But why you need one might not be so obvious. And finding out is important; to power an electric vehicle charger, your home will need enough electrical capacity.
All homes have an electric panel with breaker switches. Condos and apartments, also known as multi-unit residential buildings (MURBs), will have an electrical panel for each unit, and often only one more panel for lights and outlets in shared spaces, like a hallway. These panels commonly have a limit of 100 amps, sometimes 200 amps. This means that all of the electronics and appliances that you have running in your home must draw power less than the maximum number of amps your panel can afford, or else a breaker will trip, or an electrical connection will overheat.
A typical charger, which is a high-draw electronic, adds anywhere between 30 to 60 amps to your panel, which is a 30 to 60% increase in an energy need. This is why most panels cannot afford to have electric vehicle charging equipment added directly to them.
And while this might sound like a problem: it’s not. There is no need to upgrade your panel.