Virginia-Based Builders to Make “EV-Ready” Garages a Standard Feature on New Homes

4 years ago by Eric Loveday 26

Where's My "EV-Ready" Garage?  Oh...That's Right...I Didn't Chose Capital City Builders...Whoops

Where’s My “EV-Ready” Garage? Oh…That’s Right…I Didn’t Chose Capital City Builders…Whoops

A northern Virginia based construction company that goes by the name of Capital City Builders, LLC says that its new “EV-Ready Garage” initiative will ensure that all of its future new home builds will be pre-wired for plug-in vehicles.

Capital City Builders Makes Standard "EV-Ready" Garages

Capital City Builders Makes Standard “EV-Ready” Garages

Capital City Builders says that, from here on out, all garages of homes that it builds will be pre-wire with a 240-volt line and an outlet.

This is now a standard building option, according to Capital City.

Here’s the company’s statement:

“Capital City Builders, LLC, a leader in luxury homes in the Northern Virginia area, has always strived to stay ahead of customer demands.  Managing Partner Ali Khazai believes that electric cars are here to stay. The close-in suburbs of the Nation’s Capital are ideally suited for “electric commuting”.  Expecting consumer demand for high voltage plugs in the garage to sky rocket in the next year, Capital City Builders, LLC has decided to make EV-Ready Garages a standard option.  “As a small family owned business I remember when my father first made air conditioning a standard feature.  Several years ago we made Cat6 a standard feature for data and voice and now we are adding these 240 volt outlets in the garage.  It may be viewed as crazy now but in a few years it will be as standard as the garbage disposal.”

We sure hope that the rest of the nation’s new home builders soon follow the lead of Capital City by making all new construction homes EV-ready.

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26 responses to "Virginia-Based Builders to Make “EV-Ready” Garages a Standard Feature on New Homes"

  1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

    There are always some people ahead of the curve. Just make sure it supports high amperage for the Model S or Gen 3. 😉

    1. GeorgeS says:

      That’s what I wondered. The devils in the details. My guess is all they do is put in a 20 amp breaker and call it good. After all how much does it cost for piss ant little 12 gauge wire,,not much. 3.3 kw is probably all you get….ah but you can upgrade for just a little bit more. You want how many amps?? 100 amps holy sh*t Sherlock.

      1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

        Presumably you should be able to spec what amperage you want available and that would dictate the gauge of wiring they install. IIRC you can do up to 50A/240V in 2 breaker panel slots, while my 60A required 3 (and I have a 70A for the heat pump that also takes up 3). If you want 100A for a charger, I reckon you should have at least 300A service. I have 200A service and a 60A charger, which worksforme since I mostly charge at night and don’t cook or blast AC/heat at night.

  2. Pam84 says:

    Too bad Virginia is a big coal burning state.

    Plugging a vehicle into one of these “EV-Ready” garages means that 1/3 of your commute will be powered by coal, 1/3 by nuclear, and 1/3 by natural gas. Wind and solar and other clean sources are nominal.

    Having a 240V outlet in your garage that’s tied to a coal-fired plant is not a green solution.

    1. GuyMan says:

      Two words: Solar Panels

      1. Nelson says:

        That should have been the first standard for a luxury home builder.

        NPNS!
        Volt#671

      2. GeorgeS says:

        with battery back up.

    2. Aaron says:

      Many of the old coal-fired electric plants in Virginia are moving to natural gas. The mix will be better within the next year.

      http://www.elp.com/articles/2013/09/virginia-electric-and-power-coal-plant-to-convert-to-natural-gas.html

      Of course, having a solar array on your house is the best solution.

      1. Pam84 says:

        The “EV Ready” garage is still reliant on non-renewable, carbon-based fossil fuels.

        The builder advertises he’s being “green” but we all know unless that 240V outlet in the “Ev Ready” garage is connected to solar or wind, the EV in Virginia is being powered by Coal, Nuclear and Nat Gas.

        1. ItsNotAboutTheMoney says:

          And if there were 100% renewable electricity in order to use it you’d want a hook-up in the garage, which is more efficient to have pre-built than retrofitted and thus is green.

          I hate stupid trolls. At least Intelligent trolls make you think somewhat deeply.

    3. Anderlan says:

      Power is cheaper at night. WHY? Think about it. Try thinking at all.

      So much inefficiency to be wrung out of the energy system. And EVs take a chunk out of each one.

      I can drive in an EV plugged in at night off of carbon emissions that would have been wasted anyway. Carbon free driving.

      1. Assaf says:

        Absolutely. And by the time most of these outlets will be used, the coal fraction of Virginia’s power will likely be quite a bit smaller.

        What’s your deal, Pam84? The “coal cars” canard is getting old and expired.

    4. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

      So? EVs can/will get cleaner as they age, while conventionally-fueled vehicles won’t. I wouldn’t let concerns about coal stop me from getting an EV of any power level, since in comparison with a comparable conventional car of equal performance it will end up being cleaner.

      Plus, as others have mentioned, solar.

    5. scott moore says:

      Like that is the only reason to move out of virgina…

    6. Marc Lee says:

      In Virginia the power is split

      34.9% coal 23.3% nat gas 36.4% Nuclear 2.1% renewables.

      However off peak and overnight the portion of nuclear generated energy can go over 50%.

      And of course there is the solar panel option, but Dominion had the rules written very much in their favor.

  3. GeorgeS says:

    Nice touch on the photo Eric!!

  4. Ocean Railroader says:

    I had a 220 volt 30 amp plug added to my garage that is used to feed a 6 kilowatt heater and what is cool about it is if I ever get a EV I can use it to power it up in that the heater and a EV would both be heavy power drinkers and this plug is ready for them.

    1. Dr. Kenneth Noisewater says:

      Lots of homes also have 30A circuits with plugs in the garage for clothes dryers that could be used for a pigtail’d EVSE. A house I rented actually had an unused 30A dryer circuit since it also had a gas line, and I’d have used that except that it was an older 3-prong style without a ground and I didn’t want to bother my landlord for an upgrade.

  5. philba says:

    Wow, I’m dismayed by the negative and outdated attitudes towards this idea. Get an ICE and it will never be cleaner than the day you bring it home. Get an EV and you ride the footprint of your utility. As has been said, coal power gen is moving to NG which is cleaner. Nuclear is a lot cleaner (even when you factor in spills and leaks). Off peak charging is, of course, a positive thing though perhaps should be called “less bad” in that it doesn’t drive building new power plants. Solar power is great but simply won’t make much contribution.

    On the size of the circuit. 40 Amp 240 VAC is fairly common and is very reasonable for overnight charging. 6kWh or more will keep most EVs (even a Tesla Model S) full on an overnight charge. (Yeah, if you bring your 85kWh Model S home with 0% SOC it will take about 14 hours to charge but that’s an extreme case.)

  6. miimura says:

    I like how he mentioned they made Cat6 standard and now EV-Ready. I’m sure I spent more money during my new home construction on my structured wiring (Cat6 & RG-6) than I did the two NEMA 14-50 outlets in the garage.

  7. KenZ says:

    My only disagreement would be “standard as a garbage disposal.” Those times have changed; we’re remodeling our kitchen next month, and a garbage disposal is explicitly not going in, nor is it necessary due to mandatory and frankly not particularly onerous city composting. Why pay a couple hundred bucks for an antiquated concept?

  8. Rick says:

    This is how it should be done. The industry sees the need, and provides for it. Not the government saying it’s necessary for every house to be built that way.

  9. MDEV says:

    Yeah right I live in Arlington VA, they required for condos commercial standards for 220V outlet. This push the price up to around $5000 to $7000 just for the power outlet installed in the garage if the requirements were as residential (Like the rest of the state counties) the average price could be $1500 to $2500. This is a nice way to denied access to EVs in Virginia.

    1. miimura says:

      Are you talking about installing a charging station in a condo common area, or an area under your exclusive control? If you are trying to install in the common area, I think there is some logic to applying commercial standards instead of residential. Although, I question what the real difference is.

  10. Bill Howland says:

    Well, they did say “Luxury Homes” so I’d assume this means they have a 200 amp main service, and, currently, a 50 amp circuit to the garage will provide power for all the basic model s’s and x’s and also the toyotarav4ev.

    The only “non-optional” car where this would not be 100% of the need would be the Tesla Roadster which comes standard with 70 amp capacity. But suffering along at 40 amps is certainly tolerable.

    Let’s see… $10 range outlet, 50 feet of #6 Aluminum SEU at $1/ foot, and a $15 double pole breaker. Plus a few big staples and some labor.

    Big bang for little bucks!!