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Best Level 2 Home EV Chargers Tested (2024)

Level 2 Home EV Chargers Tested by EVchargerReviews.net
Michael Kim // EVchargerReviews.net

Top Level 2 EV Chargers We Tested

  1. Best Right Now: Tesla Wall Connector
  2. Premium Pick: ChargePoint Home Flex
  3. Simple and Durable: LENZ EV Charger
  4. Also Great: Emporia Smart EV Charger
  5. For Outdoor Charging: FLO Home X5
  6. Best Design: Wallbox Pulsar Plus
  7. For Security: Autel MaxiCharger

Updated February 23, 2024, by Michael Kim

So your new electric car is on the way, or maybe it is already here! Charging an EV is different from filling up a gasoline car because it is much more convenient and cost-effective to charge at home overnight than at a public charging station.

We have spent the last two years testing the most popular Level 2 home EV chargers in our garage with multiple EVs, narrowing it down to seven products below. Driving an electric car feels exciting, environmentally responsible, and fun. Let us help you find the right home EV charger.

Why trust us? We have hands-on testing experience with the most popular EV charging products.

Best Right Now: Tesla Universal Wall Connector

Tesla Wall Connector Gen 3 Testing

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The Tesla Wall Connector was already the best choice for most Tesla drivers. Now there is a new Universal Wall Connector that works with J1772 plugs too. Regardless of your EV brand preferences, this charging station is a smart choice for the long term as the Tesla (NACS) connector will become the de facto standard in North America post-2025.

We like the integrated cord management features of this product, and the cord is easy to handle but robust enough to handle 48 amps without overheating.

Tesla Wall Connector mounted on wall
Tesla Wall Connector NACS plug connected to car

Specs

  • Up to 48 amps
  • 24-foot-long cord
  • Indoor/Outdoor NEMA 3R
  • Hardwired installation only, no outlets
  • Wi-Fi Connectivity
  • Tesla (NACS) and J1772 connector available

Pros

  • Integrated cord holder
  • Powerful 48 amp charging
  • Ready for current and future EVs
  • Can be paired with Tesla app

Cons

  • No outlet options, must be hardwired
  • The cord can get stiff in colder climates

Premium Pick: Chargepoint Home Flex

ChargePoint Home Flex mounted on garage wall

ChargePoint is a reputable brand in public charging as well as home charging. Priced at the higher end of the spectrum, the Home Flex is well-built, includes smart cable management, and a fully featured app. We were impressed when the app detected our utility provider by ZIP code, and automatically calculated accurate charging costs using up-to-date TOU electricity rates.

Compatible with all EVs on the market, the ChargePoint Home Flex is our top choice for EVs with large-capacity batteries. The ChargePoint Home Flex is a top seller on Amazon and for good reason.

To get the full 50 amps, a 60 amp circuit breaker and hardwired installation is required. Otherwise, the ChargePoint (and all other products below) are limited to a maximum of 40 amps.

Chargepoint Home Flex plugged in
ChargePoint Home Flex plugged into Tesla

Specs

  • Up to 50 amp charging
  • 23-foot-long charge cable
  • Indoor/Outdoor operation
  • NEMA 14-50, NEMA 6-50, or hardwired options
  • UL Listed
  • J1772 EV connector

Pros

  • Energy Star Certified
  • Wi-Fi connectivity
  • Cord remains pliable in colder temperatures
  • Up to 50 amps

Cons

  • A ChargePoint app and account are required for setup
  • Only one Home Flex can be paired to an account

Simple and Durable: LENZ Level 2 EV Charger

LENZ Level 2 EV charger

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05LEVEL2

Need something solid but without the bells and whistles? LENZ has a great value Level 2 charging station with a robust metal enclosure. The LENZ product can be installed (quickly and easily) inside or outside.

While it may not have connectivity options, most modern EVs will have built-in scheduling options. If you’re looking for something uncomplicated with a NEMA 14-50 wall plug, LENZ is a great choice.

We were impressed with the quality of the materials of the enclosure, the cable, and the J1772 connector. This charging station also managed to stay very cool while operating at 40 amps. But the cord holster could be improved for cable management. Full review here.

Specs

  • 40 amps, or as low as 16
  • 24-foot-long charge cable
  • Indoor/Outdoor operation
  • NEMA 4X waterproof rating
  • NEMA 14-50 wall plug
  • J1772 EV connector

Pros

  • Great value for a basic home charging station
  • Durable enclosure materials
  • Good quality charging cable

Cons

  • Holster design could be better
  • The status indicator is just a small LED light

Also Great: Emporia Smart Level 2 EV Charger

Emporia Level 2 Charger

Colorado-based Emporia makes a home EV charger that is easy to recommend, especially if you already have other Emporia Energy products in your home. The app can control various Emporia hardware including home batteries, but their EV charger is a competitive product in its own right. Less expensive than other 48 amp options, but Emporia does not cut corners where it matters most.

We really liked the high power output (48 amps hardwired, 40 amps over NEMA 14-50), and the highly durable single-piece metal charge cord holder. Most competing brands include a cheap plastic cord holder in the box. Installation and app configuration was straightforward as well. You can see our full Emporia review.

Emporia Level 2 EV charger unboxing
Emporia EV charger on wall in garage

Specs

  • Up to 48 amps, when hardwired
  • 24 foot long cable
  • Indoor/Outdoor operation
  • NEMA 14-50 outlet or hardwired
  • J1772 EV connector

Pros

  • Lower cost than competitors
  • Up to 48 amps of power
  • App connectivity and scheduling
  • Good metal charge plug holder and cable management

Cons

  • The charge cord is shorter than the competition
  • The charger casing is made from plastic

For Outdoor Charging: FLO Home X5

FLO X5 smart home EV charging station

Québec-based FLO is best known for its North America-wide public charging network. Their latest home charging station, the Home X5, feels as durable as their outdoor public charging stations. The enclosure is made of molded aluminum both front and back, and the integrated holster and cable management systems are thoughtfully designed. The cable and connector are among the best we have ever tested; it is durable and freely coils around the charging station regardless of ambient temperature.

The Home X5 is an internet-connected smart home charging station, but a key difference is how the unit connects online. Instead of WiFi or Bluetooth, the FLO has built-in powerline networking (PLC). Some competing products struggle to maintain a WiFi connection in our testing garage, but the FLO unit had zero connection issues with powerline networking.

FLO Home X5 installed on wall for testing
FLO X5 J1772 EV connector

Specs

  • Up to 30 amp output
  • 25-foot charging cable
  • Indoor/Outdoor operation
  • Hardwired installation only
  • UL Listed
  • J1772 EV connector

Pros

  • As durable as commercial chargers
  • Reliable powerline networking
  • Highly pliable cable
  • 5-year warranty

Cons

  • 30 amp output extends charging sessions
  • The FLO app does not report on home charging costs

Best Design: Wallbox Pulsar Plus

Wallbox Pulsar Plus NEMA 14-50

The Wallbox Pulsar Plus is our top pick for a charger with a compact and attractive design at just 7.8″ x 7.9″ x 3.9″ in dimensions. The face of the unit has a large and bright status LED indicator light.

Available in 40 and 48 amp versions, the Pulsar Plus can charge up to 8 times faster than Level 1 (120v) charging. The Wallbox unit features a 25 foot long cable, the maximum allowed length. The 48 amp version of the Pulsar Plus is able to deliver up to 11.5 kW of power.

Wallbox also works great for households with multiple EVs that need to be charged simultaneously. Two or more Wallbox charging stations on the same circuit can communicate with each other and balance the available household power between chargers. See full Wallbox review.

Wallbox Pulsar Plus unboxing and installation
Wallbox Pulsar Plus J1772

Specs

  • 40 and 48 amp versions
  • 25-foot-long charge cable
  • Indoor/Outdoor operation
  • NEMA 14-50 or hardwired
  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity
  • J1772 EV connector

Pros

  • Compact design with clear indicator lights
  • myWallbox app companion app for control and charge monitoring

Cons

  • The cord holder is cheap plastic but you can wrap the cord around the unit itself
  • Wi-Fi reception isn’t the best, the unit can struggle if your network is far from the garage

For Security: Autel MaxiCharger

Autel MaxiCharger working with RFID card as key

Autel MaxiCharger is gaining popularity lately because the product offers good quality hardware and a very polished connectivity/app experience. But what really sets the MaxiCharger apart is the integrated RFID card reader. This EV charger can be programmed to unlock using almost any RFID card. We were able to set up a transit card and even the Tesla key card as unlocking triggers. This is ideal for an outdoor or underground apartment parking installation, where you want to prevent strangers from stealing the electricity from you.

Autel offers two “plug-in” 40 amp versions of the MaxiCharger as well as a 50 amp hardwired version. Check the product specs when ordering.

Autel MaxiCharger cord holder
Autel MaxiCharger Wifi setup screen

Specs

  • Up to 50 amps
  • 25-foot charging cable
  • Indoor/Outdoor operation
  • NEMA 14-50, 6-50, or hardwired installation
  • J1772 EV connector
  • RFID card reader for security

Pros

  • Wi-Fi and Bluetooth connectivity
  • Intuitive app
  • Long charging cable
  • RFID card reader for locking charger
  • 3-year warranty

Cons

  • The charging cord could be more flexible in freezing temperatures
  • Some users report Bluetooth connectivity issues

Didn’t find something you like? See all the products we looked at here.

Methodology

Our testing facility is a residential two-car garage with a NEMA 14-50 receptacle installed by a licensed electrician. This setup will be similar to how most EV owners charge at home, and allow us to quickly and easily swap chargers for testing.

We consider user and market feedback for products we order for review, but all products we recommend must be hands-on tested in our garage for at least two weeks and several EV battery charge cycles. A Tesla Model Y is our main test vehicle, but we have also borrowed an Ioniq 5 or VW ID.4 for some tests.

Our main criteria for products are (1) ease of use and installation, (2) power output, (3) cord length and management, (4) design and materials used, (5) smart features, and (6) reliability/warranty. Not every product we test is recommended to our readers. This article will be kept up to date with our favorite home EV chargers as more products are released and tested.

Our testing methodology in action

What is a Home EV Charger?

Home EV Chargers are devices (usually wall-mounted) that safely connect your electric car to your household’s electric circuit. Technically speaking, the wall-mounted box commonly referred to as an “EV Charger” is called an Electric Vehicle Service Equipment (EVSE), and it passes electricity to the onboard vehicle charger.  The onboard charger is the actual equipment that converts household alternating current (AC) to direct current (DC) required to charge the battery. But for the sake of simplicity and understanding, most people call the wall-mounted EVSEs as home EV Chargers. 

Self Install vs. Hiring an Electrical Contractor

Is an EV charger installation something you can do yourself? Sometimes. Many newer homes are pre-wired and have a 220-volt plug near where your car is parked. NEMA 14-50 and NEMA 6-50 are common 50-amp wall receptacles that a home charging station can plug into. If you already have an outlet installed, you may buy and install the equipment by yourself safely.

If you don’t already have a 220-volt receptacle on your wall, or if you are planning to hardwire your charging station (to go above 40 amps), then working with a licensed electrician is highly recommended. An electrical contractor will be able to assess the existing capacity of your electrical panel, run the appropriate gauge insulated wiring to your garage, as well as help receive any permits required in your local area.

How Much Does it Cost to Install a Home EV Charger?

If you already have a 220-volt outlet, no electrical work is required for a plug-in style home charging station. A general contractor or DIY homeowner can do it in about an hour of work.

If you don’t have an outlet, but your household electrical panel has the capacity for a dedicated 40, 50, or 60-amp line, then an electrician will need to run wiring from the breaker box to your charging location. Expect to pay a few hundred dollars, with costs increasing proportionally with distance from the electrical panel. Our more complicated NEMA 14-50 installation was around $1,200 for a 50+ foot run and electrical permit.

If your home’s electrical supply cannot support a dedicated 30+ amp 220-volt line, like some older construction homes, then major electrical upgrades could cost thousands of dollars to support Level 2 EV charging.

Can You Install an EV Charger on the Outside of Your Home?

Absolutely. EV charging stations can be mounted to an exterior wall or a pedestal near your parking location. For outdoor installations, due to potential exposure to moisture and precipitation, it is recommended to have the unit hardwired to the electrical circuit rather than using a 240v outlet like the NEMA 14-50.

It’s important to pay attention to weather resistance ratings when shopping for an outdoor EV charging station. Most EV charger enclosures on the market are rated at least IP66, which protects the equipment from raindrops and water jets. For outdoor usage, we recommend tougher products that have NEMA water resistance ratings. For example; NEMA Type 4 and Type 3R products like the Tesla Wall Connector are intended for outdoor use and will withstand rain, snow, and ice formation. For extreme climates, NEMA Type 4X products like the Lenz EV Charger or FLO X5 have additional protection from corrosion which may develop from frequent exposure to moisture.

Remember that even the highest-rated enclosures should be installed high enough off the ground so they are never submerged in flood water.

What is the Fastest Level 2 EV Charger?

In North America, Level 2 EV charging stations for your home or business will range in output between 30 and 50 amps. Most electric cars on the market can charge between 32 and 48 amps.

Assuming your EV can charge at 48 amps (11 kW), you can take full advantage of this charging speed by looking at home charging stations that support 48 amps. Products such as Tesla Wall Connector, ChargePoint Home Flex, Emporia EV Charger, or Wallbox Pulsar Plus can charge at 48 amps. Keep in mind that any home charging station that outputs more than 40 amps will need to be hardwired by a licensed electrician because plugs like the NEMA 14-50 are limited to 50 amps constant load.

Do you actually need the absolute fastest charger? Charging speed becomes less important if most of your charging is done overnight. Even a 30 amp charging station from FLO can deliver 7 kW (30 amps * 240 volts), which means 84 kWh of energy can be delivered in 12 hours. More than enough for most EVs. Charging gradually at a slow speed overnight will also benefit your local electrical grid by distributing the load.

Do You Need a “Smart” EV Charger or a Basic One?

A regular non-smart EV charging station contains electronics to safely connect and carry energy from the wall to the electric car. The electronics only need to initiate a charging session and monitor temperatures, voltage, current, etc. These basic EV chargers begin working immediately upon plugging into a car and are perfect for EV owners looking for an uncomplicated experience. Most modern EVs have built-in charge scheduling functionality that can work with any home EV charging station.

Smart home EV charging stations have networking capabilities using Wi-Fi, Ethernet, or even powerline networking. Smart chargers usually have a companion mobile app or web interface for management. An Internet-connected home EV charging station can offer some or all of these benefits:

  • Monitor real-time charging sessions
  • Change current amp output limits
  • Lock or limit charging access to specific cars
  • Some EV chargers offer very granular scheduling options throughout the week
  • Notifications can be sent to the user’s phone if they forgot to plug in their EV
  • Many smart EV chargers offer energy consumption reporting
  • Connected chargers may be able to communicate with a participating electric utility using the Open Charge Point Protocol (OCPP) for demand response. For example; if a local grid is overloaded, the utility could send a signal to throttle your EV charging speed.

What is the difference between Level 1, Level 2, and Level 3 charging?

The difference lies in voltage, amperage, and ultimately charging speed.

Level 1 charging is done over standard household electrical outlets. In North America that means 120 volts and 12 amps. This translates into about 1.4 kW of power and around 3 miles of range added per hour. Although 120-volt outlets are abundant, they will not provide enough range overnight for most drivers.

Level 2 charging steps up the voltage to ~240 volts and current can go as high as 80 amps, but most EVs max out at 48 amps. Charging at 7-11 kW on Level 2 will juice up most EVs in only a few hours. Level 2 charging makes EV driving convenient and cost-effective, but will have some upfront installation costs.

Level 3 charging boosts the voltage to 400/800 volts and can routinely pull 500+ amps. An EV can get the majority of the driving range back in a matter of minutes on Level 3 charging. This is possible by bypassing the onboard vehicle alternating current (AC) charging equipment and sending direct current (DC) straight to the battery. Due to the immense power requirements of Level 3, it is only feasible for commercial applications and not at-home EV charging.

Frequently Asked Questions about Home EV Chargers

Are Rebates or Incentives Available For Home EV Chargers?

Yes! Many states have incentive programs to reduce the cost of the transition to electric driving. You may be eligible to be reimbursed for a portion of the cost of the EV charger and/or professional installation. Incentive structures change on a regular basis, we track incentives on this page.

Why install a Level 2 (240v) home EV charger?

Level 1 (120v) charging may be more widely available near your parking location but it can only realistically supply 3-4 miles of range every hour. Level 3 is direct current (DC) fast charging that can rapidly charge an EV in under an hour, but a residential circuit breaker could not supply this much power, and Level 3 chargers are prohibitively expensive.

Level 2 charging is the most popular choice for EV charging at home because circuit breaker upgrades are not needed most of the time, and wiring up your garage is relatively inexpensive and will break even after charging the EV at off-peak electricity rates.

Change log

  • February 23, 2024: Updated product information. Added commentary about outdoor installations.
  • January 29, 2024: Revised product recommendations based on recent user experience and product availability.
  • December 18, 2023: Revised product recommendations based on the latest testing. Updated explanation on fastest charging stations.
  • November 20, 2023: Included information about the distinction between smart networked EV chargers and “dumb” chargers. Added current sales promos.
  • September 18, 2023: Revised product selection based on newest product tests. Included more details about the methodology.