Two women walking through the front door of a brown brick house with a dark blue car in the driveway being charged by a Hive EV Charger attached to the wall

The smarter way to charge your EV

Exclusive to Hive EV Charging and British Gas, SmartCharge automatically schedules your charging so you’re never paying more than you need to. And when you pair it with the British Gas EV Driver tariff, it’s the cheapest way to charge in the UK.

Introducing our first-ever intelligent scheduling tool

How SmartCharge works

Part of the British Gas PeakSave family, SmartCharge gives you cheaper, greener energy by scheduling your EV to charge when the grid is quiet. Just say when you need your car charged by – and the Hive app does the rest. Our clever software works out the best times to charge, then calculates your savings and takes them off your British Gas energy bill. Simple.

Dark blue car sitting in the driveway in front of a brown brick house with a Hive EV Charger attached to the wall of the house and a cable from the charger plugged into the car

It’s easy to SmartCharge

Go to the scheduling page on your Hive app, select SmartCharge and follow the instructions. Then leave your electric car plugged in whenever you’re at home. That’s all you need to do. With SmartCharge, the Hive app automatically does all the hard work for you. And best of all, the money-saving service is completely free.

How much will you save?

The longer your car is plugged in, the more opportunities we have to charge your car with cheaper electricity. Stay plugged in for less than 6 hours and your credit saving will be 2p per kWh but plug in continuously for over 6 hours and all your charging will get a 4p per kWh credit saving. If you are on a 'Time of Use' tariff, we'll prioritise charging your car during your 'Off Peak' window.

Get the UK’s lowest EV charging rate² when you combine the British Gas Electric Driver Tariff, your Hive EV charger and SmartCharge which could give you an equivalent of paying just 3.9p/kWh.

Why SmartCharge is greener

SmartCharge doesn’t just save you money, it also helps the environment. That’s because when the electricity grid is quiet, more of the energy that’s available is generated from renewable sources like wind and solar. Using SmartCharge means you’re more likely to be using more of this greener energy for your EV charging.

Ready to get going with SmartCharge now?

To use our new intelligent scheduling feature straight away, you’ll need:

  • A smart meter

  • A British Gas electricity account

  • Hive SmartCharge is currently supported for our Alfen S-Line and EO Mini Pro 3 EV Chargers.

Got all three? Great – just enable SmartCharge scheduling in your Hive app to unlock the benefits.

Dark blue car sitting in the driveway in front of a brown brick house with a Hive EV Charger attached to the wall of the house and a cable from the charger plugged into the car

Beta feature

The new SmartCharge service is currently available as a ‘beta feature’, which means we are working hard in the background to ensure all features are developed. The full service is still in development and will be launched to a wider range of EV charging customers soon.

SmartCharge is just one of the clever innovations that will shape the energy system of the future. Want to learn more about Intelligent Energy Management?

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Smartphone lying down showing EV charging controls on the Hive app, on a white background Smartphone lying down showing EV charging controls on the Hive app, on a white background

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Scheduling SmartCharge FAQs
Does SmartCharge work with my other charging schedules?

No, SmartCharge doesn’t work alongside the other schedule settings in the Hive app. You get the best rate by plugging in and letting Hive choose when you charge with SmartCharge, rather than setting your own schedule. If you have set any other EV charging schedules in different apps, it’s best to disable them to benefit from SmartCharge.

Can I override my schedule?

Yes, although SmartCharge does all the work for you, you still have flexibility in the way you want to charge your car. However, if you do decide to override, you would miss out on any SmartCharge credit for that transaction.

Do I need to charge overnight to get the benefit of SmartCharge?

Not at all! Some electricity tariffs give you cheaper electricity if you charge overnight, but with SmartCharge we want to give you the cheapest charging, whatever time of day you charge. Just plug in, set when you need your car charged by and let SmartCharge take care of the rest.

Why do I need to plug in for 6 hours or more to receive the greatest discount for SmartCharge?

SmartCharge works by picking the cheapest and greenest times for you to charge, which is when the grid is quiet. Depending on the time of day, it could just be a few minutes here and there, or a stretch of a few hours at a time. So plugging in for more than 6 hours helps to give us enough time to find enough optimum charging opportunities to have your car ready for when you need it.

But we understand that there will be times when you’re not able to leave your EV plugged in for such a long stretch, so SmartCharge will give you a discount of 4p/kWh if you’re plugged in for more than 6 hours. You’ll receive a discount of 2p/kWh if you’re plugged in for less than 6 hours.

Can I opt out of SmartCharge completely?

Yes, if you feel that you no longer want to use SmartCharge, you have the option to completely disable the beta feature and you can then begin to use the other schedule settings as normal.

Car charging FAQs
If I have two EVs and only one charger, can they both benefit from SmartCharge?

This will depend on your circumstances and when you need each car charged by. If you have enough time to plug both cars in for over 6 hours each before you next need them, then they can both benefit from SmartCharge. If you don’t, then we recommend overriding the schedule for the first car to charge continuously, and then plugging the second in for at least 6 hours to benefit from SmartCharge.

But we’re working on improving SmartCharge and making it easier for two EV households to benefit from it.

What if I have a hybrid - don't I miss out on the better rate?

No – the beauty of SmartCharge is that you benefit from the amount of time you’re plugged in, rather than the time spent actually charging. Even if your car only needs to be charged for 30 minutes, it will still benefit from a discount of 4p/kWh for that charging if it’s plugged in for over 6 hours.

Which chargers does SmartCharge work with?

SmartCharge is currently compatible with Hive’s Alfen S Line Charger and EO Mini Pro 3 Chargers.

Who is in control of charging my car?

You’re always in control of your charging. You decide when you want your car ready by and leave SmartCharge to choose the cheapest and greenest times to charge. And if plans change and you need your car sooner, just select ‘override SmartCharge’ on the Hive app to switch to continuous charging at any time.

Does SmartCharge affect the health of my battery?

No, the impact of SmartCharge is the same as regular charging.

Why is the car not SmartCharging?

There may be circumstances where SmartCharge is not working optimally. This could be due to a variety of factors. Some things to watch out for are:

  1. Connectivity issues with your charger. This could be due to location, hardware or software issues. Please ensure connectivity is strong when charging.

  2. Something else might be causing the car to charge (e.g. you have set a specific car schedule). Please ensure these are disabled for SmartCharge to work.

  3. You have disabled the SmartCharge scheduling feature in the schedule settings on the Hive app.

Savings and billing FAQs
How do I use SmartCharge in the most beneficial way?

Instead of only plugging in your EV when you need to charge it, get into the habit of plugging it in whenever you’re not using it and try to leave it plugged in for at least 6 hours to get the best discount. Remember, you’re not paying for the whole time you’re plugged in, just for when you’re actively charging.

How do SmartCharge credits work and where will I see it?

You can see all your SmartCharging in the Hive app, which you can see by transaction, month, and year. It will appear as a "SmartCharge PeakSave" credit on your British Gas Electricity Bill. The credit will be based on your previous charging so there may be a delay to the credit appearing on your bill.

Does SmartCharge work with time of use tariffs?

Yes, SmartCharge works with both single rate and time of use tariffs. For customers on a time of use tariff, please note that the current discount of 4p/kWh or 2p/kWh is a limited time offer for choosing to be part of Hive EV SmartCharge.

[1] By managing your charger with Hive SmartCharge we’ll give you a credit each month with money back directly on your British Gas bill.
[2] Based on electricity prices correct as of 24/05/2024. When you plug in your EV for 6 hours or more covering the period of 12am to 5am, you’ll qualify for a 4p credit towards your EV tariff night rate of 7.9p/kWh for all electrical consumption. 4p/kWh credit also applies at any other time of day on any other British Gas electricity tariff if your EV is left plugged in for 6 hours or more.
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