type 1 or type 2 plug. This is standard for nearly every electric vehicle (EV). The charge points are suitable for charging hybrids as well as pure EVs.

Will the charge point drain electricity from the street light?

No, the charge point will use the spare electricity in the street light circuit.

Where can I find out more?

There are more FAQs, and additional information, on the ubitricity website.