Can I charge my electric car for free?

Driving by the power of sunshine...

What is a solar charger?

zappi is the world’s first solar charger, invented by Robin Richard and Lee Sutton, introduced pioneering technology, greatly influencing many similar products that followed. zappi works with our without solar panels (PV), but for those with them installed, it can harness the power of the sun. You will be able to utilise the various ECO settings, which will allow you to use self-generated energy, to charge your electric vehicle.

Solar is transforming the prospects of the transportation industry for which railroads, subways, buses, planes, cars and even roads can utilise this amazing technology to both save money and better the planet. It’s a ‘win win’ solution.


How does a solar charger work?

Charge your EV, with your PV…

The amount of electricity solar panels produce is constantly fluctuating depending on the quality, brightness and length of daylight available. There is a misconception that solar panels require direct sunlight, and although they would naturally work better when the sun is gleaming and the sky is blue, solar panels are more reliant on the photons present in natural daylight, which means even on an overcast day at the height of spring and summer, you’d expect an ample level of generation.

In fact, we tend to spend more time outside in the summer and use far less electricity, for which there tends to be a large amount of surplus energy generated. In most cases that surplus energy is pumped back into the grid and somebody else would utilise that extra power you’ve generated, however, if you have a diverter such as the eddi and an eco-smart car charger such as the zappi, you are able to utilise this surplus energy by instead diverting it into charging your electric vehicle.

Products featured in this guide to solar chargers

Use surplus energy to charge your car for free

The zappi is clever enough to communicate with your PV system via a little device called harvi, which acts as a messenger by sensing and communicating import and export data to other myenergi devices. Those devices can then shout “hang on, don’t fire my excess energy back out to the grid, i’ll use it instead”. zappi happens to use this surplus energy to charge your vehicle whereas eddi, would use it to instead heat your water. How the energy is used by the zappi is determined by your requirements and preference, via the mode you select.

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Do I need solar panels for zappi to work?

No, zappi also works as a stand-alone plug and go charger. If you select Fast Mode, the zappi will simply charge at the fastest rate whenever the vehicle is plugged in and will only stop charging when the battery is full. However, zappi is an eco-smart, solar charger because it is compatible with all Solar PV systems and wind turbines, to be able to utilise green energy.

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