Last Updated on May 30, 2023 by Rose Morah
If you’re living in a flat, terrace, or townhouse this means you don’t have the driveway to set up an EV charger.
Additionally, the high probability is that your only charging option is an electric car charging cable across the pavement (public sidewalk).
Apparently, this is a common EV charging problem faced by many EV owners who don’t own a house.
This article will cover things you need to know before running the EV charging cable across the pavement.
The following are the things to know before running the EV charging cable across the pavement:
- 1. You will need to get approvals first
- 2. Contact the council
- 3. Talk to a local electrician
- 4. Find out the best way to do it
- 5. You are fully liable for any accidents
- 6. Know how often people park on the spot
- 7. Make sure your extension is waterproof
- 8. Use a good-quality cable protector
- 9. You will need to have RCD
- 10. Beware of charging cables theft
1. You will need to get approvals first
Is illegal to permanently run a charging cable across the sidewalk?
If the pavement is not on your property then you will definitely need to get approvals depending on where you’re located.
For example, if you are from the UK, you will need to get the council’s approval. And if you live in the US, you may also need to check the States guidelines for running cables across the public sidewalk.
Additionally, if the pavement is not under public property then you will need to get the HOA’s (Home Owner Association) approval.
Installing permanent cables across the pavement without approvals may land you in legal battles.
2. Contact the council
If you live in the UK, I would highly recommend contacting the council to find out if the road will be installed with charging points.
This will save you the headache of having to run cables across the pavement to charge your EV.
For instance, Wandsworth, Westminster, and other councils have been installing EV chargers across the streets for EV owners in this situation, by converting the street lamps to charge points.
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3. Talk to a local electrician
I know of people who have gotten the solution to their EV charging problem, and great advice after contacting their local electrician.
Well, for some of these electricians, your situation is not the first that they have dealt with.
They will advise and give you a better way to deal with such a problem because they have the experience.
4. Find out the best way to do it
There are so many online videos that will teach you how to run cables under the pavement/sidewalk.
Finding out the best way to run cables under the pavement is extremely important. This takes us to the next point.
5. You are fully liable for any accidents
You will be fully liable for any accidents caused by the charging cables.
Therefore, you need to find out the best way to run the EV charging cables across the sidewalk, mainly because of safety reasons.
The cables need to be marked and protected to prevent injuries/accidents. This is to prevent people from tripping and also for the sake of the disabled.
N/b: Don’t be surprised to get some people tripping over intentionally for cash reward lawsuits. A majority of EV owners have reported dealing with such people who look for cash in every chance that they can get.
Additionally, if you have installed the charging cables on the pavement permanently, properly marking it is highly recommended.
This is because in case someone comes digging around that area where you installed the cables, they will be aware and thus take precautions.
6. Know how often people park on the spot
Find out how often people park on the spot you plan to convert to be your charging spot.
This applies to EV owners who are charging from the street parking.
You will need to find out how busy it gets and if someone else likes parking on that spot.
This will help you figure out a plan B in case someone parks in your spot.
Otherwise, what do you do when you need to charge but someone has already parked on your spot?
See also: 10 Cheapest EV Home Chargers (Under $500).
7. Make sure your extension is waterproof
Before you run the cables across the pavement, just make sure your charging equipment is waterproof.
8. Use a good-quality cable protector
If your charging cables are going to be temporarily running through the sidewalk, make sure you use a good quality cable protector.
9. You will need to have RCD
RCD is highly recommended for safety reasons because it helps prevent electric shocks.
RCD automatically cut off the electricity supply through the charging cables in case something happens to the wire, thus preventing electric shocks.
10. Beware of charging cables theft
Beware or rather prepared for theft of the charging cables or people looking for free electricity.
Since you will be charging in the streets, you need to take proper security measures.
This is because some passersby will see it as a great opportunity to steal.