Can you leave an electric car charging overnight?

You can and should charge overnight when possible


There is absolutely no harm in leaving an electric car charging overnight. In fact, most people charge overnight to make use of cheap nightly rates with an EV tariff.

Most people should charge overnight to access cheaper energy prices (providing they have a dual-rate tariff) and to reduce peak demand on the grid.

Charging overnight is also the most convenient way to charge. Plug in > go to sleep > wake up with a full battery. Simples!

Are there any safety concerns?

Charging at night is no more dangerous than charging during the day. The only difference is the sun isn’t shining on our side of the planet.

The only potential danger is vandalism and cable theft, which is more likely at night, just as most crimes are. But really, it isn’t a big problem.

Having said that, charging an electric car overnight is not safe if you use an extension lead unless the extension lead is rated for electric vehicles. If you do use a granny charger, make sure the 3-pin socket is also in good condition.

How to charge an electric car overnight

Not only can you charge an electric car overnight, but you should aim to do so to access cheaper energy prices.

However, there is a right way to go about it:

  • If you are using a smart charger, just set a schedule. Schedule a charging session for a time range, plug in, and leave your car and charger to do its thing.
  • If you are using a 3-pin socket, Commando socket or a dumb charger, schedule the session in your vehicle or use your vehicle companion app.

Your charger/socket will stop the charging session when commanded to do so, such as when your battery reaches a certain percentage.

We recommend setting your car to stop charging when it reaches 80% SoC (the level of charge relative to its capacity).

80% SoC is the sweet spot to preserve battery lifespan. EV batteries do degrade, but they do so far slower when charge cycles are optimal.


It is absolutely safe to charge an electric car overnight and it is also safe to leave an electric car plugged in well after the session is over.

Charging at night is worthwhile for convenience and to save money if you have a dual-rate EV tariff. It will also reduce peak demand on the grid.

Image: Myenergi.

Alfred drives a Tesla Model 3 Standard Range Plus but has his eye on a fully-electric pick-up truck. He'd love an electric Ford Ranger, which should be a real thing in a few years!