A man's hand inserting an electric charger into the charging port of his car

What’s the Difference Between a 32 Amp or 40 Amp EV Charger?

We get it: You want to buy the best EV charger for your home, not get a degree in electrical engineering. But when it comes to the specifics, it can feel like you need at least a course or two to determine what you need. Take our latest 32 amp EV charger for example. Specially made for personal use (versus our 40 amp Level 2 EV charger that is better for more public use), it can be confusing what those 8 amps mean to the average person. 

Amps and your home

The average US home uses 100-200 amperes (the scientific term for a unit of electrical current, also known as amps). Rarely do you ever use that much, but if you have ever dealt with a home where the circuit breaker is often flipped or you had to turn off one appliance just to use another if you didn’t want to be left in the dark, you know what it’s like when your home doesn’t have enough amps available. Therefore, newer homes are set up to handle a larger demand for amperage. 

Every electrical appliance or device in your home that plugs into an outlet or is hardwired to the circuit takes a specific amount of amps depending on its electrical need. A hairdryer, television and electric range oven all require different amounts of amps to run, but if you run them all at once, you’d need to be able to accommodate the total amount of all three.

Your home only has so many amps (again, typically between 100 and 200 amps) to distribute between the devices that need electricity at one time. As the amount of amps needed increases towards the total amount available, you’ll notice lights flickering or power dwindling; if it reaches capacity, your circuit breaker will flip as a safety precaution to prevent any electrical fires or other issues.

32 amp vs 40 amp EV charger

But if your home has 100-200 available amps, what difference can 8 amps make? What is the difference between a 32 amp EV charger vs a 40 amp EV charger?

What it comes down to is that the more amps an EV charger can use, the more electricity it can deliver to the vehicle at one time. This becomes important when time is a factor, like when someone is adding charge to their vehicle while running into the store for a few moments. If you’re charging at home, the extra time is usually unnecessary; therefore, we’ve designed our 32 amp EV charger to provide a steady and reliable stream of electricity faster than a Level 1 EV cable while using less amperage than our commercially available 40 amp EV chargers.

However, this seemingly small difference can lead to big reasons for a homeowner to choose a 32 amp EV charger vs. a 40 amp EV charger. While your home may have 100-200 amps available, they aren’t all available on the same circuit. Instead, they’re distributed—that’s why when a breaker is flipped it may require trying to figure out which needs to be reset.

A 32 amp EV charger can be plugged into a 40 amp circuit, which is more common. To provide some buffer for additional appliances, a 40 amp EV charger needs to be plugged into a circuit that has at least 50 amps. This can limit which outlet you can use or cause you to need to upgrade your circuit board to include additional amperage.

If you’ve been looking to upgrade your home’s EV charging station or begin building one, our iEVSE Home unit provides a fast, reliable charge alongside WiFi capabilities and control via app integration. Learn more about our latest EVSE.

Have Questions? We're Here to Help