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Discussion Starter #1
I am reading around but so far haven't found this so hopefully this is the right place to inquire.

1. With a standard 110 outlet how long does it take to fully charge from a fully discharged condition?

2. Is it safe to plug in outdoors in any weather conditions?

3. Is the $535 extra charging cord the only option or does Lowe's or somewhere offer a $100 or so alternative?

4. When plugged in if you hit the remote start to cool the interior down does it use electric only? Is there a time limit? My Prius has the solar roof option that allows activating the A/C but has a 3 minute time limit.

I'm driving a 2015 Prius now and really like it but could eliminate about 98% of my gasoline usage with the range of a Volt. Thanks for any and all input.
 

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I am reading around but so far haven't found this so hopefully this is the right place to inquire.

1. With a standard 110 outlet how long does it take to fully charge from a fully discharged condition?

2. Is it safe to plug in outdoors in any weather conditions?

3. Is the $535 extra charging cord the only option or does Lowe's or somewhere offer a $100 or so alternative?

4. When plugged in if you hit the remote start to cool the interior down does it use electric only? Is there a time limit? My Prius has the solar roof option that allows activating the A/C but has a 3 minute time limit.

I'm driving a 2015 Prius now and really like it but could eliminate about 98% of my gasoline usage with the range of a Volt. Thanks for any and all input.
1. Charging Time
Using a 120-volt standard outlet will take approximately 13 hours to charge the Volt at the 12 amp settings, or 19 hours at the 8 amp default setting. Using a 240-volt charging station will take approximately 4.5 hours to charge. Charge times will vary with outside temperature.

2. Yes.

3. Any J1722 EVSE will work. ClipperCreek seems to be the most popular and it is well made. FYI, the Volt comes with one EVSE included, the second one is available for order.

4. Yes, it will use power from the plug, however sometimes it can't supply enough, so the HVAC will also use the HV battery (but it recharges when done). There is a setting in the config menu that prevents the gas engine from starting if plugged in. The remote start will run for 10 minutes but you can activate it twice before you must actually start the car in person.
 

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I am reading around but so far haven't found this so hopefully this is the right place to inquire.

1. With a standard 110 outlet how long does it take to fully charge from a fully discharged condition?

2. Is it safe to plug in outdoors in any weather conditions?

3. Is the $535 extra charging cord the only option or does Lowe's or somewhere offer a $100 or so alternative?

4. When plugged in if you hit the remote start to cool the interior down does it use electric only? Is there a time limit? My Prius has the solar roof option that allows activating the A/C but has a 3 minute time limit.

I'm driving a 2015 Prius now and really like it but could eliminate about 98% of my gasoline usage with the range of a Volt. Thanks for any and all input.
You will love the Volt. To answer your questions:

1. As noted, a standard wall outlet takes about 13 hours at the higher 12-amp setting. Be forewarned that the EVSE basically needs to be the only thing on the circuit otherwise you may trip a breaker.

2. Yes but ideally the plug itself should be in a weatherproof receptacle. When I use my L1 charger from my garage, I have it plugged into the wall and run the cord out to my Volt which is in the driveway.

3. You can find many alternatives. I purchased a new L2 DoStar EVSE from eBay for just over $300 (now they retail for about $260). It's meh but it works (tends to throw more faults than I like which require me to unplug/replug into the wall) but to be fair, I have it completely outdoors which it probably is not best suited for. I plan to eventually hard-wire in a NEMA compliant outdoor EVSE. For L1 chargers, you can find them in the same price range. I wouldn't pay $595 for the OEM.

4. Yes - if plugged in (and when the car starts the EVSE doesn't fault - see above :) ), it will run off the electric power while preconditioning the car except for scenarios where the engine needs to run (e.g. really cold weather).

Hope this helps.
-DJ
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thank you both. That is very helpful. To expand a little, is a second cord needed generally? I was thinking of things like eating at Cracker Barrel and adding some charge while there. I suppose it just saves the trouble of having to take and replace the cord from home every time?
 

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If you go for a dedicated 240 unit to charge at home, just keep the 120 unit stored in the car for topping off when possible. I'm going to +1 on the clipper creek units. Their prices are quite attractive, and about the same as a L1 unit. The only kicker would be that you need access to a 240 line where you install so if you don't already have one you will need to add that into the cost since you'll need to have an electrician wire one up if you aren't handy enough to do it yourself.

The other advantage to going with L2 is that with the faster charging speed it could be possible to drive entirely gas free except for trips since you can easily add 10-12 miles of range per hour vs. 3-4 with L1 which gives you that little bit of extra if you should decide to go out a couple hours after getting home from your commute.
 

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If you are driving a 2015 Prius now, then you should keep the Prius for another eight to ten years. Your lifetime costs will be extremely low with the Prius, since you already accepted a huge loss due to depreciation. If you buy a 2016 Volt, then you lose a huge amount of depreciation again. Furthermore, you will pay higher insurance and registration costs with a higher-value vehicle. My advice to you is that you should stop buying new vehicles and breaking-in vehicles for others to benefit from low operational costs. If you want to sell your 2015 Prius in trade for a 2013 Volt, I will contemplate an offer. You need to study the Department of Energy Lifetime Cost Calculator.
 

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Thank you both. That is very helpful. To expand a little, is a second cord needed generally? I was thinking of things like eating at Cracker Barrel and adding some charge while there. I suppose it just saves the trouble of having to take and replace the cord from home every time?
Personally, I have never found a need to plug in away from home. For an hour or two of charge, it is just not worth the hassle of finding an outlet, obtain permission, lay out the cable (probably need an extension cord too), then you have to put it all away when you leave. I had rather just burn a little gas if needed. I have only tried to use a public L2 station (free) one time in the last 4 years and that only got me a few miles worth of charge.
 

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I have a hard wired Clipper Creek LCS-25 installed in my garage, it can fully charge my 2017 Volt in 4 hrs and 15 min.

The OEM EVSE is still in its plastic bag in the cubby in the rear of our Volt.

I don't look for nor attempt any opportune charging when I'm out and about, and frankly getting over 60 miles per charge I don't need to.


The Volt is light years ahead of a Prius. One drive will prove that.
 

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I am reading around but so far haven't found this so hopefully this is the right place to inquire.

1. With a standard 110 outlet how long does it take to fully charge from a fully discharged condition?

2. Is it safe to plug in outdoors in any weather conditions?

3. Is the $535 extra charging cord the only option or does Lowe's or somewhere offer a $100 or so alternative?

4. When plugged in if you hit the remote start to cool the interior down does it use electric only? Is there a time limit? My Prius has the solar roof option that allows activating the A/C but has a 3 minute time limit.

I'm driving a 2015 Prius now and really like it but could eliminate about 98% of my gasoline usage with the range of a Volt. Thanks for any and all input.
1. Depends on the year Volt. 2011-2015 takes roughly 9 hours for a full charge on 110
2. Yes.
3. The $535 cord is an extra cord. The has one charge cord included in the base price.
4. Remote start will use climate control on electric only while plugged in I believe. Time limit may depend on the year.

Buy one :)
 

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Thank you both. That is very helpful. To expand a little, is a second cord needed generally? I was thinking of things like eating at Cracker Barrel and adding some charge while there. I suppose it just saves the trouble of having to take and replace the cord from home every time?
The amount of charge you are going to get from a 110v outlet during lunch is not really worthwhile. I normally find that 110v outlets are never really that convenient. Charging via email 240v charger while you are lunching or shopping makes more sense. You can get about 4 miles of driving per hour of charge at 110v and closer to 12 miles when charging at 240v (that's because it takes 13 hours to fully charge at 110v , 4.5 hours at 240v).

Another option is to install a 240 volt outlet at your house and plug in the EVSE that comes with the car using a 110/240 adapter
 

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Thank you both. That is very helpful. To expand a little, is a second cord needed generally? I was thinking of things like eating at Cracker Barrel and adding some charge while there. I suppose it just saves the trouble of having to take and replace the cord from home every time?
The only place I've found it useful to charge at 110 outside the home was overnight at a hotel or while at work (I just took mine with me). This was before I was moved to the parking deck with a slew of L2 stations :)

While out and about, a second cord isn't really useful.
 

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Discussion Starter #12
Ok. Learning more it seems. So the $500 cord that's a duplicate only works at 110? Then that's definitely a no. I've never really looked at them but noticed Cracker Barrel has I think 4 parking places at many of their locations that are dedicated to charging. I figured they were probably L2 and would be worthwhile but figured you'd need your own cord to use them maybe.
 

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I leave my OEM charger plugged in at home and most of my charging happens there overnight. Public charging using your own EVSE at 120V is basically useless except for during an overnight stay somewhere. And at hotels, for instance, it is hard to get access to a plug, much less permission. Getting a second EVSE would only make sense if you need to charge at work to stay within your electric range, and you have access to an outlet there for that. Even then, it would just give you the convenience of not having to unplug your OEM evse to bring it with you each morning.

This car is not like a Nissan Leaf where you need an EVSE with you due to range anxiety and to prevent getting stranded. You can always drive home to charge. Everyone's situation is different, but my advice is not to buy an additional EVSE until you have owned the car for a while and know that it would actually be helpful to you.
 

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Yes, that seems like the best plan. It sounds like for most people the second EVSE would never pay for itself. I'm retired. About one day a month I drive 45 miles or so to meet family for lunch and then home 90 minutes or so later. That's probably about a 1 gallon of gasoline trip at most. I thought if we ate at Cracker Barrel or somewhere I might get enough charge in the 90 minutes to not use any gasoline but I don't think it's worth fooling with now.

About 4 times a year my better half drives my car on her 60 mile round trip commute while I take hers in for service. Probably little more than a gallon for all 4 trips combined. Another 2-3 times a year a 60-70 mile round trip for lunch with friends. The rest of the time it's several miles around home for whatever. In the last 55 weeks my car has travelled right at 9,000 miles so I don't think I'd need a second cord after all. I probably don't need an L2 for home either since most times it's about 14-15 hours parked before being driven again and most times would have used less than 20 miles since the last charge.
 

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We charge our 2016 Volt everyday and when we do go outside the electric range its really not a problem. Just yesterday my wife and I took a trip to Cabelas in Tualatin Oregon, just south of Portland to buy some fishing gear. 174 miles round trip. When the battery ran out we still came home with a depleted battery and 46.2 mpg just on gas. 46.2 mpg just on gas is only about 4-7 mpg less than we would have obtained in our 2010 Prius. Infact the trip cost less with the Volt than the Prius when you consider the cost of electric and gas for the Volt and just the gas for the Prius.
 

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Yes, that seems like the best plan. It sounds like for most people the second EVSE would never pay for itself. I'm retired. About one day a month I drive 45 miles or so to meet family for lunch and then home 90 minutes or so later. That's probably about a 1 gallon of gasoline trip at most. I thought if we ate at Cracker Barrel or somewhere I might get enough charge in the 90 minutes to not use any gasoline but I don't think it's worth fooling with now.
Most places with public charging have a Level 2 setup which has a plug that plugs into your car. So you don't need to bring along your own "charge cord". Over a 90 minute lunch you would get about 20 miles of charge.

Main times you would want to carry around your charge cord would be for charging at motels, camp grounds/RV parks, or long-term parking where there are a bunch of 120v receptacles for folks to use.

About 4 times a year my better half drives my car on her 60 mile round trip commute while I take hers in for service. Probably little more than a gallon for all 4 trips combined. Another 2-3 times a year a 60-70 mile round trip for lunch with friends. The rest of the time it's several miles around home for whatever. In the last 55 weeks my car has travelled right at 9,000 miles so I don't think I'd need a second cord after all. I probably don't need an L2 for home either since most times it's about 14-15 hours parked before being driven again and most times would have used less than 20 miles since the last charge.
You may get along just fine with 120v charging. However should you feel the need to, the 2016/2017 provided charge cord works just fine at 240v. All one needs to do is build a simple plug adapter. (Instructions in other threads on this site.)
 

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If you are driving a 2015 Prius now, then you should keep the Prius for another eight to ten years. Your lifetime costs will be extremely low with the Prius, since you already accepted a huge loss due to depreciation. If you buy a 2016 Volt, then you lose a huge amount of depreciation again. Furthermore, you will pay higher insurance and registration costs with a higher-value vehicle. My advice to you is that you should stop buying new vehicles and breaking-in vehicles for others to benefit from low operational costs. If you want to sell your 2015 Prius in trade for a 2013 Volt, I will contemplate an offer. You need to study the Department of Energy Lifetime Cost Calculator.
oh! relax, some people just like to keep buying new cars, a couple of regulars here are on their 4th or 5th car in just the 3 years I've been here. I know people who don't ever want to own a car that is not in its factory warranty.... My neighbors wish I would buy a new car a bit more often...., just to keep the rust and falling parts off our street... "Paul, is this rubber figure 8 thingie yours?", "yup, don't you recognize a mid 90s Ford exhaust hanger?"
 

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I ..1. ..

3. Is the $535 extra charging cord the only option or does Lowe's or somewhere offer a $100 or so alternative?

4. When plugged in if you hit the remote start to cool the interior down does it use electric only? Is there a time limit? My Prius has the solar roof option that allows activating the A/C but has a 3 minute time limit.

I'm driving a 2015 Prius now and really like it but could eliminate about 98% of my gasoline usage with the range of a Volt. Thanks for any and all input.
the others here have done a great job of answering your specific questions, (as usual) I will add my experience, in 3 years and 61,000 miles, I have done 98% of my charging on 120volts, over night outside in all weather, or on 110Volts at work, outside, in all weather, using the original factory included EVSE (charger cord). I own a clipper creek 240 volt unit which I have set up to charge off a dryer plug for visits to my sibling's house where my mom lived, which were typically long enough to get a full charge. It made them both feel like part of my new electric car experience. other than that, I like the others, no longer worry about plugging in when on the road, unless there is a open, easy to access, no cost to me, public charge station, available. an hour's charge on a L2 is about $0.70 worth of Gas, on a 110 volt, about $0.30 worth, not worth the effort to as noted above, get permission, unwind and rewind...
relax! with a volt I don't have to worry about charging ! now if you go out and buy a battery electric vehicle, then you always need to somewhere in the back of your mind understand you range and charging situation, but with a plug in hybrid, that worry just doesn't exist!
Paul
 
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