EV charging stations set to become more reliable and accessible under new UK law

  • The UK government has passed through the ‘Public Charge Point Regulations 2023’ to regulate EV charging stations
  • They must now meet a mandatory 99% reliability rate, and offer the option of contactless payments
  • Regulations will come into effect over the next two years

What are the new public EV charging station rules?

The British government has published the long-awaited regulations surrounding public charging points within the country. The news comes just after a new report shows a surge in demand for ultra-rapid charge points.

One of the stand-out points is enforcement of a high reliability rate – specifically, over a calendar year, operator points must be running 99% of the time. Charging point operators have one year to comply with this new stringent standard. All operators will also need to have helplines available 24/7.

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These regulations also enforce contactless payments on new and existing public charging points, within a year of the rules coming into force. This will save the headache of having to download multiple charging apps. Many operators, such as BP Pulse and InstaVolt, already meet these regulations and offer contactless payment for non-members, but others still remain specific app-only.

However, it’s worth noting that these contactless payment rules will not apply to chargers under 8kW. Operators also have two years to ensure that EV roaming is in place, allowing consumers to pay with their chosen charging operator on EV charging stations from third party operators.

The law also enforces clarity on pricing, as well as open data sharing. Price must be shown in pence per kWh on charging points, while to-the-minute data must be made freely available to show charger availability.

What does it mean for the UK electric car experience?

The 99% reliability rate, combined with a 24/7 helpline, should help quell fears of being stranded at a broken chargepoint. Plus, the requirement for contactless payment without the use of apps should help more consumers make the switch to electric, ahead of the 2030 ICE ban.

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