GM Volt Forum banner
1 - 20 of 20 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Anyone have a level 2 charger and would you mind telling me the brand and gauge wire the cord is? I am using the factory charger at 240 volts and realized the wire is only 16 gauge. Thanks!
 

·
Moderator
Joined
·
8,680 Posts
I think the most popular brand around here for aftermarket EVSEs is Clipper Creek. I don't have much info on wire gauges, though. Not sure why Voltage would matter - wire guage is normally about current levels, no matter what voltage (insulation matters for Voltage, of course.)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
874 Posts
Anyone have a level 2 charger and would you mind telling me the brand and gauge wire the cord is? I am using the factory charger at 240 volts and realized the wire is only 16 gauge. Thanks!
It's hard to tell without destroying the cord(s), but if I had to guess on my Clipper Creek 16A charger, I'd say that it most likely uses 10-12 AWG wiring. The cord going from the EVSE to the wall is somewhere around a half-inch thick, and the cord going from the EVSE to the car is a slight bit smaller (~1/3rd inch, guessing based on memory)
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,855 Posts
Your Volt's OEM EVSE is built for 120/240VAC at up to 12 amps. The internal parts are built by ClipperCreek. The housing is made by Delco. Not sure who makes the charging cable and J1772 connector.

I have a ClipperCreek LCS-20P Level II EVSE. It is designed for 240VAC at up to 16 amps so the components and wiring are designed to handle 25% higher current load than the OEM EVSE.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #5 ·
The reason it should matter is the 240 volt pulls 16 amps, so due to higher voltage it allows more amps. It should state the wire size on the outside of the cord. My OEM one does.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I don’t think that’s true. When I charge on 115 at 12 amps it takes 13 hours. When I plug it to 240 volts it takes 4-5 hours. I’ll have to check the amp draw but it’s obviously higher than 12.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
7 Posts
Discussion Starter · #8 ·
I stand corrected, your right, it’s only pulling 12 amps at 240 volts. Why does it charge so much fast then 115 if the amps are the same? What will happen if I get a 240 volt charger? How fast will it charge then? I’m baffled by this
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
420 Posts
The charger in the Volt is a 3300 watt charger. At 230VAC that means it should draw 14.5A, however my OpenEVSE Level 2 charger tells me the vehicle is drawing about 16A. That means you should be using 12GA wire. If you are ever going to say want to drwa more than 16A (say your friend with a newer Leaf wants close to 40A) then you might as well wire it with 10GA, which is the recommended wire size for 40A Level 2 EVSE chargers.
 

·
Registered
2013 Volt
Joined
·
1,713 Posts
I stand corrected, you're right, it’s only pulling 12 amps at 240 volts. Why does it charge so much faster than 115 if the amps are the same? What will happen if I get a 240 volt charger? How fast will it charge then? I’m baffled by this.
Ignoring slight changes in efficiency and ramp up/down times, doubling the voltage will cut the time in half. If you are taking 13 hrs to charge at 120V, I'm guessing you are really not at 12A, but rather at 8A. This is true because:
P (power) = I (current) * V (voltage)
and
E (energy) = P * T (time) = IVT
or
T = E/IV . And since E is constant, doubling either I or V will have the same effect -- cutting the T in half. Similarly, changing the current from 12A to 16A changes the T by 12/16 or 75%.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
420 Posts
bentbiker: sorry - you are incorrect. A Volt takes about 13 hours with a Level 1 (120VAC) charger to charge fully at 12A. At just 8A it will take about 19 hours.

Please read page 217 of the manual.

Your Ohm's law formulas are correct but remember that most household power is really about 117VAC. 117*12=1404 watts. The Volt battery when fully discharged requires about 15KWh of energy to charge it. 15000/1404=10.4 hours, but that is assuming no inefficiencies, or which there are quite a few!

In fact this report shows Level 1 charging efficiency to average about 84%, so 10.4/.84 = 12.7 hours is what GM engineers have determined.

https://www.veic.org/docs/Transportation/20130320-EVT-NRA-Final-Report.pdf
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
4,855 Posts
I stand corrected, your right, it’s only pulling 12 amps at 240 volts. Why does it charge so much fast then 115 if the amps are the same? What will happen if I get a 240 volt charger? How fast will it charge then? I’m baffled by this
Charging is twice as fast at 240V versus 120V because when you double the voltage you are doubling the power. If you charge at 240V and 12 amps it will take approx. 5.5 hours to fully charge the Gen 2 Volt. If you charge at 240V and 16 amps it will take approx. 4.5 hours to fully charge the Gen 2 Volt. Due to the 3.6kW onboard charger in the Gen 2 Volt the charger will never draw more than 16 amps or charge faster that when charging at 240V and 16amps. The Gen 1 Volt has a 3.3kW onboard charger. Maximum charging for Gen 1 is limited to 240V and ~14.5 amps.
 

·
Registered
2013 Volt
Joined
·
1,713 Posts
bentbiker: sorry - you are incorrect. A Volt takes about 13 hours with a Level 1 (120VAC) charger to charge fully at 12A. At just 8A it will take about 19 hours.

Please read page 217 of the manual.
Thanks for the "clarification" of the time to charge for a Gen2 (which I don't have). Thus, I don't have the manual. If your number is correct, what say you to the claim that the OEM EVSE will charge in 4-5 hours at 240V? I took the 4-5 hrs at 240V as being the correct value, but it can't be both ways.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
420 Posts
If your number is correct, what say you to the claim that the OEM EVSE will charge in 4-5 hours at 240V? I took the 4-5 hrs at 240V as being the correct value, but it can't be both ways.
It's not a claim, it's a fact. Yes, at 240VAC the Gen 2 Volt takes 4.5 hours to fully charge. I'm not really sure what you mean by "it can't be both ways"? Please clarify.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,999 Posts
Before everyone gets into a bar fight please note where the post was made. It is in the Gen2 Forum. Therefore assume the discussion would be about Gen 2 charge times. If you give other times for Gen 1 charging make sure you note that.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,999 Posts
I stand corrected, your right, it’s only pulling 12 amps at 240 volts. Why does it charge so much fast then 115 if the amps are the same? What will happen if I get a 240 volt charger? How fast will it charge then? I’m baffled by this
You only need a little bit of knowledge here to help you understand electricity.

The circuitry is set at 12 amps on the EVSE. Think of the wire as the size of a water pipe. A 1 inch pipe carries less than a 2 inch pipe. in this case you are limited to 12A which can be carried by a 16AWG wire just fine.

When you are charging using a standard 120V outlet then essentially only 1 wire (one pipe) is carrying the power to the EVSE. With the pigtail you made or purchased to use 240V you are now using 2 wires (2 pipes) to carry 120V each at 12A each to the EVSE.

Now what happens if you buy another 240V EVSE? Very little but not nothing. Gen 2 is capable of charging with a proper EVSE up to 16A I believe. Where a now you are limited to 12A you will increase by 4A. In the real world then you will charge approximately 30-45 min faster at 16A than 12A.

Now you have to ask yourself a question. Is that 30-45 minute bump worth it to you to spend $400+ on a new EVSE or Is it better for you to continue to use the one that you got for free (or with the car)?

That is a personal question that only you can answer.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
907 Posts
To the OP, I know you've seen the answers on FB. But to answer your original question (as I also did on FB)... The GM L1 EVSE for 2016+ is only 16awg. Previous years were 14awg. I have a 2014 model and a 2017 model, the wire gauge is labeled on the cables.

The EVSE signals to the car what maximum current is available, the car then decides how much to take, but never more than what the EVSE tells it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,678 Posts
Ignoring slight changes in efficiency and ramp up/down times, doubling the voltage will cut the time in half. If you are taking 13 hrs to charge at 120V, I'm guessing you are really not at 12A, but rather at 8A. This is true because:
P (power) = I (current) * V (voltage)
and
E (energy) = P * T (time) = IVT
or
T = E/IV . And since E is constant, doubling either I or V will have the same effect -- cutting the T in half. Similarly, changing the current from 12A to 16A changes the T by 12/16 or 75%.
Clarification: T is not changed by 75%, it's changed by 25%. The new T at 16A will be 75% of the T at 12A.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
402 Posts
My JuiceBox EVSE is on a 50amp circuit (40 amps output). I know the Volt won't draw that much, but I can say that I've plugged it in a couple of times when the engine had just started as I arrived at home, and it definitely took less than 4 hours to top up.

To the original question, I ordered the optional "soft cord" with the 50/40 JuiceBox, and that cord uses two 12 gauge stranded wires on each hot leg (so four total), with a single 10 gauge ground...if I remember correctly. I know this is more than our Volts require, but I was allowing for future considerations when I sized the system.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
420 Posts
...yeah - two 12 gauge wires connected in parallel gives effectively 9 gauge wire.

9 gauge can readily handle 40A continuous.

My OpenEVSE Level 2 charger shows that the Volt consumes about 16.2A at 234VAC.
 
1 - 20 of 20 Posts
This is an older thread, you may not receive a response, and could be reviving an old thread. Please consider creating a new thread.
Top