40 vs. 48 Amp EV Charger: What’s Better?

As electric vehicles continue to gain popularity, many EV owners are looking to optimize their home charging setup for maximum convenience and efficiency. One of the key decisions to make is whether to install a 40-amp or a 48-amp EV charger.

While the choice may seem straightforward, it’s essential to understand the nuances and implications of this decision. In this article, we will explore the differences between 40-amp and 48-amp EV chargers, helping you make an informed choice for your EV charging needs.

Understanding Amperage and Charging Rates

Before delving into the specifics, it’s important to grasp the basics. Amperage, typically expressed as “amps,” is a unit of electrical current. In the context of EV charging, it directly correlates to the charging rate – how fast your EV’s battery will recharge.

  1. 40-Amp EV Charger:
    • A 40-amp EV charger is designed to deliver a charging rate of 40 amps.
    • The charging rate of a 40-amp charger can add up to 36 miles of range to your EV in one hour, depending on the specific model.
  2. 48-Amp EV Charger:
    • A 48-amp EV charger, on the other hand, delivers a charging rate of 48 amps.
    • It can add up to 42 miles of range to your EV in one hour, making it slightly faster than a 40-amp charger.

The Difference in Charging Speed

The primary distinction between a 40-amp and a 48-amp charger is the charging speed. The 48-amp charger is faster, but the difference in speed may not be as substantial as you think. It’s essential to consider your daily driving needs and your charging habits.

If you typically drive around 30 miles per day, both chargers are more than adequate for overnight charging. Charging your EV overnight allows you to take advantage of lower electricity rates during off-peak hours.

Electrical Service Capacity

Another crucial factor to consider when choosing between a 40-amp and 48-amp charger is your home’s electrical service capacity. To install a 48-amp charger, you will need a 60-amp electrical connection. In contrast, a 40-amp charger requires a 50-amp connection.

If your home’s electrical service can support a 60-amp connection without overloading the system, then opting for a 48-amp charger is a viable choice. However, it’s essential to consult with a qualified electrician to ensure your electrical panel can accommodate the increased load.

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Future-Proofing Your Charging Setup

Thinking about your long-term needs is a prudent approach when deciding between a 40-amp and a 48-amp EV charger. Consider the following scenarios:

  1. Additional EVs: If you plan to add more electric vehicles to your household in the future, having a 60-amp circuit for a 48-amp charger can be advantageous. Modern EV charging stations often allow you to adjust the charging rate, so you can allocate power efficiently, even with multiple EVs.
  2. Electrical Service Upgrade: If you foresee upgrading your home’s electrical service in the future, having a 60-amp connection to your EV charger may save you from rewiring and additional installation costs.

Also read: EV Battery in Hot Temperature: 5 Things to Know

Choosing the Right Wire

Regardless of whether you opt for a 40-amp or 48-amp charger, it’s crucial to use the appropriate electrical wire. The wire must be rated to handle the chosen amperage safely and efficiently.

For a 40-amp charger, you’ll need wiring rated for 50 amps, while a 48-amp charger necessitates wiring rated for 60 amps.

Changing the Charging Rate on Your EV

Many EVs allow you to adjust the charging rate within the vehicle’s settings. If you choose a 48-amp charger but want to charge more slowly for efficiency, you can adjust the charging rate to 40 amps or lower.

This flexibility enables you to adapt your charging to your specific needs and power constraints.


Deciding between a 40-amp and a 48-amp EV charger ultimately depends on your daily driving habits, your home’s electrical capacity, and your long-term plans. Both options offer efficient charging for most EV owners, and you can always adjust the charging rate to suit your needs.

While a 48-amp charger may provide a slightly faster charging speed, a 40-amp charger remains a practical and cost-effective choice. If you have the electrical capacity for a 48-amp charger and anticipate future EV additions, it’s a worthwhile investment.

Whichever option you select, consult with a qualified electrician to ensure a safe and reliable installation, and enjoy the convenience of home EV charging tailored to your preferences