nhasian
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2018 8:57 pm

Time for a level 2 charger. Suggestions?

Thu May 23, 2019 9:37 pm

I've had my 2018 Chevy Bolt for a year now and I've been happily charging it with the cable it came with in my garage. Now my roommate just bought a Chevy Volt and that forces my hand to buy a level 2 charger as we both cannot charge our vehicles at the same time during off-peak hours. A couple of questions:



What brand/model of L2 charger is recommended to buy or avoid?

What guage of wire to use to add a 220 volt outlet to our garage?

Any advice on finding an electrician to install a level 2 charger?

theothertom
Posts: 46
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2018 4:13 pm

Re: Time for a level 2 charger. Suggestions?

Fri May 24, 2019 2:00 am

You'll get a lot of recommendations on brand, so I'll let others chime in (or you can search this and other forums). One of the important things to decide is the amps of the "charger" (technically an EVSE...the charger is in the car). The Bolt will take a max of 32 amps at 240 Volts. Anything more than that is future proofing.
Your electrician can tell you what gauge wire to use. It's based on current, not voltage.

JoeS
Posts: 29
Joined: Mon Jun 19, 2017 3:14 am
Location: Los Altos Hills, CA

Re: Time for a level 2 charger. Suggestions?

Fri May 24, 2019 11:28 am

My preference would be to install a NEMA 14-50 outlet and plug the EVSE into it, so you can also take that EVSE with you on road trips. I'm partial to EVSEs in which you can easily adjust the current, because there are times when you need to 'dial-down' the car's current draw. Remember, steady-state current draw must not exceed 80% of an outlet's rating.

SparkE
Moderator
Posts: 1078
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2016 5:53 am
Location: SF Bay Area

Re: Time for a level 2 charger. Suggestions?

Fri May 24, 2019 4:08 pm

If you go to google.com and type :

EVSE recommend site:www.mychevybolt.com

you will get a list of threads where people have asked for EVSE recommendations over the years, on this site. (there are quite a few)

Also, the default OEM EVSE that came with the car is capable of 240V operation. If you make a 'pigtail' (very short, 12" 'extension cord' whose purpose is to make one type of electric socket available to a different type of plug, sort of a 'socket converter') you can plug the standard Bolt EVSE into a 240V socket and charge at 12 amps (12*240 = 2.8 kW), which is *at least* twice as fast as at 120V (depending on whether your car settings are at 8amps or 12A for 120V)

SparkE
Moderator
Posts: 1078
Joined: Sun Sep 11, 2016 5:53 am
Location: SF Bay Area

Re: Time for a level 2 charger. Suggestions?

Fri May 24, 2019 4:25 pm

Oh, look, an active thread with recent posts about using the standard EVSE on 240V :

viewtopic.php?p=33738#p33738

nhasian
Posts: 2
Joined: Fri Mar 02, 2018 8:57 pm

Re: Time for a level 2 charger. Suggestions?

Fri May 24, 2019 11:02 pm

Whoa that is excellent news. So I wouldn't have to invest in an expensive home EV charger? If I understand you correctly, All I would need is to install a NEMA 6-50 outlet in my garage connected to a 40 Amp breaker and then just get this adaptor for my existing charging cord? Where can I get one of these adapters?

EDIT: Is this what you are talking about?

https://www.walmart.com/ip/AC-WORKS-L14 ... /965695952


SparkE wrote:If you go to google.com and type :

EVSE recommend site:www.mychevybolt.com

you will get a list of threads where people have asked for EVSE recommendations over the years, on this site. (there are quite a few)

Also, the default OEM EVSE that came with the car is capable of 240V operation. If you make a 'pigtail' (very short, 12" 'extension cord' whose purpose is to make one type of electric socket available to a different type of plug, sort of a 'socket converter') you can plug the standard Bolt EVSE into a 240V socket and charge at 12 amps (12*240 = 2.8 kW), which is *at least* twice as fast as at 120V (depending on whether your car settings are at 8amps or 12A for 120V)

theothertom
Posts: 46
Joined: Wed Sep 19, 2018 4:13 pm

Re: Time for a level 2 charger. Suggestions?

Sat May 25, 2019 12:07 am

nhasian wrote:Whoa that is excellent news. So I wouldn't have to invest in an expensive home EV charger? If I understand you correctly, All I would need is to install a NEMA 6-50 outlet in my garage connected to a 40 Amp breaker and then just get this adaptor for my existing charging cord? Where can I get one of these adapters?

I suggest you examine your charging needs. How many miles do you drive a day, how often do you want to charge, and how long do you mind charging?
Note that the supplied "charger", when plugged into 240 volts, charges at 2.8kW, or about 11 miles per hour. A 32 amp L2 charger will charge around 25-30 miles per hour.
It all depends on what you want.

RichCapeCod
Posts: 16
Joined: Sat Sep 30, 2017 1:42 pm

Re: Time for a level 2 charger. Suggestions?

Sun May 26, 2019 4:04 am

I use the factory OEM charger, with the "pigtail" attachment. Very happy with the result.

I use a garden hose holder to keep the charge end out of the rain.
Image

I had to use a dremel tool to relieve a bit of plastic to make way for the electric wire.
Image

Rich

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