Electric vehicle charging

One of the best things about owning an EV is being able to plug in at home without visiting the petrol station. Using a residential off-peak electricity rate means you can charge your EV for the equivalent of 30c a litre.*

There’s nothing technical or difficult about it. Charging is as easy and as safe as charging your mobile phone.

Find out what's involved in charging at home and while out and about.

Charging at home

Charging at home overnight is the simplest, cheapest and most convenient way to charge.

You may be able to take advantage of off-peak electricity rates and some power companies even offer special rates for EV owners.

You can charge at home using your portable 3-pin charging cable or by using a wall-mounted charging unit. When purchasing an EV or charging equipment, ask the seller for a signed copy of a Supplier Declaration of Conformity – this shows the unit has been tested and meets electrical safety standards.

Portable 3-pin charging cable

3-Pin EV Charging Cable

This plugs into a standard household power point and is typically supplied with your EV when you buy it.

Things to consider

  • Used vehicles from other countries may be supplied with a charging cable. These should not be used and should be replaced with a charging cable that is suitable for New Zealand’s power supply.
  • Some cables come with an industrial or caravan plug that allows faster charging. Organise an electrician to install a special wall power point.
  • Don’t use extension cables or adaptors.
  • To maximise the life of your EV’s battery, avoid charging to full every day unless you have to.
  • Use software or timers on the charger to minimise the time the battery is fully charged.

Wall-mounted charging unit

wall mounted charging unit

A dedicated wall-mounted charging unit is great to have at home.

These are increasingly common and convenient as they can often charge faster than using a regular 3-pin charging cable. A registered electrician would need to install it.

There are several options in the market, with higher-end devices able to display information and enabling you to control charging using your smartphone.

Charging out and about

It’s easiest and cheapest to charge at home, but sometimes you may want to top up when you are out, or on a longer trip.

There’s an ever increasing number of public charging stations popping up around the country – at shopping malls, airports, supermarkets and even some petrol stations.

To find one where you want to charge up, download an app to find one that suits your needs and vehicle type.

Public fast charging

These are available around New Zealand. Fast chargers typically cost about $10 per 100km. To recharge your battery to 80% takes approximately 20 minutes.

All fast charge stations have tethered cables, so there is no need to bring your own for fast charging. Sign-up to a fast charging network for easy billing and payment. It’s better for your battery to fast charge occasionally rather than frequently. The last 20% of the battery takes longer to charge and is why fast chargers usually charge only to 80%.

Most pure EVs can fast charge, but many plug-in hybrid EVs cannot.

Public slow charging

These are often found at locations where drivers stop longer (e.g. shops, hotels, tourism attractions). Charging is usually free and can take several hours.

You will need to purchase a type 2 cable that is compatible with your car to use a public slow charging station.

* Estimate based on a residential off-peak charge rate, and will vary.

EV charging safety

  • Any chargers that use mains electricity must meet New Zealand's Electrical Safety regulations and Standards.
  • Don’t use extension cables or adaptors.

Read additional industry guidance on electric vehicle charging.

Safe EV charging Q&A – Energy Safety website

National guidance for public EV charging infrastructure – NZTA website