Automotive experts at Leasing Options are warning UK drivers that electric car charger thefts could increase amongst the cost-of-living crisis.
This increase in electric vehicles inevitably makes thefts more likely – but add in economic pressures from the cost-of-living crisis and you’ve got the potential for electric thefts to increase tenfold.
EV owners targeted by thieves could find themselves paying up to £700 for a replacement charger
Many scrap and recycling businesses are also receiving more questions regarding electric car chargers – including how much they would pay for one. The scrap value for expensive copper in a cable may be worth around £50 to a thief – but a brand-new replacement could cost the driver around £700.
Mike Thompson, Chief Operating Officer at Leasing Options, explains “Unfortunately, it is relatively straightforward for thieves to take charging cables, especially while they’re on charge. Software experts have also highlighted that some EV chargers had cyber security flaws, which meant they could be accessed remotely to unlock charge points.
“Clearly, this isn’t great news for electric car owners. However, there are some extra steps EV owners can take to protect their electric car charger from being targeted. Including removing the charger from your car at night, installing a dash camera and using a padlock.”
- Charge your vehicle at home, away from street view
While it’s not always possible to charge up at home, this is a great way to minimise thefts. In addition, installing an electric charge point on your property provides extra security from prying eyes. Opt for a charger in a garage or away from street view if you can. This will give you more security and peace of mind.
Padlocks are one of the best ways to deter thieves, and they can be used on cables. In addition, many electric vehicles have a loop to secure your lock in place while it’s charging. In some cases, and depending on the wheels you have, you can loop the cable through the wheel and place the padlock on the cable.
- Use a secure box in your boot
While some cables are stolen from boots when not in use, that’s not to say you shouldn’t use them. Instead, opt for a secure box to store your cable when not in use to make it harder for opportunists.
- Remove the charger from the boot overnight
The boot is the easiest place to store your charger. However, it’s also the most obvious and the first place thieves will look. So, instead of leaving it in your car overnight, remove it and store it securely inside until you need it again. It might be a little inconvenient, but it’ll save the cost of an expensive replacement.
- Install a dash camera
Dash cameras aren’t just great for extra reassurance on the road – they can be a great deterrent for unwanted attention while you’re parked up. Opt for cameras that work while the car is off and charging, so it films any nearby contact with your vehicle. While it might not stop someone from stealing the cable, you might get a good look at the perpetrator, which is helpful for the police.
- CCTV at home
Electric car charger thefts happen while people are out and about and at home. So, install CCTV near the charging area for extra peace of mind. This can help identify unwanted guests but may also deter them from taking your charger.