Can I Get 3-Phase Power At Home
Yes, you can get 3 phase power at home but it would be up to electricians to handle the electrical work and the distribution network operator (DNO) to change the supply.
It depends on what your home configuration looks like which will then tell you how much modifications you need. Most homes use a 7.4kW to charge their EV as this is more than sufficient and this only requires a single phase.
Anything higher, an 11kW for example requires your electrical installation to be modified and take it from a single phase to a three phase.
Can You Change From A Single-Phase To 3 Phase?
Yes as long as you have a competent electrician, you can upgrade to 3 phase for your home. The electrician isn’t allowed to touch the supply though, that has to be carried out by the DNO.
It’s also worth remembering it’s not a cheap option, so only three-phase power supplies if you really want or need it.
Differences Between Single And 3-Phase?
A single phase consists of a two-wire AC power circuit, a neutral wire and a power wire. Compare this to 3 phase which is a four-wire circuit with a neutral wire and three power wires. Therefore it can be quite a long job depending on other factors.
The new 3 phase panel will have to be installed and the current distribution one removed. The loads will have to be balanced across the phases, that includes the EV charging point.
The Cost For Increasing The Power Supply In A House
As we spoke about previously it’s never a cheap job but can range in thousands depending on how far away a three phase supply is. The further away, the more it’s going to cost, it’s as simple as that.
Ideally, you’d love to be within 30m to keep the price down. We have seen prices of between £6000 and £15000 for large buildings, such as farmhouses and other large properties.
On average with 20m of trenching, you could expect to pay £4500 including VAT for a standard conversion. Due to the higher energy usage you want, the process of upgrading is not cheap but we do expect 3 phase to become more popular in houses as people look to use 11kW and maybe even 22kW power to charge their car.
What Is The Process For Changing The Phase Electricity Supply In A Home
Firstly, every job is different when it comes to upgrading the power supply in a house. There are a lot of variables that need to be accounted for before changing from a single phase. Below we list a number of things you should be aware of regarding the work needed.
Before you do anything, you would have to send off an application to the distribution network operator but your electrician can do this for you if need be.
Next, the cabling that runs into the house and single-phase fuse will likely need replacing. This normally involves trenching or more commonly known as digging.
Trenching can involve going down a depth of 60cm or a few metres, it all depends on the situation. The reason a trench is required is for the new cabling and to connect it to a three-phase supply, this is why you want it to be close, that way you haven’t got to trench as far.
Most modern homes have writing that is compatible with a three-phase supply so it’s only normally the distribution board and cabling that supplies the house that needs upgrading.
The new three-phase distribution board must also have RCD protection to adhere to current regulations.
As you can see, if you want more power to your home, you can upgrade from single-phase power supplies to a three-phase electricity supply. You need a qualified electrician and to make an application to the DNO, but after that, you are set to go.
It’s worth getting quotes beforehand as it can be an expensive job so you don’t want to rush into it and then not be able to afford it. You should also judge whether it’s worth it, a 7.4kW is usually enough for most people as they charge overnight.
However, if you need to charge your electric car more frequently or during the day for just a couple of hours, then a higher phase output would definitely be worth considering.
Take a look at all our other electric car posts if you need further advice about owning an EV.