Don't boil the kettle while charging your electric car because it will blow
the fuse, National Grid warns
Electric car owners have been warned that if they attempt to boil a kettle
while charging their car it will blow the fuse.
The National Grid expressed concerns that an average size 3.5kW battery
charger would take 19 hours to fully charge a car battery, even when it is
25 per cent full.
A "thought piece" document obtained by the Financial Times warned that a
more powerful 11kW device would still take six hours to charge a car battery
and during that time, the use of everyday items such as kettles and ovens
would blow the fuse.
"The average household is supplied with single phase electricity and is
fitted with a main fuse of 60-80 amps," the National Grid said.
"If one were to use an above average power charger, say 11kW, this would
require 48 amps. When using such a charger it would mean that you could not
use other high demand electrical items... ?without tripping the house's main
The warnings come just weeks after the Government announced plans to ban the
sale of new diesel and petrol cars by 2040 in a bid to encourage people to
buy electric vehicles.
However, motoring experts immediately expressed concern, noting that it
would place unprecedented strain on the National Grid.
Most electric cars will require a battery capacity of 90 kilowatt hours
(kWh) to make journeys of around 300 miles, National Grid believes.
It suggests that the ability to travel longer distances without stopping to
recharge will be a "must have" if motorists are to abandon petrol or diesel
The company suggested that building several thousand "super fast" charging
forecourts - similar to modern day petrol stations - would be preferable to
a "large scale rebuild of the domestic electricity infrastructure" by
fitting homes with the maximum 100 amp main fuse.
Michael Gove, the Environment Secretary, has warned that Britain "can't
carry on" with petrol and diesel cars because of the damage that they are
doing to people's health and the planet.
"There is no alternative to embracing new technology," he said last month.