GM Volt Forum banner

1 - 10 of 10 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Hello all. Earlier this year I bought my 2013 Volt and am very happy with it. Great car, loads of fun to drive. When not on the road it's kept in my garage where I keep it plugged in to the Voltec EVSE that came with the car. Earlier today I noticed that there was a trail of small brown ants running up the wall to the EVSE which I have mounted on a wall stud of the garage and they appeared to be entering the unit. I had assumed that the EVSE was a sealed unit but it apparently isn't. I unplugged the unit and took it outside and the ants seemed to be coming out at the end where the 120 volt cord enters. I can't open the unit to clean it out because it is held together with Torx tamper resistant screws. I checked out this problem online and it seems that ants are sometimes attracted to electronic devices outside. Has anyone else had this problem? I can't imagine this is any good for the EVSE but I'm not sure what to do. I can't easily move the location of where the EVSE is mounted because I ran a dedicated 20 amp circuit just to serve it. Thanks in advance for any ideas.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
23 Posts
Harbor freight sells a set of bits for security screws for a few bucks. Their set likely has a bit that fits the screws you have which would let you clean the inside of the evse and seal any openings.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
921 Posts
I think the ants are attracted to the heat. I once had a small fax machine in my laundry room (because there was a telephone jack there). One rainy day I saw a line of ants hauling their little white bits along the cord. Turns out they had discovered a path inside through the outlet and were moving for dry ground and warmth. They did not actually go inside the fax, they just formed a mat under it. Some sealer around the outlet took care of the path in. It was touch-and-go there for a while getting all the ants though...

Saw the same colony a few years earlier piled up under a pile of carpet padding during the remodel. Every time it rains they troop out of the lawn and form huge mats someplace dry, like the overhang on the front of the garage...
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #7
I want to thank everyone for their advice on dealing with the ants that got into my EVSE and I thought I'd let you know of my progress so far.

Last evening I put the EVSE into a plastic bag and put it in an old freezer we have in the basement. This morning I went into town and bought a set of Torx bits for security screws at the auto parts store. I got the EVSE out of the freezer, took it out to the back yard and removed the six screws holding the unit together using the T20 bit. This allows the cover to separate from the "boxed in" main body that encloses the unit's circuitry. Beneath this cover were probably hundreds of ants and their eggs too. The ants all seemed to be sleeping so it was a simple matter to dump them out on the ground and using a shop vac with a crevice tool I cleaned up the rest. The main body that encloses the circuit board uses a gasket to seal it from the base portion so luckily no ants had gotten in there.

I've put the unit back together and now just have to prevent it from happening again!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
179 Posts
Insects seem to be attracted to the hum or magnetic field given off by the transformer in equipment. If you do search's on the internet you will come across stories of Firer Ant's in the south livinging the A/C condenser units. Am, FM an TV transmitter which have big transformer become insect hotel. my favorite it roches in a PC, anytime someone drops off a computer for me to fix its out side, cover off and the shop vac removes the unwanted visitors.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
38 Posts
Discussion Starter #9
The EVSE usually just stays on the garage wall but we'll take it with us when going on a trip. I'm just glad I didn't throw the unit in the back of the car without checking it first. The whole darn colony was in there!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
50 Posts
After fighting losing battles with suicidal fire ants (how can a whole species be so psychotically aggressive and still thrive and if it's a winning strategy why do we not see swarms of stinging termites etc.?) attacking electrical contactors and thereby causing malfunctions and fires I sincerely hope that's not what you're dealing with, but if so my suggestion is to overdo whatever you think may work. Your strategy needs to look like WWIII.

For other ants less inclined to drama, consider taking the Viking gold approach: bribe them with something better somewhere else.
 
1 - 10 of 10 Posts
Top