Is a Permit Needed to Install an EV Charger?

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Owning an EV is satisfying, both for its economic value and the ease of no longer having to pull into a gas station to fill up. Installing a Level 2 EV charger at home offers the most convenience. But homeowners must obtain a permit before commencing the installation.

EVs are on the rise worldwide and so is the number of at-home chargers. Installing a charging station at home allows EV owners to conveniently charge their vehicle in a garage overnight as they sleep. Upon waking, the car is juiced up and ready to go.

What are the three EV charging station levels?

Charging stations are available in three levels. Level 1 uses a 120V outlet. Most garages in residential homes already have this type of voltage and do not require any extra electrical work to upgrade it. As a result, the Level 1 charging station does not require a permit.

A Level 2 charger is the most popular, as it delivers a charge quicker than the Level 1 charger. It utilizes a 240V line instead of a 120V line. Since this higher circuit is not found in residential settings, a new line installation—and therefore a permit—is required.

The third charging option is the Level 3 charger, which is most commonly found at public charging stations. The Level 3 charger delivers a full charge in the fastest amount of time. The EV charges in 30 minutes using a Level 3 charger that demands 480V.


What are the advantages of an at-home EV charger?

EV owners who drive their car once a month can get by with a Level 1 charger. The car will have to be plugged in overnight to be fully charged.  A Level 1 charge is impractical for drivers who use their cars more often, such as for commuting to work.

A Level 2 charger is the ideal option for drivers who rely on their EV for everyday use. Expect a Level 2 charger to add 20 to 60 miles of range for every hour of charge. However, installing a Level 2 charging station requires that the homeowner make electrical upgrades.

Level 3 chargers are found primarily in commercial sites, such as restaurants, shopping malls, and places of work. A commercial business has the option to install a Level 3 charging station and provide EV owners with a public place to charge their vehicles.

Why do I need  a permit for EV charging  installation?

As mentioned, the Level 1 charging station requires that the EV owner simply plug their vehicle into an existing outlet in the garage. Since electrical upgrades are unnecessary to utilize the 120V outlet at home, a permit is not required.

A Level 2 charging station, however, requires that the homeowner add wiring or upgrade the electrical panel. The city or municipality asks that the homeowner obtain a permit prior to installation. A licensed electrician or certified EV charger installer should be hired for the hardwired or plug-in system.

A building permit may also be necessary if the homeowner wants to remodel the garage to make it easier to access the Level 2 charger. Both the permit for the electrical upgrade and the remodeling are useful for the homeowner and offer a few additional benefits.

What are the benefits of obtaining a permit?

Safety is the primary reason behind obtaining a permit to upgrade the electrical panel prior to installing a Level 2 charger. Obtaining a permit ensures that the electrician performing the work follows best practices that meet the jurisdiction’s requirements for safe installation.

Electrical permits safeguard life and property. Applying for a permit requires several technical details: load calculations, an electrical plan, a site plan, and other important information. Load calculations prevent the charger from exceeding the capacity of the electrical panel, which can lead to a fire.

If a homeowner neglects to obtain a permit, several consequences result. The local department can force the property owner to cease work. They may also impose a fine for building code violations. If an electrical fire erupts, the homeowner’s insurance company can deny the claim.

approve document and permit stamp

How do homeowners obtain a permit?

Just as installing a Level 2 charging station shouldn’t be done by amateurs, it’s recommended that homeowners ask their electrician to submit an application for the permit to the local building department. Having a competent professional apply offers several advantages.

An installer who applies for the permit has technical knowledge about electrical upgrades, including the wiring method that is utilized, the overcurrent protection method, and how the installation meets all jurisdiction codes. An electrician files correctly and avoids wasting time and money.

Applying for a permit to install a Level 2 charger at home or a Level 3 charger in a commercial setting should be done by experienced professionals. When you work with Nu-Trend to install your electric car charger, our qualified electricians handle this important initial step for you.

Here are the revised steps for EV installation for Chicago residents and building owners:

1. Assess the charging needs of the resident or building owner.

2. Contact a licensed electrical contractor.

3. Research state rebate programs and register with ComEd for EV charging eligibility.

4. Obtain a City of Chicago permit and local city permit through a licensed electrical contractor.

5. Plan the location of the EV charging station for convenient resident access and proximity to a power source.

6. Install the necessary circuit and charging equipment for the specific type of electrical station, and power it up!

Call Nu-Trend EV & Electrical Services

Our highly skilled electricians possess the expertise to properly install a Level 2 or Level 3 charger. We inspect your existing electrical system to ensure that it can handle the power required by the charging station. If rewiring is necessary, our experts make the adjustments to ensure compatibility.

Once we obtain the work permit and inspect the current electrical system, the installation commences. We install the charging station of your choice in a timely manner. Upon completion, our specialists conduct a final inspection to ensure the installation meets your satisfaction.

EV Charger Installation

Nu-Trend is the recommended EV charger installation service for residential homeowners and commercial customers who prioritize impeccable workmanship, a respect for your space, and the availability of quality maintenance and repairs in the event they are needed in the future.

Choose Nu-Trend for all your EV charging station installation, maintenance, and repair needs.

Join our long list of satisfied customers by calling our Schaumburg, Illinois, office at (847) 882-1888 today.


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What Our Cients Say


Vil Varadhan

Nu-Trend did a professional installation job for my EV Charger at home. The technician was thorough and put safety first. Although, it was not cheap – The quality of work gives a peace of mind. They took care of City permit etc.


Kevin Gallagher

Updated panel from 100 to 200 A and installed EV charger. Team was very professional. Shane was responsive and ushered through the permit. Dave and Jr did a clean install and were respectful in my home. Would consider them for future electrical work.


Martin Gardner

We had Nu-Trend add an EV charging port to our garage which was organized via Qmert, who contracted Nu-Trend to do the installation. I first met Dave, who came out to inspect the job site and put together a quotation; he is an excellent, Knowledgeable, and professional electrician. Shane at Nu-Trend took care of all the paperwork which includes a work permit from the local council and inspection after installation. Dave and a co-worker who was also excellent came to the house and did the installation in about half a day, the quality of the workmanship was impeccable. The work passed Inspection with flying colors.

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