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What Should Commercial Real Estate Owners and Managers Consider When Choosing EV Charging?

Posted 10/27/2023

The United States is on its way to becoming an electric vehicle-first (EV) country, meaning you will start to mostly see EVs on the road within this decade. We’ve discussed on this blog the numerous advantages of installing EV chargers at your commercial property. When it comes to installing electric vehicle supply equipment (EVSE) at your commercial property, it is imperative to choose the right vendors. But what should you look for when choosing the right charging equipment and EV charging company?

Selecting an EV charging vendor

When an electric vehicle charging infrastructure vendor, there are several factors you should consider.

Consider experience and reputation

Perhaps the most important element of this process is picking an EV charging company that has a stellar reputation and experience. One way to gauge a company’s credentials is to research who else trusts the company to handle their EVSE installation. Ask your industry colleagues for a recommendation, or search public maps like Google Maps or PlugShare to see which EV charging companies are popular in your region. You can also see who your state government has selected as an EV charging equipment supplier. Blink Charging is an official EVSE company for the state governments of Colorado, Maryland, and Utah.

Consider services provided

Choosing the right electrification partner isn’t just about being able to trust that company. You also need to make sure they offer all the EV charging solutions you require. Download Blink's Site Assessment Guidelines[/caption] Here are some of the ways that your installer may help:

  • Conducting a site assessment, including current electrical load usage, increased capacity you will need, permit requirements, and potential additional utility upgrades

  • Procuring any available funding for the installation

  • Designating parking spots for charging this year and make-ready spots for future installations

  • Filing for necessary permits

  • Managing installation and commissioning

  • Coordinating with the local utility

The right electrification vendor or contractor can help you plan your EV charging installation. Blink Charging is a full-service solution. During a site walk, your sales manager and general manager will discuss your needs with you and then we will conduct a site assessment of your property. Whether you choose to use your property’s preferred electrician or get a recommendation from Blink, your business needs a qualified electrician who has experience with EV charging.

Consider network capabilities

Finally, consider the EV charging network itself. Look for a comprehensive charging network that provides you with the ability to easily control all of your chargers, including pricing and access. The network should also help EV drivers find your chargers when they need them. And if you want to save money, look for a charging network with load management and demand response capabilities which give you the option to join a utility demand response program. The Blink Charging Network provides EV charger site hosts with an intuitive dashboard where they can fully control all aspects of their chargers, like creating groups of users, and setting pricing for individual groups or setting prices for certain times of the day, etc. Your chargers will also appear in the Blink Charging Mobile App and in popular EV charging locators such as Google Maps, PlugShare, and select vehicle navigation systems.

Selecting the right charging stations

Your EV charging vendor can help you choose the right chargers for your property. When choosing a station, consider your needs, budget, available power, and rebates and incentives. While every commercial real estate property has different needs, there are a few criteria you can use to help you determine what type of chargers would be best for you.

Level 2 and DC fast charging

Commercial properties will either install commercial Level 2 chargers, or Direct Current Fast Chargers (DCFCs). If seeking LEED certification for your property, you will need to select networked, ENERGY STAR certified charging stations that can provide Level 2 charging or higher. Level 2 chargers, like the Blink Series 7 or Series 8, are capable of charging a vehicle from nearly empty to nearly full in a few hours, and are ideal for places where drivers can reasonably be expected to leave their vehicles parked for an extended period of time. Level 2 chargers are perfect for workplace and mixed-use CRE properties where drivers charge while parked. DCFCs can charge a battery from empty to almost full in under an hour, and are best for places where a quick charge is required. These charging stations require 480V of power and are most often used for fleets or near highways. If your chargers are meant to charge your EV fleet, a mixture of Level 2 and DCFCs may be the way to go.

Paid or free charging

Some businesses are happy to provide EV charging to their customers free of charge, while others will want to turn their EV chargers into a revenue source and charge fees for their usage. With the Blink Network, you can set pricing to be free for your customers, and paid for the general public.

Public or private charging

Finally, consider your parking itself. If your business serves public users, or if you want to invite public drivers to your property, you can use the Blink Network to offer paid charging to those drivers. And if your charging stations are intended for employees or fleets only, you can restrict access to approved employees with an access code.

Don’t forget the incentives

The federal government has stated it wants at least 50% of new vehicles sold to be electric by 2030, and it has put numerous incentives in place to help both individuals and companies purchase EVs, like the:

Plus, there are dozens of state and local government incentives, which you can explore with Blink Charging’s Commercial Incentives tool.

Conclusion

Choosing the right electrification vendor is the first crucial step to joining the thousands of businesses across the country that are installing electric vehicle supply equipment to take advantage of the nation’s transition to EVs. Ready to follow in the footsteps of the governments of Colorado, Maryland and Utah and choose Blink for your electrification process? Contact Blink Charging today.

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