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Contact person Dietmar Hirsch / Project Manager Sales Energy Services / Copyright Stadtwerke Neumünster

Tips for connecting a wallbox

The connection of a wallbox in the carport or garage is an important step for fast and safe charging of your own electric car. The wallbox makes you independent of external service providers and guarantees quick charging according to your own ideas. At green car magazine, in dialogue with the Neumünster municipal utility, we focused on the essential criteria for an individual charging connection. In the short interview, the information is summarized in compact form and an outlook on the regional expansion of electromobility in the Neumünster urban area is also given.

gcm: Although it is also possible to charge the electric vehicle at the domestic socket with 230 volts, it is still much safer to use a charging station in order to be able to charge your electric vehicle quickly and safely at home. Why is charging using the charging station safer than using a socket?

SWN: In most cases, the sockets installed in the house are not designed for the continuous charging current that occurs. In these cases, there is a risk that they will become very warm. They could then deform, melt or even catch fire. The supply lines of the sockets are also often not designed for charging cars with electricity; if they get hot, a fire in the wall cannot be ruled out.
The e-car charging stations - also called wall boxes - are designed by the manufacturer for the special task of providing continuous charging currents for vehicles and are therefore safe for operation. The supply lines and their surroundings are designed from the outset by certified installers in such a way that risks, in particular the risk of fire, are excluded.

gcm: The selection of charging stations extends from the offers of the manufacturers to the free providers. Which criteria have to be considered in advance when choosing the charging station?

SWN: Interested parties should always seek advice from a qualified electrician before buying a charging station. A specialist can assess whether my main distribution is designed for the additional connection of a charging station or whether it may need to be expanded. This is particularly important for calculating the costs. Because a modification or expansion of the electrical installation is also an investment.

Further criteria are:
The location plays a role in the design and installation. It is therefore important to think about beforehand whether it should be set up in the garage or outdoors.
If someone later wants to take part in the energy management of the network operator with their electric vehicle in conjunction with other charging points, then they should choose a charging station prepared for this today. If not, he can fall back on cheaper models.
If I want to know how much energy the charging station has delivered, I need a sub-meter if the vehicle I am charging does not provide this information.

gcm: What do you have to consider in advance when installing in your own garage or carport and which requirements must be met?

SWN: Basically, there must be an easily accessible, stable attachment point for the charging station. Weather protection is not necessary if the charging station is selected accordingly, but it is convenient for the user.
Laypeople should leave the installation of a charging station to a qualified electrician, since comparatively high currents flow after the system has been commissioned, which can be dangerous for people and the environment if installed incorrectly. Incidentally, the network operator must be informed before installing a charging station. He then checks whether his network is adequately designed for this.

gcm: To what extent is electromobility currently being used at Stadtwerke Neumünster and what further steps are planned for the future?

SWN: There are currently four BMWI i3 models in use at the Neumünster municipal utility. These are in the vehicle pool and the SWN employees use them for business trips.

Some of the passengers on SWN traffic in Neumünster are also transported by hybrid buses. Three hybrid buses from the Mercedes Benz Citaro series (diesel and electric drive) have been on the road on Neumünster since 2018. In 2020 there will be twelve hybrid buses.
On the subject of pure e-buses: the degree of maturity of the vehicles and the high purchase price are currently still in conflict with SWN's economic operation. That is why we are converting the vehicle fleet to partially electric driving (hybrid) in the first step. But we are very actively monitoring whether there are subsidies for fully electric buses and what experiences other transport companies have made with such buses.

SWN is gradually expanding an e-mobility charging network in Neumünster. This now includes 13 charging points that are distributed throughout the city. With the installation of the charging stations, SWN joined the Innogy roaming network in 2016. This means that SWN Autostrom customers can use a Germany-wide network of e-charging stations.

gcm: Thank you very much, Mr. Wisdom.


Interview from December 2018 / regional energy supplier: Stadtwerke Neumünster.

Contact person Dietmar Hirsch / Project Manager Sales Energy Services

Cover picture: Contact person Dietmar Hirsch / Project Manager Sales Energy Services / Copyright Stadtwerke Neumünster

Detailed information in the winter 2019 edition of green car magazine. Subscription under

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