Publicly accessible charge points that make up the Source West network, are operated by Charge Your Car. Charging sessions can be started and stopped, using the following access methods:
- Charge Your Car access card: registration and purchase required via Charge Your Car website: www.chargeyourcar.org.uk – choose ‘EV driver’ and then ‘How it works’ for instructions.
- Charge Your Car mobile app: free to download from App Store (Apple iOS) and the Google Play Store (Android). Registration required.
- Charge Your Car automated telephone line: no registration required. Please refer to information stickers on charge points for instructions.
Regardless of which Charge Your Car access method is used, if a tariff is in force at a charge point, the relevant tariff will be payable by the user.
If you should have any queries, please contact the Charge Your Car helpdesk on 01912 650 500.
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You can also use our journey planner to see charge points available in the vicinity of your journey. Note that the journey planner will show charge points for all suppliers in the West of England area (Bristol, South Gloucestershire, North Somerset and Bath and North East Somerset). For more information on charging networks, please see our FAQs.
- Bristol’s first on-street electric vehicle charging points are currently being trialled. They will be used by Co-Wheels Car Club to charge their new electric vehicles.
- Subject to Highway Authority approval, from autumn 2018 the first public charging points and additional car club bays will be installed in Bristol, with a bigger roll out within the West of England area to follow.
Electric Nation also provides charging points to a limited number of households, to try to evaluate the effect of electric vehicles on the power grid. If you join the scheme, they cover the cost of installation. You can check if you’re eligible on Electric Nation’s website.
If you’re interested in grants for business, please see our business pages.
Do all charge points charge all types of electric vehicle?Different models of EVs connect with charge points using 2 types of charging cable connector. ‘Tethered’ charge points are pre-fitted with permanent charging cables. Untethered charge points do not have pre-fitted cables; instead the driver uses their own charging cables provided with their vehicle. A useful guide to connectors and how they vary by type of charger can be found on the Zap-map website.
How much does it cost to run an electric vehicle?You can fuel an electric car from just 2p per mile – much cheaper than the 10-12p per mile it costs to fuel a petrol or diesel car. If you charge at home overnight you can take advantage of off-peak electricity prices to make further savings on fuel. Costs for using public charge points vary by provider, just as it does with petrol stations. As an example, it costs £6 for a 30 minute rapid charge at one of Ecotricity’s charge points, enough to charge a pure electric car to 80% - from nearly empty, that’s much cheaper than filling up a petrol or diesel car. Electric cars currently pay no car tax and no fuel duty (for fully electric cars).
What’s the difference between all the types of charging points?There are three types of charger – rapid, fast and standard:
- Rapid: charges to 80% in 30 minutes. Perfect if you’re in a rush, or on a motorway journey. 50 kW for DC units (400V /125A) or 43 kW for AC chargers.
- Fast: charges your car in about 4 hours. Perfect while you’re at work, at a Park & Ride, doing the weekly shop, or going to a restaurant or cinema. 7 kW AC charger (32A).
- Standard: charges your car in about 6 hours. Perfect for charging overnight at home. 3kW AC charger (13A).
Can someone unplug my car while it’s charging?No. Charging cables lock in place when you start to charge, and can only be unlocked by you once you finish using the charge point.
Do I need lots of different charging cables?No. Your electric car will come with a charging cable which allows you to charge at home and at public chargers. Rapid chargers work slightly differently – they have their own cable which you can use, a bit like a petrol pump. Some cars also come with a cable that can plug into a normal 3-pin socket – this isn’t recommended for everyday use, but can be useful as a back-up.
Do I need to sign up to multiple charging networks?It depends on where you intend to travel using your electric vehicle, and whether you mainly use it locally or nationally. If you intend to mainly charge from home, then you might not need to consider joining a public charging network at all. However, if you think you will need to charge away from home, then you will need to consider which network(s) would be suitable. Find out more information on Zap-map.
How do I get a charge point for my business?The government offers grants to provide support towards the up-front costs of the purchase and installation of electric vehicle charge-points, for eligible businesses, charities and public sector organisations. Workplaces can apply for vouchers and get more information on the gov.uk website.
What is Source West?Source West is a charging point network covering the West of England region (Bristol, South Gloucestershire, North Somerset and Bath and North East Somerset). It was funded by Bristol City Council through the UK’s Local Sustainable Transport Fund (LSTF) and aims to promote electric vehicles throughout the South West. The project was also partially funded under the ICT Policy Support Programme (ICT PSP) as part of the Competitiveness and Innovation Framework Programme by the European Community.
Can I plug in an electric vehicle and trail the cable up to a property over the pavement?No. Anything which causes a potential obstruction or trip hazard is not permitted.
Can someone unplug my car while it is charging?No. Charging cables lock in place when you start to charge, and can only be unlocked by you once you finish using the chargepoint.