GM Volt Forum banner

1 - 14 of 14 Posts

·
Registered
Joined
·
266 Posts
Discussion Starter #1
Hi All,
I have the 120 charger (that came with my volt) mounted on the wall next to my Volt. I seem to remember reading that some owners leave them plugged into the wall, all the time. When I leave for work and disconnect the charger from the Volt, I also unplug it from the wall socket every time.
My question is : Does anyone know which is better for the charger ? I am a volt owner for only a few months and want the charger to last as long as possible. So, leave plugged in or unplug from the 120 volt wall outlet , when the Volt is not around ?
thanks
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,416 Posts
Funny you should ask just now since...... nevermind. Unplugging all the time is bad for the receptacle. Unplugging occasionally and checking the condition of the plug pins is wise. Look for black on the pins. Could mean the receptacle is bad.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
266 Posts
Discussion Starter #3
Funny you should ask just now since...... nevermind. Unplugging all the time is bad for the receptacle. Unplugging occasionally and checking the condition of the plug pins is wise. Look for black on the pins. Could mean the receptacle is bad.
It is on a dedicated outlet, right next to the breaker box. It is plugged in from 5pm to 5am every night without any problems. I check it regularly and there is no discoloration. Also, I have touched the wire and plug after several hours of charging and maybe warm once in a while, but have never been hot.
So leaving it plugged in won't burn the EVSE unit out and is better for the outlet and plug end ?
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
3,424 Posts
Plugged in for three years, never an issue. Its VERY bad to be constantly plugging/unplugging, with every use the resistance increases slightly
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
266 Posts
Discussion Starter #5 (Edited)
Plugged in for three years, never an issue. Its VERY bad to be constantly plugging/unplugging, with every use the resistance increases slightly
I RTFM and it says to wrap it up and pack it away after charging ... wasn't sure to leave it plugged in, but was concerned about the plug ends.

Thanks for the input. Three years with no issue is what I was looking to find out !!
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
2,634 Posts
No need to unplug it. It does draw a tiny amount of power, about 2 watts, which is maybe why the manual says to unplug it. This amounts to about 1 charge a year wasted. I imagine unplugging it every day will put more wear and tear on it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
887 Posts
I wouldn't expect any problems from leaving the 120V EVSE plugged in. It shouldn't 'wear' out that way. As others have said, frequent plugging/unplugging will likely cause more wear (to the plug and the socket) than leaving it.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
231 Posts
Unplugging and plugging your 120 VAC EVSE occasionally will actually renew the low impedance of the brass alloy plug blade and receptacle contacts and allow them to operate cooler under load. The wiping action helps clear away oxidation at the contact points. Oxidation builds up faster when the receptacle is handling heavy continuous EVSE currents since the contact temperature will be elevated for long periods of time under these conditions.

If you have been unplugging your EVSE every day from the same outlet, you should regularly check the tension on the wall receptacle spring contacts to insure the wall receptacle contact pressure on the plug blades has not weakened to an out of spec condition.

A duplex receptacle must have a minimum plug pull-out force of 3 pounds and a maximum of 15 pounds for a UL listing. You should replace any wall receptacle that requires less than 3 lb to pull out a plug. Any outlet with low insertion/removal force is no longer rated for the maximum continuous current rating and is susceptible to dangerous overheating under continuous heavy loads typical with 120 volt EVSEs.

If the weight of a 1/2 gallon of milk (4 pounds) can pull out the plug from your receptacle outlet used to charge the Volt, you should consider replacing it with an industrial or hospital grade receptacle with high contact force.

The maximum temperature acceptable at the contacts of a 120 volt AC wall receptacle and plug in continuous duty is typically 131 degrees F (54 degrees F temperature rise above a typical ambient temperature of 77 degrees F). If you pull out the plug after the charger has been operating for an hour and immediately touch the blades, if it is painfully hot to hold them continuously (implying over ~ 150 degrees F) the wall receptacle connection is overheating due to worn or degraded contacts and the wall receptacle should be replaced.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
468 Posts
Hi All,
I have the 120 charger (that came with my volt) mounted on the wall next to my Volt. I seem to remember reading that some owners leave them plugged into the wall, all the time. When I leave for work and disconnect the charger from the Volt, I also unplug it from the wall socket every time.
My question is : Does anyone know which is better for the charger ? I am a volt owner for only a few months and want the charger to last as long as possible. So, leave plugged in or unplug from the 120 volt wall outlet , when the Volt is not around ?
thanks
I leave the EVSE plunged in to the outlet all the time unless I'm inspecting the receptacle or prongs. Been doing this for 1.5 years and the EVSE is fine. Constantly plugging and unplugging the EVSE in to the outlet might cause excessive wear and tear on the outlet and the EVSE plug too. I recall reading the "vampire" draw of pluged-in EVSE is tiny..if that was a concern.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
1,206 Posts
Leaving it plugged in is best. Inspecting monthly or quarterly by unplugging and plugging back in is advisable. The unit only draws enough power to be able to test if the other end is plugged into the car or not and turn on the LED indicator. Very little standby DC power. When you plug it into the car, the low voltage circuit completes and then causes the 120v relays to close to allow the 120v to flow to the car. Essentially, the EVSE is just a 120v toggle switch controlled by a low voltage circuit vs. a human finger to turn it on and off.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
266 Posts
Discussion Starter #11 (Edited)
THANKS ALL for the good info. I didn't want to ruin any connectors or burn my house down !!

This forum is a great resource for newer VOLT owners ..
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
11,416 Posts
Didn't see this mentioned... You might consider unplugging when lightning is expected.

KNS
I do this sometimes. I always have the car unplugged from the EVSE in this case. It's rare to have your car charger (in the bumper) get smoked but I've seen 2 reports here.
 

·
Registered
Joined
·
45 Posts
One thing I would consider is having a surge protection on that circuit in case of lightning or major overvoltage on the line. I have installed a 240V surge protection on my electric panel when I installed the L2 charger. Good thing is it protects also my electronic stove, dryer, and all the electronics in the house. Make sur you get a good one. Ideally, get one installed directly in the electric panel. It takes a millisecond of overvoltage to kill almost any semiconductor (more than 800V).
 
1 - 14 of 14 Posts
Top