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Discussion Starter #1
What are the ELR amperage charging option to choose form on the center screen? Can you charge at 16 or more amps with a conversion (L2) plug as long the the 120 volt wire can handle a 16 amp or more current? Or Would you have to install a 240 volt line. I always seem to be confused about the charging for some reason.
 

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No, the cord tells the car the maximum amperage rate allowed, 12A would still be the max. The car can decide to take less (and does on L1 by default).
 

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The only way to get more than 12A is to install an L2. L1 can only charge at 8A and 12A. But the freedom you get from recharging in 4.5 hours vs. 8-14 hours is priceless.
 

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Why cant' you have a level 2 charger in a regular outlet to get the higher amperage?
To feed that much power (27.5 amps) at 120 volts, the wires feeding the EVSE would be as big around as you finger.
 

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Why cant' you have a level 2 charger in a regular outlet to get the higher amperage?
Because level 2 is 240V not 120. And it wouldn't help because it's the charger in the front bumper of the car that negotiates with the EVSE on how much current to use. The car is programmed to only do 8A and 12A at 120V, so if you were able to install a 30A 120V circuit, and find a 30A L1 charger (which I don't think exist), it would be money wasted because the car will select 12A at the most.

At 240V the car and EVSE would negotiate a higher current (something like 15-16A). So if you bought a 30-50A Level 2 EVSE, it would still only use what the charger in the bumper is capable of. But money spent towards a larger L2 EVSE isn't necessarily wasted as someday you might end up owning a Tesla where it's charger can use the 30-50A, but not the volt or ELR.
 

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Because level 2 is 240V not 120. And it wouldn't help because it's the charger in the front bumper of the car that negotiates with the EVSE on how much current to use. The car is programmed to only do 8A and 12A at 120V, so if you were able to install a 30A 120V circuit, and find a 30A L1 charger (which I don't think exist), it would be money wasted because the car will select 12A at the most.

At 240V the car and EVSE would negotiate a higher current (something like 15-16A). So if you bought a 30-50A Level 2 EVSE, it would still only use what the charger in the bumper is capable of. But money spent towards a larger L2 EVSE isn't necessarily wasted as someday you might end up owning a Tesla where it's charger can use the 30-50A, but not the volt or ELR.
^^^This. A good description for FutureVoltDude. And to be clear, (edk-austin take note) the EVSE (not the cord attached to it) announces its capabilities to the charger in the Volt and the charger decides, based on that, what current it will draw. For a Gen1 the maximum current will be 13.75A @ 240V. For Gen2 it will be 15A @ 240V. Now, the EVSE may announce that it can provide a maximum of 12A, which is the case for the GM supplied EVSE that comes with either the Gen1 or the Gen2. In that case the charger in the car will draw only that much. A third-party EVSE, such as the Clipper Creek units, may have the capability to supply currents greater than 12A, in which case, the charger in the car will draw more current up to its maximum or 13.75A for the Gen1 or 15A for the Gen2.
 

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Why cant' you have a level 2 charger in a regular outlet to get the higher amperage?
Exactly what do you mean by "regular outlet"? There are a family of outlets that are used to supply 120v (L1), and a separate family of outlets that are used to supply 240v (L2). The plug side of the equation is configured to use either 120v or 240v and you should not be able to plug a 120v device directly into a 240v outlet, or a 240v device directly into a 120v outlet. The National Electrical Code defines how these are setup and building inspectors enforce those codes to keep fools from burning down their houses.

VIN # B0985
 

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Discussion Starter #9
Sounds like for a gen 1 volt or ELR its not worth the money to have a dedicated 240 volt line installed to charge when I can just charge at 8 amps or 12amps...
 

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Sounds like for a gen 1 volt or ELR its not worth the money to have a dedicated 240 volt line installed to charge when I can just charge at 8 amps or 12amps...
3.5-4.5 hours to charge from empty at L2 vs 8-9 hours to charge on L1 is the difference.

For many, that's totally worth it. For us it's the difference between being able to drive all weekend on electricity because we can recharge fast, versus not being able to keep our charging requirements ahead of our mileage and burning gas instead.
 

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The recharge time is why I've decided to put in a 240v circuit and get a L2 charger.
 

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Sounds like for a gen 1 volt or ELR its not worth the money to have a dedicated 240 volt line installed to charge when I can just charge at 8 amps or 12amps...
If you do the math and try to compute the number of EV miles you might gain by going to level 2, yes the math never works out. But the freedom that comes with begin able to drain the battery, then come home, do some odd jobs around the house, then leave again with a full tank means you aren't stranded waiting for batteries to charge. For that, the cost of a level 2 EVSE is a bargain. For all the people too cheap to spring for a level 2, you paid extra for the car, you're saving a ton on fuel, live a little. Convenience wins out over pennies.
 

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If you do the math and try to compute the number of EV miles you might gain by going to level 2, yes the math never works out.
When your gas is the equivalent of >$4.50/Gallon, but electricity is as low as 7c/kWh, yeah, it makes a LOT of sense.

Especially when you installed your own L2 for <$500, including the EVSE. Honestly, eve if we had paid $1000 or so for the hardware and someone to install it for us we'd have probably reached break even inside 12 months in gas savings, given as how we routinely save between $60=$100 in gas every month by being able to charge quicker and focus on electric miles, particularly on weekends.
 

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When your gas is the equivalent of >$4.50/Gallon, but electricity is as low as 7c/kWh, yeah, it makes a LOT of sense.

Especially when you installed your own L2 for <$500, including the EVSE. Honestly, eve if we had paid $1000 or so for the hardware and someone to install it for us we'd have probably reached break even inside 12 months in gas savings, given as how we routinely save between $60=$100 in gas every month by being able to charge quicker and focus on electric miles, particularly on weekends.
Alas, in the US, gas dropped from $4 per gallon to about $2-3, thus negating much savings. You also need to count the number of times that L2 would have gained you ground over L1. I can charge at L1 every night and leave the next morning with a full battery. So the $500-1000 cost really only saves you on days where you drain the battery, charge it back up and drain it again in the same day. For me, that only happens occasionally on weekends. The cost of the L2 will never pay for itself given I only use 2 full charges in the same day maybe 2-3 times a month at the most.
 

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If you do the math and try to compute the number of EV miles you might gain by going to level 2, yes the math never works out. But the freedom that comes with begin able to drain the battery, then come home, do some odd jobs around the house, then leave again with a full tank means you aren't stranded waiting for batteries to charge. For that, the cost of a level 2 EVSE is a bargain. For all the people too cheap to spring for a level 2, you paid extra for the car, you're saving a ton on fuel, live a little. Convenience wins out over pennies.
After L1 charging for five years and then treating myself to L2 for a month, I have to wholeheartedly agree with LLninja!;)
 

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After L1 charging for five years and then treating myself to L2 for a month, I have to wholeheartedly agree with LLninja!;)
L1 charging for 5 years? Man I couldn't stand the 2 weeks I had to charge at L1 while waiting for the electrician to come install my L2.
 

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Masochism, pure and simple!:p
 
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