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Discussion Starter #1
Hi Everyone,

First : I am at a loss to figure out which charging station I should buy. I rent a duplex and the owner of the building has concerns has concerns about how it will look since it must be an outdoor charger. My questions are:

- What charging station will charge my Chevy Volt the fastest? I will be using a 220 Volt circuit, but how many amps should it be? Does more amps mean faster charging for the Volt? 2014 model). I have tried to find out how fast the Volt's charge can transfer energy from the EVSE to the cars batteries but I can't seem to find this anywhere.

- I am really consider the Turbocrd from EV Solutions : http://evsolutions.avinc.com/turbocord. Their website claims a charge time of only 3.3 hours but it seems too good to be true. Does anyone else here have one of these and do they work as described?

Any help with this would be really appreciated. Thanks in advance!

On a personal note, I have purchased 10 Firebirds (starting in 87) and 2 Camaros starting in 2010, and have loved them all. However the constant disregard by big oil to clean up their endless oil spills, plus the crap that is being pushed into the air every single day by fossil fuels has finally made me decide: NO MORE. Electric cars is the way to go.

I have already purchased the Volt and am waiting on delivery which I am told should be "any day" now. When I hand over the keys of my 2013 2SS RS 1LE Camaro and drive away with the Volt, I will be doing so with a huge smile on my face.

All of my friends think I am nuts. I am a member of a view other forums and all of them are trashing me too. Almost all of them are for the wrong reasons. They don't think there's anything wrong with Gas, and even worse, they think that electric cars are "all hype" and or "just a fad", and / or "a government conspiracy of some kind". The incredible amount of disinformation and the people who believe it are just staggering. Sure maybe it takes a little research to learn the value of electric cars, but so many people just flat-out refuse to lift a finger.

The worst trashing I received was on a Camaro forum, first when I posted about the oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico years ago, and then again when I stated my intension to sell my Camaro and buy a Volt. So much hate from so many haters...

Anyway, I am THRILLED to know I will soon be behind the wheel of this fantastic car.

Cheers!
 

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It doesn't matter which 240V EVSE you get because the actual charger is onboard in the car. So anything above 16 amps would suffice. If you want to future proof a little,get a 30 or 40 Amp charger for just in case you upgrade to a different car, but the added cost of that is a gamble. If you end up buying a tesla you will need an 80 amp circuit and who knows what the next car you decide on will need. You might consider getting a portable one that you can unplug and take with you, but if you are renting and this unit is outside, you might want one hard wired and secured so it cannot be stolen.
 

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Welcome aboard the list of uber high end cars traded in on the Volt is long and distinguished. For me I traded an $88K 2008 Jaguar XK on our 2012 Volt


Enjoyed the Volt so much more I had to have one, so I traded my 2011 CTS-V coupe in on 2013 Volt


My garage today


Ignore the haters. Re the EVSE they all charge at the same rate, the Volt set's the rate. Many will recommend any EVSE from Clipper Creek. I have the LCS-25 that easily supports our two Volt's. They are made in the USA, super affordable, built like a tank and they offer a three warranty regardless of who install's it. Many want a "professional" read expensive installation.


And consider joining VoltStats.net
 

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It is a friendly forum here and the mods are also very good. Many here also have performance cars in their garage. Search the forum and any question about the Volt has been answered here.
My Schneider unit has been flawless for 20 months and I made my house a Volt house by upgrading my panel to handle the new demand.
Welcome to the forum!
Robert
 

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I wouldn't worry about appearance. Many EVSEs are quite small and unobtrusive. (See Bazinga's photo of his Clipper Creek / Sun Country LCS25.) Wiring might be more of a concern, especially since you are renting. Also, if the provincial government is offering any kind of incentive on installation you have to walk their walk to claim it.
 

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2Muchmark,
You traded in one fun car for another. One thing your really going to love, say you start some project at home then realize you need some inexpensive item (less than the gas to the hdwe store and back). Well I still get stuck in that situation, but I'm not wasting $5 on an item that cost me $4.
I traded a Cadillac SRX. Everyone thought I was nuts. I have never regretted it. Got some positive comments from guys on the SRX forum. They are nice and everyone here is nice also. Good luck with all the haters.
 

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It sounds like the Camaro forum is filled with people who fit right into the stereotype of Camaro owners. Too bad, as the car itself even before they paused production was turning out to be a really nice car that many overlooked because of that stereotype.
 

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$650 for that little 120/240 EVSE?
There are many L2 options. Many like the Cripple Creek EVSE.
If you are handy with a solder iron (about 8 little wires) and can crimp terminals on wires there are kit EVSE's.
I have my EMW Juicebox up and running for $285 total. It is built for 3.3Kw charging only, but upgradeable to 50Kw. (I'm not interested in a Tesla, just another BEV.)

You got this right, "soon be behind the wheel of this fantastic car.". Add 'futuristic'.
I tell people I feel like I'm in the movie 'Blade Runner' driving around in this silent, fast car !!
 

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We purchased the Clipper Creek HCH 40 which can charge, I believe up to 7.3 KW per hour, and is 40 amp, note; the volt can only charge at 3.3 kw per hour but if we buy another electric car we are somewhat "future proof". I can tell
you that Clipper Creek stands by their products. I am pretty sure that the members in this forum can tell you as well as me Clipper
Creek is a top notch company with their products being made in U.S.A....
 

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I can't see that anyone has exactly answered your question about charge times. A depleted Volt battery will get a full charge in about 3 ½ hours with any of the 240v EVSEs on the market. Also, in our country the widely-recommended Clipper Creek products are sold by Sun Country Highways, https://suncountryhighway.ca/ . Like many here, I have the LCS 25, mounted outside, and it has held up well through two winters.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Hi everyone,

Thanks for all the replies!

It doesn't matter which 240V EVSE you get because the actual charger is onboard in the car. So anything above 16 amps would suffice. If you want to future proof a little,get a 30 or 40 Amp charger for just in case you upgrade to a different car, but the added cost of that is a gamble..
Ok GREAT. It didn't dawn on me until just today that a bigger / higher amperage charger would be used to charge cars with bigger batteries, or more cars at a time. Our only EV for now will be the Volt so I'll purchase the Turbocord device for now. But who knows? Maybe wifey will see the light and want a Volt in a year or so anyway..!

It is a friendly forum here and the mods are also very good. Many here also have performance cars in their garage. Search the forum and any question about the Volt has been answered here.
Ok great - thanks for letting me know.


2Muchmark,
You traded in one fun car for another..
I think you're right. When I look at cars today that are gas powered, I am no longer impressed no matter what they are. To me, they are 100 year old "technology" with a new wrapper and a few computer parts glued on. EV's like the Volt and Tesla are the only cars that make me say "COOL CAR!" now.

Yesterday, a guy in a Mustang pulled up beside me while I was in my Camaro, and raced the engine like a loser. 10 Years ago I would have raced him but today it just seems so damn stupid. I could probably give him a good race in a Volt but even if I lost the race, I know I would have won because he would be very P-O'ed that I could even come close to beating him... can't wait. :)


It sounds like the Camaro forum is filled with people who fit right into the stereotype of Camaro owners. Too bad, as the car itself even before they paused production was turning out to be a really nice car that many overlooked because of that stereotype.
I don't know about that. I misjudged the forum I think. Even though it was clearly a Camaro forum, I assumed that everyone on it was a general car enthusiast but it turned out not to be the case, at least based on certain comments I received.

One thing I found interesting was that on that and the other forum I mentioned, people blasted the Volt for things that simply were not true, and would then dismiss proof to the contrary as "fake". So strange.

consider joining VoltStats.net
Thanks Bazinga - I will!


I'm really looking forward to taking delivery of my Volt. It should be this week. Pictures and gushing reviews coming soon I'm sure.

Cheers!
 

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As for the haters... Someone wise once said, "forgive them for they do not know what they do..." Very little is learned from confrontation and trying to force someone to admit they were wrong. The original argument gets lost in a test of wills instead. When I come across one of the many misinformed I try very hard to remain cheerful and with a smile on my face explain the facts about the Volt, both the pro's and even the con's so as to not come across as a cheerleader. Don't expect an immediate convert it just isn't going to happen. A "win" is when you can get someone to at least question their "facts".

As for Camaro's, nothing wrong with still having a soft spot for ICE's. I still have 3 of them in my small car collection.
 

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If you end up buying a tesla you will need an 80 amp circuit and who knows what the next car you decide on will need. You might consider getting a portable one that you can unplug and take with you, but if you are renting and this unit is outside, you might want one hard wired and secured so it cannot be stolen.
That's not exactly true. You don't "need" an 80 amp circuit to charge a Tesla. In fact, you can charge it from 120V just like any other plug-in car. A 40-amp line is perfectly suitable for charging a Tesla. It just won't be taking full advantage of the car's charging capability. But that should be more than enough for an overnight charge even from a fully depleted battery. And I suspect most people will be replenishing less than 40 miles of range per day.
 

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Another Canadian Owner?

Looking at your location, I assume you're in Montreal Quebec which means you are another fellow Canadian Volt owner. :D I live in Northwestern Ontario so we experience much the same brutal winters that you do. The good news is that the Volt works well in winter weather. My only tip would be to get winter tires for the Volt. The all season tires on the Volt are designed for fuel efficiency plus the additional weight of the Volt means it can be very hard to stop in slippery conditions. Under -10 C if you have it set for the colder setting, the Volt will turn into a hybrid instead of being a pure EV and which is a good thing because you'll get more heat from the gas engine. The only downside I've had with the Volt is that if you leave it unplugged in -20 C weather for 8 hours or so the battery gets too cold to operate and you'll be stuck with gas engine only until the battery warms up. This makes the Volt very sluggish but admittedly most cars don't do so well when left out in the cold. The situation changes entirely if you leave it plugged in. The Volt will periodically draw power to keep the battery warm. A warm battery means you can floor it out of your driveway in the morning without waiting for the engine to warm up in cold weather. The battery will mostly supply power until the engine can warm up to operating temperature on the go.

The charger isn't a charger to be exact. A better description of an EV charger is that it is more of a "smart" extension cord. There's a website which shows how to build one yourself if you are skilled with high power electronics. I was shocked at how few parts there are when I saw the diagram. Basically it's a high powered relay swith, a current sensor and a small controller board. I suspect the only reason you need one is for safety. The actual battery charger is built into the Volt itself. It can at maximum charge the Volt at about 4.4 Kwatts I believe. So a more powerful "smart" extension cord isn't going to make the Volt charge any faster. It might be useful for future cars that could use more power. Also don't forget that the Volt comes with a free 120v charger which works perfectly fine but takes a long time to charge if you're completely empty. (about 10 hours). I actually used that for almost a year before I got my 240v charger out of convenience. The LCS-25 charger from ClipperCreek works quite well and is reasonably inexpensive. They make a version with 240v plug so it doesn't need to be hard mounted. But as I found out the hard way, it's best not to leave it under your car where salt water will penetrate it's seals and short it out. ClipperCreek was kind enough to send me a replacement and I've since put it into a waterproof case to protect it. If you have it mounted to the wall or in the garage it should be fine thou. Another thing to watch out for is although the plug at the car is pretty robust, you'll probably want to cover it with something in the winter so it doesn't get plugged up with snow. I actually use a plastic bag with a series of magnets to keep the snow out of the port.

The Volt isn't what I'd call a "fast" car. It has a lot of kick to it thou because of the tremendous amount of low speed torque but at higher speeds it will lose out to any performance car. It isn't slow however because there's a few things you can do with the Volt that you'd be reluctant to in a regular car. If you don't need the battery range, it's perfectly fine to hammer the gas pedal straight to floor because an EV is silent. Although it does use more power, it's nowhere near how fast a regular car goes through gas when you do that. Also because it's silent, you'll often be able to get in front of folks at lights because they can't tell that you've floored your car. Also expect to be driving more because now that trips are so cheap, you'll be tempted to make trips that normally are a bad idea economically. ;)
 

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I traded a HEMI Magnum for my Volt. Never regretted it. (Although, I bought a HEMI truck later. Gotta have some toys!)

I have a GE WattStation. It has a locking bracket, so, I never worry if my daughter leaves the garage door open. The GE also is one of the few with an actual on/off switch. It's a pretty good looking unit for permanent install.
 

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Congrats on your Volt purchase. I went from a CTS-V Coupe to the Volt and everyone thought I was nuts too. My wife now drives our Volt until the lease is up in 3 months and over the weekend I took delivery of a 2014 CTS-V Coupe. I just missed the car way too much.

I ordered the GE Wattstation. That seems to be the best one out there. $599 on Amazon.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
So today I said my final goodbye to my Camaro and drove away with a shiny new Volt, and WOW is it awesome. Very fun to drive, and super quiet of course. The looks sexy and the interior is great in black leather. It looks nicer inside than I remember it somehow. I don't miss the Camaro one bit. Driving without using a drop of Gas feels great, especially when I pass those Gas stations with the giant $1.49/Litre signs...!

HOWEVER, I dun goofed. I decided to charge the Volt at a public charging station just to see how it worked. I plugged it in, waived the card, and it started charging. Great! I went and did some fake shopping and bought something I didn't really need. I came back to the car, disconnected the cable without unlocking the car first, and HONK HONK HONK goes the alarm.... embarrasing!

I ended up buying a Turbocord as the "charger". An electrician is installing the stuff I need for it on Friday. I will post my experience with it here. One thing I'll say though is that I ordered the Turbocord yesterday and received it today. I fully expected it to take a week minimum to get here.
 

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So today I said my final goodbye to my Camaro and drove away with a shiny new Volt, and WOW is it awesome. Very fun to drive, and super quiet of course. The looks sexy and the interior is great in black leather. It looks nicer inside than I remember it somehow. I don't miss the Camaro one bit. Driving without using a drop of Gas feels great, especially when I pass those Gas stations with the giant $1.49/Litre signs...!

HOWEVER, I dun goofed. I decided to charge the Volt at a public charging station just to see how it worked. I plugged it in, waived the card, and it started charging. Great! I went and did some fake shopping and bought something I didn't really need. I came back to the car, disconnected the cable without unlocking the car first, and HONK HONK HONK goes the alarm.... embarrasing!

I ended up buying a Turbocord as the "charger". An electrician is installing the stuff I need for it on Friday. I will post my experience with it here. One thing I'll say though is that I ordered the Turbocord yesterday and received it today. I fully expected it to take a week minimum to get here.
You can turn off the alarm in the config menu. The only time I turn it on is if I'm using my own portable charger in a public location, as I don't want someone to steal my EVSE. But when using a public one I turn it off as well as leave a note to allow others to pull my plug if they are a pure EV and are desperate.
 

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Discussion Starter #19
LLninja,

Ok great thanks for letting me know. I think I will keep it on though, just to scare away any doofuses who decide to unplug it just for the heck of it.

So today the electrician completed the installation of the 220v connection. The car is charging away via a Turbocord and I am watching the charging level climb on my iPad.

46% / 30 km at 3:46
50% / 33 k, at 3:56
56% / 36 km at 4:10
63% / 41 Km at 4:26

So cool... I love it!

The Chevy Volt (and other electric cars like the Tesla) are THE coolest cars on the road. Camaros, Mustangs, Corvettes, Mercedes etc, are all so BORING and OLD TECH to me now. Yesterday this mustacheoed dude in his whatever car pulled up beside me at a red light. It was a Honda of some kind, but with the muffler replaced with some really noisy thing. It sounded like crap. He probably drove home thinking he owned the road... but he didn't.... :)
 

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Ok ... so I'll purchase the Turbocord device for now. But who knows?
.. 10 Years ago I would have raced him but today ..
!
I am hesitant to recommend the turbo cord because they very deliberately avoid revealing the wire gauge of their 25 foot cord. I'm concerned that it is 14 gauge high temp insulation wire rather than the 12 gauge Id like for 15 amp charging.

also, If you ever get the acceleration bug in your volt, there are plenty of theories in old threads discussing how to maximize go-power
 
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