I live in Britain and am considering purchasing an Electric Vehicle, EV; likely the second generation Nissan Leaf. I intend to install a home EV charger at my property, however friends and family do not yet have one. I understand that charging EVs from a normal UK mains socket takes 8 or more hours, which is a little slow!

Is it possible to plug an EV into two UK mains sockets to reduce this time? If not, is there any way to reduce the charge time without a dedicated EV charger?


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    $\begingroup$ What does your electricity supply company offer? Have you asked? Because what you suggest won't work. $\endgroup$
    – Solar Mike
    Jun 1, 2021 at 10:52
  • $\begingroup$ Fair enough! I will be sorted for charging at home, it's when I visit friends and family that I need a better solution. They do not have anything in place and I don't really want to buy them all EV chargers for their birthdays! $\endgroup$ Jun 1, 2021 at 11:17
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    $\begingroup$ I agree with Pete W that Home Improvement and Motor Vehicle Maintenance & Repair may be better suited to this question. But one thing to consider is how far you need to drive to get to your family and friends. That 8+ hours figure is for charging batteries from 0 to 100%, I believe. Unless your trips are at the very limit of the car's range, you won't need to go from 0 to 100% charge, but from 20 to 80%, for example. And given that the speed at which batteries charge is inversely proportional to charge (quickly when empty, slowly when full), you'll likely get the necessary charge in significantly less than 8 hours. $\endgroup$
    – Wasabi
    Jun 1, 2021 at 12:57
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    $\begingroup$ @PeteW The standard UK residential socket is 230V 13A (i.e. 3kW). A 5W LED bedside lamp uses the same type of socket as a 3kW cooker. We don't have the convoluted USA 120V/240V dual voltage system with 57 different sizes of breaker :) $\endgroup$
    – alephzero
    Jun 1, 2021 at 16:42
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    $\begingroup$ @JamesGeddes the EV probably handshakes with the charger, when plugged in, to determine the charging current ... the power cord for a regular receptacle would set the charging current at a low value, regardless of the number of receptacles it is plugged into $\endgroup$
    – jsotola
    Jun 1, 2021 at 17:25

1 Answer 1


As Solar Mike commented, "no." The cable or adapter you have which connects your car to a edited for UK 230VAC by 80A is carefully designed for safety and compatibility. Any attempt to DIY a "Y-cable" is strictly verboten. Now, in round numbers, 200 V * 60 A (continuous) is 12kW, implying that an 80 kWh battery (edit: Nissan Leaf has at most a 62 kWH battery as of 2021) will charge 0 to 100% in roughly 7 hours. Since you're unlikely to be either that low or need to go that high, sufficient charge to get back home may take more like 5 hours.

As a side note to USA-dwellers: Depending on the layout of your destination houses, it might be possible to (with an adapter) connect to a 240VAC socket in use for a clothes dryer, etc.

If you had a car which was designed with 2 parallel charging sockets, then of course you could use two sources. To my knowledge no car in existence does this.

  • $\begingroup$ UK is 230VAC and to get 110 needs a transformer - I have one , a big yellow one. But the standard household supply is single phase 230VAC 50Hz and usually 80A supply fuses. 3 phase can be had but that requires paying extra and having the electricity supply company fit that service. $\endgroup$
    – Solar Mike
    Jun 1, 2021 at 13:04
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    $\begingroup$ There are no 120V sockets in the UK. The rest of the world does not follow US standards. $\endgroup$
    – alephzero
    Jun 1, 2021 at 16:47
  • $\begingroup$ @SolarMike Right, the electrical infrastructure varies a lot country by country. For example in my locale its perfectly normal for each flat to have 2 three phase wallplugs one for the electric cooktop and oven and one for the sauna. Fitted standard in most houses and flats. $\endgroup$
    – joojaa
    Jun 1, 2021 at 19:00
  • $\begingroup$ @joojaa in my country where I live at the moment, all are supplied with 3 phase, just the amperage varies so a little chalet has 25A fuses... then all the sockets can be 3 phase or single with singles coming off different phases for balance. $\endgroup$
    – Solar Mike
    Jun 1, 2021 at 19:10
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    $\begingroup$ @mart - Your thought is correct but most UK houses are wired using ring circuits, one for each floor, so any two sockets you could reach without (e.g.) going upstairs are connected together anyhow. $\endgroup$ May 28 at 13:16

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